The Way She Leaves Me

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It’s 4 a.m. and she brings me coffee. She sits with me in the bed. And she says things that make the wings in my soul twitch and tremble, preparing to fly. Not away, I would never fly away from her, in the frightened uncomfortable way of wild, nervous birds. No, this is more of a soaring on pure, clean joy, at being so greatly loved and cared for.

We talk in the darkness, steam rising from our cups and honesty filling the room with wakeful heat. She is preparing to leave me for the day — it is a Monday and work is required — but I can feel her struggling with the desire to crawl back beneath the covers with me and stay. She falls silent sometimes, gazes at me like the Wolf she is, like I am the moon in her early morning sky. I am.

I watch her shoulders tense as if they were covered in bristling fur. I feel her teeth clawing at my neck and nails biting into my hip. She will leave me soon but she wants me hungry before she goes. What’s more, she wants to carry that hunger with her too. She wants to feel it in her bones all day — to know that no matter the distance between us, I ache with it just as she does.

She checks the clock again, and growls, rolling out of bed. The right thing is pulling her, and it always wins. It’s one of the things I love about her — although today, I groan, protesting loudly about it. I watch her putting clothes on her body, and wonder how she can make that process just as gut-wrenchingly sexy as taking them off.

She knows I will linger here, in her bed. I will sip the remainder of my coffee, pull her still-warm pillow tight against my body, and watch the sunrise through her window before drifting back to sleep. Oh. So. Hungry. She tucks in her shirt tail, and threads her belt into the loops on her jeans. She pulls the blankets up around my shoulders and leans in for a last kiss, then two more.

I watch her pull the bedroom door closed and then listen for the echo of her work boots on the hardwood floor. She is leaving. Twelve steps between here and the front door and every last one feels like the Grand Canyon. Still I smile in the darkness of her bedroom. I watch her headlights sweep the ceiling over my head. I know she is a hungry Wolf, and she will be back.

—–

Just a Taste — After Halsey, Castle (a golden shovel poem)

werewolf2

 

I wonder if you understand it now 
the way you draw pain from my 
body like blood from a jugular. My neck 
–both pale and trembling– is 
yours to take, always open 
to your appetite, and the wide 
hungry hollow in you, begging 
to be filled. I will surrender, ache for 
any chance to feed your need.
wild and hungry wolf, you are the fist 
that holds me close, wraps itself around 
me and draws pain like blood, just to taste it.
———-
POETIC FORM:
golden shovel – Take a line (or lines) from a poem you like. Use each word as an end word in your poem. Keep the end words in order. Credit the original poet, ie. “-after (poet)”.
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POEM A DAY NOVEMBER 2015 – PROMPT:
For today’s prompt, write a “let the moment begin” poem.
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AUDIO FILE:

It Was a Claws and Teeth Night — After Evanescence, Bring Me to Life (a golden shovel poem)

woman in black

The darkness returns, and if I die before I wake
it was all a vivid dream of you chasing me. 
I still see it when I close my eyes, looking up 
at moon and stars, earth at my back as you bid 
me fight — remind me of the strength that is my 
birthright. Bare your teeth and your need for blood! 
I feel my body thrum, alive — pungent with desire to
feed the wolf in you. I will hold my breath and run 
— knowing you’ll give blessed chase, just before 
I lose myself in this clotting darkness. When I
hear your growls echo in distant trees, I’ll come 
clawing this earth with my howling — I’ll be undone.
———-

POETIC FORM:

golden shovel – Take a line (or lines) from a poem you like. Use each word as an end word in your poem. Keep the end words in order. Credit the original poet, ie. “-after (poet)”.

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POEM A DAY NOVEMBER 2015 – PROMPT:
For today’s prompt, take the phrase “It Was a (blank) and (blank) Night,” replace the blanks with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write your poem.
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AUDIO FILE:
 

 

Sleeping — After Adele, Remedy (a golden shovel poem)

spooning

I’ve held you more closely when 
the night stole your sleep, and the 
thoughts in your head brought pain.
I’ve seen the way your fear cuts 
your breath, and dread leaves you 
staring long into the darkness, deep.
I’ve been the broken one, tired and 
scared — and you have been the 
rock, that sheltered me in the night.
This love we are building keeps 
us stronger, together — you 
and me. We are made safe from
fear that finds us peacefully sleeping.
———-

POETIC FORM:

golden shovel – Take a line (or lines) from a poem you like. Use each word as an end word in your poem. Keep the end words in order. Credit the original poet, ie. “-after (poet)”.

