Seekrit Bloggo Saturday

This blog is where my unspeakable thoughts find a place to live/remain/die. Like, the next time I am in bed with someone, and they ask me what’s on my mind, they are getting a recitation of either “and death shall have no dominion” or “she bitches about boys” and there is no inbetween.

The irony ofc is anyone hearing “she bitches about boys” likely will need interpretation support.

Anyway I can’t tweet this or fb this so here it lives. What do writers with other lives *do* with all the thoughts they cannot write into their everyday? Do we all have seekrit blogs?

I think about all the misery I could have avoided if I just relied in the truth of my own experience. Doubt is other people and doubt is hell. If you ever love like I love, it is always unconditional. Four years of trying to condition it just led me to a fiery expanse of a poem – four years and then Dylan Thomas. At that point of loving, there is no choice but to accept it. It is what it is. Stars at elbow and foot. Death really does have no dominion. The next time you ask yourself if it was real, try to tarnish it and see how far you get. If it’s still there, raw and pearl rubbed and as perfect in inception and even brighter, congrats, you discovered how to love unconditionally.

Ok, you ask. Ok but this person isn’t in my life? Do I just…have this now? Yup! That’s it! And may you find it again with less pain or expectation of reciprocity or building a future. Let trust fly out the window, let reciprocity escape. All you can do is love. If you value that enough, then unconditional love is more than enough. If you have screamed and raged for years “why won’t this feeling die?” Congrats! You have stumbled and bumbled into a place where death has no dominion! Oops! But also yay? That’s it, folks. Call it a wrap. There may be others as well you feel this way for. None of it means a life together is necessarily possible. But hey you barely sank never mind rose again. And now you have stars at elbow and foot, after the clean bones, gone – maybe, you think, maybe this ridiculous feeling will outlast your existence too.

And, if they don’t inspire you to recite dylan thomas in their ear like a prayer, like an oath – there is always marilyn hacker, waiting to land like an axe in some “high-strung, well-hung, penurious boy, not knowing what he’d get, could [have been] more generous.”

If I leaned into love that night, I would have believed every word he said about why this could not work. Maybe that is the better way: let cheaters live, let the cowardly have their cowardly ways, believe the lies from a place of love that does not care about the debts and balance and this for that and tit for tat.

Reciprocity is dead but love is not. Some monsters you just can’t kill. Draw a monster. Why is it a monster. Because I can’t kill it. I am tired now but happy too. My love is a monster and I am ok with that.

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Destroyer of worlds

Sometimes you want to write a poem and realise some other person has already done it – has already taken the meat of what you want to write and thrown it against a page, like a map of your bones on xray film. Last night I felt made of stars, the expanse of space inside me. So today is for Dylan Thomas, fiery and Welsh and a “roistering, drunken and doomed poet” at least as per wiki. I hope everyone meets someone they find impossible to stop loving after they are gone, by death or by the mundane mutiny of life. After heartbreak and all the graves we build inside ourselves, after numbness and fatigue and the impossible tiring resilience of continuing on, after the rage and the sorrow, after trying again, after suspicion and effort and sorrow again, after all of it, it just….remains, like twin suns inside each eye, aging you and deepening whatever depth in gaze you have now acquired. I hope everyone finds a love they cannot kill. I hope killers of love find love they cannot kill. I hope these skilled murderers like me find a love that kills death. A love beyond the body. A love beyond the other. A love beyond oneself. If someone were to ask me now if I still was in love with every lover I have ever loved, the answer is an unwounded yes devoid of hesitation. In the night sky last night, I felt a night flower unfurl its petals and stretch its hidden tendrils across spacetime. If a new lover asks me what’s on my mind as we curl around one another in some corner of some petal of some hidden corner of my story yet to come, and I already love them in some strange way, I would recite in their ears “and death shall have no dominion”.

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Apsara


Thursday cabernet
plum-wine colour line
twilit and violet
autumnal sunset ripe –
I meant to ask you
what did my lips taste like?

