The Week Before

The Week Before

 

I hear the fireworks whistle across the sky, forming

into shapes that I can’t see. I wonder when the clouds

will blow away and ket the sparks shine through. I sit

in my chair, reclining, eyes drifting into sleep,

ears wide awake, clinging to each pop! And bang!

Fingerpainting

Fingerpainting

 

I painted with my fingers, traced them white,

orange, blue on a black-as-night construction

sheet. As my toddlers giggled around

me, I pressed harder and harder, almost

tearing through the paper. But when they stared

at my scribbled page, I showed them how

to take a brush and smooth it all away.

Circles and dots, fingerprints that won’t leave

turned to lines and thistles streaking through dark.

As the kids got up and washed their hands, I stayed

and placed my purple fingers underneath

the wood table, knowing they would stay.

Jesus Wept

Jesus Wept

 

Just when I thought things were falling into place, stars collided.

Everything changed. Things began to spin in directions they weren’t

supposed to, orbiting new planets, around the sky, around

us, in a way that wasn’t meant to be. But nothing ever

seemed different when prayers were wailed at the sky.

 

Whenever I see the new stars bright in the night, I hope

everything will again align. My souls yearns and waits

patiently for my constellations to form and for long-lost

tears to well back in my eyes and unbreak my heart.

My car crashed through the concrete

My car crashed through the concrete

 

went falling through the ground

to a deep dark hole filled with broken

rocks and worms slithering around

 

My car dropped through the concrete

and jolted me inside. I hit the window

with a thud and dared to hold on tight

 

My car tumbled through the concrete

and when I crawled outside, I saw

the sunset glowing, reflecting in my eyes

Lullaby

Lullaby

 

Hush, hush, go to sleep, let the fog

roll over you. Close your eyes, sleep

tight, let dreams drift away.

 

As the sun breaks at dawn and shines

down from the sky, hear the birds

in the trees whistling softly.

 

As you wake, see my eyes looking

into yours, bright as day. I whisper

hums of songs, perfect melodies.

Constellations

Constellations

 

The dust on my phone looks like stars in the sky.

And every time my screen locks, I see planets

circling around and around the earth,

stars so hot, they’re about to burst,

vacuums, space sucking in and in, hope.

With every glimpse, my heart starts to twirl.

Sevenling

Kids at the zoo come to see

Dolphins, zebras, lions,

Monkeys flinging from the trees.

 

But they never see the men

All in white, scooping up trash,

Putting cherries in their cones.

 

When they go home, it’s never alone.

Prayer and Blessing

Praying and Blessing

 

Up on the cabinet of my preschool room, is a box

full of books, waiting to be read. My teacher took

them down and sorted: keep, toss, donate. I wanted

Praying and Blessing but she threw them in the donate

pile, placed them at the glass front door, hoping

someone would grab, but dusting when they didn’t.

My Poetry

My Poetry

 

My poetry is a fastball, sailing

through the wind, 93 miles per hour, slicing

the air like a child’s paper plane.

 

It flies until it hits the batter’s mouth,

causing blood to seep out of teeth’s new holes,

gushing to the ground, the way I bleed poetry.

 

My poetry is the ambulance rushing

through the crowds, racing to save the one.

As the bandage is placed, and all is healed,

 

he forgets the scab that used to be, fears

the one that is to come. He soaks in a bath,

peels it off his skin, embraces my words.

Similis Papilioni

Similis Papilioni

 

I see my reflection on my computer screen. I’m covered

with a bouquet of flowers, roses, berries, purple buds waiting

to bloom. The bouquet sits above butterflies resting

on top oranges, feasting on its juice, long tongues snaking

into the pulp. My screen darkens the image and I pop

through. My face is hidden by blossoms, my body by wings.

But if I move my head, tilt it to the side, I see my eyes poking

out. It reminds me of what I’m told to be: beautiful,

gentle, still, before I burst through my delicate shell and fly.