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2.9k · Aug 2020
verdict
South City Lady Aug 2020
I wait alone
wrapped in paper
shivering amidst cold
the door pressed hard
against my chest

this time a year ago
I met a similar fate
the verdict returned
       cancer
a word my mind
has deconstructed
reconstructed
discarded
as my past

tears erupt behind
my eyes
how can I afford
to fight again
at what cost
and during
a pandemic

the door **** twists
as she emerges
eyes averted
my throat scored
in pain
"It's benign,
come back
6 months from now"

unable to move
I peer through haze
minutes tease silence
then with
trembling fingers
I dial his number
Aiden answers
    "Mom, you okay?"
nodding tearfully
with newfound certainty
I finally whisper, "Yes!"
This time last year, I was undergoing surgery for breast cancer. The year of recovery was difficult.  The tests came back with more unknowns. I waited 6 months to learn at last I'm one year cancer free. Each year will get easier, but for now, I am a survivor. 💕
South City Lady Feb 2021
At some point we all confront
physical pain so profoundly intense
it feels we will be consumed by its overwhelming conflagration.
The deeper the burn, the steeper the journey,
the greater these life lessons become etched within the slick skin of our hearts.  

Our life's true purpose is stored
within those hours, weeks,
years of desperation, of sweat,
and introspection.  When we finally awaken
to witness our acts of courage along
with every dip of failure, we feel blessed
for having survived the ravages
of a tremendous storm that bent our faith
and altered the trajectory of our lives' paths.

We are not defined by the worst events
that have happened to us; still, the long alienating nights spent dissecting thoughts, confronting fears, acknowledging
our weaknesses can bring us into this moment
of extraordinary hope as we truly begin
to imagine our lives beyond
their conventional value; instead,
we value the years our lives extend to us.  

Experiencing pain, loss, and uncertainty
can liberate us to live a bigger lives
than we had ever originally planned,
to become all we were destined to be
from our inception.
On pondering physical pain, hurt, loss
677 · Feb 2021
feed the fire
South City Lady Feb 2021
pain is temporary
still I crave its fuel
feeding hunger, burning
through darkness,
wafer moon teases
naked trees
blanching sleek limbs
running away
from desperate crowds
that sting my senses,
from curses singeing
midnight nerves,
I am
a warrior
in No Man's Land
652 · Feb 2021
grotto
South City Lady Feb 2021
perhaps we are really
only jagged landscapes
mired in pain
disclosing our truths
inside the caverns
of written words
575 · Aug 2020
Tybee Island
South City Lady Aug 2020
I feel your eyes emblazoned as stars
stitched into a river of ebony
your hands, how they extend from heaven
wading across our distance
tasting of cedar and salt to my mind
of every dream I've yet to realize

I squeeze the rind of you
from coastal sunsets
drinking your essence as blood red pulp
you sing within the cicadas' song
as I wander through tufted sea oats
searching, longingly, for your voice

the whimsical splash
of your laughter is a brilliant fusion
of lemon, fuchsia, and tangerine zinnias
framing my cottage pathway
you become the smile
of every face I encounter,  
the tickling glimmer of sunlight
between scrolls of Spanish moss
dripping like lace from my heart