Don’t worry about me;
I don’t worry about you
I just smile – maybe you’re smiling somewhere too

I think you’re just some
summer fruit to taste awhile
some thyme to while away
to rub between my fingerprints
unseasonal yet berry-like
maybe too unreasonable in winter
for fairy-types like me

I rise rosé, on my day,
draped in a cloud
against the rising sun – its rays
press against my whispers, I have tasted
dawn at my lips, drunk light
at daybreak, and this midnight
memory of your slender hips –
well they just make me

smile
like the devil

I’m made of summer
festivals and fairy
lights and chocolate
and wine at night

I remember my butterfly magic
pink tongue peek flit slip flick

flesh warmed by twin temple flames
No need to wait-
don’t think I need to keep a
cloud aside for you,
where I’m from, the sky is blue
where I’m from, the sky is mine and true
where I’m from, my heart is red like berries
red like the devil’s chosen hue

the details are in the body
the details are in the tally
the details are in the fruit –

so I would have, in the river
I could have, in the bath
I might have by the fireside,
on pelts or by the pool –

but don’t you worry about me;
I don’t worry about you
I just smile – maybe you’re smiling too


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Second Craft

Jar of phalanges, finger bones
in oil and stone, potion for a
better home, better night
better past, fossil heart
pick up an index, dip it in latex,
become an escapist,
rewrite a timescape, taste
the powdered thoughts sitting against
the memory of future spells
and fluttering of fallen bells, cracked and
crushed and filled with the sunstained
kaleidoscope window glass pane
we are and we are naught and

crosses are and we are not

we are and we are naught and

crosses are and we are not

we are

eat a pistachio, save the shell
make a necklace of tiny bells
and seashells and stones skipping
against the shore all by themselves
in the wind and in the water
in the dream you had tomorrow
time delivered here by letter,
letter by letter day by day
year by year, throat by tear
there by here, hope by f-

irst, and thirst by desert
oasis grains and golden
summer, apples from
pirate; tongue from quicksilver
powdered words stirring against
the memory of future appellations
and fluttering of constellations,
sunstained and starlit twain
dust tendon leather strapped
bitten swords deep to dermis
diamond to bone,
cut a knife, against the marrow
love enough to hold the sorrow
love enough to love again
kaleidoscope window glass pane

we are

second wind
second sight
second craft
second light

 

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Salsabil

back
against the past glade
and glebe unwind rewind
unspool an old tape clean held under a bath
until it drowns in mercy or in grace
held against a magnet, stripped clean,
held to sunlight the negatives burn

Why give this? you might have asked

nails in the road tires
in the dead water mangled
machinery
sometimes I sit inside a rotted tree

trunk me-sized familiar I want
the peace of bleeding into bark

Why write this? you must have asked.

set a bag of bones against the windowsill,
all the phalanges of an old hand hammer
smashed bone shards for
craft the miracle: we
each survived
the other inside the cemetery
of my body and whatever holy space
burned in you my ear
holds like a jewel your whisper etched
in sharpest moonlight cut words,
(and maybe that was why)

Why make this? you might have asked.

ask
when you drink from Salsabil
why, if you need to then, but maybe
then by then, there,
given everything eternally,
will remain no need:
that which remains
remains a name

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in the case of

 
[Alev Lenz – May the Angels]

in the case of some wounds, the ones that keep on wounding, there is no healing – there is a time before, but there is no after and instead the tissue of life grows around it like forest thick with vasculature branches and marrow and connective tissue, around the localized abscess a black hole inside yourself – there is still life all around it, just around the death but the death is the death nothing can bring that dead part back people grow old inside the black hole inside themselves that is where and when you learn about people and it’s ok other things live you just understand death now too and that means everything else can die too – all of it gets a little more precious a little more fragile a little more dark a little more helpless a little more frightening a little more uncertain – maybe in that vacuum of spacetime between death and life we make strange choices about what we wish to live or maybe darkly there is no choice, there is just what is, an abstruse and eternal golden braid, threading all our stories of love and pain and some have more of one than the other and it does not matter what you do the braid was wrought an eternity ago and remains for eternity in a sense nothing really happens the heat-death of the universe has already happened, is happening, will happen, everything you ever did you are still doing and everything you have never done has already happened, is still happening, will happen together.

what am i made of I think masseter half copper wire and something in my eyes and i wonder what they see and if the death in me feels like a disconnect from their life unnerving and unsettling it is remarkable how someone can change your writing, it is remarkable how in the after all my fingers felt broken, trembled like wind chimes in a gentle summer breeze moving this way and that unnaturally in strange loops of direction detached from muscle and tendon snapped away a lifetime ago

it is ok to visit dead things the space is a grave i no longer want to desecrate there is something sacred and odd about it too in the way untouchable things can be reviled or precious or in odd cases sometimes both – love lets me visit graves without kicking over the stone – and this is not what I thought forgiveness would feel like –  some things and some people are impossible – like you. impossible because you were the space between my skin and my muscle – it took some flaying to learn where you were and in the flaying were you lost – gone forever, like a star cracking in half separating – a wound spilling into the dead space of things it cannot scar over or all life would end –

meeting you felt like meeting myself – familiar. i wonder what it was for you -maybe nothing profound. that is why “our” is a dead word. “us” “we” are dead. did they ever live? i am not sure. (you can say no, if it is the truth. just say the truth.)

