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Jun 2018 · 321
Stefania S Jun 2018
the way it percolates

driving us mad

bringing tears to our eyes

often heavy and sad

my neighbor claims karma

an act of simple fate

laughing i drove off

his words unaware of my morning escapades

an affair with a man

married in state

his wife wears a crown

of the knight that she made

his heart, may be heavy

his head overwhelmed

his pain numb inside 

mine a throbbing shell

under the dripping trees 

of the Old North State

our lips met


our bodies sought fate

tangled were our limbs

no judgment we laid

onlookers know not

their ignorance in spades

my jealousy gripping

like the pulse and the pain

our tongues lapping up

what others disdain

hands clenched together

a night full of waves

guilty some may cry

but please save your rage

i have no time for your misdirected pain

we work and wonder

our daybreaks heavy and claimed

years have gone by

what have we paid

mountains don't move

not like thrashing seas

nor do carolina skies

or the heavy florida heat

where will we be when the clock strikes time

beneath a hammock of oak

or a splintering of vines

tobacco barns in sight

the owl's swift decline

curving roads leading

rabbits fly by

empty nest for one

the other full and spry

moments of sanity

spared by lucidity

medication blurred thoughts

windows to the world

veins pumping heavy

words turned to swords

heal we must

but how do we know

if this is the pain of the stay or the pain of the go

anonymity for one, me, i don't care

i have no shame for my truth

no guilt left to spare

my journey, long, spirited and cold

my hands pumping blood

meant to eventually go
Stefania S Apr 2018

today, what about today?


tomorrow, drenched in heartbreak or sorrow?


tonight, my phone rings softly and i see the light.

sowing in the earth resists

grinding rocks

bloodied fists

who knows how many hearts have tried

narrow fields stitched with pride

rage or passion

seeds do grow

setting out across the snow

winter passed, spring anew

i wander alone

so do you

we greet and hold

hands so tight

lovers by morning

starry-eyed nights

echoes we recall

a summer it came

morning called

you whispered my name

deep and melodic

the back of your throat

inside of a capsule

we scribe

you drove

heavy weight

fibers of news

do you know how i write about you

i cringe and quake

missing the turn

your steering quicker than my ability to learn

damaged and broken

my rims are all bent

seedlings of hope

washed away and spent

flying from above

like a diving demand

your hand reaches out

it carries the sand

a tiny piece of earth

you watch from so high

my drowning demands

my inability to pry

barking i save

for the hollows of night

the moon a virginal witness

my massive plight

when will you set

when will we grow

seedlings we scattered

so long ago

some days there is green

if i glimpse in the light

the turn of your hand

from softness to right

empty shells some

no blooms they will deliver

but nothing is certain

not in the cold winter

my body the forest

my heart the sky

your love the earth

through my simple mind’s eye

wind me up

set me down

please just don’t let these seeds die in the ground
Apr 2018 · 216
in the processing
Stefania S Apr 2018
the line between the conscious and unconscious self; how easily i eek by and walk it like a tightrope, a never-ending circus act that defies the laws of physics and psychology all in one. studied and rendered, the darkness is forever intrusive and limits the layers of light as they fight for ownership, my spirit and soul far too heavy for a world gone mad with the weight of ego.

insecurity, maybe an aimless plight, its acknowledgment hardly anything new but still just as disarming. i watch myself cross the room, moving in direct proportion to the molecules that fill the space and i wonder how much of it i consume, where exactly do i begin and end. how much more can i become without becoming nothing?

laughter, a gift; an art form; a defense mechanism, merely a guise to hide what falls below and leaves empty space between. i don’t make others laugh, though i wish i did, could, knew how. instead what i do is force them to think, to draw back, to discern. myself a mere vehicle, never the driver, though often wishing for the opportunity to direct.

love is in there too, it brews like tea leaves, ghostly images fallen to the bottom of the cup. no one knows how to read them really, not even me. i am forever in the processing, the guiding, the questioning, the limitless bounty of loss that has plagued this span of existence. i know how to love, but like the winter, my snow suffocates the seeds and forces them into hibernation.

a girl without a garden, not one she knows how to tend alone anymore. my back more ache than muscle. my ego, an ant crawling up the side of a mountain. hubris once the feared fall no longer in the picture. think, think, think. too much though. always too much.
Apr 2018 · 326
when i think
Stefania S Apr 2018
inside of my mind

where no one else goes

darkened and shady

brilliantly posed

flowers run wild

while fears plant their seeds

i quietly sit

spaced out and relieved

empty voices speak

notes too high to hear

other times louder

than a scream to the ear

windows glow yellow

the moon sometimes too

mostly alone, unless i think of you

i’m walking down roads

alone and afraid

an empty hand

a shovel-less *****

toxic is the blood

that feeds off my thoughts

memories and wishes

destroyed and distraught

a kiss far too much

an embrace miles away

waking and sleeping

night turns to day

victimless mind

how quickly you fall

under the spell

cast by the call
Apr 2018 · 148
where i leave my footsteps
Stefania S Apr 2018
follow right

