Thursday, April 27, 2017

18/30 Sweet

when my children find joy in a thing
I want to bask in their happiness
as long as I can

my son has this way
of making me laugh
at unexpected times
asking for snacks
celebrating the little things

I cleaned my room without being told
he says
this seems like a great time for cake!

the way he explains how cake
is the perfect food and if it's carrot cake
it's even better
he is not over exposed to sweets
but when it comes to cake he
can not stop himself

a self proclaimed cake connoisseur
he takes every slice seriously
thinking deeply over each bite
helpful suggestions on how
can be done better

it has become a thing we do
at least once a month
where we seek out new cake
to try
over conversations
being a teenage boy
and girls

my favorite cake with him
was the double chocolate raspberry
after the first bite he put his fork down
looked at me seriously
there were tears in his eyes

he said this is probably
the most delicious cake
I have ever eaten
all I heard was
mom I love you so much
and thank you

we indulge on our cake dates
because we enjoy
the prolonged
to sweet

17/30 Jazz

makes me think of dancing
under a moon
not quite full
but it wants to be a kiss on the mouth
holding hands
taking over the world
tickling keys
drums in the background
a steady beat
dancing tongues
the morning comes sooner than expected

the sky lightens
but we keep moving
mellow and magic
the best of all the feelings
the motion more mysterious
we move
like if we keep dancing the way we do
morning won't come
we won't have to stop

go back to the mundane
everyday existence
we were desperate to escape from
so we focus on the moving

in the moment

16/30 Singe

the morning after I wrote you
the words sticky on the page
I thought of all the things  
I should have kept to myself

the doubt of how much to say
clouded my thoughts just enough

my tongue freed up by my pen

I said more than I thought possible
how could I write about this

I think

how can the words come so easy on paper

an an envelope with a stamp

not from a body standing in front of another body

so, I wrote
about the love and fear of love
lost in translation
about the fire
lodged in my throat
about the way
you only see me in pieces

crack in the foundations
and crumbling wall

I told you the story of how
I was once a dragon lady
my job to keep everything out
burn it away with my flaming tongue

how you were the cool
I needed
the ice on a burn
a calming effect

how with you my hands
no longer clawed at
held strong

I don't miss those days
as much
as I miss
the warmth of your smile

I only crave the flames
when you cover my pieces
in the frost of your cold shoulder

15/30 Winter

Years ago I hid behind my fear
let you float away from me.

Brown eyes and lips so full
they pleaded for acceptance
my fear refused to set my tongue free.

So I watched you go, made sure to cut all ties.
It was the only way to protect my heart from you.
The potential devastation was too much for me to step into.
I still mourn you in winter when the cold creeps in
you are the chill in the room.

The silver box, a gift given to me by an uncle
who convinced me that what ever dream I place inside
Would come true.

The same uncle who on Christmas Eve
Broadcasted Santa's demise
a crashed into the Gateway Arch,
The Saint Louis side.

When he spoke of dreams though,
his eyes held that wicked gleam
so I believed when he said,
"You can't go looking for it,"
he warned,
"it will find you when you least expect it.
Just speak the dream into the box and wait.
Dreams like to surprise you when they come true."

I believed him until I was ten.
The year I turned ten a boy I liked died.
He went fishing with his father and his father,'s father,
he was the only one not wearing a lifejacket
when the boat capsized.
I had never been to a funeral before,
never dreamed the young
could die so young.
His dreams would never come true
whether he placed them in my silver box
or the box that would be his home

I had a turtle named Snapper.
I know cleaver. His carapace,
a smooth green with yellow stripes.
It was the first pet I had that was considered my own.
I never let him mingle with the family pets, I
afraid the dog would eat him
while the cat could care less.
I'm pretty sure the cat believed us to be his pets.
I took him to show and tell once.
The bully boy in my class
poked him with a pencil.
I jumped on him.
Won my first fight
ruined his bully career at the same time.
My turtle died three days later.
My classmates made an altar for him.
The former bully brought me a snicker bar
every day for a month
a form of apology.

