I Knew My Pain

I knew my pain when it was a screeching

sunset

spurting cotton candy carnage

across the feathered heavens

mocking all that is soft and soothing

drawing my gaze

up and up, tearstained

\thundering scarlet refrains\

reverberating clang of your loss.

I knew my pain when it was a snarling

saber-tooth

birthed of my rent ventricles

spewing aortic dirges

feasting on festering anguish

\clamorous gluttony\

heartache grew fangs

fueled on midnight howling

and my heart gnawed raw itself.

I knew my pain when it was a stinging

nettle

clinging needy-puppy to my shins

\all scratch and scrape reminders\

of the bite that replaced the soul

in the deep chocolate of your iris.

I knew my pain when it was creeping

ivy

camouflaged among wistful greening

arisen from the fetid heap

\itching a glitch in my hopeful healing\

tendrils sneak snake-oil slick

renders my skin hopeless raw

where it lingered

in the shadow of your touch.

I knew my pain when it was tempered

steel

inlaid with soulful etchings

\mother of my surviving pearl soul\

I raise the blades coated

in my fevered blood

hammered now, the plowshares

of my hard- won stance.

I Knew My Stature

I knew my stature when I was a shrinking violet

wilting wallflower

hangdog hanging in the corner of the gym

stewing in the stench of pubescent sweat

and hurricanic hormonal surges

a bit too fleet of mind

and broad of hip

to be asked to dance.

I knew my stature when I was a shriveling teen

angularly angling

for acceptance in the seat of those size 4 jeans

gaunt of cheek and lean on ease

I nibbled on the knowledge

skinny girls get dated

while I wasted \wishing\ away.

I knew my stature when I was a curvaceous coed

unholstering my sexuality

like the black market weapon it was

filed down and ripe for the bidding

overpowered and unequipped for battled

shooting myself in the foot

greenhorn that I was.

I knew my stature when I was a birthing Bessie

nursing \wet and dry\

bequeather of sustenance and succor

repository of binkies, hugs and tissues

beneath notice as an independent woman

selling my soul for a closed bathroom door.

I knew my stature when I strode that shore

clove in rhythm

with the seething tides

shedding the skin

of a thousand judging serpents

one with the wilding waves

as they sing my siren song.