you are wisteria and wine
late summer afternoons spent
in naked conversation
I want to be drunk on you today,
tomorrow, every day
we're promised tucked
beneath your chin,
slumbering to the sound
of your cool rain
coating oak leaves
453 · Mar 2021
to the poets . . .
South City Lady Mar 2021
write your soul's depths
belief in truth's concepts
for you elicit a precious voice
resonant to raw strength
instinctive courage
press forward through unclear days
in the gloom of unknowing
you reconcile love with hate
propagating belief beyond
sight or sound
where speech is sacred
as dying breath
make haste - your echoes
reside within blistering canyons
for others' hope to hear
Keep writing your truths
400 · Mar 2021
Newnan Strong
South City Lady Mar 2021
This weekend, my city was hit by an EF-4 tornado.  I'll never forget the sirens at midnight or holding my kids' hands tightly in a small closet as the news warned to brace for impact in 3 minutes.  There was the unforgettable sound of hail and well over 170mph winds and then, the eerie calm that followed. But mostly, I'll never forget driving the roads before dawn to see enormous trees yanked from the ground by the roots, limbs snarled around power lines, and roof flashing and furniture littering the ground. The devastation took only 22 seconds, but its ferocity didn't shut down the resolve of our people.  I am reminded that hardship and tragedies teach us gratitude, inner strength, and generosity.  I am reminded that people are inherently compassionate and selfless as we help each other rebuild. ❤️
Love.
382 · Jan 2021
send poetry, love
South City Lady Jan 2021
chiding words
seize my heart
your blade forged deep
within my breast
tainted by wrath
my droplets stain pathways
toward turbulent seas
let the crimson
run
set my voice
free
reunite beauty
from pain's mystique
drain memories
steeped in mistrust
I will not entice anger
disenchant this hope
alienate my spirit
send this poetry,
sweetest love
Poetry possesses the power to puncture hate and bleed love
372 · Jan 2021
I m A g I n E
South City Lady Jan 2021
your words pervade
aromatically over
my defensive shell,
  gradually releasing,
relinquishing each imprint
of resistance
         as I unclench,
embracing you
in hopeful sips,
thirsting
  for nourishment
         your morning rain
splashes upon fluted lips,
my tulip soul soaking in
translucent song

your fingers splayed
    through silks,
unadorned by fear
ornamented by
                 your grace
sunlight burns through
my facade where residue
of past anguish once held sway

    fingers lift my chin,
gingerly, to your face,
while you listen
  pressing your heart within
my gypsum, solidifying
these pliable impressions,
confessions shared openly
restoring faith toward trust
"I Can Only Imagine"
371 · Nov 2020
Unsheathed
South City Lady Nov 2020
When I awoke to catch
the ocean at sunrise,
I spied the moon
still out beyond curfew        
tiptoeing in sleek oleander,
glistening outside
the landscape of dreams.
365 · Feb 2021
bliss
South City Lady Feb 2021
— "That great abyss that exists between loving and imagining that one loves."   -@Esu Emmanuel


the most hopeful wish we store
in satin-boxed hearts
is the unquenchable bliss
that longing will flourish
into staying, that cravings
will reach beyond passion's
momentary caress nestling
into late latte mornings
where his hand fills the contour
of your safekeeping
& sincerity collects upon
tongues soaking skin
in the stillness
of velveteen rain

Happy Valentine's Day 💕
318 · Sep 2020
What is School For?
South City Lady Sep 2020
A high school graduate
posed a question on YouTube
         What is school for?

After 25 plus years
of instructing,
I'll provide
a heartfelt answer.

School, for me, is
an opportunity
to share a passion for listening,
reading, opening minds,
      developing souls,
teaching students to share
their feelings,  
    debate opposing views,
challenge what they already knew.

I detest state tests,
and I'm worried
about the coronavirus,
but I step through my school's doors
each morning donning a mask,
and I teach
     for the love of my students,
     for the pride in my subject,
     for the hope of our future.

I teach because if I don't,
will someone listen to their hearts,
and pre-pandemic, who will bring
extra food to share after class,
dress up  as a cheerleader
at pep rallies and homecoming week,
coach cross country, sponsor
Friday afternoon writing clubs
for students who need
an outlet for their creative voices?

You see, there ARE many of us
out here who truly care
and want to teach
students life skills
and a way to cope.

Be careful when you ask,
"What goes on in my high school?"
Stop in and observe first-
I am proud of my heritage
as a second generation educator,
and I'm grateful for the students
who have taught me as much
as I've taught them.

Teachers model empathy
      and understanding,
the ability to time manage
     with school, sports,
                 and part-time jobs.
They remind us that we need
to think
and feel
and care
for each other.

Come to my school;
     walk through our doors,
and then tell me -

             What is school for?
My son shared this video with me. I was stunned. We need our schools and teachers as part of our communities. They teach us to care and can help us heal during this time.
315 · Feb 2021
the daily grind
South City Lady Feb 2021
"Get immersed in your writing process until the world is gone."         -Stephen King

Writing starts out as an unforgiving act with a rude listener whose back is perpetually turned.  You feel his disinterest as your unconfined mind spews ideas into warped silence, trying to capture airy words still wet with flighted feeling, to strip them down, distort them into a surreal collage of unrehearsed meaning.  