In my childhood neighborhood
there was a dog fenced at the corner house.
He barked and charged the fence
anytime anyone came near.
His growls would appear in dreams some nights.
One day, after serving detention,
walking home from school
sure that my troubles were just beginning
I barked back at the dog
then kicked the fence to prove my fierceness.
My eyes bulged wide as he stopped mid bark
as we both watched the fence slowly creak open.

I was running before I knew it.
He chased and barked.
Fumbling for my key I tripped up the stairs
leading to my safety.
Knocked the air out  of my lungs
lay sprawled on my front porch.
The growling dog stood over me
I waited for the bite,
he seemed to smile
licked my face
trotted away.
I cried for hours after.

I replayed my terror
still feared the dog
crossed the street whenever I had to pass
that house
sure that the next time he
would not hesitate to bite.

When she called me a mermaid
I felt powerful
like my breath would always be in my body
in or out of water.
I found a mermaid charm
sewed her into my hair to remind myself
I can swim anywhere.
It reminds me of her on the days that I twist my locs,
or when it passes my eye,
or on any Tuesday in winter.

A sure sign I'm nervous is if I twist my rings,
or talk too fast,
or walk, or sing,
or breathe, or eat apples,
or clean my car, or write a poem,
or, or, or.
Basically I'm always nervous
I believe it's because I care.

I still have the silver box.
And while I do not believe it makes dreams come true,
I place my heart inside in hopes that if it ever finds
brown eyes or full lips,
or the memories of a dead boy
maybe when I find the love
I long to give
my heart to in the open.
I will let my future lover find it.
Which means,
I will put it in her path.
We will open it together
I will no longer be hidden.
Maybe it will happen on a Tuesday
in winter.

14/30 Stray

I used to have a home. If you could call it that. There was a lot of noise all the time. When they do not think you understand what is happening you pretend you do not know what is happening. When the one with long fingers left, the food bowl would be empty more than not. Water was plentiful when the toilet seat was left up which was often when the one with the long fingers left. I was always grateful for the door flap. They called it a doggie door but I am no dog, I am a cat. The first day the one with the thick fingers forgot to put food in my bowl, I was OK. There are always things left lying around, not enough to fill an empty belly but to sustain. The box they liked me to use became so pungent it hurt to breathe in the air around it. The second day would be harder.

By day three, I used the doggie door, even though I am a cat. It was early in the morning and the grass was wet. I never liked walking in wet grass but I was hungry and my instincts drew me to the woods behind the house. I heard so many things, all of them sounding like something to eat. I crouched to listen closer. When the mouse ran by I pounced. I had never pounced before. I learned that day what my claws were for, why my teeth were shaped the way they are shaped. I wondered while I ate what I had been eating? No part of this meal was crunch or cold, but warm and blood and filling. I ate it all in one feeding. Licking my paws clean after, was a celebration.I feel asleep in a dapple of light with the knowledge that I could feed myself better than the one with long fingers..

By day five I ventured so far away from the doggie door and encountered so many delicious things I had no desire to go back. I couldn't go back to the crunchy cold meals, when I had the feeling of slicing open prey coursing through me. I dined on rats, birds, chipmunks and other things that might not sound as appetizing. I fell asleep every night in a new place belly full and satisfied.

I didn't meet my first dog until week two, that day I learned to climb a tree. It's quite a thrill to learn and master something the first time you try it. He barked for almost an hour. I thought, I could sit in this tree all day, but I watched him. I like to watch dogs their bodies give up so much information. Not like us cats, you never know what we are thinking but mind you we are thinking. All the time.

I find dogs fascinating, their aggression is very much over the top, it's almost like they fear me so they become louder in an effort to convince me that I am the one afraid. I fell for it once, ok maybe twice, but after surviving 3 years in this neighborhood the dogs don't bother me anymore. They know I will wait them out, I have never met a dog prepared to strike first. For split muzzle and hell no.

It is a lonely life sometimes. I do not have people to stroke my fur or listening to my purr, like the one with the long fingers.  I take comfort in knowing that even though she left me, I have survived.

I had a partner once, she did not understand about the dogs, when they barked, in fear she struck out, they smelled it, her fear, and fell on her. I watched from the tree, until they calmed down. I buried what was left.