down the way

soft and lush

gardens lay

tender day

borrowed brush

the feeling of hunger

the feeling of love

my steps so silent

coy and light

wandering whispers

trees at night

golden glow

sun’s silky glove

chirps like gossip

high in the trees

me on the ground

heart skinned like knees

pain sufficient

tender touch

carpeted forest floor

where we rush

underfoot, i surely run

catching up

the rays of the sun

but who does wait

beyond the trees

trampled paths

fallen leaves

find my step

stay in line

don’t wander from the path

gilded lies

rings of age

too many to count

your heart swollen

down to pounce

wake me when it’s safe to leave

my footsteps behind

amongst the trees
Apr 2018 · 259
truth tainted by honesty
Stefania S Apr 2018
maybe you won’t like

what i have to say

maybe it’ll only

serve to scatter the remains

maybe you’ll shun me

violently turning away

truth and honesty

not always easy prey

a manufactured truth

tucked away

honesty spoken by my heart

every day

dawns full of words

nights often grey

being mindful

respectful, far away

but love doesn’t care

distance no moat

what road did you wander

not the one that we wrote

simplicity in terms

vulgarity despised

my heart the gauntlet

trapped behind lies

someday’s are forever

never to appear

time melted long ago

your purpose its peer

what have you


what have you to give

where are the makings

the markings

the sieve

filtered out

safe enough to breathe

air open, closed lungs

dead leaves

winters passed, summers too

spring always the death

of me and you

we fight and we flounder

the blooms everywhere

except for our hearts

our heads

our chairs

i’ll sit and wait

i’ll saddle up for the ride

simplest of terms

no one can describe

barbaric torture

namely my own

fits of weakness

life turned to bone

find me i demand

hold me near

end what you suffer

embrace what you fear

scattered blossoms

crepes turned to white

willows that weep

far off and out of sight

fold up the papers

toss them about

let go of the plundering

give up on the doubt

once in a while

we are given the chance

the honesty of love

the long forgotten dance

so wrap me up tight

or silently let me go

without justification

i’d rather be snow
Feb 2018 · 332
run away
Stefania S Feb 2018
come home to me
leave the past behind
all of those pains and scars
you keep them breathing
and alive
feeding them
filet and lobster
with that they'll never tire
who could
the ground spins in retrospect
and nothing moves quite as it should
the tree limbs shake and crumble
the weight unbearable even under the owl's watchful eye
broken and lying on a bed of leaves
walking the night
moon high
us too
tears fall hard and we shout
louder you say
but i've no voice left
my shouts died with my last hanging
hands once soft and loving
now placed around my own throat
strangling out the silence
muting my words
my work, unfiltered
but only on walls that won't see the daylight
scars stitched haphazardly
opened up, projected
violent rage of reason
i am not the driver, nor the guidance system
my direction a vague notion upon a nautical spread
while you loop
tires spinning on dusty roads
the valley calls
but the signal always fails
silence the end note to my questioning
Feb 2018 · 371
valentine's eve
Stefania S Feb 2018
birds take flight on a windowless night

but the crows

continue to gather

nosy beaked

wings, oil-streaked

they have no business among us

watching our eyes


silences our lies

and the den grows quieter


without the heat

stalking pointed feet

one falls prey 

after another

stolen eyes

long gone dry

the widow reaches for her master

gun in hand

sleeping sand

the crows do finally scatter
Feb 2018 · 399
simple soul
Stefania S Feb 2018
wandering, lost
rugged highway
vines aloft
ragged nails
heart's a'torn
mourning bourne
forest night
naked morning light
withering grass
rolling sass
southern nights
warbler's flight
spring to hatch
only here, no where near
go away
foggy sway
willow bend
arms to lend
nightly swoon
that ******* moon
Feb 2018 · 304
how i disappeared
Stefania S Feb 2018
it doesn’t seem that long ago that i was a young woman with a baby in my arms, little fists fitting neatly into my own, breath of my breast and an infectious smile that appeared early. of course to say it wasn’t long ago is a bit of a lie, as it’s been nearly eighteen years.

today, nearing my mid-forties and a very different person, i find myself in-between dimensions. time seems to have sped up and i am facing my own mortality as if it were a lover. i have fallen so many times in the years between my baby’s midnight cries and his approaching graduation that i’m not even quite sure if i’ll be walking there or crawling. but i do know i’ll make it, whether it’s under the light of a southern sky or from behind the cover of a darkened and eternally masked visage.

my journey from then and there to here and now has been bumpy. i’ve grown and shrunk, fit in and stood out, fell down and climbed over; basically i’ve turned myself around more times than a spinning top in the hands of a wild-eyed youngster. disappearing, that has been different, less climactic, quieter, more revealing, yet terribly isolating. my actual self, a shrinking figure in a mirror hung so long ago i can’t remember why it was even chosen, its shape too small for any person to do much mirroring. like the mirror, i can hardly recall who stands before it most mornings, my body, bones mostly with very little extra flesh to speak of harshly.

untouched, sacred, THIS body has only been seen by my healthcare provider. no man has seen me disrobe and i can only laugh at what i spent years trying to achieve through the repetitiveness of running finally realized at the hands of a long-term love affair with darkness. food, always the enemy, not so much anymore. i don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it, eat only when i’m hungry, and refuse to deny myself the pleasure of ice cream because of extra skin hanging at my waist or thighs. those days have passed. the thoughts still exist, the what if’s: what if i get fat again, what if i can’t fit into my size 2 skinny jeans, what if i have to wear a real bra again? i try to push them away as often as possible but they lurk, triggers in the land of odd.

