The Battle Between Carnival and Lent by Holly Iglesias


From a spare palette—red, blue, brown—hubbub. Revelers and

Scolds circle the Drunk astride a barrel. Hooligans storm the

cloaked Penitents as they shuffle into church. Hens squawk,

maids squeal, a boy tickles the backside of the Devil. The

Cripple peers into a well as children scatter like marbles, jostling

bakers, soldiers, dunces, and nuns lolling in the square. Splashes

of white form a triangle—apron, grain sack, egg—invoking the

Trinity and other miracles of composition. A single day, the

ground neutral, and windows everywhere, gaping like mouths.


About the Author

Holly Iglesias is a poet and translator. Her work includes Angles of Approach (White Pine Press), Souvenirs of a Shrunken World (Kore Press), and Boxing Inside the Box: Women’s Prose Poetry (Quale Press). She is the recipient of fellowships and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the North Carolina Arts Council, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, and the Edward Albee Foundation. Her most recent work is Sleeping Things, forthcoming from New Rivers Press.


The Battle Between Carnival and Lent
“The Battle Between Carnival and Lent” by Pieter Bruegel the Elder