Tag Archives: poetry

The arrival

Most people think of poety as a delicate thing.  .
Like sugar finely spun into a gossamer silk adorning an ornate wedding cake.
Its splendour to be found both in its intricacy and its fragility.
Even the word poetic, dances upon the tongue elegantly

So I receive gifts of  watercolour paper, inks, sealing wax, calligraphy sets, leather bound notebooks, all of the finest instruments – as those who hear my words believe must be necessary to create beauty, but this is not the reality, my words are not spun like gossamer silk.

They do not arrive softly, tenderly, sweetly, politely.
They don’t beckon gently, make me a cup of tea, and invite me to consider them.

The Words arrive without notice, in the middle of the night, chaotically, loudly.
They jostle me out of bed.
Like a calamity or a boisterous and unpleasant houseguest, who is a loud talker with no filter, whose prattle echoes through a tiny cottage, when you have a migraine.

They words arrive like a circus train through a sleepy town in the wee hours.
Girrafes, elephants, tigers, monkeys, birds.  All with their own call and screech and noise.  All with their own smell and movement.  All with their own desires and needs aching to be met. All trumpeting above one another to have their voice heard.

They are restless, they want to be let out.  They have arrived and they want to breathe free air, and stretch their toes  on the soft grass.  They want to roll in it.  They want to bathe in fresh water  and Not pace and pace in their 4×4 cells that stink of piss and sweat and despair.

The words eviscerate me with their brutality and resurrect me with their exquisite beauty.
Their arrival is nothing less than sacred chaos.

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Days like this

Sometimes it is not easy,

To be alive

When bodies creak and stick like rusting broken hinges
Sharp edges that threaten your tactile senses
When depression creeps under the covers,
A constant companion from the moment you wake
When your pennies cannot feed you and poverty creates in you a criminal
When opportunity sits appraising your value like some casted off thing
in a pawn shop
And death seems like a mercy.

Until you go for a walk just before dusk and watch the sunset
And remember that you are magical.
Remember that your hands are the bandagers of skinned knees and your arms are a refuge for the fallen
Remember that your eyes see the suffering hidden under the surface
and your mouth bears witness to injustice
You, are a truth teller.  A change maker.  A warrior.  A queen.  A safe place.  A kindness.
A hot meal to the starving.  A salve for the wounded.

You are a miracle.

Pink clouds of golden light touch your face and whisper lovingly,
The earth will never fail to hold you up and the sky goes on forever,
like breathing

 

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Apathetic Warcry

The apathy shuffles in like a zombie
A second skin, that begins to coat your mind
with its poison
Greasy
and yet weighted like lead,
And no one notices that your eyes are dead

Trapped in a powerless paralysis
Unable to think your way out
Tortured by  a disease inside your mind
That no one will understand so just say,
I’m fine and you?

Desperate for someone to blame
you eye the girl with chipped nailpolish  and downcast eyes
the one who prefaces your truth
with an apology

She wears your name like shapeless wool sweater
pulling the collar down and away from her skin
Agitated by the way it itches

In dr’s offices she is genuinely apologetic, and appropriately ashamed
Of her ‘Condition’
Particularly when reminded of how inconvenient she is.

She is a good girl.  She does what she is told.
Wears her diagnostic label like a sash in the mental illness pageant
For their consideration

And

You

Don’t

Forgive

Her

Compliance

Blame is easier.
than living with your face,
cracked open
like a river dam

Broken.

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inner conflict

Body landscape

tumblr_m5so7efEvN1qedotto1_500

As a thin woman, I didn’t know what it felt like to have a body
My arms swung freely unaware of their surrounding geography
My thighs, seperated by that infamous canyon
were unaccquainted with each other.

But when there is a mountain range in the centre of your country,
You cannot help but notice the change in gravity,
Air pressure building, feeling the incline, that swells as you ascend

Heavy breasts make for themselves a home, in the crook of my elbows,
Accustoming my arms to their presence
Constant companions, offering their ample form
To soften my sharp thoughts.

I am guided to take hold of this body, lifting and moving its fat,
like bread dough in the hands of a baker.
Learning its mysteries in ways that are not possible
When you use a spoon, instead of your hands.

I Spread out in all the ways that feel good to move, getting flour on my nose.
No longer seeking to pound it flat,
Overworking my form and obliterating the sweetness of its authentic taste,
I Embrace the grandness of this being
Rather than grieving the loss of the fragile, goose-fleshed, exposed ribs of my youth.

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Swallowed

This bed has become a refuge, and a prison.
Dark and warm, I crawl on my belly, deeper and deeper
Into my own absence

This morning, I awoke desperate for some distant artifact
Evidence, of your existence
The lingering scent of your honeyed skin
A stray hair, I could braid into my own
Some remnant I could fashion into a talisman,
to ward off the dark and piercing loneliness

There are no arms to hold me.
But gently,  a cold, wet nose  and sticky, warm tongue
Attend to my grief stricken faced

If I rail at these efforts to soothe me,
she merely lies down and keeps a silent vigil for my wellbeing.
Waiting for an invitation to provide affection.