when i gave birth to my son i weighed almost 200 lbs. i’m only 5' tall. i was a round little thing with hardly any love for myself. today i weigh nearly half of that, have a healthy bmi and feel pretty good about my body. you’d think that would equate to happiness; wrong.

rather than stretch this out i’ll tie it up, neatly. the smaller i become the less there is of me to hate. shrinking away from everyone and everything, quickly initially, and then slowing down as the years have passed, i’ve found that if i can just squeeze into the tiniest of spaces i won’t hurt so much. there isn’t much of me left to lose and i’m quite cognizant of that, while also keenly aware of the abilities my tiny frame provides, like climbing trees, running at break-neck speed and disappearing in a flash.

eventually i’ll find the shape of my elderly aunts in that ******* mirror, but for now i’d rather grow invisible, tiny, forgotten.
Jan 2018 · 287
working inward
Stefania S Jan 2018
a silent cry
followed by violent shouts
sullen coves
darkened funeral spouts

the undertaker dressed in black
eyes of coal
he never looks back

widow (maker)
spun around
her dresses long
her feelings down

empty shoals
crowned in blue
legs of scars
moon, new

hear her cry
head thrown back
sobbing swallowed
coughing hack

skin transluscent
soft yet untouched
nocturnal creature
fallow of *****

withdraw the bow
pull the sword
unappreciated spied my lord

empty cages open and shut
downward spiral
a violent cuck

harrowed adventure
blighted by (sh)fame
ignorant ties
hollow frame

guilty no more
follow on back
open your mouth
scream from of the lack

trust embellished
overly surmised
internal wicking
her sad lonesome eyes
Stefania S Jan 2018
stability in the clearing
a gathering of family
challenging times behind us
lift our glasses towards the sea

good fortune unbound
mirrored and free
make peace with the winter
nothing comes without need

hard times of ago
nestled unseen
memories abound
mediterranean deep

clasp your heart
breathe in the peace
flowers above
eyes they do see
Dec 2017 · 213
running for cover
Stefania S Dec 2017
there's a storm brewing
warning's gone out
cold coming through,
iced up veins
crumbling about

winter's bone
chilled, dried and cracked
broken shelter
no one's back

empty baggage
old and decayed
cradled leaves, robbed
from the grave

will you answer
when no one's home
the bell that rings
sadness its toll

blame and circumstance
underlying routine
chivalry a dead man's
desire-less need

naked and open
spread and bare
winter's harsh winds
spare no fair
****** in the beginning
as cold begins to fall
whipping boy standing
little girl small
Nov 2017 · 403
shadowless wings
Stefania S Nov 2017
flying, soaring
fields below
flowers and trees

spread open
waiting for reception
withheld moments

gliding mindlessly
the sun bellows from above

clicking and tapping
claws measuring
timing not scheduled for flight

moon dancing
echoing night
shadowless wings
winter ignites

below they cry
look from there
above your head
it's everywhere
Nov 2017 · 252
in the cards
Stefania S Nov 2017
the draw
five cards
maybe just the one

i don't flinch
empty cups
nothing new
laughter, empty

paths of green
ivy and oaks
sumac i hear
i listen

sparse in other woods
sparser than here
webs catching passerby
my eyes watch

in the distance i see the melting
a wanderer's corpse floating
swim upstream the message declares
Oct 2017 · 419
Stefania S Oct 2017
a hand
to hold
fingers, neatly nestled
solid touch

warm syrup
honey spilling
mouths overflowing
with sugar

salt inflicted
poked a bit
now healing
coaxed to fit

blind of sight
deaf of sound
sticky sweet leaves
falling to the ground

delighted you'll run
hollow inside
the man in the moon
laughing, the lies
whispered truths
behind phases of light
narrow windows
buckets of light

no rhyme to follow
or reason to bend
time its worst enemy
also best friend

run through the trees
follow the footfalls
but watch for the thistles
and momentary recalls

names won't be remembered
and the earth will change
but the forest longest living
will remember her frame
Oct 2017 · 367
Stefania S Oct 2017
i touched the buttons
actually having to
erase needed time
reading instructions

as a child the card catalogue
an escape hatch
saturdays spent in dark corners
our local library a getaway
a reprieve
a sanctum

but now everything is online
and the single floor of books here
in the basement, confined, kept hidden
moving tombs their home

i started with the term feminism but landed elsewhere;
phenomenological studies of women
journals not older than i
but long outdated
historically sad

the library made me cry
i wanted to read everything
but also bring it home
a little girl in the patchogue library once again,
alone and crying.
Oct 2017 · 320
boxed in blocks
Stefania S Oct 2017
the walls of her fortress
dripping with sage
centuries old
empty of rage

her gut, a tortured field
often ablaze
truth lies there
while battles were waged

kitchen of flowers
table a maze
lovers look across
not knowing each's gaze

moments of crime
passion betrayed
within the lives of the "normals"
they laughed as they lay
bedridden with ***, long slow daze