It's a crusade against the self, really, where you push reality beyond the scope of eyes or ears until only your heart is listening.  Then, and only then, do the words materialize in your head, rapidly filling the mind's empty stadium. You become the spectator, the speaker, and the space. Poetic lines are the paste as ideas collaborate; you learn to stand in the cyclone, feeling a poem's tremendous energy, permitting the words to dictate their own dignity.  

They rush faster and faster as you press their loops and curves to the parchment witnessing their enchantment, the dizzying display of language tumbling under and over and through until you are left exhilarated, breathless, and undefeated again . . .
    that is until tomorrow comes.
This piece describes my writing process.  what is yours?
303 · Jan 2021
woodwind
South City Lady Jan 2021
frost bitten, burdened
with a rucksack of sorrows,
we unravel doubts casting them
far below . . .
the darkened riverbed  
channeling heartbreak
through an embouchure
of song, harmonic breath
of winter's solstice, lilting promise
tilted toward warmer seasons
hope's amulet inscribed
with goldenrod
and swallow's melody
May the days of winter's darkened footsteps lead us toward a new year where sunlight beckons in unfiltered joy.
300 · Jan 2021
return to class
South City Lady Jan 2021
a new semester
filled with uncertainty
for teachers . . .
more anticipation of the unknown
fear for our colleagues,
our students-
and yet,
I can't imagine a career
I'd rather risk my life for
than for the smiles of students
our crazy, harmonious connections  
I can't fathom being
any other than what I am
one who loves and supports
our future
when I rest my mind on this affection,
all the rest dies away
for all at once
I smile, again, meeting
a new family, collaboration
filled with possibility
together, we are reborn
again
and fear falls away
we are students and teacher
engaged in the beauty
of a journey
an exchange, even CoVid
can't deny
I am anxious to return to class tomorrow, but am grateful for the opportunity to do what I  truly love.
298 · Jan 2021
cracked portrait
South City Lady Jan 2021
do we wear our sins' composite
within the creases of a smile
distresses revealed
in ****** unrest, subtle ticks
affixed within our
crooked reassurance

is our vacant stare an invitation
leading the curious down
cellar stairs where
vagrants of the mind wander
in hesitations and anxieties
and circumlocutions that
seldom speak our truest intention

does even a nod confess
daily compliance
a face composed
to satisfy the world's approval
while punctuated tears
we shed in silence,
exclamations
of sincere expressions
turn a blind eye
This poem was inspired by the final line of BLT's "Toxic Fruit":  The toll for misdeeds
and wrongdoings
are the lines
that mark your face.
295 · Sep 2020
WE, THE POETS
South City Lady Sep 2020
when silence breeds discontent
and critics ensnare your feet
in a morass of minutiae
amplify your truth

when gossip makes
a mischief of reality
stand your ground
command all energy
toward positivity

never relent because
others seek to mold you
in their stale likeness
never submit to quietude
when you are gifted
a poetic voice

It's your obligation
to subjugate negation
and contort vexation
into your own narration
toward personal salvation
Your thoughts, your creation
only your fingers, the translation

Never submit to false authority
lies, malice do not signify you
hold your head high
Look to the stars
and dream in words
again
HP is a safe haven for poetry and creative expression, and we have a responsibility to protect this hallowed ground as a place to think, share, and dream. This poem is my pledge to remain true to our mission as poets. Never let others' opinions falsely define you.  Dare to be authentically, unapologetically yourself.
South City Lady Aug 2020
I'd share with you
how much our
early morning
walks have become
sacred coffee meditations

a chance for you
to confide in me
your dreams
pose bizarre scenarios
tell me about kids who
are YouTube famous
& vow you'll
make "mom a millionaire
one day"