 

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POEM A DAY NOVEMBER 2015 – PROMPT:

For today’s prompt, write an apology poem.

 

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AUDIO FILE:

 

 

Light and Darkness

candle 2
Late lies the wintry sun a-bed,
A frosty, fiery sleepy-head;
Blinks but an hour or two; and then,
A blood-red orange, sets again.
(excerpted from “Winter-Time” by Robert Louis Stevenson)
—–
Were it not for shadows, there would be no beauty.
(Junichiro Tanizaki)
—–
Learn to reverence night and to put away the vulgar fear of it, for, with the banishment of night from the experience of man, there vanishes as well a religious emotion, a poetic mood, which gives depth to the adventure of humanity. By day, space is one with the earth and with man — it is his sun that is shining, his clouds that are floating past; at night, space is his no more. When the great earth, abandoning day, rolls up the deeps of the heavens and the universe, a new door opens for the human spirit, and there are few so clownish that some awareness of the mystery of being does not touch them as they gaze. For a moment of night we have a glimpse of ourselves and of our world islanded in its stream of stars — pilgrims of mortality, voyaging between horizons across eternal seas of space and time. Fugitive though the instant be, the spirit of man is, during it, ennobled by a genuine moment of emotional dignity, and poetry makes its own both the human spirit and experience.
(exerpted from chapter eight of “The Outermost House”, by Henry Beston)
—–
Hello darkness, my old friend
I’ve come to talk with you again
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains
Within the sound of silence
(excerpted from The Sound of Silence, by Paul Simon)
candle
Today is the day I will celebrate Yule, and my Winter Solstice. I have been thinking a great deal about the longer nights, the insomnia, the shadowy days, and the lack of the sun. Truth be told, I miss her light, her warmth, and on those days this month when she has shone her face and warmed me, I have made an extra effort to get outside and soak her in.  I am eager to turn that corner of the longest night and head back toward the light, to chase through the woods at sunset as she sets fire to the tops of the trees, and warms my skin! But I’d be remiss if I left it at that. Because I am also the girl who loves the darkness, and welcomes the night, even the insomnia. I find it is a gift, to steal an hour or three of shadowy silence for spilling ink and writing poetry, is one of the great pleasures in my life.
candle yin yang
Darkness intrigues me, calls to me, begs to be celebrated. I have felt this way since very early on in my adult journey into a new experience, a new identity and spirituality that was fully my own. I remember long ago reading a post on a blog by Poppy St. Vincent, about being a woman who in the spirit of Lilith, chases her own darkness… “Maybe sometimes she has children now but she has a life away from them as well. Maybe she loves but does not obey without question. Maybe she walks her own path, thinks her own thoughts; she has the distinct smell of trouble about her. Maybe she is so restless at night because she has such dreams of desire that they will not let her rest.” …it resonated with me so deeply, that I long ago wrote about it, and that call to leave the warmth of hearth and home for a while, and chase my own darkness down the shadowed paths under moonlight. It truly changed the way I identify myself.  I have learned to embrace the darkness in me, and yes, to revel in it. I am both Raven and Moon. My blood runs inky, and I seek out the nights, the shadows, the forest paths where I run with my Wolf. We explore that darkness together, and yes, these things add depth, poetry, adventure and a spiritual richness, a “religious emotion” as Beston says. I am deeply fed by this act of embracing the night, and the darkness that is an intrinsic part of who I am, and how I’m made.
candle snuff
I have been meditating today on this longest night, and on ways to celebrate it in my own way. I will, of course, attend a small Yule celebration, and with friends and like-minded acquaintances, I will join in the ritual, light candles, make music, and welcome the light in that circle. Today alone, as I have no other day this year, I wear about my neck a chain from which is suspended a small silver charm shaped like the sun — presented to me and to all in attendance at my first Yule ritual. It seems an appropriate reminder of the light that shines in even the most troubling times, and I need that perspective. My year has had its share of heartache, and even today, I am going through a sort of darkness that I do not relish, do not chase. I am comforted knowing that it will not always be so dark as it is now in that sense. I recall for myself in these ways the truth that light is coming.
candles
Still, my desire is to embrace that light while also honoring the darkness… like a chunk of snowflake obsidian I carry in my pocket some days, light and dark in the same small space, both creating beauty. I will carry that stone with me tonight, and I will spend some time in the wee hours, reveling in the absence of light. I will turn off my electronics, my light bulbs, blow out my candles. I will breathe and be grateful for the shadows in my life that define beauty, and provide contrast to the brightness. I will relish the stillness, the sound of silence, the quiet of four in the morning — and after a while, I will light a solitary candle, and I will write. I will do what I was made to do, what is in my blood, and bones and DNA. I’ll spill ebony ink onto my pages, to remind me that darkness too, is truly my old friend.
Candle out

Winter Solstice

Winter-Solstice-Sweden-

These long nights etch frost
across our window panes.
We are the slow, tired reply,
heavy with winter’s sleep.

