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Sofia J Coman Sep 2020
I remember when first my head pushed out of my egg
All about me my sisters stirred, small children testing their muscles
We pushed. We dug. Our long necks straining through wet sand
We said goodbye. We dove. We swam apart. We were happy.
Turtles have not much to say.

I remember the morning when first they came to my bog
Oh the racket they made. The acrid reek. Their footfalls broke my moss
With nets and shovels and loud voices they searched
We dove deep. We swam silently, like clouds in the night. I was snared
I was taken so far from home.

I remember when first I saw the man in a hot, smelly city shop
He tapped upon my glass and spoke, waving his arms and shouting
I pulled my head into my shell. My beak ached for clean water
I tried to hide. I tried to cry. I tried to climb the slippery walls
I went with the man, in a brown sack.

I remember when the first pin was driven into my back
The searing pain through my thick but sensitive shell
Then another. And another. The cruel men drove them deep
I tried to scream. I tried to run. I tried wriggle out of the agony
Gold burned like a thousands suns.

I remember…

I remember the sadness in the man’s eyes. Not for me
Turtles live for centuries, he said. Make it perfect. Gild and jewel
The terror. The weight. My heavy, heavy shell. My legs give out
The longest life a curse. My glittering shelter a prison. My life
This life forever.

I remember…

A poem about a gilded turtle, based off of story 4 of Huysmans' Against the Grain
Sofia J Coman Jul 2020
It was early on a Saturday morning
when I found the tiny slug.
It was stranded in the middle of a parking lot,
still wet with dew, but that would soon
become a trackless desert for small creatures.

With a small blade of grass, I coaxed
the slug onto my thumb. It sat there, shyly
peaking its feelers out, no bigger than my nail.
My heart melted. I walked it to the bushes,
and saying "goodbye, small friend", brought it home.

I think often about the measure of my life.
Do I draw Meaning from my weight on a scale
held by some all-powerful, cosmic being?
From how my life touches those around?
From the music I leave behind?

The answer to these questions is not the one I like.
But as long as there are tiny slugs in parking lots

I will live on
Sofia J Coman Mar 2020
It's funny to think
that I once liked this room.
It was so... *****, comfortable.
But now that I cannot leave,
all the comfort shrivels
into ringing pain.

All my decorations and trappings
to reveal nothing but padded walls
Written from quarantine, with nowhere to go, and no one to care
Sofia J Coman Dec 2019
I awoke to a world white to my touch:
All color and shadow had faded
to a blinding, uniform brightness.

I don't remember who I was before:
That is perhaps a blessing for me
for now I am everywhere.

I hear its voice inside my head:
Dreamlike and calm, but spoken
as if from the mouths of billions.

I am just an avatar for myself:
A husk of a form, a vehicle to move
one of endless forms among the stars

I turn my countless eyes upward:
I laugh for the twinkling universe
that has yet to know my oblivion

And all my bodies try to scream
Sofia J Coman Dec 2019
The auburn sun
breaks the watery,
shifting horizon.

It's so beautiful,

I almost forget
how the electrodes
throb in my brain.
Sofia J Coman Dec 2019
She was dead already when you found her,
but yet she smiled at you shyly, avoiding your gaze.
That first night, when you laughed together
as you walked side by side beneath the moon
that shown between the cobwebs, you fell for her.
And she fell for you.
But she was dead.

When winter came, and you huddled together
as the snow fell and deadened the noisy avenues,
she told you that she was in terrible, terrible pain.
You can't see it, she said, but it's like my very soul
has been ripped from me. You said you loved her.
And she said she loved you.
But she was dead.

Do you remember the first time your gazes locked
but the light behind your eyes had begun to fade?
Her breath trembled lightly as she noticed,
and quickly grabbed your hand. I'm fine,
you said. She kissed you gently and made you promise.
You promised.
You promised.

Today she woke with a start to the sound
of her own heart beating. Beating! But swiftly
her overwhelming joy turned to cold dread,
as icy as a frozen spire. I'm.... alive... but where is she?
Her anguished screams broke the grey dawn,
holding tight your gentle form, slowly cooling.
I love her with all my life!
But she is dead
A story I wrote when I was sad. I do not ever want this to happen.
Sofia J Coman Nov 2019
Look back at all you have left behind
Everyone you know
Everyone you love
Everyone you’ve ever heard of
Every **** sapiens
Every life
Every death
Every memory
Is so far away
On a blue speck of dust
Within that speck of light
Slowly fading into the hungry void

Our speck

Now is not the time for tears
Look ahead
To all the new stars
Excerpt from *Sanctity in Shifting*
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