south fly the geese, crows never go away
the sparrow calls morning
the owl flies today
blocks of comfort, boxed and weighed.
Oct 2017 · 362
Stefania S Oct 2017
the cup bought on a whim
one of those mornings
willing to spend more than five
for what should cost a buck
but the leaves drew me in
the circle broken by lame marketing
often the case in life
how easily we break our own circles

this morning alone i've reheated its contents three times
what used to be a daily purchase i now prepare at home
the cup its carry
i'm probably killing myself with the reheating
the construction recyclable but that means nothing
reheat inside of that and you'll get cancer
someone says
makes no sense though because the coffee is ******* hot
and the ******* cup holds it every day before it's reheated

i want to be that cup, i think
ready and willing to carry around the contents put upon it
no fuss or bustling
just a vessel
thought little of, pushed to the corner of the closet
brought out for utility

how to be a cup?
how to trade the drive and flourish
the passion that keeps pounding away
the flashes of intensity that find their way into tiny timbered moments
silly though, because of course i can't be the cup
no more than i can be the actual coffee
Oct 2017 · 475
darkest flight
Stefania S Oct 2017
the phone rings
and as always i recoil
my body not set to the ups and downs
of volume,
far more comfortable in the silence
and open space

i think of the x-acto knife at home
how it will shred through the layers of
paper like tissue

tissue like
like tears
like my *******
like the soft space between my thighs

a collage though, put together and patched-up
perhaps i've forgotten those envied bits
long gone are the nights of lovers lying soundless
the room filled with the scent of lust
my tongue and mouth dry, lips cracked from kissing

a drawer full of clippings all ready and i'll glue
color and light, texture and contrast mean almost everything
maybe, mostly, wantonly
withdrawn and blindly i imagine the outline
the way the picture will move and i will be seen

a microscopic view at best, even from over there
turned away and forgotten, like the art of long ago
she once flew higher and faster
skies ahead shouting for her to catch up
days like raindrops splashing on the darkened blacktop
now it's more swamp below than land
footing uncertain and pain inflicted
hands ingrained, lashings she deserves

how to come so far and yet be stuck so violently to the web
spun around and around
blood dripping and draining
and the flies circle,
they wait aware of the unraveling of the fleshy pieces
wanting only the remains

she is a sinner, she repents
but the crime, what of it an whose crime is it really
does she walk with these painful heels or flutter off
reminded that time will heal what space has not already
years of distance and she becomes less human
less herself
less anyone
Oct 2017 · 283
Stefania S Oct 2017
darkness the lover
your soul its
tiny frame, loosened
then bound
working remains
time plays tricks
metabolism for trade

little girl lost, little girl
get out of bed
the angry voices say
or **** it, pull the curtains
simply fade away

dust covered furniture
moats to cross through
each atom
a mere reminder of you

lonesome weather
miracle sights
winding roads
driving through the

let out those shouts
howl them at the
bare your softened soles
take a wander through

the mind a mere
palace, darkened place to play
pasts to escape
futures, delayed
present in the now
winding the tock
hang from the
second hand
your lover, the clock
Oct 2017 · 391
sallow beaked bird
Stefania S Oct 2017
don't know what to
don't know what to
whispered words slowly
spirited away
weapons between teeth
saliva soaked blade
slicing tomorrow, tonight and today
wish me luck
the climb may take a while
the mountain you know
you've been there, child
come when there's snow
i'll offer you a cup
wander through the
my mind turned to dust
mourning sets in
down the mountain you'll go
a jar i'll hand you
fill it with what you need to sow
Sep 2017 · 2.0k
Stefania S Sep 2017
pearls lining my breast
my clavicle tight
and the veins, pulsating underneath warm skin

teeth like razors descend
but the bite becomes more
as one by one the gemstones break free
teasing at each taught ******

slowly and with the hunger of the sea
they graze my naval before finally settling
against a silken shoreline of ecstasy
Mar 2017 · 680
Stefania S Mar 2017
the grass is greening
and voices begin to rise
i wander further
the distance between the tall oaks
and my bare feet
merely a few steps

the front door
not always left ajar
often thrown off its hinges
anger an anvil of weight
a battering ram

the moon rises and night falls
withering cries
cardinals fly west
and venus readies herself
for a second showing

