Strength

“A story just isn’t a story without a dragon.”
H.B. Bolton

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I have a dragon who loves me.

He is fierce, protective, and strong, often quiet and brooding. He watched me for months, smiling wryly when I flirted, his gaze sometimes burning, sometimes distant and always thoughtful. He flirted back, and yet has not been easy to read. I have been intrigued by his quiet and patient nature, and the way he captures my attention. He is a mystery, and he looks at me as though I might be magic.

I am.

“I believe in magic. Writing is my magic wand, and through my magic I create my own secret world, away from all these worries and responsibilities. Love, honesty and humanity is essential to enter this beautiful world of magic. I dwell among White magical peacocks, glowing unicorns, fire breathing turquoise dragons, talking trees, flying horses, talking wise jackals and wolves, crystal water falls, secret pathways hidden in urban gardens and books with doorways to secret worlds. You need to believe in magic to experience it.”                              ― Ama H.Vanniarachchy

Our courtship has been unconventional, and that’s fine by me. We’ve chosen to embark on this journey of learning about each other, trusting and celebrating the good things in life. He is family, as are his wife and his son. I am amazed by that depth of love and connection with each of them. In many ways he is simply a solid, strong presence in my world, who makes me laugh, and treats me well, cherishes me, encourages me, believes in me. I feel the dragon heart beating beneath the surface of his tough exterior, and I know that there’s nothing he would not do to see me smile. He has a strong sense of honor, of right and wrong. I admire that about him.

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Vastness

For small creatures such as we the vastness is bearable only through love. – Carl Sagan

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I have a lover who stargazes with me.

We began our journey under a crescent moon, and stumbled our way to the full, in a pool beneath the night sky. Ever since those first encounters, we’ve been wandering in an ocean of magical light and energy, marveling at stardust, enthralled by the moon in all her prowess. He gazes at me, as I breathe in the night, and he turns his face to the heavens, squeezes my fingers in his, as the wonder of eternity unfolds before us. He believes we are made of star-stuff, and inhales that vastness with me. He and I are similar, in this view of the universe. I knew it the moment I listened to the first song he sent me. “A Thousand Years” by Sting very much took my breath.

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This love we share is full of mystery, galaxies unfolding in my head. He is a musician, an artist, a bohemian spirit with his own unique way of thinking, loving, living. I am a poet girl, artist, barefoot gypsy dreamer. We are like a window opening on the great wide expanse that is the night sky, and when I think I’m beginning to understand, the world tilts, the moon slips behind a cloud, and the window closes. The more we unwind, the more mystery I find.

From the first time we met, there has been this resonance between us. He reminds me, more than ever, to turn my face upward, and note what small creatures we truly are. Still, to be so small, we are not insignificant. We have power, and influence, as the tiniest pebble upon the surface of an ocean. We create ripples, we have energy, we make a difference. We make art, music, poetry, and love.

This week, I found again a favorite poem by Rainer Maria Rilke:

Overflowing heavens of squandered stars
flame brilliantly above your troubles. Instead
of into your pillows, weep up toward them.
There, at the already weeping, at the ending visage,
slowly thinning out, ravishing
worldspace begins. Who will interrupt,
once you force your way there,
the current? No one. You may panic,
and fight that overwhelming course of stars
that streams toward you. Breathe.
Breathe the darkness of the earth and again
look up! Again. Lightly and facelessly
depths lean toward you from above. The serene
countenance dissolved in night makes room for you.

–Rainer Maria Rilke, Paris, April 1913, 
from _Uncollected poems_ selected and translated
by Edward Snow New York : North Point Press, 1996

The very idea that the overwhelming vastness of space — those depths lean in, making room for our gaze, our face, our presence — this is the wonder that takes my breath and prompts me to reach for his hand.

Depths

“…to slip beneath the surface and soar along the silent bottom of the sea agile and shining in water honeycombed with light.”
Ellen Meloy

 

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I have a girlfriend, and that for me is an amazing thing, for I have yet to explore such a relationship successfully, and I have so longed to try again.

