Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Poems

I have a lot on my mind and also I really haven't been feeling well. I need some time to rest and think. So in the meantime, I thought I'd share a few poems I've written about my baby, being pregnant, and the like, in chronological order of their composition date (all of which remain unrevised, mind you).  Also, my apologies for the random change in font throughout the entry.  the formatting is not cooperating.
 
-I think there were more in between, but "December" is definitely the first poem I wrote after discovering I was pregnant, and for some reason my biggest fear was that I would somehow have to help my little one find happiness in what could be such an awful, awful world.
 
I have since realized that I am so in love with him that I don't think I could show him anything other than happiness.
 
December
 
I keep thinking
about December,
about explaining
the strings of lights
hung from windows—
& the cold, & that it
won’t always be cold.


-This next poem was written the night I had my first sonogram. A very basic poem, not exactly how I'd like it to sound, but sometimes things are too real to write about. (This poem, as well as "December," were part of my 30 in 30 this past year, so I had to get something out in order to meet my quota.)


April 23, 2012
 
Today was the first day I saw you & heard you.
It’s funny how love can spur so many other things:
so much more furious over a bus colliding
into me as I sat helpless in my car;
when I hear a new song I like, I feel hopeful that
you will find delicious new things to discover.
 
I’m hoping when you are old enough
to take a walk at sunset, you will.
& when you smell something in the sweet
mid-summer air that you hadn’t noticed before,
you will finally understand.I’m hoping that the fireflies
will still ignite the brush like Christmas lights,
& seeing them will make you feel perfect and small.


-Next is another 30 in 30 poem.


Know
 
When you ask me,
“How will I know?”
I will tell you this:
In northern California
the shooting stars are never-
ending. When you notice one,
tell your lover about it.
There is only one reaction
that you should accept:
his genuine wonder, &
insistence upon staring at the sky
until he sees one himself.


-I believe this next one is pretty self-explanatory, written about my husband, myself, and my son; our little family.


Derailed
 
i
 
It’s about time I wrote this;
I think it all the time
but you would not know.
I feel I must be a child still, the way
My memories of you
stay so vivid & green,
like I somehow have so much
room to hold them—
nothing else filling the wrinkles
& space, nothing.
 
I remember knowing & not
knowing & so plainly
knowing, knowing, knowing.
 
How about the day in the autumn chill,
our arms around my waist as you
looked helplessly up at me—
how I wished I could have skipped
through calendars & ended up with you,
minus the things that happened in between.
Sometimes the strongest kind of hate
is when it is cemented with love;
sometimes you cannot imagine.
I could not imagine.
 
All we know are moments
here & there, your hand reaching
for mine in the car, moments
when I knew I would never find a way
to show you that I don’t just love you.
 
 
ii
 
 
I worried this past weekend when our son
moved very little within me, my focus
the absence of his quivering comfort,
the image I can’t get out of my
head of his fingers touching his
perfect nose. But this morning I thought
of only you, & almost in response,
he squirmed to the rhythm of my heartache,
a desperate need to break free & find you
himself. I love him for this, for being so much
wiser than both of us, for knowing things
we are too old to know anymore.
 
 
iii
 
I lose you over & over when I wake
every day to the silence of your absence.
 
 
You know this feeling too: the desperation
of your hands tied behind your back.
How you pray for the rope to come undone,
so your fingers can speak what your mouth
never could, everywhere & forever on her skin.
 
 
I feel this now; inadequate words for everything
that needs to be said. But I am captured by your eyes,
by the smell of you when I need it most, by the trembling
flicker of life growing within my body. So soon we will
meet him & I will ask him how he knew all the things
we didn’t, & with a scream & cry he will tell us everything
we need to know:
 
love can still exist even when you shake
someone to their center, when their world
comes crashing down dangerously, when
you remove them from the warm, safe,
haven of a womb & show how cold, loud,
& painful life can be. This is breathing.
 
I want your hands on my hands on his hands.
I want your arms around my arms around his arms.
I want your kiss on my skin on his skin.
 
This is breathing.


-And finally, ::sigh::. This might be the saddest of them all. Only because sometimes, loving someone so much is the saddest thing in the world. And I know I will cry when I can finally kiss my son.


Expecting


i can't exist without knowing you anymore, your fingers learning how to curl and toes stretching against the inside of my skin.  i won't let them wash their hands of me anymore; i will let them know the bitter. I can't believe in this as terrible, because of you, because of you being ours, because there is something beyond the things i know and don't know, that makes knowledge not matter anymore. your eyes blinking for the first time under flourescent light and i will wish it could be sunlight.


fear has an appetite. i know you alone, but would no matter what; the ocean never meets the sand without washing some of it away. that is what happened to me: i was washed away. my hair keeps growing and i have little desire to cut it. it is a map of where i've been, a random curl represents my feet, backtracking over him. this is because of the things i miss, the very, very little things, like his particular warmth. (our chemistry never worked like a textbook, we mixed chemicals sure to erupt and they did.) all outbursts settle; you will emerge on the earth as a new element, essential and unable to be broken down.


when i look in the mirror, i can barely see past the surface stains on my skin, scarred and made tougher through healing. i will write a song in which you come to meet us both, and even our tremendous pain will be swallowed by your tiny arms.
 

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