an exchange
invaluable its rate
but just the same
someone's coming
or going
Jul 2016 · 778
red folders in a big box
Stefania S Jul 2016
in this room
noise level
and my pen erupts
the hard truth
it's time to change, again
this frightens me
and i feel lost
transition tightens at my throat
and i start to gasp
i want more of that
terrifying realization
weak and simple
this me, the one that evolved from sand
quickly turned to glass
never setting entirely
permeable and translucent
yet sharp and cutting
she's scratching again
the bars have tightened
the dull and tranquil
merely stagnation
dressed up
bows and pleated skirts in place
Jul 2016 · 413
what now?
Stefania S Jul 2016
she listens
assumption on their faces
but a fool she's not
her mind
thunderstorms in the summer
pounding hear
the intensity too much
tears well
and the music
her most potent line of defense
drowning out the past
mistakes in judgment
a rear view mirror
caked in the blood of battle
that no man dare accept
hands and nails blackened by the soil
and raw
heart like a brillo pad
frightened by the wash of emotion
never the right time to cry
holding onto the moments
praying for the solitude
found only among the trees
places where she's fallen on
knees softened by the earth's surface
birds fleeing from the highest perches
screams as shrill as crumbling foundations
and crashing mountains
a begging dirge
body a useless paradigm
before and after
black and white
alluring and repulsive
desired and rebuked
given and taken
from there
the lowest ground
the crows cast off
ascending the heavens
garnering the cries of the innocent
sullen air filled with a sallow tint of pain
Jul 2016 · 227
tuning things out
Stefania S Jul 2016
i laugh
not being able to write
you the distraction?
not one bit, it seems.
words, not the issue
there are plenty.
all day i'd cover the page
telling the world about my insides
and how you have scrambled them.
i'd start with how it's fear
how silly poetry could barely touch
not a stab
my fingers nothing short of shocked
touching myself it's as if there's current
your thought brings me to life
but how, how can i tell that
how do i dare cross that line
my heart such a deep and cavernous space
how dare i dig in, mark space upon that muscle
my mind alive, every day, thinking
but you know...somehow
because if i dared, if i felt fearless
i'd say so much more
i'd not hide behind metaphor
silly games, i've never been a fan
time changed all that
so don't scoff, i'm not blocked
it's not the time being consumed
i'm writing plenty, hidden pages
smiling as i dream of the rough touch
behind those eyes
their consuming power unyielding
Jul 2016 · 343
Stefania S Jul 2016
the way it falls
collar bones cold
chills tearing at my spine
human necessity, memory
of touch long erased.

my mouth a portal,
sound only. lips,
retired rose petals
moments contracting
upon themselves

pointless gateway
rusted chains marking
an empty garden
ground turned and cursed
age rushing and darkening the permanence of regret.

hollow echos limbering up posts
legs shortened by time
expectation of movement between
shortsighted and extinct
wanderlust long extinguished

boggy eyes with water rims
too shallow to swim
far too empty to drown
salty bottomed and
largely misunderstood

curved ground between
here and there, and the earth
contracts. mind's eye drawing closed
and the rivulets pour, the faucet closed
only a dripping remains.
Jul 2016 · 279
final spring sunday
Stefania S Jul 2016
the tip of my pen
hot, most likely from its placement
beside the laptop, but not.
a drawer full, who does that?
either way, whether the pen's fire is the result
of the machine's heat or the force to which the words
push down against me
pressing against a pink-lined page,
maybe i'll never know.

morning crawled in
there i was stepping into the onyx dawn
long before it called its light.
the earth's face inklike, spider webs
catching at my cheeks. already at work
keeping things together and letting them
fall apart, jokingly balancing life.

the water warm as my fingers crawled against the surface
frogs sharing their swim with the near full moon
me sharing my disgust with the night insects,
my eyes stretching between the here and now
while awaiting a joyous tone. strange sunday
i laugh reminding myself of my lonesomeness
and of the dawn's curse.

with little worry the pen dries, its ball point tired
sunlight showers the tile in iridescent light and my face,
well it's awash. maybe the days when my pen was cold
i was to learn? patience, not always ready to pour-
but i've been restrained and that pen has been kind.
Jul 2016 · 391
dear reader
Stefania S Jul 2016
don't pull at my words
because they're meaningless
shells of ghosts and spirits
my heart is a wasteland
and it's unkempt and unsafe
the vines that live there have started
they choke the light out and i'm blinded
but what do you expect of a girl without eyes
so far-sighted that the present is always the
hardest sell
and a blink, that's all it takes
and quickly she crumbles, withdrawn
the safest of strategies really, because
these notions of silly lag, i don't subscribe
and you do
but i am not there and i cannot be that kind
i am from another time and place
and my fear doesn't exist in the realms of others
untethered and most shirk because i know my mind
the cost of resolution, millions and who's prepared
for that black tuesday
a depression filled with numbers and figures
because that's the best way to work it out
to walk over the mountain with pen in hand
holding the paper at its highest
no one trailing, and certainly no leader
scent and feeling my guide, and it's off, always
the forest not always kind to the dweller
the trees losing their foliage and it's drowning me
and every leaf, a tapping summer day of long ago
when i died-when i folded, because that was best
then, but that's what the brave one does, folds and ties
the string
suffocates out the light and rises up, seeking oxygen
and remembering the morning and how it burns to feel
sun on exposed wounds
blankets caskets of sorts
breathing from below a clotted dirt cage
and whose lungs can do that
what kind of filtration provides light when there's so
the easy answer, none. there isn't one-it's best to make
it's best to start again, to keep going, the mountain's peak
miles away, maybe never to be reached
and maybe that's the point, because there's no up, there's
no down
it's just this, the trek through miles of useless wood
my feet caught up on blackberry brambles
and the blood that drips from my mouth as meaningless
as those ugly clouds that threaten rain and only run off
when the sun pokes harder
i am weak and i know this
my words an epidemic to a brain gone awry
an endless cloud of haziness that's only settled
when altered, so who's to blame
for self-inflicted wounds and piercings
take ownership i say and blame myself
knowing that my cold ways and unkind heart
are the sinners and all of the sin is mere reprisal
repayment for my own infliction upon others
basic notations, because when i'm not good enough
nothing ever is, and it doesn't matter
stay away from the flock, create the rules, do as i please
those that push back still will, they'll shunt my light
they'll remind me of why i tunneled away
seeking safety-and i'll retreat, as is form and expected
always what is best, because hurting is secondary to being
and it's easier to swallow that elephant whole
to take on the blame, to blame myself
the constant knowing
and the desperate feeding of a monster
that will die in the dark
Jul 2016 · 399
white washed
Stefania S Jul 2016
the heat and i'm
sat out on the front porch.
night's still a few choruses away
and the shade's settling in
cooling things down and
bringing comfort in like it's a cool bed sheet.