We started as friends over coffee, and a mug with three hearts lent itself to our discussion of polyamory, and the joys of loving more than one, then we found ourselves falling in love with each other’s spouses, and celebrating that incredible metamour-hood and sister-ship. The more we trusted, sharing from our hearts and becoming vulnerable with each other, the more our hearts became entwined like flowering vines. Though we are both a bit afraid this deep sapphire ocean is full of sharks, we have found ourselves repeatedly taking each other’s hand, holding our breath and diving into the depths.

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This new love we share feels like uncharted territory for me, and I keep reminding myself to come up for air, to breathe, and not panic. She is beautiful, and sweet, a poet and dreamer who loves deeply and wears her heart on her sleeve, like me. Her smile lights her eyes, and the feel of her hand in mine is the softest, gentlest thing I have felt in a very long time. She speaks truth to my heart, and loves my husband, my family, and makes room for me to love her husband and family, as well.

She is courageous, and intelligent, fiercely diligent at the task of being her very best self, a loving and generous partner to her loves, and a supportive friend to those who surround her life. She reminds me to be brave, and to trust myself. She believes in magic, that we are mermaids, and that this vast ocean of wonders is ours to explore. I think she’s right about that.

“If you swim effortlessly in the deep oceans, ride the waves to and from the shore, if you can breathe under water and dine on the deep treasures of the seas; mark my words, those who dwell on the rocks carrying nets will try to reel you into their catch. The last thing they want is for you to thrive in your habitat because they stand in their atmosphere where they beg and gasp for some air.”
C. JoyBell C.

I am blessed to share this wide ocean with her, and to call her my sister, my friend, and my sweet, darling girlfriend.

Waterhouse_a_mermaid

When You Let Me

gypsyface

When you let me —
I will love you fiercely.

I will be deliberate
aggressive and honest
in my commitment
to your good, your health
and happiness

When you let me —
I will love you relentlessly.

I’ll tell you with words
with ink and paper
and poetry, how
my love for you tastes
looks and smells,
sounds and feels

When you let me love you —
I will do it holistically.

I will let you inside my mind
show you my fears
and convictions

I will share all my emotions,
ecstasies and disappointments
my sorrow and my joy

When you let me love you —
I will surrender my body.

My arms and shoulders
all the breath in my lungs
offer up my ample hips
strong legs and my sex

I will lavish you with love
from my star-filled eyes
my mouth dripping words
and my ink-stained fingers

When you let me love you —
I will open my sacred spirit.

I will pour out my dreams,
my whimsy and wild-child imagination
I will love with all the magic and
wonder a universe can hold

I will love you, truly,
all your broken bleeding pieces
with all my cuts and bruises
we will be two breathtakingly
vulnerable lovers:

your different-drummer musical beat
and your paint-spattered heart
my bare feet in the grass
pure poetry in my veins

When you let me love you–
I will inspire you.

to dance with words
to spill your own ink
and you will move me to dance,
play with color, paint
with my own vibrant hues

I will borrow your convictions,
your mantras and passions
use them to fuel and alter my own
I will grow and evolve,
sculpt better versions of myself

I will share each and every one
— when you let me love you.

A Thousand Times

(after Sting)

galaxiesinhand

I close my eyes, and see you in my head —
eyes and lips, fingers, shoulders, hips.
My mind spins and stutters, beyond my control
with these insistent questions and their answers.

Today, the knowing and the journey that is you
are the breaths between the ticking of my clock
— “a thousand times the mysteries
unfold themselves like galaxies in my head.”

Gazing inward, I wonder — unsettled and unsure.
Which words are meant for telling you
the things I long to say? Which of these
vast silences are filled with unexplored truth?

I gaze outward — watching, memorizing you:
your tells, sudden shifts, fluid movements.
I find more mystery, than understanding,
more turbulent galaxies, folding and unfolding.

You are like a great window flung open on
the universe, I stand staring out, peering in.
Just as I discover something to grasp —
spinning in your dazzling light — you close.

I slide downward, sit beside your wall
wondering — what have I seen? What part
of you can I take from this close encounter?
Silent and over-thinking — with galaxies in my hands.