things will die again have already died maybe not in the same way and eventually in me it  will just be a dead place, still maybe sacred when everyone is gone – they are of course already gone what strange ways we propel one another little bodies large bodies biggo planetto curving spacetime, sending a single thread of a single strand of the inter-braid that twines us all  shooting into a new trajectory – of course from outside of this universe it looks complete and still, all the parts not-even-happening, every moment in life still, a knot, a braid.

i have a new hand now and a new face, stretched skin over obliterated tendon

i wish you the serenity of a peaceful grave and a peaceful life, in whichever order you find them in.

i wish you dreamless sleep, pure in its weight filled with the potential of youth uncluttered by memory, unfettered by me.

i don’t know how you let me go

i let you go with love

(some people’s love is only good for letting go.)

with a copper wire promise
made in a grave with
an iron will and
a letter i will never read

be free of me,
rest at ease,
be at peace

[Agnes Obel – Familiar]

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easy

some people make it easy for you to be disappointed in them

this makes leaving easy

and everything else

easier.

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Almost

Some people are almost always empty in their kindness; almost all their truth is in their cruelty.

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The Summoning

Introduction:
This piece is one in a chronological series, set in a universe.
Feel free to find the others here, and to browse through any companion piece, set in the same universe.
Witches
1. Three Frenemies 2. Fall Coven Meet 3. BeingLovedAgain 4. The Fourth Witch
6. The Three Questions 7. Seed 8. Garden Graveyard Heart 9. The Cook
10. River Witch 11. Rage
12. Reincarnation 14. Hate
15. Rage and Her Spells of Power
17. Truth – Rhymes With Ruth
22. The Summoning
Goddesses
5. Memory Elephant 12. Reincarnation 13. Memory and Mudbaths
16. OtherSide 18. Pillow Talk With God 19. She, Named E 20. The Girl Made of Smoke and the Not-Boy 21. Other Garden

Companion Pieces
May 22 – Part 1 Stone Lady Paper Boots Dredge Half Yours, Half His Flower Seller
When You Must End Love Talk Scorpio Rising Pretty Men, Stone Lady
From The Olive Pit to Gratitude Reliability dead girl Soft Witch

I stand in the room, the little witch hut, its log cabin structure too flimsy to keep out what I am letting in. Outside, the river is turbulent, crashing against the stones in the valley with enough to force to break them into sand. Soon this whole place will be river, will be water, will be drowned. (It’s alright, I have remade the world many times after many floods)

The sky is dark, the waters darker, and they meet in me. I need no talisman. I need no clever incantation. Just a thought will do. All it takes is a whisper. All it takes is a turn of my stiff neck, all the way around like a doll’s head mutilated by a small unwitting child. All it takes is a mirror. All it takes to switch is a witch witch witch. All it takes is a witch’s wish and she is there, filtering in through all the cracks and crevices of the cabin, black violet fog entering through the cabin window, through the logs along the floor and all the cracks in the closed log door.

Thick fog that smells like river and rain and sweat and blood and fight and – Rage, I call, softly, not out loud, not even from my mind, just from the little place inside me when I first met her, that deep dark deep space of tissue-time, scarred hardness and cracked tissue. Her cackle starts low, from the floor and then, I hear it in the single flickering lightbulb, and it rises into a screech with the river outside as she climbs to meets the sky in tidal waves, lightning dances in every wave, crashing against the rocks, thunder inside the waters.

Her voice rises to a scream and I feel the knife-sharp edge of it against my skin, razor thin, always sharp sharp sharp enough to cut air.

“So!” she says,ghostly, ethereal, a voice echoing in the cabin in time with the water crashing like a building falling in a war zone. “Aha! At your most preferably bloody service! Where can I help, oh but where can’t I! Look at this place – ” and the fog sweeps through the room, knocking over a bookshelf. “Look at this softness, just look at you!” She is, of course, enraged. Mirror next, cracking on its own against the wall. I smile a half-smile, watching her at work, hold my hand up toward the mirror, whisper don’t fall to the shards of glass sitting in the air, resisting gravity, lazily floating. If she notices my magic, she does not take note.