my head, a mess lately and i wonder
is this the block i feared, silence internally
my writer's fingers frozen solid and nothing spilling?

it's not though, i know this. those words that breathe
the ones that cover page after page and course like heat.
their there...shifting like clothes inside of a tumbled
reforming and preparing for a new season.

and i laugh, because what is this, if not the product
of such a block?
the backpedaling that plagues the silenced mind
and i am set to cast suspicion and doubt on an unruly
Jun 2016 · 188
summer 2016-one
Stefania S Jun 2016
this silly head of mine
the summer coming like
a train tearing for the mountains of the
i am lost inside, and it is beautiful.
in the back room there is a flower
and i keep watering it
the summer air seems to be
teasing its blooms, i am in awe.
my heart, still burdensome at times
seems to have forgotten tears for now
and i flinch.
how long can this well stay dry? it's not like
that here on the coast of demise.
and yet, it is.
but i hate this poem, because it's a lie
it's all metaphor and beauty
when inside there's far more
and far less.
my heart is pounding most days
and i wonder if insanity can be far behind.
who said anything about only writing pretty things?
or not splitting those that are in half?
when i wake up, as of late, i am not so much tired
as tired. life has a way of straining my brain
and it is a rare thing to be able to say that, to admit it
to be seen inside of it, and yet i have been, i think, i
i am frightened lately because of the current reality,
i don't have power, because i have no desire to control
or manipulate,
because it's not a game.
i feel willing to let the universe work things out, but
how i hope it does it
in a pleasing manner. my heart tied in a bow to a
thread that feeds across
space and connects elsewhere.
bringing me back to the summer air
to the rain collecting in pools outside
my window thrown open, the dawn air
heavy and littered with sound.
my own ears collecting the songs
of a lover gone broken.
Stefania S Jun 2016
sitting in a lull
the dawn ages away, when
suddenly eyes
are upon me.
my terror, instinctive;
my urge to fight back,
just as much so
and quickly taking
escaped though, and
i am left
adrenaline coursing
an added ingredient to
a heady mix
already coursing.
secondary shut down,
and the gates close-
future release denied
suspension of
grief receptacle,
flashback and
the inevitable realization.
mind over matter, every time,
here, take this.
its shape,
****** and shifting.
make it right;
use that rush.
and the environment?
succumbs, and i
instead of bark, as is
well done, good girl.
Jun 2016 · 310
things long forgotten
Stefania S Jun 2016
we drank and smiled
pull a card, see what you hit.
hesitation in my eyes, as is usual
because there's this risk, exposure, disclosure
the fatal flaw that will give them a tool
to see inside.
this little game is nothing new
and i've long been a mystery, unwilling
to shed my lizard skin
but to sit here, exposed in an open bar,
inside, no escape. what could i do?
pulling the card was easy, my method
tried and true; shuffle, break, shuffle, draw.
the coincidence of the draw, disarming.
a double-whammy, it's the same card
i am numbed.
well? they demand.
rumbling around inside
i reach, the meaning not lost.
the words become hot tears in my mouth
and i read. my apologies for the emotions
foretold and forgiven it's okay
but no it's not. strength does not come
when you cry from the bench.
when my knees bled, isn't that how it happened?
those experiences, did they not strengthen me, but maybe not-maybe just the opposite.
normalize it and we can move forward, but reach first
cover your eyes, while you demand this from others.
disarming and alarmed i struggle for composure.
quickly the moment is lost, unsure of how or who is to
thank, and even now i can't recall
silence maybe? or was it the arrival of the check?
my punishment, a realization
one that cannot be silenced;
it's in the weakness that the
strength forms, in the stone's willingness
to be tossed about with little direction
unknown where it is to land and just
getting polished and ready along the way.
May 2016 · 261
all of the below
Stefania S May 2016
it is an ocean
having brushed the coasts
and cliffs of foreign lands,
its tongue
and lips brushing their
seductive sand and stone.

it is a sigh
let loose on a sugary
beach, its toes
sandy and caked,

it is a bite
upon time's ankle
memory and detail
its form taking shape
and color.

it is a stone
cast at a mountain's edge
epoch battered
shed of itself.

it is a cactus
poking and invading
bodies of those who dare
its armor thick
and painful.