 

POEM INFORMATION:

Poem inspired by A Thousand Years, written and performed by Gordon Sumner (Sting), on the album Brand New Day, released by A&M Records on 24 September 1999. (lyrics linked above)

ADDITIONAL CITATION INFORMATION:

Your Name — Instagram poetry (a quatern)

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(click to enlarge)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve made an incantation of your name,
whispered it softly on a spring warm wind.
My body aches, cries for your weight again.
I’ve conjured raging storms to bring you in.

Winter has kept us two lovers estranged.
I’ve made an incantation of your name.
I’ve watched the skies, I’m waiting for a change.
I’ve raised my trembling hands within the henge.

My beating heart won’t slow its frantic pace.
My shuttered eyes are haunted by your face.
I’ve made an incantation of your name.
Tell me are gathering clouds my saving grace?

Just why my soul wants yours I can’t explain.
I’m twisted on the wind, a weather vane.
You make me sigh aloud and pray for rain.
I’ve made an incantation of your name.

———-

@ConnorPenelope on Instagram

POETIC FORM: Quatern – 16 lines broken into 4 quatrains. Each line has 8 syllables. 1st line is refrain. In 2nd stanza, refrain appears in 2nd line; 3rd stanza, 3rd line; 4th stanza, 4th (and final) line. No rhyme scheme.

Guest Poet

Businessman writing in an accounting ledger

One of my long distance lovers has taken to writing poetry, in an effort to connect with me. He’s a math-brained, smart and nerdy kind of fellow — which I find incredibly sexy –and I adore him very much. I’ve previously featured his work here, and here.

I am intrigued by the way he approaches poetic forms, first the shardorma, fitting syllables into structured lines with care. I’ve been sending him new forms to try, like the tanka and the cinquain. He recently told me he’s come up with his own formula, and likes it very much.

There are five lines per stanza, with a break-line between each stanza. Not only can you read straight through, but each line of a stanza also forms a stanza for a secondary poem when combined with the corresponding lines of the stanzas that follow — first lines of each stanza are combined, as are lines two, three, four and five, to form a separate poem:

Two of his examples are featured here, in a form I’ll call accountant-poetry:

POEM 1

You see
kind and loving,
handsome blue-eyed mann
noble, strong, protective and smart —
your love.

Every facet is me.

I see
mediocre,
average man,
polyamourous and rebuilding —
a man.

Every facet is me.

They see
adulterer,
bearded wife-betrayer,
unjust, weak, neglectful and rash —
a fool.

—–

SECONDARY POEM:

you see
I see
they see

kind and loving
mediocre
adulterer

handsome blue-eyed man
average man
bearded wife betrayer

noble, strong, protective and smart
polyamourous and rebuilding
unjust, weak, neglectful and rash

your love
a man
a fool

every facet is me
every facet is me

—–

POEM 2

yes Sir
gift of service
to give of body, mind, soul
a longing to be of service
good girl.

Service is the strength to surrender but not be lost to another.

my girl
need and want meet
to focus loves and lusts
we share the two sides of a coin
I lead

Leadership is bending one’s wants to another’s boundary.

collar
want obedience
to protect and nurture
a need to be followed
Sir’s pride

—–

SECONDARY POEM:

yes Sir
my girl
collar

gift of service
need and want meet
want obedience

to give of body, mind, soul
to focus loves and lusts
to protect and nurture

a longing to be of service
we share the two sides of a coin
a need to be followed

good girl
I lead
Sir’s pride

Service is the strength to surrender
but not be lost to another.

Leadership is bending one’s wants
to another’s boundary.

Come Out and Tell it (Twisted) Slant

nindonotwanttolead

Hello, I am Penelope.

I am a free-spirit, a girl with wings. I am strong, and a tiny bit proud of that.  I am a survivor and a seeker.  I would say that I’m a feminist, in the sense that I “advocate and support the rights and equality of women”. Though it might be fairer to say I advocate and support the rights of all. I am sane. I am as whole and balanced as any human can be. These things you probably know about me, if you’ve been reading here very long. You know, too that I’m a poet, a dreamer, a woman who falls deeply, and complicatedly in love. I am a sexual, sensual being.

