Poem of the day:
"B" by Sarah Kay

If I should have a daughter, instead of “Mom,” she’s gonna call me “Point B,” 
because that way she knows that no matter what happens, 
at least she can always find her way to me.

And I’m going to paint solar systems on the backs of her hands 
so she has to learn the entire universe before she can say, 
“Oh, I know that like the back of my hand.”

And she’s going to learn that this life will hit you hard in the face, 
wait for you to get back up just so it can kick you in the stomach. 
But getting the wind knocked out of you is the only way to remind your lungs 
how much they like the taste of air. 

There is hurt, here, that cannot be fixed by Band-Aids or poetry. 
So the first time she realizes that Wonder Woman isn’t coming, 
I’ll make sure she knows she doesn’t have to wear the cape all by herself 
because no matter how wide you stretch your fingers, 
your hands will always be too small to catch all the pain you want to heal.
Believe me, I’ve tried.

And, “baby,” I’ll tell her, “don’t keep your nose up in the air like that. 
I know that trick; I’ve done it a million times. 
You’re just smelling for smoke 
so you can follow the trail back to a burning house, 
so you can find the boy who lost everything in the fire 
to see if you can save him.
Or else find the boy who lit the fire in the first place, 
to see if you can change him.” 

But I know she will anyway, 
so instead I’ll always keep an extra supply of chocolate and rain boots nearby,
because there is no heartbreak that chocolate can’t fix. 
Okay, there’s a few heartbreaks that chocolate can’t fix. 
But that’s what the rain boots are for, 
because rain will wash away everything, if you let it.

I want her to look at the world through the underside of a glass-bottom boat, 
to look through a microscope at the galaxies that exist on the pinpoint of a human mind, 
because that’s the way my mom taught me.

That there’ll be days like this. 
♫ There’ll be days like this, my momma said. ♫ 
When you open your hands to catch and wind up with only blisters and bruises;
when you step out of the phone booth and try to fly 
and the very people you want to save are the ones standing on your cape; 
when your boots will fill with rain, 
and you’ll be up to your knees in disappointment. 
And those are the very days you have all the more reason to say thank you. 
Because there’s nothing more beautiful 
than the way the ocean refuses to stop kissing the shoreline, 
no matter how many times it’s sent away.

You will put the wind in winsome, lose some. 
You will put the star in starting over, and over. 
And no matter how many land mines erupt in a minute, 
be sure your mind lands on the beauty of this funny place called life.

And yes, on a scale from one to over-trusting, I am pretty damn naive. 
But I want her to know that this world is made out of sugar. 
It can crumble so easily, 
but don’t be afraid to stick your tongue out and taste it. 
“Baby,” I’ll tell her, 
“remember, your momma is a worrier, and your poppa is a warrior, 
and you are the girl with small hands and big eyes who never stops asking for more.”

Remember that good things come in threes; and so do bad things. 
And always apologize when you’ve done something wrong, 
but don’t you ever apologize for the way your eyes refuse to stop shining.
Your voice is small, but don’t ever stop singing. 

And when they finally hand you heartache, 
when they slip war and hatred under your door a
nd offer you handouts on street-corners of cynicism and defeat, 
you tell them that they really ought
to meet your mother

How books shaped my perception of the world

Growing up,

I was convinced,

That the famous five would turn up and take me on an adventure,

Or that I’d find fairies in the garden-

A secret garden- a secret garden possessed by magic;

And I’d explore and meet a ghost, or a wizard,

Or a talking lion and maybe I’d discover a whole new world

And battle my fears and pirates and growing up

I somehow knew

That life would be exciting,

Because I’d find buried treasure and be famous

Or I’d foil a dastardly plot against the Queen-

Either way, I’d be a hero back in my small home town,

And my neighbours would actually know my name,

And I’d have a dog. My partner in crime.

Growing up,

I realised that it did not matter if I was tall, or awkward,

Because handsome princes have to marry the heroine,

That’s just the way it’s written,

So I was sure to have a happy ending in the end.

And I’d live in a castle, with a library,

With enough books to fill my head with nonsense.

Submitted by fullstops

towering above our heads
beams and glass

stretch     m i l e s   u p    to the firmament
sheafs of metal and stone
a proud monument to the humanity
obidiently moulded in the

d

e

p

t

h

of ignescent jaws of a foundry.