I smile
absorbing obscure
WWII trivia
listening to
your laugh's positivity
wanting to just
hold you close
       catching my breath

instead
we silence
our footsteps
  staring up at the mystic sky

        an ivory moon
                    tarnished yellow
by the yawn of day

& I want to keep this moment
open, blooming inside my chest


feeling your steps racing
beyond my own, knowing this

wedding cake memory
is but a taste I can only savor

you, the moon, the talk of
future days, such riches
blessing my heart

only quiet tears express
this love

of a mother
  to her teenage son
295 · Sep 2020
streaks of light
South City Lady Sep 2020
When critics roar
parceling out every error,
weakness, & poor decision
keep breathing,
           count,
meditate;
wander out
& watch the sunrise,
study Her wonder as light curls
from pale rose
to a ravishing blush;
pull kindness
from your pocket,
drop its gilded edge
into others' palms,
smile at glimpses of promise,
allow tears, too, to come
for feeling is the opposite
of a walking death;
don't retreat
from today's pain;
a blistered heart stings
& you may suffer
for a while,
but the beauty of hurt
is that it also heals-
given time
281 · Dec 2020
Ascension
South City Lady Dec 2020
I awakened to your energy
an explosion, a profusion
rapturous light splicing air,
raining as fingertips
igniting my core with possibility
all desires alight in solitary flame
burn through self-doubt
incinerate negativity
until golden embers, I become
floating upon your dreams
harvesting thoughts
currents that harmonize
a fallen past with this eternity
feel my breath upon your lashes
change this perception of living
entangle belief, liberate desires
you, we, are whatever
our minds prophecy -
imagine what you adore
cultivate its garden
within your soul
274 · Sep 2020
countdown
South City Lady Sep 2020
dawn aches behind my eyelids
such a yearning for sleep
unsettled thoughts
wrinkle the mind  
I can not smooth their
inconsistencies or
carelessly tuck them back
within steadfast dreams

they creak down hallways
a long shadow billowing
in moonlight, hair tossed
as waves crashing, releasing
suspending  - I crave

the certainty of silence
this unrest disrupts
the manicured space
where I have painted
tranquility

but I find, if you count
backwards
you can forget sorrow
misplace concerns
gather flesh
to warm
brittle roots
             5,    4,
secrets drift behind
an arched wing

                             3,    2
lightning retreats softly
into dim    heartbeats
caramelizing time
as amber light
fades to  
black
Those night games we play to harness sleep
264 · Aug 2020
ascension
South City Lady Aug 2020
you, my lotus flower
mired in depths of darkness
drowning from heavy silt
and silence
reawakening at dawn
a pearlescent flower
divinely shaped
ever constant

cultivating hope
in your petals' curves
with bowed head leaning
toward light's promise
filling my heart
with resurrections
from yesterday's blight
240 · Feb 2021
south city blues
South City Lady Feb 2021
listening to the riff
within winter's rain
straining overture
for evening's pain
scuttling rhythms
strummed into melody
feeding feelings
to pleading words
recorded, undistorted
with smoke-stained hands

glass tube glides
against weary strings
exhuming faint-hued memories,
bled from moon drenched rivers
molasses eyes trapped
in cobalt melancholy
    play this heartache,
         (it won't take long)
     take this heartbreak,
         (it won't stay strong)
  till rolling thunder
            floods song with sleep
I was watching a documentary with three legendary electric guitar players.  When they played slide guitar, the blues welled up inside my Memphis heart. 💙
239 · Feb 2021
truce
South City Lady Feb 2021
today, amidst sharp winds,
compelling backward steps,
            press forward,   silently
for gossip cannot induce
loose words without
breath's harvest
& anger will not quake without
a mind's ill design    
therefore let air disperse,
mingled in the fragrant
stillness of unbridled peace
I am traveling like a nomad to 4 different classes teaching face to face and remote students. Apparently the heat is not working in my usual classroom. Instead of venting, I wrote this poem. I'm lucky to work with amazing, talented students and to do a job I love.
232 · Feb 2021
insomnia
South City Lady Feb 2021
connoisseur of late night whimsy
tree limbs draped from murky sky
serenade sleepless windowpanes
in hollowed whips of wind
he peels back time's blistered face,
darts in between shadowed hours
with ghoulish eyes that blink
and retreat from shore
drifting phantasm,
fishing vessel plundering
a restless mind
those 4am wanderings
South City Lady Feb 2021
I imagine . . .