These things paint a picture of who I am. They focus on my passion, my strengths, even my weaknesses, but in a positive light. These things are the easier things to reveal. But these are not all that one would care to know about me, if they want to understand my journey.

I quoted Anaïs Nin, above, because in so many ways, too numerous to count here, I can relate to her. She wrote prolifically of her love, her affairs, her dreams and passion, her weakness and strength. She celebrated her life, and damned the world that would judge her for it. She can inspire me, like nobody else.

She taught me, among a thousand other things, that I can be strong, and choose to surrender my power – that it does not make me weak, or compromised to submit, as I choose, to whomever I choose. She taught me that the fact that I’m not what some would call ‘vanilla’ is part of my make-up, and a passion to be celebrated as strongly as my ability to write a poem or to command the attention of a room, and persuade a crowd to follow.

I’ve hesitated, not knowing how much of this part of me to make public. Not everyone sees this departure from the norms as a positive thing. Some who learn I live a life of alternate sexuality, who might have cheered at my being polyamorous, or bisexual, will doubtless have a negative opinion of me, after this revelation.

You can rest assured, dear reader, that I will not turn this blog into a showcase for photographic and literary depictions of graphically sexual acts. This is not my purpose here. You’ll find no photos of trussed up girls, legs spread wide, backsides in the air. It may be that you, or I, enjoy these things, but this is not that place.

My purpose today, is simply this: to share my truth – that I am twisted, kinky… my sexual, and relational preferences, according to wiki, “go beyond what are considered conventional sexual practices as a means of heightening the intimacy between sexual partners.”

I have had, and will have, relationships that involve a power-dynamic. I have and will submit, by choice, to a very strong, gentle, sexually and mentally powerful man. It is part of what feeds my soul and my body. It is this deeply emotional, psychological, spiritual connection that I want to reveal to you in the coming months dear reader, along with my poetry, and my polyamorous journey. This is part of me —  part of my passion, my polyamory, part of my chosen way to live life in the fullest way I know.

I hope you’ll stay with me on the journey.

Ask Pen – Vol. 5 – Holiday Headaches

My latest Ask Pen article is up at OKPolyNetwork.com. Here’s a preview:

askpen

Dear Pen,

2014 has been a great year, I met and fell in love with a wonderful guy, his wife is becoming a great friend, and as the holidays approach, I feel like celebrating. Problem is, holidays are full of traditions, and family, and as a secondary partner, I’m sort of the outsider, not sure what it’s fair to ask for, but don’t want to spend the holidays alone. Help?

-Hope4Holidays

Dear Hope,

Congratulations on your new relationship! It sounds awesome. Holidays can be stressful for polyfolk. Families don’t always know about, or welcome multiple partners. Established couples can find it difficult to change long-held traditions when a new partner comes along. Add in multiple holiday parties, the question and cost of gifts, and Uncle Joe, who can’t figure out who this pretty new stranger is at the holiday table, and it’s tough.

On the other hand, all partners have rights, and the desire to celebrate with those you love is a valid and important issue to address…

READ MORE @OKPolyNetwork.com

It’s Not Easy, Being Human – an Ask Pen Article

askpen

Dear Reader,

I’m not answering a question today, I’m asking one. I hope you’ll allow me this liberty, and share with me your thoughts.

-Pen


We are human, you and I. Our partners are human; our metamours are human. Even our exes are human, (though I know it may be irksome to acknowledge in some cases.) We battle insecurities, and our own demons, and we bring those battles into our profoundly human relationships. This is who we are. Wouldn’t you agree?   There are several excellent books about how to deal with conflict in poly relationships and as we educate ourselves, I think we strive to communicate clearly and often, to check in and speak up, to ask for what we want. We work hard to “own our own shit”, as Cunning Minx would say. We face our jealousies, and process our emotions…

[Read more of this AskPen article on the OKPolyNetwork site. Click the image below.]

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with ink and affection,

PenSig50