Words and Birds

In the darkest
Of her days
Twin beacons
Sustained her
Transported her
Through the inferno
And beyond

To survival

Avian visitors
Fluttered and flapped
Past her window slit
Into her imagination
Burgeoning hope
In external miracles
Worldly peace

Verbs, nouns and adjectives
Swooped and drifted
Past guilt and despair
Into her soul
Lifting expression
Voicing angst, anger, pain
Ventilating agony

On a wing and a verse
Synonym snapshot
Verbal portrait
Observational oratory
She built a bridge
Above Dante-ion abyss
To a livable life

Vagina Politics

My vagina

Along with those

Of all the foremothers

And all my sisters

Every race, creed and color

Inexplicably

Is held to account

For every action and reaction

Erection and ejaculation

Of all penises

Within cruise missile range

 

My flawed cavern

Is cause of misjudgments

I am much too intelligent

To ever have committed

I am repeatedly reminded

While simultaneously accused

Of using my wily organ

To corrupt and subvert

Penis-headed right activity

 

Ownership of said aperture

While the embodiment of

My weakness

Otherness

Less-than-ness

Foments the mystifying misbehavior

Of elsewise well-behaved

Carryin’ career criminals

 

I know why penises

Blame us vagina owners

For their missteps

This source of ecstasy and comfort

That baffles and befuddles

Humbles and contorts

In moments intimate and obscene

 

It is incomprehensible

When my sisters

Equally gifted and afflicted

Wield the sharpest swords

In the vicious dismemberment

Of my vulnerable core

 

Inexplicably oxymoronic

I am possessor

Of the orifice

Most powerful of all

While weak and tainted

Beyond imaging

 

With such power

In my being

My nucleus implodes upon

The enigmatic dilemma

Over which I have

Zero control

 

No third person distance here

This story is my own

 

Re-Entry

 

Back in the real world

 

She looks, walks and talks the part

Suburban professional

Soccer mom

(Minus the soccer playing children, now grown)

She knows this world

Can speak it’s language

Follow it’s unspoken rules

 

Yet surrealities abound

 

She was dragged

At gunpoint

Chained and shackled

Into hell (*prison)

Left to languish in

Fetid anguish

Befitting the evil

 

She walked from the gates

Shoulders squared

To catcalls of “hey Shawty”

From cell windows

Forever scarred

AND strong, resilient

As never before

 

She used her “mom voice”

With gang banging drug dealers

Sunday morning in the

Halfway house dining room

Hands akimbo

Asserting her rights

In a right-less world

 

She strode to the podium

Spoke her public shame

While advocating

For openness

In doors and minds

For herself, unemployed

And countless compatriots

 

She walked the tightrope

Of abject gratitude

At opportunity offered

With resurrected saleswomanship

Articulating strengths

Owning existent skills

Surviving incarceration

 

She proves herself

In early morning promptness

Dedicated attentiveness

Creative self-directedness

The wearing of multiple

Unlabeled hats

As she walks a mile

 

In these ill-fitting new shoes

Life Moments

In moments she lives life

Normally, as if

In today’s vernacular

Normal was a thing

 

She drives to work

Lead-footed as always

Focused on tasks up-coming

Until she remembers

A speeding ticket

Could violate her probation

Prompt prison’s return

 

She speaks her mind

With authority

Borne of decades’ experience

Hard won knowledge and education

Forgetting the felony

That stripped her of all

Authority, dignity, voice

 

She laughs, spontaneously

Struck by incident or comment

Hilarious, incongruous or ironic

That tickles her

Sensibilities, funny bone

Oblivious to the wreckage

Of the life which she inhabits

 

She dances

Twirled and spun

By the glorious updraft

Of a song, bird or human

Or blessing of the sun

Insensible to her unending

Incomprehensible grief

 

She lives

Moment by moment

Day by day

In a life bereft

Of all she would formerly

Have deemed crucial

To survive and thrive

 

And moment by moment

Surprising herself

With innate tenacity

She lives