and yet, its
struggle a haphazard journey
through the elements

and again, despite;

it is a soft-petaled flower
its opening slow and deliberate
its awakening responsive
its showy hues dancing
and falling aside.
May 2016 · 455
Stefania S May 2016
in ink upon my spine
a space, long drained
there lies a soliloquy
which speaks
in whispers.
unknown sense
the universe laughs,
little girl it teases,
your instant gratification
pathos is showing.
let go
of that battle, the owl cries.
your tight grip on time
a ruse.
missy, cried the moon
this agenda you struggle
with...look at me
how i just show up,
breathe soft one, breathe.
laughing the sun shakes
her voice while throwing light
at the moon, i just show up
too, though i'm oft accused
of slipping away.
i understand your battle,
beautiful girl
because like you, they
assume i return unchanged
my fresh form a mere
angrily, the daisies
shake their stalks,
ignored, walked upon,
most beings ignorant
to our stature. yet,
we rise from the soil
rich with the droppings of
the dead. new
made of the old.
unsure of their advice
and where to turn
i fold, inward.
the universe's forces, brilliant
and insightful
meant to empower
instead highlight my
inadequacy and lack
of rooting,
nothing more than unknowns
pouring from an
empty vial that whispers
silence and space.
May 2016 · 823
peter pan
Stefania S May 2016
that night
that dress.
the way when
i turned just
right, my
breast appeared.
and you, pride?
but a scolding
while you sought
candy all night.
nothing underneath,
and i was flushed,
hopeful, always.
you didn't see me
you never
May 2016 · 200
fan blades
Stefania S May 2016
an early escape
and the week slips by.
a year now, this person,
this professional.
a mask most days, after
years of silent obscurity.
experienced beyond academic
friction and backlash.
but so what
a rock that's never been rubbed?
time marched its
cadence, the past
season folding in on itself
with little evidence of any
december's throes
long forgotten
as those pristine sheets fade
the ocean existed then
and there was optimism.
laughter of course,
because there never really was.
a long goodbye as
a creative cork.
but the surface reappeared,
as it always does
and the bobbing slowed; shift.
finally time contracts
exposes its tears
to the open eye.
souls fall away and
mood affects the
framework. wanderers
passed, their souls sticky
and spring bounced onto stage.
suddenly the weekend looms, and visitors
the sound in the room slows
and the realization of
present creeps back
in on an endless loop.
May 2016 · 409
situational anger
Stefania S May 2016
morning arrives
and i am angry
i feel the acid pouring through my
veins, cold at the
back of my throat as
it burns its path
through my rushing
fawn response and
am left to run, as
far and as fast as
my legs will allow.
avoiding the fallout
of a promised war.
looking in the mirror,
a never-ending
karmic battle between
past and future. good
girl gone bad, or just the
opposite? not really mattering
the roses die, the
water stagnates and
my heart is pretty much
the sun's arrival,
generally potent,
flaccid this dawn
as i curse the slumber-filled
night, silent and empty.
dreams muted, the
result of a chemical
sleep, intended to silence the run-on
so what, how to
retract this flawed
refraction? summer
bounces nearer and the
night's heat will intensify,
raising the potential for violence, the
streets of my soul
quickly clogging
with unexpected
acetylcholine bursts,
moderation necessary
as i begin to drown
in my own
apocalyptic undoing.
May 2016 · 248
series two: untitled three
Stefania S May 2016
the night, long
a period of silence
and i'm trapped
sanity; a literary device.
heavy and pervasive,
pouring through my
feelings hidden, their
meaning diffused
and appropriately
and who's to notice?
those who see
even their eyes
hooded by doubts.
the hum persists
and i watch
the clock, my
system flooded
electrically wired and pumping
putting the words out
pushing them
their power invasive
and addictive.
originally published at on May 22, 2016.
May 2016 · 299
Stefania S May 2016
blocked, days now and frustrated as hell
how tiring to pour so effortlessly for months
and then the desert comes through pulling
everything from the scape.
sure, there's blooming going on
and the flowers out front are red and yellow
the crepes are starting to burst
and the grass is green, but my words keep dying.

cancer maybe, eating the page as if it were a white blood cell
nothing but black mire in its path and wasted time.
the screen laughs of course, and i grow angrier, my time taxed.
lunch hours dry as a bone. admin watching and me keeping silent
about my passion.
what will it take? i am not van gogh and don't have the muse
for which to segment.
maybe time, that old benefactor, so patient, he passes and eventually
the words reappear, chasing a black cloud of darkness.
why then? that is maybe where it lies, the truth.
why when things are at their darkest am i so quick to spill?
of course what comes out is often unsavory and sour,
the souls eat that up.
you're dark they say, and i laugh, because they know nothing.
so when then? when shall i expect their hardy return?
i guess to hold tight is my only choice. transitions everywhere
literally and figuratively. summer itself bringing professional shift.
earlier days brought round and sunrises rushed, life constraints.
i'll wait though, be patient, as i've been for so long now, howling
only occasionally.
May 2016 · 297
series two: untitled one
Stefania S May 2016
write about what hurts?
the strong pull
of the earth?
the way the sky falls
down each night
and blackness
closes in on the land.
the way my soul cries out at particular
guitar notes or
bass lines that pull me apart?
the way a hand to the spine owns me, falling dependent.

maybe instead...i write about what
how pages and pages of tear-stained
ink resuscitated me.
how i decided
bleach should
only be used for whites
and not ever for souls.
how the moon's
shadow dug me from
my grave.
how in the darkest
and most lonely
of hours it was
my own strength
that held me in
how the future
became so much
less terrifying
when i began living
in the now.

or, i could list what irks me;
brilliant cut diamonds
that make claims,
empty cavern souls
with pearlescent
teeth and frozen
green gods caked in coke
empty promises.
bank accounts
filled with false
hope, and
gas tanks charged
ready for escape.
i'd write of any of
that, if there were matter.
but the ears are closed
and they eyes,
flaming sockets.