a room draped
in muted lighting
the scene of a recent
gathering,      now departed,
nostalgia clings
to a hazy Chardonnay glass
stained by cinnamon-tinted
lips, one sip remains;
                              I indulge

across the room,
      conversation erupts
into liberated laughter,
echoing spirits    l o o s e n e d
in moonlit tongues
beneath a winding staircase;
my shadow caresses
the wooden banister,
              eaves
                     dropping  

by floor-length windows,
majestic fingers cloak
a bohemian blush
as ardent eyes lean in
without inhibition; my lips
burn from their amorous
        exchange

then haunting notes
drift upon midnight air,
the room blurs,
disintegrating into
shimmering confetti,
      spilling down
              back steps
that sting an untamed night
with distant memories,
bewitched in peonies,
fragranced by a piano's
final resonant
key
South City Lady Feb 2022
i pour a shot of amber song
it soaks through cubes
infusing my glass with
emotional pungency,
melodic lucidity
i saunter through lyrics
of nostalgic wonder
like purpled heather
amplified beneath
distilled sunset

words elongate
upon every sip
my heart parcels out
meaning through the final
round of your sylvan song
undulating sensations
flickering candlelight
how to capture your blood's
heat, ripened grape upon
lush lips, each slips me deeper
into intoxicating whispers
I grow drunk upon liquid feeling
languishing in shadows
of heaviness and divinity
I wish I could have written song lyrics like she could.
216 · Nov 2020
night crawler
South City Lady Nov 2020
words flutter as fireflies
flicking the glass
anxious, incessant,
nagging my sleep
berating decisions,
lamenting shortcomings,
tapping upon every insecurity
until they are spoken, liberated
from the heart's sarcophagus
I watch them fumbling through air
spiraling madly, luminescent
in their liberty, twirling
upon night's velvet cape
then dissipating into the ether
of forgotten memory
as thoughts expire
and settle into the fragrant satin
of freshly stained dreams
An ode to the  sleepless nights of this week, of this pandemic, and the ways we acknowledge and wrestle with our restlessness through poetry
216 · Jan 2021
conspiracy
South City Lady Jan 2021
what liberties you take
to cleanse your guilt
at the cost of my tranquility
I am but Caesar's cloak
run through, blood soaked
blade secured at your hip
I am now a ghost
of the lips that once spoke
your name whose flesh
can feel your steel
but once
214 · Jul 2020
bewitching muse
South City Lady Jul 2020
She drapes her beauty
over a gossamer sleeve

breathes music box melody

through the spindles of dreams

elopes with the stars

and whispers
lavish possibilities

through a cauldron of clouds

she, the whimsy,
midnight Blues fantasy

seeped in gin
drizzled over
my sins

she is madness
and meaning

commingled in
pearlescent
glow
I was inspired by John Destalo's style in "Scavenger" and Patty and Gideon's homage to the Blues and the beautifully soft phrase "cauldron of clouds" in Shamamama's "Sleepless."  The phrase bewitched me.
207 · Dec 2020
poets' tribute
South City Lady Dec 2020
these thoughts are to you
for your soul's absorption
not mass consumed
read, discarded, reproduced
for when we share,
the nexus of eyes and thoughts
carry a spiritual dialogue
you wander the footprints
where my words have tread
feel their snow laden leaves
stare into the sky's heaviness
vortex of unexpressed ideas
we've yet to translate
hold my winter to your breast
until these words warm
kindling for midnight fires
where sparks dance
in lyrical heresy forming
memory for our minds
May our words remain true to feelings,
to the expression of authentic ideas
for  a receptive audience resulting in a
highly intimate exchange of hearts.
207 · Jan 2021
lucid dreaming
South City Lady Jan 2021
I feel your composition
rippling beneath my brush
the complexity of your mind
hands softening
around my shadow

how your voice    lingers
on my page captivating
each breath . . .  you flicker
in gaslight as I beckon
you closer - come, I want
to discover you beyond
the palette of words
constructed in my dreams
touch the highlights
of fantasy as you trace
every thought of me

stay, beneath night's cover
promise not to dissolve
in whispering mists of dawn,
my muse, envelop me
in your love's unreality
197 · Feb 2021
nocturnal song
South City Lady Feb 2021
caught within the rain,
      i taste its gentle texture
as tears upon porcelain cheeks
such an intimate exchange
                    i can scarcely breathe
or audibly express
sensual aromas
through words' simplicity