Submitted by ink-phantoms

On Memory

An original composition. 

Let it all out. Enter the sweet, never-quite-true world of memory, where everything runs through the filters of music and color and nostalgia, passes through the Gateless Gate beyond which even the most ignoble sufferings seem to have the same magic of the past. The present slips through you and becomes film photographs, remembered melodies, great friendships and beaming smiles, and before you know it your whole life is behind you. Take in the mysticism of bravery, of sex and dreams and demeanor, of French girls in photographs and of sweet love made for the first time, of the simple ineffability of every single experience, which only seem comprehensible and meaningful when you revisit them by wandering through the black attics of memory, where they pulse like luminescent butterflies, alive with the glories of play and the wistful teardrops of all that we have done, because all we have done has brought us to what we are doing right now. Who could or would be free from the magic of a bike ride down a long trail, of a walk taken with a stoned friend, of all the enchantments and disenchantments of high school, which bind and release as often as the sun rises and sets? My remembered life is not a progression of moments but a pastiche and a panoply, a Picasso mural full of all the things I succeeded in and all the things I didn’t, full of snapshots and snatches of conversation and the spiderweb of moments that influenced and tugged on each other across the shuffled card deck of time, all of it bringing about the sad smile which only ever comes from reflection. Our brains and our souls do this, send us spiraling into the past, revealing the pattern that emerges when the waves of time have eroded the moments in between defining flashes of light that seize what was temporal and turn it, like the transduction of energy brings the world into ourselves, into the eternal humility of a snapshot. Tenderness saturates your being like a conciliatory quicksand around the legs, and looking back on the scatter of what I’ve managed to snag from the river of time and store with me in little albums and mobiles and dreamcatchers, I embrace even my enemies, wish somehow I could move beyond the faded stillness of what is after all a memory, a symbol of something which during its own time bloomed with incredible flowering motion. The mind is like an aviary full of yellow canaries and sailors that spend all night playing patience whittling and drinking from old green bottles, and by the time we realize this the canaries are already fleeing or else holing up for the night, done with their singing, so seize it all now before it fades, regardless of how many ancient globes spin in your memory and entrance you with hypnotic numerologies that you could not see when they spun before you the first time; once it has passed it is subject to the many predators of the unconscious, who bend and twist and sprinkle fairy dust on what happened before, and the jungles of memory become a place to see that each of your friends was a steeple before which to kneel and pray, a bundle of sizzling nerve fibers more precious than a bowl of diamonds, that every love no matter how impure was still an intimation of the great Maternal Soul who presides over all such matters, that each tragedy was a lesson imparting volumes and volumes of wisdom through the simply stark meaningless fact of its happening, that each leaf and piece of mulch and ignorant comment is integral to life, that it all happens because … so use this knowledge, this late-night grasping for the lost & hinted worlds of your memory, where dreamtigers stalk, footprints leaving Arabic sentences in the mud, and where ghosts dance with living folk in the ballrooms of Regret and Remembrance, use this knowledge to throw yourself forward, into the immense shining value of everything and anything that will ever grace your being with its simplicity or complexity: doing this, become the river. 

Submitted by vast-flowing-vigor

"There is a difference between being put out and being put outdoors. If you are put out, you go somewhere else; if you are outdoors, there is no place to go. The distinction was subtle but final. Outdoors was the end of something, an irrevocable, physical fact, defining and complementing our metaphysical condition. Being a minority in both caste and class, we moved about anyway on the hem of life, struggling to consolidate our weaknesses and hang on, or to creep singly up into the major folds of the garment. our peripheral existence however, was something we had learned to deal with- probably because it was abstract. But the concreteness of being outdoors was another matter- like the difference between the concept of death and being, in fact, dead. Dead doesn’t change, and outdoors is here to stay.”

Toni Morrison, The Bluest Eye

(Source: inspiredbylit)

Poetry Month!!

Who are your favorite poets?

Some of mine are..

Gwendolyn Brooks, Sylvia Plath, Maya Angelou, Anne Sexton, Andrea Gibson, Allen Ginsberg, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Rita Dove, Ron Rash… I could go on forever!!

Share below!!

Funerals. They’re a frightful bore, aren’t they? I’ve been to far too many, but that’s what happens when you come from a ridiculously large and archaic catholic family. They all spend their time clamouring to die. Must get to heaven before Cousin Doris.