so instead,
i'll write of what
i want, or of
what i need.
what i already know, already tainted
limited, and empty ego-
shadow boxing.
May 2016 · 442
Stefania S May 2016
i wrote a poem about you
the boy with the darkest shades of blue
i locked it up in a box
next to my summer socks
when you next ring
i'll not say a thing
a bubble will burst
but it will pour from a hearse
May 2016 · 220
six weeks
Stefania S May 2016
i waited

and when
your guilt rose
of urgency

time passed
stable again

your sorry
overlooked, drunk

always empty
but let go
six weeks
May 2016 · 572
fuck you letters
Stefania S May 2016
wednesday pushes through the door
an angry battering ram, reminding me
all is not lost-unnecessary cliche i remind
daylight is cruel at times, shattering illusions
of the dark.
dark itself an illusion, when it is known
there must be light for there to exist dark, or
maybe not?
a broken promise of the universe, plans gone awry,
ships stranded because of the stars disagreement to align?
my voice an angry arc of light touching down-
north-eastern bound. ******* i cry,
whose rules am i to die?
misread in the moment, a puppy barking and *******
rugs ruined, thrown to the curb.
slash at me, i scream, and again,
******* i cry.
my temperament, serrated
as your mood.
silence now, a thick black fog
irradiating the dawn.
crumbling mass
lose yourself, safety in your books.
no risk for rejection, so we share
that air-and the lonely night
which for us, maybe forever-
shall be blinded from sight,
shouting aloud, below distant star-shrouds
******* we cry
too late to live but far too soon to die!
May 2016 · 400
Stefania S May 2016
morning came in shades of
sleep broken lately, an old woman
sitting at the eastern window awaiting her
sailor's return, his war still waging.
fighting traitorous thoughts
warm coffee the witch's brew,
no what ifs to be had, for there are
no what ifs. time broken and
stuck, solitary spiritual confinement;
****** frozen
trysts mundane and
blocked vibes but word-flow
and the view...
supple, sensual, earthy
surrounding, encasing-
warm, growing, soothing.
May 2016 · 344
Stefania S May 2016
jesus christ
i think
your filter blown out?
word dribble
laughter, she's funny...
but, my god.
i know, but have
you know?
what's stopped-
a net thick,
murky, opaque.
enough frightened already
depths of madness
thinking of tops
empty bravado
but why-lost souls
backyard gaze &
nothing and everything
built-up shallows
tiny silent dungeon
long locked
bursting wildflowers
burning too quick...
love mania flow
May 2016 · 198
Stefania S May 2016
drape me in black
i laugh
my frame a shifting
fill my mouth
with dirt
and shove me
back to earth
coat my skin
your scent
their lure
break me open
spill my remains
empty my rib cage
heart and lungs
wet, raw
breathe it all in
drips and drops
sweep me up
toss me ashore
burn my remains
drape me in black
May 2016 · 463
red maple
Stefania S May 2016
i grew up in a patch
of green
low rolling hill
tumbling sky
red maple picnics
cool earth

roses at the chain link
spring's surprise
play dates out front
shoddy wooden hideaway
to the rear

sister scarred
angry bees collect

red-shingled horizon
white shack
rear view
laundry-line perimieter
prison yard
invisible fence line

irish drunks
right side
wife shouts
captures best friend
back-rear torment
pup trapped
evil about

boys and bruised knees
cheek kisses
and sunset
bike rides
snack spot
woods of death

the sky fed me
my roots
tightly woven
spanned, undisturbed

summer mornings
on the run
heat like fire
pebbles, glass
walking on

escape, run, be wild
dreams your navigator

loose teeth
mother's hugs
father's presence
motor, artistically
colored red

powered escape hatch
long gone
tree trunk porch presence
dead bird picnic
red-slatted bridge

fruit spider visitor
tiny rodent winter traps
screaming zia
e mamma

communion veil
st. albans bound
pappa, look!
gum stuck hair
ruined sleeve

tumbled jacks
fruit loop bed
glass box
from the carpeted

beat downs behind
the woodstove
hair-dragged reckonings

anger passed down
mother to
pray, midnight

i grew in no-man's land
May 2016 · 660
freedom's heartache
Stefania S May 2016
the music plays
my mouth sealed
not my mind
an endless hamster wheel

envious they say
my freedom appealing

the endless lonely night terrors
and pin-dropping
silent morning hours,

freedom at a price
touch long forgotten
brief reprieve

tears in private
no soothers about

and eventually
a heavyweight
eight-hundred pound
should lifts

the world it seems,
but, remember

darkened room
touch yourself
breathe, wonder

a monster
you question
anger sets in
veil lifts
they sense it

not easy
never was
sniff elsewhere

bitter *****
they slam
but why?
use me
then what

a pearl at
the neck
she'll not know
suspect, initially
i know

so that
then i'll smile?
i'll spread
opening my
punctuation *******

remind me
the prize
more empty nights
more freedom

safety net
eggshell soul

barbed-wire heart
internal bleed
oozing cut
dripping trail

razor-blade smile,
nod of the head
yes, freedom
it's wonderful
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