“Look at you” she says, her voice close to my ear. I feel a little nip and then a sharper one, and then I hear a chuckle. “Fuck the books, the throw pillows, the couch and the coziness – this is where the real bullshit is -” I feel a finger along my cheek.

“Yes, let’s fix this all of this – just like old times, let me in” she says, a tendril of fog diving into my wrist, into my throat, tapping against a single cornea like a piece of contact lens glass. I feel the eye narrow on its own, eyebrow pulled like a marionette, high and haughty. I feel my pulse quicken in an arm, racing against the length of it, curling my fingers. I feel the straightening of my spine, electricity thrumming against my brainstem and in the river outside, lightning flashes again. The water is so high, I think the moon might be drowning. I feel my wrist turn to – “Stone. Yes, do it. Now, do it! In your eyes, and in your fists – no, wait. wait a moment – where I work best is here -”

And then, there the gentle, cotton candy deceptively sweet fog flavour, and under it, the taste of blood, old blood, the taste of a sword, many swords, many souls, the metal in my tongue like a magnet for its taste and she sinks into the wire of my vocal cords, and I feel that old thrill trill in my throat, a million words, like darts, like arrows, ready – a million shards of glass ready for spitting, witch voice, first voice, old voice, kill voice, end voice, ruin “him, yes let’s end this, let’s finish this, let’s! let ME! DO IT! ” The old nails in my old palms, the length of fog curling against my lungs, in my nose and against me, and an ancient magic curling through everything I know. “Break him, break IT, I WANT to. Let me rip. Let me vent. Let me burn – let me drown – let me evaporate – let me do aaaaaaaaaaaallllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll of the hurting you’re just too fucking soft to take care of.”

I look at the fallen books, smile softly, look at the mirror, broken and hanging in the air. Reassemble, I ask my room and things snap back into place. The fog pulls back, coalesces in front of me, solid, solid, more real, less water, more woman, less condensation, more skin – until she’s there. Naked, and ever so slightly violet-hued, black hair like mine, brown skin like mine, blood lips, but everything else tighter narrower harder, her whole body an arrow, her smile, a dagger.

“It’s nice to see you,” I say softly, a little helplessly. “It – ”

“Oh did I serve you well?” She asks, sneeringly, somehow ahead of me in thought, in words. Outside the sun is bright, the river is calm. We are maybe not having the same conversation.

“It was nice to…feel powerful,” I said softly. She wrinkles her nose, scoffs. I lick my lips; I try to explain. “I can’t actually – let you, you know that right?”

She cackles again, her mouth opening unnaturally wide, and in it, I can see the whole universe, the earth, myself and every moment.

“What did you want, softie?” She asks, mockingly, lazily, hand behind her head, leaning back against nothing at all, ankles crossed against the air. She twirls like that, reminding me of The Exorcist, a slow strange circle in a witch’s log cabin. “What did you fucking want? Why did you call me, hmm? This is all I offer! Stone and bone and witch and blood and hunt and blade! ”

“It’s just… nice to see you. That’s all – it’s nice to know you’re there and it’s nice to…to talk, and I… I just like having you around – you know, not – like not all the time, just sometimes…I like getting to know you. You’re – ” I trail off as I see her laughing soundlessly, entire body shaking so hard she’s holding her stomach, her eyes tearing up in humor.

“You stupid, soft idiot bitch,” she says, finally, straightening up and staring at me, hands on her hips. Yet she says it not unkindly. It’s the kind of thing you tell yourself. She scoffs again and spells it out: “That jumble of bullshit is exactly what he wants from you. Anyway, me, I can do nothing for you but put on a fun show – was that enough, dumbass?”

And then she is gone, suddenly and swiftly. No need to wait for a reply, I guess. I smile and feel myself in my broken mirror smile too, the reflection stare at the back of my head.

How well she knows what she can give, Rage.

How quickly she leaves when there is nothing for her, that River Witch, that Stone Lady.

Rage is never the witch I allow to consume me, possess me, live in me, become me.

But I’ve never met a witch more ruthless with her magic, more clear, more exacting, more sharp with her boundaries and her borders.

She knows who she is.

“Thanks for making me feel strong,” I say to the empty room.

Outside, the waters are still.

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saltsmooth

lately i think about the would be
could be
sharkskin saltsmooth taste
of her thigh
after my hand has slipped
and slid against the back of her knee

it sits elsewhere inside me,
these thoughts somewhere between
my ribs and splenic flexure, when
they skip a beat I feel it like
a bird, flutter beside my liver

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