i wish i could go back -
hold the little boy with unkempt, inky hair
and clumsy, painted fingertips
by the hand and tell him:
“you are a hero.
you will soar into the sky
with your crimson cape
and pointe shoes;
the crowd will tell you
to fight tougher, punch harder
but i believe in you
and that's enough.”
day 6, Nostalgia
i know him too well —
the sweaty palms
the wobbly knees
the trembling voice
he sits with me in therapy
scowls at me, clawing his nails into my arms
growls through gritted teeth:
“quit talking about me.”
and the floor tilts underneath.
i do not flinch/shrink/cower;
i remain firm/secure/composed
my tongue is an ammunition
i am no longer afraid to exhaust.
Day #4 of Escapril, prompt: anxiety.
when the Tuscan sunlight trickled through the blinds,
pouring gold specks into the room
and your light hums reverberated into my ear
as we laid in tangled sheets
it dawned on me that
home was never a place —
home was a person.
this is it, i thought
this is home.
day #8: a love poem
when fear comes
i make space for it.
i allow my fear to live and breathe and sometimes i give it a slice of pizza.
i feel its' grips and its' tugs
but i turn a blind eye;
because i have learned
that when i don't fight my fear
it does not fight back.
i invite fear with me
wherever i go
from ordering off a menu to public displays of affection with my lover
i give it a first class ticket, a front row seat
i tell my fear,
“please, sit back,
enjoy the show
- but you are forbidden
under any circumstances
to take control.”
the secrets you want to keep veiled
the words you wish you had said
are hidden away in junk drawers, dusty cupboards, bulging closets
tell them that is safe here
tell them to step into the bright sun
tell them of the sanctuary that is a lover's gentle fold
we await them
day 12 - Spring Cleaning
My body climbed into tear-stained sheets,
senses circling me with familiar lavender
and anxious qualms
about where I was.
I peered out the rain-streaked windows
to see the full moon
gleaming akin to a neon sign that said,
the hazy moon dipped into silver
the glinting stars sank into gold,
and it was as if you were plucked from the pool of darkness
and plunged into the face of the earth
the constellations on your celestial body
the supernova glow of your being
is the starlight everyone needs
day 13 - celestial bodies
this one is dedicated to my baby niece.
every star in the night sky
wishes to kiss me in gold dust
every rough body of ocean
wishes to wash over me in healing salt
every rose bush, blooming or wilting
wishes for me to tend to their roots
my hands do not falter,
for my golden heart
never runs out of gleaming currency
my voice cuts through the silence,
the dagger in my hand is sheathed
in a white dress and red lipstick
my home, a well-built powerhouse
stands on dark rocks,
overlooking an indigo sea at twilight.
11: Every goddess. (prompt: not from your perspective)
This is written in my mother's perspective
at night you can find me
planted onto the tile floor
the shower water gushing against my hunched back feels like a hug
each trickle resembles your fingers
- i'm trying to erase you,
scrub away the marks you've left on my wrists,
the bruised knees
but your threatening undertone
rings in my head
stings the sterile lights,
they will always flicker.
when you awaken
you will stretch your limbs out wide,
give this new slate a hug,
let it know that it will be yours for the taking.
undoing this new chapter with a clear conscience and an open heart,
your pen will overflow with compassion and fortitude.
you will shed your burdens,
as you whisper,
This is my first entry to Savannah Brown's Escapril poetry project! Nothin' fancy.
the boy with tousled black hair met my gaze and cocked his head to the side. "come here", he mouthed with a grin that allowed his fangs, sharp and glinting, to come into view. they were like diamonds and i was a lapidary, fueled to engrave him into my memory. the other boy beside him was too busy placing kisses all over his pale neck to notice i had moved closer. eventually, he stopped. his silver eyes flashed into mine, and his lips barked a kind of laughter that brought a slick of sweat to my palms. "Claudius, who is this?"
Claudius stood up, his voice mocking. "our appetizer."
the urge to run kicked me to the stomach, but my feet couldn't sprint quick enough.
he pierced his fangs into my neck, and i drifted.
day 16 - any dreams?
wrote a short story (not a poem!) based off a dream i had two nights ago.
i **** on the patch of swollen purple on my thigh
pick the scabs my wounds formed
and dance around the beast's smoke
sometimes, i scream at him
tell him to leave
but he always screams louder
i need to bury him anyway
enfold him in the land of past selves and bad habits
and when i do
the light will pour in
as my heart grows golden roots
and the choir sings a chorus of release
while my body sways along
and in those moments where the sun is setting
and the house lulls to a soft quiet
and your body falls back into the numbness,
may you know that you will always have you.
these parts can never be taken away;
no matter how much the pain and longing
tries to dim everything into a moonless black,
you will always have you.
the darkness knows all my secrets.
he hands me a cluster of bones from my closet
the ones i've tried to bury
he conducts a séance for the memories
the ones i've tried to smother gone
the darkness knows how deep the storm roars in my chest,
and smiles at the rumble of thunder
the storm clouds threatened
to pull me into the blue river
and drown me in a mix of cobalt and smoke
i was pushed into the rift
the folds of brine,
so i pulled out my pockets
hoping the last bit of blush pinks
and buttercup yellows
would save me from the patches
of leaden gray
day 09: furor (focus on a color)
I think I (unwittingly) swayed away from the prompt and went off the rails with this one.
my bedroom/airports/empty reception rooms/anywhere at 2 am
vacant parking lots
hospitals at midnight
museum waiting lines in the early morning
schools during break
late night supermarket runs
waiting for the bus at 5 am
walking down the cobblestone streets at 6 am
gas stations at dawn
unfamiliar McDonalds on long road trips
their buzzing electricity is my alternate reality. stretching across my view with reckless abandon.
day 20 - liminal spaces
why, oh why
do you rebel against me?
for i heal every last one of your cuts and bruises
without asking for your permission;
why, oh why
do you punish me?
for i stick by your side
in spite of all the abuse you put me through;
on the days you do not want me,
(call me "vile" and "atrocious")
and on the days that you do
(call me "magnificent" and "divine") —
i will turn your bones into kindling
and run your cracks into lacquered gold
i will always be here
to keep you breathing
day 17: if my body could speak:
prompt: body as a friend (or foe?)
— The End —