I have spent a lifetime
in silences. [unspoken]
traumas committed
   against my tongue;
  for years,    
            I heaved snow against
my chest
       cultivated forbidden
territories so frightfully
                   polar, i can no longer . . .
handle their sharp-shapes
without the ecstasy
     of frostbite

through winter's moonlit veil,
i sense     your heat,
a telepathy of tenderness, hands coaxing
me from murky waters;
                                            come for me
            your prodigal soul-  
reborn
    rekindle these heated
passions,
          unclasp my mind,
unfasten the sash
restraining these chapped lips,
          thaw each
finger within
your eyes'   firelight,

let me feast
upon your mellow night,
clothed in laughter,
        wounds exposed
as damp rose petals,
            pull me toward
your heart's
shelter, so this loneliness
    may find
                      (at long last)
a nested branch of rest
within the wingspan
  of your nocturnal song
A love story, a fantasy piece collected from the cold embers of poetic silence when the muse is mute, and all I long for is her conversation through my pen once again.
194 · Aug 2020
Coffee with Poets
South City Lady Aug 2020
I've spent the morning soaking my heart
in your words,
feeling each tenderness,
devouring nostalgic verse,
lingering in the fields before sunset's lips
grow silent

How your thoughts intermingle
with my own, slipped like satin
over my head to dress the hips of day
Such quietude to linger in these rooms
with faces I've yet to see, whose
minds are ever present

This meditative state, laced in whispers
enchanting the morning
      thank you for sharing
your vulnerabilities and concerns,
for taking time out
to feel and hope amidst
the scars of unprecedented days

Thank you for reminding me,
we must keep pressing forward
towards the dawn
I have spent the last hour catching up on HP poets' works from the week. Teaching high school online is robbing me of much needed creative time. How I miss writing poetry, how I've loved reading yours today. Thank you!❤️
188 · Feb 2021
. . . dream of better days
South City Lady Feb 2021
Your life is ripe for love, and it shall come
to you so unexpectantly, kissing your
soft lips when you thought you'd never
taste the sensation of passion; love shall
find you and replenish your soul
of all you thought valueless. You are
deserving of late nights diminishing
into rapturous dawns and tomorrows
more sumptuous than todays.
You deserve, and love shall come.
Only dream and believe of better days,
my love.   ♥️
167 · Feb 2021
curing process
South City Lady Feb 2021
those hollow mornings hewed
in darkness, thick
with silence and self-doubt
daily vigils dedicated toward
an unknown uncurling from inside
each desperate season,
a panorama of your heart's tears
releasing past mistakes,
protecting, reinforcing,
curing your soul to receive
an untold beauty,
the resplendent glaze
emblazoned from within
we are in a constant state of becoming and such a glorious process it is when we stand apart and witness its evolution, its unpredictable beauty which was intended all along.
164 · Dec 2020
flow state
South City Lady Dec 2020
suspended notes drift
through space
spectacular orbs of honeyed
sunlight burning though
loneliness, isolation
a haloed warmth
echoes through
my body
splashing energy
awakening stilled corners

with eyes closed, I absorb
a riverbed of colors
gravitating oracles
motions of tender memory
tinted jade
& streaked magenta
how they stain
my feelings' tongue
infusing hopeful breaths
with generosity,
infinite love

oh, that I might linger here
held between these columns
elevating rhythms
captivated beneath a forest
of stars so vast my mind
cannot conceive their origins
nor their destinations
I am no longer standing
in the present, but timeless
a particle enveloped
in each pulsating droplet
transformed into snowflakes
soaking your face

         can you feel my love?
Prompt:  channeling creativity and love that words can commit hearts to feelings of gratitude and hope for the coming year
161 · Sep 2020
Rhapsody in Blue
South City Lady Sep 2020
it was an era of candlelit dreams
     we played my piano
     harmonizing the evening's laughter
     transfixed by starlight
     and peppered with too much youth
     to catch the fallen minutes
     drifting as snowflakes
     between our words