Let’s draw the cloak of longing–
curl into our hollow spaces,
inspire the waning heat of
our own, too-shallow breath.

There’s in us yet, a reaching.
Limbs promising new growth
itch under stubborn bark–
breathless for season’s change.

Sap whispers in our branches.
Murmurs wake us in the night.
Rumors stirring wild imagination,
hope kindles these dry bones.

We’ll soon wake from slumber,
bathe our faces in the morning.
Our weary nights are numbered;
–here comes the blessed light.

Sleep is for the Birds — After Rod Stewart, Maggie May (a golden shovel poem)

one sleeps one awake

I wonder when it is that you wake
and ponder what it is that keeps you up.
I am Rod Stewart’s Maggie,
lying — asleep, beside you.
will while away nights — I think
— until I stir and meet your eyes.
think you’re used to this — you’ve got 
a rapport with 4:00 a.m. Something 
I wish I knew, and don’t envy you — to 
eat the night as I drink death’s sleep. You say 
you’ll sleep when you’re dead. I’d like to 
think I’d like the solitude. I could share with you.

———-

POETIC FORM

golden shovel – Take a line (or lines) from a poem you like. Use each word as an end word in your poem. Keep the end words in order. Credit the original poet, ie. “-after (poet)”.

 —–

POEM A DAY NOVEMBER 2015 – PROMPT:

For today’s prompt, it’s time for another Two-for-Tuesday prompt.

Here are your options:
  1. Take the phrase “Ode to a (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write your poem.
  2. Take the phrase “(blank) is for the Birds,” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write your poem.
 —–

AUDIO FILE:

Never — After Rick Astley, Never Gonna Give You Up (a golden shovel poem)

wolfbluemoon

Until I saw you bare your teeth, I never

believed in werewolves, thought I was always gonna
find them only in my dreams. Until I felt you give
me that hungry look, knew I’d be devoured by you
I’d stopped hunting teeth under the moon — I’d given up.
———-
POETIC FORM
golden shovel – Take a line (or lines) from a poem you like. Use each word as an end word in your poem. Keep the end words in order. Credit the original poet, ie. “-after (poet)”.
POEM A DAY NOVEMBER 2015 – PROMPT:

For today’s prompt, here are your two options:

  1. Write a Technology Poem.
  2. Write an Anti-Technology Poem.

Sinner — after Hozier, Someone New (a golden shovel poem)

womanspillsink

It’s four o’clock in the morning,
know the hour, before I wake.
The beating of my heart, at 
this familiar darkness will be the 
penance to open my eyes — the first 
groaning prayer of my day. I won’t cringe. 
I shall not moan over tired bones or lack of 
sleep, I’ll flood this night-filled morning 
with words, kneel before it with ache and 
ink. I’ll spill this blood to write my 
pain across the sacred page, until my heart’s 
low hymn becomes an echo — already
chanting, rhythmic cries of sins I’ve sinned. 
———-
POETIC FORM
golden shovel – Take a line (or lines) from a poem you like. Use each word as an end word in your poem. Keep the end words in order. Credit the original poet, ie. “-after (poet)”.
POEM A DAY NOVEMBER 2015 – PROMPT:
For today’s prompt, write a mistake poem.
For more information, check out– http://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/2015-november-pad-chapbook-challenge-day-9.

Thirsty — after Jo Dee Messina, Bring on the Rain (a golden shovel poem)

sleep

I am tired of fighting tomorrow’s 
battles, today, of thinking too long on another
possible outcome for conflict, I need a day 
of white flags, doused in gasoline and 
excuses piled up, set ablaze. I’m 
not ready to lay down tonight, too thirsty 
to swallow more words — can’t sleep anyway. 
———-
POETIC FORM
golden shovel – Take a line (or lines) from a poem you like. Use each word as an end word in your poem. Keep the end words in order. Credit the original poet, ie. “-after (poet)”.
POEM A DAY NOVEMBER 2015 – PROMPT:
For today’s prompt, write a submerged poem.
For more information, check out– http://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/2015-november-pad-chapbook-challenge-day-8.