little egg

Yesterday,
I spent the
entirety of the
morning
and afternoon
contemplating 
the hormonal peaks
and valleys
of our menstrual cycle.
28 days of rising and falling, dividing and intertwining.
Estrogen, progesterone, testosterone: How
have such vital determiners of mood,
desire, and life
escaped our 
notice—our interest?
Is it
simply that
there are so many
other things
to worry
about?
Or is it more
insidious than mere
disinterestedness? Mere distractibility?
What is it about our bodies—about the simultaneous
adoration and debasement of our bodies—
that suppresses our appetite
to know them?
To really
understand them?
It is this source of life
that has caused us the most shame.
A shame that can be fought
only
with 
curiosity—
mornings
and afternoons
spent deeply in contemplation
of that which creates
the possibility of
yesterdays.

 

in good faith

I stare down at the empty page,
the shifting shadows
of leaves beneath sunlight.
My right hand casts a deeper shadow
that moves as I write across the page.

Time stretches out
around me, within me.
And I have no choice
but to let it. And all of my words
today feel hollowed out, cliché.

But I must keep trying. I must
keep working, and writing.
I must find a way to keep going,
day after day after day.

Self-acceptance does not come gladly,
merrily, and by surprise.
It comes, like most good things in life,
steadily—nurtured by that which is pure,
yet so very hard to (re)learn.

i have lost the world

Sitting on the park bench,
caught in the strength of the wind,
I read Mary Oliver’s “Ich bin
der Welt abhanden gekomme,”
in which she writes of
that operatic song. 

Returning inside to my desk,
I listened to the same song and
wondered at the meaning
of those foreign words.

“Ich bien der Welt abhanden gekomme.”
I have lost the world.

Google translate asked me
if I meant “Ich bin” and
I realized, yes, that is
what Mahler and Oliver meant.

Sometimes, it’s really
the smallest of operations
that changes everything.

“Ich bin der Welt abhanded gekomme.”
I am lost to the world.

I have lost the world.
I am lost to the world.

Is it better to lose
or to be lost?

Better to let go
or be let go of?

Or is there really no difference at all
between losing and being lost? Both
imply an absence
of togetherness.

But it was Mahler’s song of loss
that made Oliver cherish
her aliveness, wandering the fields,
surveying the birds and the pond,
carried by that mournful tune.

It is in losing, and being lost,
that we find unity
again. Even if only
for a moment, on a park bench,
caught in the strength
of the wind.

moonset

On my bike ride to work this morning, I saw the moon setting in the Western sky, gossamer and holy. Almost other-worldly. I felt very reminded—indeed I feel very reminded every time I see the moon in a particularly well-defined state—that we are on a planet that is delicately suspended between other massive spheres of rock and gas in a giant expanse of space. How exquisitely, almost tragically fragile it all is: this fleeting existence. I thought of meaning—how as the coldness of the morning shifts to the warmth of midday, what I deem important or worrisome almost arbitrarily changes from moment to moment. It is merely the nature of existing on a spinning planet that revolves around an indifferent sun: time passes. Everything changes, always. To cherish—not lament—the delicacy of every moment marks the wisdom of the lucid soul.

beam

Cardinal,
sun beam,
Playboi Carti,
Cardi B.

Each
creative pulse
finds its origin
in the same source.

It is the nature of all things:
this ungodly holy union.

Let us bask
in
its perfect
variation.


This poem was written using Emily Ives’s writing prompt “Beams”  from March 7, 2019. Check out her instagram and blog for inspiring posts about writing!

move

Above ground
by the window alcove
blinding grey light, where
colors appear as they ought to

Beneath me, a sea
of onlookers
Some capped in red
others cloaked in curiosity

Next to me, I hear your old message tone
Two notes: one
low, one high.
I never liked it.

What would you have done?

Had you still been here
I wonder vaguely

Would you have stood by
the group who abandoned you?
Marched with
those who threw stones?

(I hear your old message tone again)

Endured among
those who opened you up
And found you out?