I was very stuck. This is not my best. About doll collecting
It’s obssession, regression, a cry
for more more more, a creeping
fear that there will never be enough,
that I will never be enough. Have I
sealed my fate like all these painted lips,
pursed, unsmiling? I don’t mind
their unblinking eyes. I know
someday I’ll pile them in a box
and send them on their way but for now
each in her place, each
with her story.
Today’s NaPoWriMo post was about using something overheard. On April 1st, as I was sitting outside to write my first poem of the month, I wrote down something I overheard. There were a few kids breaking glass bottles on the playground, and as a couple walked by the man told them not to because younger kids might get hurt. His last words to them were “I’ll come find you if you do.”
I may write more with that sentence, but for now, a love poem.
I’ll Come Find You If You Do
I will wait for years, going old and frail, while somewhere
across the world you do the same, and I will wait for you
to call my name. I’ll come find you if you do.
I will consult with broken bottles, shards of glass,
I will ask the birds. I won’t forget that I gave you
my word. I’ll come find you if you do.
Leaving doesn’t mean forever. When you’re far away
from this place, if you’re broken or frightened or only
miss my face, I’ll come find you if you do.
I’ll be right here unless you need me right there
beside you, you have my pledge. You may stumble
on the edge but fight through, love. I’ll come
find you if you do.
I was using a prompt for a civic poem, something responding to current events. I have a hard time with that sort of thing – I have so many thoughts and feelings, but trouble translating them into poetry.
I am a small voice.
I don’t add much to the crowd, to the call
and response. A small voice
and on the phone I stumble and slur.
I am a small voice
even in poems where I try to shout.
A small voice
but unlike before it is filled with rage,
it will not
be silent anymore.
This is based on yesterday’s NaPoWriMo prompt: a nocturne. Another poem inspired by Emerald City. Kind of a sonnet.
It’s not worth it, the dreams
that hang in swags over bedposts,
full of voices no on else
will hear. I only want sleep
if it’s the oblivious kind,
Younger girls twitch
like puppies, innocent.
They won’t be so sweet
when the lights come on
but sleep makes us all small-
me so small I might tumble
down the space between the pillows
This poem was inspired, oddly enough, by an article about Melania Trump’s instagram photos. The author depicted her as a sort of fairytale princess who has no desire to leave her tower, and that sent me here.
I wait here burnt, bloodied, while she makes up
her mind. The door is unlocked now, the monster slain,
but still she stands at the window as if she wasn’t free.
I’ve told her she owes me nothing, not her lips nor her love,
in case I’m what she fears. But all she does is press her hand
to the glass and say “I like the view,” and that is that, though
I tell her of the wonders I’ve seen in the wide world. I give her time,
return again and again, and while she smiles from her window she never comes
down. After a month,
I stop going up.
I’ve had my fair share
of adventures and damsels.
“Aren’t you a bit old
to be a knight?” the girl,
from her window. I know
My dashing days are past.
But she wants out more
than she wants perfect so
she asks me to climb her hair.
The brambles have grown back
around this tower, the first
I ever scaled. But this time
no dragons. Only two souls
within the tower room,
the girl young enough to be
my daughter, a woman
old enough to be my wife.
She doesn’t fight
when I take her child
and the girl never looks
with all the newness ahead.
But I look back, briefly, see her
in the window, my princess, hand on the glass.
Got a few days behind on posting but I’ve still been writing!
This is based on a prompt about colors. I was thinking about color names for things like nail polish and how creative and strange those can be. And then it dawned on me: crayons. The 1992-1993 Crayola contest to name several new colors came at a time in my life that I’ve mostly forgotten about due to trauma, but those crayons still stand out to me.
Name the Colors
There was a time before robin’s egg blue,
before tickle me pink and purple mountain’s
majesty, before even macaroni and cheese.
I don’t remember life before, only
the moment they were born. When I drew you
pictures for your hospital room
all those years ago, as my world
collapsed, what did I do about the lack
of razzmatazz? My memories are in concrete
and brick red, unsharpened. But the Big Box,
that I remember, so many crayons named
by kids my age who could think about color,
who weren’t caught up in worries
and words, who would remember forever
the day the paper wrappers were marked
with their names, permanent,
I ran into this story on my Facebook feed and wandered into the comments after I read it. Someone said something about this trope dating back to Cassandra of Greek mythology, so I went and read up on her again.
TW: allusions to rape
Irresistible is a terrible word, one that means
curses and misfortunes falling fast and wet
like raindrops only because I dared to have
a face. It means he had no choice, gods will be
boys. And after the trial, after they list
all the reasons this was my own fault, after
they tell me my face evokes lies, not beauty,
I become a danger to others, overdramatic,
a ruiner or men with potential. No one can resist
telling me so. When I speak, when I try to fix
the world that’s broken me, they say not all gods.
I send them prophecies and they return them
with notes scribbled on the back, promises
or blood and fire.