Every once in awhile some pretty house kitty decides to walk on the wild side, she in heat and me paying attention. It is a loud affair and brief, but, it wouldn't surprise me to know that there are other cats out there who look like me.

Surviving is what I have done best. I have learned how to avoid the cars. I look both ways before crossing, always. I avoid or stare down the dogs and sometimes the men with nets and leashes. I feed myself.Go where I want. I love the feeling of dappled sunlight and all this freedom. But every once in awhile I dream of the one with the long finger. If I ever saw her again, I wonder would she know it was me? Would I remember her?

Saturday, April 22, 2017

13/30 Rising

I can feel them trying to come 
the prickle the sting 
prying their way from me 
escape attempt

but I refuse to let them fall 
let them make this moment more erasure 
than it already is 

I hold them a talisman 
I hold that too as 
long as I can 
one exhale on the wrong side of mourning 
could drown me deeper than the last time 

so I hold them in 
the shudder of my chest 
a reminder of what happens 
when your heart turns library 
loaned out to diinterested readers 
who care more about the cliff notes 
less about the story 

everyone has 
only few read it back to themselves 
stuck on the same pages 
reliving past transgressions 
like a recipe to find something 
that was always lost 
even in the retelling 

they are still burning for release
if I let one fall 
they will all cue up
fall forever 

I think 
best to hold them in 
at least until this wave passes 
store them up 
to water something 
that might possibly grow

Friday, April 21, 2017

12/30 For the Love of God and Everything Holy, Body, It's Bread. We Love That shit!

I have occupied this body for a very long time
and there are some betrayals I expect 
some of these balance themselves out 
menstruation for menopause  
200 bucks yearly flushed away for decades, 
in some account I call 
have fun not babies no more 

the stretch marks that replaced smooth skin 
I rationalized that one away 
called it a road map to places traveled 
called it the bumps along the way taught me 
how to navigate better 
called it braille for a lovers touch 

this geographic tongue 
I rationalized it called it 
your tongue has tasted too much bitter 
now time for all the sweet 
called it all the kissing tastes better 
called it whoever, 
whatever you put in your mouth is savored 
in a way that confuses the alphabet 

when my body starts doing the strange
a random elbow rash, 
the phuck? 
bizarre pinking around the eyes and swelling lips 
the hell?

clearly an allergic reaction 
but to what I think
I don't ask my body 
she's on some other shit right now 
if she doin what I think she's doin

the last time I asked my body 
if I was really allergic to something
let's call them oranges 
because I love oranges 
and their cousins all things citrus 
my body said 
yes, Theresa
you are allergic to oranges"

I said, "not today body, 
not today" 

to show her, I ate a bag of oranges 
yeah, I ran a little fever and the rash went away
but in the way off all vaccinations 
you give yourself a bit of the poison 
your body will provide a defense, 
I am no longer allergic to oranges 
I am however still allergic to the peels 
so I can't peel those fucker
but I will eat them all 
cause my skin does it's own thing and since 
it is the largest of all the organs 
I let her do her what she do

but last week, 
last week I noticed the elbow rash 
pink rash around my eyes and lips 
thought, oh hell no 

so like the orange experiment 
I ate all the bread, 
it got worst so 
I denied myself all things delicious 
for 24 hours 
the symptoms calmed 
I went out for dinner 
I want the biggest fucking burger you have 

and it was OK the first few bites 
by bite five 
my lips started burning the swelling began
my elbows were itching as if 
they could scratch themselves 
I remained calm, resisted the urge to 
drop to my knees and scream to the heavens 

"Noooooo, bread! 
Has thou forsaken me? 
Does thee doubt my love 
my devotion you fickle ass delicious lover" 

but bread 
I knew bread wouldn't hear me
she always cheating up in here on everybody's plate
right in front of me
besides my friend works at this restaurant 
hey Anisa
it would have been weird 
and my allergicness to possible police involvement 
is one I have no issue with

so, the scene happened in my head, 
as I wondered if it was just bread, 
prayed lord, let it be just bread

next week the beer experiment 
but in the mean time, 
I found this gluten free vodka, his name is Tito, 
as I mourn my lover bread
Tito, tonight he has got my back
unlike this body