This love cannot hold me
But constant and unchanging,  it transcends language and culture
As a primate, I ache to be held
As a spirit, I recognize devotion.

Image

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Butch Girl, Beautiful

butch femme

It can be arms canvassed in tattoos, eyes that flash with daring, an incorrigible smile or something as understated as a steady gaze

In any case,  her eyes declare

I want inside your wilderness

From across the room, from down the hall, haunting eyes that buck authority and promise all sorts of dirty things

The language of her body reads “I perfected the art of fucking girls up against walls in the safe haven of these strong arms.  And I want you.

The swagger of her approach promises to pin me up against a wall, hold my arms above my head, kissing me like it is the end of the world and worshiping at the altar of my breasts,  if it truly is the end, you goddess, are the only one I want rapture from.

Tasting her name in my mouth, I roll it around my tongue and suck deeply, licking the cologne that clings to her curves, treasuring a kind of woman-ness that isn’t taught in school or photographed for magazines.  There is nothing in conflict or transition about your butch woman’s body.

Carressing her undressed form and applying a warm, wet mouth to her natural grace.  This dance lays both of us bare and exposed, scarred beauties.

I can see where you have been wounded by eyes like nails, where your beauty has gone unrecognized in a world that defines woman, so narrowly.

You can see, where I have been accosted by intrusive hands, claimed  and seized by those who perceive my feminine state as nothing more than plunder.

And so we wrap each other up a tangle of arms and legs, while the intensity between us burns like the oceans between our thighs.

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Not a Love Poem

heartbroken

Moonfaced girl, with eyes full of stars, asks me to write her a poem.
How can it be that she don’t know that  I WRITE HER  EVERY POEM
When I write  grief, pain, and fear, I am writing about you
About the places where you live in my body, just under my skin.

But you don’t want to hear that do you?
No, your face wants a love poem

You want to hear that MY LOVE, is like a heat wave.
So intensive and expansive, the way it transforms the very air, that you have to learn to breathe all over again.

You want me to romance you with the tongue of Sappho and the arms of Neruda,  wrapping you in constellations of awe

You don’t want to hear that my love broods in dark corners, skulks in alley ways, hides itself in bed, where the absence of your round fleshy form, no longer warms like a hearth beneath the covers

You don’t want to see the tears that collect more often than occasionally as I go about my daily chores, remembering the way you smelt of wildflowers, honey and summertime.

You don’t want to know that my love is wounded and guilty and damaged.  You don’t want to prick your gentle fingers on the sharp corners that have formed along its edges, jagged and barbed in anticipation of being touched

My love WAS like a heat wave, it scorched the grass, and starved the birds.

Let’s pray for rain now.

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Thicker Skin

She tells me, to make this work, you need a thicker skin.
But my skin is thin like paper, pages of an unfinished manuscript, scraps of poetry hastily scribbled on cocktails napkins and forgotten receipts crumpled in the depths of pockets.

Fragments of meaning. Pure nonsense, pure wisdom.

Stumbling along I am mostly metaphor, interpreted differently by each new set of eyes, wandering the streets like a ghost, untouched, unseen.

Would that I could coat my skin with scales, impenetrable to the sharpest of words, encase my eyes, so that I may dive deeply into the fray, able to see past and future.  Transmuted by alchemical fire, I am Immune to the burning of tears. Make of my skin a leathery battleground, because I am strong, but I am not tough.

Not tough like stony faces with cool eyed stares owning their burdens silently.

I am the antithesis of silence.

My pain reads across my face like a neon sign, promising live nude girls, obvious to anyone regardless of their literacy; attracting those that would fetishize my vulnerability.

Jacket ripped, spine cracked from overuse, ink trailing.

And so I augment my words

And I complicate my stanzas

And I become a tome of such weight and complexity

that knowledge of me becomes unreadable without mastery

So forgive my thin skin, my ripped pages, my velum transparency

All I have to cover myself is the illusion of artistry

skin

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Meredith, in a Lime Green Parka

Meredith in a lime green parka
waiting for her lover
in -33 weather
in front of the unwed mothers house, around the corner
asked to meet my dog.

The dog barked furiously
shaking her collar, barring her  teeth

And you let her.

She sniffed at you|
distrustful  of your hooded form
and you smiled patiently,
content to let her suspect you.

Until at last, accepting the safety of your genuine tenderness
She pushed her cold wet nose under your wool soaked fingers

Through the bundled layers of our winter wear, on a starkly cold January night,
your undemanding strength betrays you.

Femme to butch, I catch a glimpse of your suave heart
Steady and true.

No need to ask how you identify or what pronoun you prefer

Just me.

Just you.

winternight

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