        its remnants still leave a taste
        of Parisian nights on the rim
        of my glass - how you toasted
        every hour as the sun bled into
        the Seine and our blush faded
        to overcast with upturned lapels
        and footsteps receding into nightfall
Whenever I teach The Great Gatsby, my words turn to green lights at the edge of a dock and glittering stars and eyes that pierce the night with too much honesty.
161 · Dec 2020
dawn
South City Lady Dec 2020
lift the residue of darkness
numbing beauty into drab sorrow
melt this frost, clinging doubts
that leave my eyelids drained
tomorrow comes -
warm lover
tender morning glow
feeding upon raw skin
radiant light dabbing color
to soothe a chaffed world
swirling pigment, tingling umber
brushstrokes that nourish hope
glazed in powdery confection
sweet luxury upon my breath
159 · Jan 2021
watercolor
South City Lady Jan 2021
I blush even now,
our earliest memory, a sleek song slipped
about my mind as we drove along
the Emerald coastline staring through
sunset's liquid blaze,
our strange magic stirring embers
I thought were distant, faded
from my heart, warm pigments
suspended in ultramarine air-
how you painted my eyes
in burnt umber, my lips
with cadmium red
as I awakened
from the sea's silk
your earth and fire
158 · Nov 2020
Garra (Spanish for talon)
South City Lady Nov 2020
we claw through brittle days
       upon calloused hands
hearts chiseled into Celtic swords
                                  
                                       yet we hold on-

hunkering down through
       blistering nights,
trudging beneath
               the frosted moon,        
         awakening at mottled dawn, sleep deprived,
       riddled with a profound ache
for distant fairy stories
              
we will not surrender
      to shrieking banshees,
           to long-stemmed loneliness,
  to prevailing hunger,
                  to our minds' mischiefs fretting
        as shadows in    
                   unforgiving hours

      instead we galvanize as druids,
              extracting golden amber
from faraway dreams
        depositing them as seeds stowed
beneath winter's cloak-    
   lore keepers
                       of pandemic secrets

                                    -until spring
    thaws the frozen river beds
              of our poetic fingers          
    pollinating speech
                     while we spawn
into garnet roses
(blood soaked with piecing stems)

    a reawakening of voracious beauty,
the roaring Aslan,
             unmuzzled prophesier
                                   of breaking dawn
In these dark days, we will persevere until the coming of daybreak.
150 · Sep 2020
life is but a dream
South City Lady Sep 2020
Do you ever imagine
      you've lived this day
long ago

only under the beveled glass of a dream,
and now,

you're just going through

      the motions using muscle memory?
Are we carrying out the tissue of our dreams conjured up centuries before?
149 · Jan 2021
dancing to Santana
South City Lady Jan 2021
she's the alter ego
the Spanish Maria
to my demure smiles
the trembling lips
West Side Story hips
playing opposite
my downplayed reflection
fingers reaching
beseeching the recesses
of who I am
passionate Latina
to my pale skin
the antipode within
my sensual dance
siesta dama,
midnight enchantress,
soft suede Madonna
black magic seductress
whispering ****** intentions
within innocent guile
Another night spent dancing in the kitchen when all the word has gone to sleep 🌙
149 · Dec 2020
Pentimento
South City Lady Dec 2020
older beginnings,
newer endings
airbrushing
our former selves
reconfigured shadows
painted in our likeness,
perverse substitutes
for who we once were
inside

with each subtle layering,
we forge expectations
of unreality
patterning behavior
to society's desires,
but what of the integrity
that underlies
the gross insincerity

do we fabricate
perpetual lies
to belie ourselves
and so assume  
the carnivalesque expression,
the idealized deception
of what we classify
as real
or do we rupture
the glass mosaic
recapture the marred
face beneath, the beauty
behind
our beast
A pentimento, in painting, is "the presence or emergence of earlier images, forms, or strokes that have been changed and painted over".
148 · Dec 2020
recovery & restoration
South City Lady Dec 2020
I first sought the companionship of words
to dream love into shapes I could touch.
The world had become distorted and distant; writing resurrected a need to feel, to chip away at callouses, embrace my soft again. Poetry felt forbidden, decadent, enticing- a trove of pleasurable pain.  Words wrapped around rhythmic  lines framing stories where my wanderlust could journey: beyond the broken fence of normalcy, past the lamppost, to utter obscurity.  

