Groundwork

Groundwork

I would like to rely a little more on myself

and not see hope as a chore,

like eating healthy or being kind to my anxiety,

something other than just coping

when lack of sleep slides into the bed beside me

and swears he’s the only intimacy I’m worth.

Can I place a hand over where it hurts,

yours or mine, or both together,

allow scars to touch bare skin

without lying about their origin,

my longings and wishful thinkings,

mistakes and misplaced trust.

Of the things I find hard to accept,

the most difficult is knowing

how the next steps require

I must let go of them all.

Here Lies Grace

Here Lies Grace

I woke up this morning and sensed the air

mingle with the spaces between my fingers,

the weight of your absence

like a twenty pound blanket I sometimes carry

as extra skin

when I long to feel less fragile

and more oxytocin, more real

and less repellent.

I round up my knees

to cradle the present,

give it the human touch it needs

in moments of discomfort so quiet

that I hear the birds outside my window

breathe in faintest echos

like the words my lips speak silently

across an empty pillow.

Communion

Communion

Today is for the realigning of bare bones,

edges exposed,

every crack blessed with drops of holy water

for how else would I honour

the body of a Goddess.

Trace my fingertips over this skin

with the tenderness of a lover

whose touch was gone too long

but right on time to hold these hands as they sleep,

only letting go to wipe tears from her cheek.

Then, wake her up gently,

magic cast in the whispers of morning breath,

planting kisses on the back of her neck

where pulse meets electricity

and calls it healing energy,

calls it what I need,

when I stopped waiting for a reminder

of my trauma

to leak love back into capillaries

and find a daily practice

to map its journey through my blood stream.

We answer our own prayers.

Equilibrium in Motion

Equilibrium in Motion

This is not a war

and there is no you outside yourself

to fight.

It’s just the passage of thoughts

and fleeting feelings,

laying themselves to rest for awhile

inside an impermanent body,

which you also inhabit

as an everlasting spirit.

Part of being

is life becoming,

all in this together,

and nothing in nature is exempt from this change.

So notice how we change with you,

refined for our next revolution,

even the rivers and streams have currents.

Growth

Growth

I’m made up of moments

scribbled in the margins

of a worn out notebook.

These are the seeds sprinkled on recycled trees,

watered by tea-stained cups,

collections of my teardrops.

This is the hope drunk,

burning my throat

as silence drowns from the inside out,

the pen eating each forgotten line

with the fragility of shaking hands,

they hold these feelings as a gentle kiss

between fingers,

held still for a breath

to let the birds bless

this communion of sacred togetherness.

My spirit alive in the ink that spills,

once stalled, for now pours,

as I discover

there is no touch more intimate.

Scrabble

Scrabble

Dividing kilometres

by the words I can add up on my fingers,

hand to heart co-ordinating my pen to write

of your absent mind

whilst my mouth holds back lines,

sentences strung from the day’s reminders of you.

Tina knew,

love has something to do with it

but now is neither the time nor the place

to submit to measured spirits,

I’ve always drunk till contented

and even one can be too much for me.

So I sip today slowly,

stall my letters, keep them short,

the score only matters to those playing the game

and I am no one’s to gain.

I race with the softest of movements,

choices so silent I could slip away.

Don’t Hold My Head Down

Don’t Hold My Head Down

If you keep doing what you’ve always done

you’ll keep getting what you’ve always got

and you’ve always done

what makes someone else happy.

Stayed over when you felt you should have left,

wanted to say no but instead you said

‘maybe’ or ‘I don’t know yet’

till pressure turned it into a yes

or it was just conceived as one

when often silence is a siren song,

willing someone to listen

and notice something’s wrong

because there’s a voice here that lacks confidence

in saying what they need

and passive participation

just because the other person said please

doesn’t mean it’s the best decision for you,

and if you hesitate or have to convince yourself to act

then that’s your body saying

you don’t really want to do that,

it’s just hard to know how else the situation will pass

and one makes you uncomfortable for longer.

You don’t need to be stronger

because you aren’t weak

it’s just that you’ve learned through past experience

that it doesn’t matter if you scream out,

your consent is something people have forgotten about

and then your energy was spent on figuring out

how to get help

when it’s clear that no one hears you.

How do you turn up the volume

to a world that presumes

we all speak the same body language

and show fear in the same way?

Most women’s battle cries are first seen in their eyes

because it’s perceived as an easier option than refusal

to instead freeze or play friendly,

because appeasement is indoctrinated

from an early age

where we are taught that men are violent

and it’s not safe as an adult

to leave our house at night

without company,

keys between our finger tips,

not to style our hair in a manner

that someone could grip

because a man’s arousal is our responsibility

and when it’s seen as our fault then the consensus

expects us to do something about

that erection in his pants now,

and it doesn’t matter about reciprocation

or the years our ancestors fought

for our sexual liberation

because we’re a nation of porn users

waiting on Stormzy’s Vossi Bop, cum-shot, money-pot facial

that actress was obviously gagging for

just after the point that the man behind the camera

called her a whore, whilst another man

sticks his dick in her mouth

and holds her head down,

leaving the next generation in no doubt

that a quick internet search

will show the worth of a woman’s body

in the 21st century,

bent over a casting sofa

as three men penetrate her

and piss on her chest.

Society at its best, no holes left to fuck,

a president that brags of grabbing us by the pussy

and still his fucking time isn’t up.

Two girls one cup

because we’re forced to share the shit

that most men don’t want to be burdened with

because feminism doesn’t equate to being masculine

it just means you’re a pussy

to be in the minority

that stand in solidarity

with a woman’s authority over her own cunt.

On the cusp of a sexual revolution

but some still want the opportunity for a witch hunt,

like how 200 million women and girls have been cut,

it’s the new version of burning alive

because if the world gave women permission to have pleasure

it could satiate her life

in ways men don’t know how to satisfy.

So continue to feed her lies

about her lesser place in society

because really you’re worried

she’d be a threat to male survival as we know it.

Death of dependency in exchange for respect

where sex happens when we’re ready

and we’re free to lay down boundaries

and leave when it feels uneasy

because there’s no assumption

that by a certain number date

or in exchange for his undivided time

we’ll end up in his bed for the night,

sacrificing our needs to pacify a man’s pride

because we’re told that caring is in our genes.

The overarching theme that feeds

the means by which we put aside our desires,

burn out our fires

because having a libido just makes us sluts

and sex ends when the man cums

and we’ve always done

what makes someone else happy.