in process: speaking up, and teaching our daughters to do the same

Speak up

This is the thing I want to say:
when I was young
I never knew that there was
more than one path open to us,
that we could make the difficult choice
but I want you
to know it.

Sometimes I don’t know how to do
the thing that I have to do,
the thing that I have chosen.

Sometimes my
skin feels inside out
and my body like it is in 12
places at once.

Sometimes I try to tell someone
but I am behind glass.

No one can hear me.
No one can see my face
without a blur hiding its detail.

Lately I am a calm sea
quiet, with slow, constant motion
but no release.

The small waves
are lulling me into a trance
that will take me through
the long days of darkness
and winter and waiting

but this false calm
cannot last.

I am ready now
to show my
true face.

I am made of fire and earth
and they do not hide.

I look around and see
so many others still hiding

and I wonder why we keep
trying to exert ourselves
over things clearly
so much more
powerful than
we are.

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on losing

Feeling the pull to say (and feel):

I love you anyway. Even if you fall and fail and we don’t ultimately win this one. Its ok. I’m still here and will always be here.

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poetry in process

Bones on the brain

The whole house is sleeping
I am sleepy too
but sleep felt like a waste of precious time
so I am here
Glassey eyed,
sketching skulls.

We cut through bones
Yesterday evening in the dark
On the front porch.
He held the pruners
And I held the baby
While her and I
Watched his strength
Cut through

Now I have bones on the brain.

I think both
of their strength
and fragility

Remembering how easily
my own have broken

The other day a woman showed me how
The inside of a human skull
Has a pattern on it that looks just like
A leaf pressed into silver

In the crisp air and quiet
Of an empty room in the early morning
It seems quite natural,
That each should be
inside the other.

night breeze

I feel the breeze through
the bedroom window
on a summer night
as I sit with my baby
at my breast,

it’s the end of summer
and finally the coyotes
have returned.

their song comes through
the open window and in the
odd hours of the early morning
they keep me company
in the quiet and the dark.

The cool comes on quickly and
autumn makes herself known
as the warmth of the day
arrives later and later.

Daylight makes lessons learned
in the dark harder to remember.

There is a feeling of relief
and then dismay
when I realize that
I am still myself,
despite the drastic
changes to my
definition.

Stretch marks,
like any other scar,
are a reminder
of where I’ve been
a record on my body
of each destination
and crash.
A mind may forget
but the body remembers.

It is written on my bones
and this body will find a way.

In a time of crisis
I strain to remember
what coyote taught me
about the lighthearted
nature of the universe
I say it over and over again
in my head, hoping repetition
will make it stick.

Her mouth curves into a wide grin
around my nipple and
again I am in love.

 

 

 

 

Published on Zoomoozophone Review

night breeze

I feel the breeze through
the bedroom window
on a summer night
as I sit with my baby
at my breast,

it’s the end of summer
and finally the coyotes
have returned.

their song comes through
the open window and in the
odd hours of the early morning
they keep me company
in the quiet and the dark.

The cool comes on quickly and
autumn makes herself known
as the warmth of the day
arrives later and later.

Daylight makes lessons learned
in the dark harder to remember.

There is a feeling of relief
and then dismay
when I realize that
I am still myself,
despite the drastic
changes to my
definition.

Stretch marks,
like any other scar,
are a reminder
of where I’ve been
a record on my body
of each destination
and crash.
A mind may forget
but the body remembers.

It is written on my bones
and this body will find a way.

In a time of crisis
I strain to remember
what coyote taught me
about the lighthearted
nature of the universe
I say it over and over again
in my head, hoping repetition
will make it stick.

Her mouth curves into a wide grin
around my nipple and
again I am in love.

Recently published in The Zoomoozophone Review Issue 3

Closer

We go into the wilderness
to find a wilder version of ourselves,
to release her out into the world.

We look, trying to see everything
between the curves and the edges,
how it blends together and fades.
We circle back, again and again,
each time getting just a little
closer to the center.

The sounds of the ocean and
the windswept pines belong together.

We desire. We demand. We rage.
We are quiet when we should speak.
We shed layers. Grow. Surrender. Leave behind.
We die and come alive again.

We dance wildly in an empty room
trying to enjoy instead of endure.
We live together on our separate planets.
We arrive again and again.

My body was made for this.

eating an orange

I eat an orange
and look at the rain
fall outside my second
story window onto
the streets and
sidewalks below
as my body begins to
reproduce the blood
that the doctor has
just taken from me.

Sometimes
it seems,
a body takes over.

The mind becomes
less important and
precious thoughts
are harder
to formulate
or care about.

Needs are basic
and primal and
we learn to listen
to the wisdom of
our bodies.

A bit of juice
dribbles down
my finger and
as I lick it up
I am reminded
that we are all
just animals
full of instinct.

I close my eyes
and feel the world
begin to change
its course
according to the
movements of my toes
and the pads
of my fingertips.