Now, I sleep beneath the exposure of stars, writing the dark, unsettled histories within, territories where only my fingers can navigate their distance. Out in this unknown, I forget my name. I am the faceless gravedigger of my soul, scavenger of lost relics, beachcomber in love with the sea's unbridled fury.
Writing ourselves whole is as a courageous act of discover.y. BLT's writing about his mother inspired this piece's theme, the power of writing to excavate feelings and heal ourselves.
144 · Aug 2020
Swedish massage
South City Lady Aug 2020
come lay beside me
let my fingers caress your sorrows
working through deep creases
releasing all stress your breath carries
massaging tense shoulders
and unspoken hurt buried in your chest
pulling pain from silent reservoirs
of former loneliness

I am here with you now
there is no sadness
my laying of hands can't resolve
in love there is only purity
a bliss found in eternal connection
let me tenderly kiss
all that delays your thoughts
from slumber

together, we
conquer fear as my fingers
work the tendons
making them pliable again
cupping hands to your heart
feeding you warmth and beauty
to quell midnight aches

come to me, whisper
your concerns
you never need carry
them alone again
for love conquers doubts
sending a tsunami
of tenderness
wave upon wave
to flood your soul
for  in love
we are made whole
139 · Sep 2020
restoration
South City Lady Sep 2020
If we can restore vibrancy to color
stripping layers of time
to render art new
then can we lift sound particles
from memories
laid down decades before
dab a pen over words
slandering our hearts
eliminate critical noises
that chastise
til all we recognize
is a blank slate of static
where WE select
rhythm and pace     
            
compliments      feeding our lives' diorama  

                 beliefs              entangled    
                                    between      
                                              heartbeats

we become the artist
         the symphony playing remastered tunes

Stay Strong    
                                  You are Valuable
And, most importantly,

           You Deserve to be Loved
If we can challenge old thoughts that debilitate our efforts and rewind time's old cassette tape to the very beginning, what dreams might we record, what promises to ourselves might we keep?  BE KIND TO YOUR MIND
120 · Jan 2021
storming the Capitol
South City Lady Jan 2021
my thoughts
   are    h e m o r r h a g i n g
so much         slippery

                       feeling
               betrays my silence- steeped in murky isolation,

                                   I cannot . . .
tear
                         sufficient
    strips of paper
                 with syllables
            to quell this wailing wall erected around my heart  
            I kneel

before
      an altar              

      recollecting      
                                      ­­   reconciling
  beliefs
        that might coagulate
and
         so preserve [stained faith]

I whisper  a solitary

         word    
                 BELIEVE
    
    feeling its enchanted ripples

sifting between stiffened fingers

      holy water to disillusioned lips

speak for me
        these splintered lines
align
again to         lyrically arrange

              my dissonant song
I sat after class in tears watching a terrorism unlike 9/11 and far more fearsome, the terror within stripping the sacred fabric of America.  And I thought, we will rise again, bruised and greatly humbled, to build the rubble of our faith. Again
120 · Sep 2020
heart's destiny
South City Lady Sep 2020
Do you ever feel
that there is a greater story
living inside you than the one
you wake up to
each day,
one richer,
more prismatic,
where you can dress
in your bohemian voice,
open oak paneled doors
once denied you,
become all the radiant
seasons speckled
in russets
and autumn golds,
pale peonies,
and Titanium whites?  

Do you ever imagine
the mirror's reflection
as the real you
standing beyond your
mind's limitations?  
What would it take
to awaken
on the opposite
side of your thoughts,
to dream in excess
& possibility beyond
the confines of this
reality to a world
where you become
all that you can imagine?
118 · Sep 2020
harvest moon
South City Lady Sep 2020
why are we
so crudely made
when placed along side
our conceptions of love

we fall miserably short
of caring, listening,
giving, receiving
yet in our dreams
there is no threshold      we must cross

the slip into love
is as effortless
as the moon's benediction
after an autumn night's
prolonged slumber
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