But this one was interesting. I had a quick peep in the coffin, my face covered by a handkerchief in mock grief- they’d sewn her up quite neatly, I thought. And the Boy’s family on the other side of the church. A double funeral, no less. I was so sure Father Laurence wouldn’t agree to that. What was he thinking, letting our families in the same room? But then the rumours reached my ears. About Father Laurence, and a shadow of implication. It made sense. He was sweating up on the pulpit.

Everyone cried. It was awful. There was Aunty C, clutching at his mother, drowning in tears behind their black veils, and everyone muttering and shaking their heads. A tragedy, a bloody tragedy. We’re sorry for your loss. I didn’t think it was a tragedy. I thought it was bloody stupid.

 I tried to warn her, really I did. But she just said I was jealous, jealous because he wasn’t interested in me anymore. Now that was amusing. I told her, as plainly as I could, that I was glad the freak had stopped following me around town and pawing through my rubbish. It was wonderful knowing I could turn up to a party and not see his eyes following me across the room, like a wounded stag begging to be put out of misery. And it was a relief when he stopped bombarding me with love letters and leaving tear stained poetry on my doorstep. Honestly, the cringe worthy sentiments he sent to me were enough to make me want to vomit.  She blushed. Interesting.  Has he been recycling those little love notes? I asked, and she blushed harder. I laughed, and told her about my favourite one. Rosie, you are the sun. Marry me?  She called me a liar. I told her I’d sent the ring back, along with a restraining order.

You’re a slut. That’s what she said to me. You’re a slut and I hate you. He loves me now.  Fine, I said, fine. What is it you’re planning, Ju? Running away from daddy and straight into his arms? A moonlight flit? Are you going to marry him? Fine, I laughed. Go ahead, I won’t tell anyone.

But it’s your funeral.

Submitted by fullstops

she had skinny wrists
and a broken heart
and a necklace she wouldn’t take off—
you could watch her hesitate doing
the tiniest thing.
she wanted to learn to run headfirst,
keep her eyelids closed
and swim while trusting the water
to keep her afloat.
she had a rusty pair of scissors
gripped in her white knuckles
and wished she could be brave enough
to shear off her
lustrous black hair
and the pretty,
delicate image of her
you have in your mind.

Submitted by thegreatbigquestionmark

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Never Land

London, 1917

He was the brave one. He’d never been scared of anything, he’d boast, and she was glad, glad because as long as he was there to take care of her, and fight for her, and rescue her, she could continue to love him. But now she must be the brave one. For him.

But she told no one that every evening, she would light the long forgotten night lights, blowing away the dust and humming an abandoned lullaby. Every evening, she’d falter in the doorway to their bedroom, then turn and head for the nursery. Bent double in a tiny bed, she’d breathe in the scent of her childhood, and pull the covers over her head, tracing her fingers over her memories. It had been so easy, back then, to escape the nightmares. How easy it had been, for a small girl to feel safe in the arms of a boy.

During the day she’d rattle around the old Kensington home, writing ridiculously cheerful letters then tossing them into the fire place. Uncannily astute, he’d see right through them, and she mustn’t let him know that she was afraid. Some days, she could no longer bear it. Some days, she would sit by the nursery window, and wait for the stars to come out.

She’d only received three letters from France. The first had been ridiculously cheerful, filled with adventure and pleasant descriptions of the country side, and the food, and the men, and the training. The second had been filled with desperate assurances. The third had arrived only yesterday, three months after his last.  

The generals say that we have arrived as boys and will leave as men, but that isn’t true. None of these boys will ever grow old.

I love you, Darling

Peter

Submitted by fullstops


blue

take the time to blink twice
and let the music of the sky
sink into your eyes

breathe



Submitted by thegreatbigquestionmark



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your lips taste of the 
peanut m&m’s straight from the jar
and of drunken promises
in the dead of night.
our eyelids are shut
and our eyelashes tangle
from the closeness of us. 
your warmth is everywhere
and i can hear every word
you murmur against my skin:
“you’re lovely, beautiful,
i wish you were mine,”
and i tell you to stop talking,
because it makes no sense
to wish for something
you already have

Submitted by thegreatbigquestionmark

We Real Cool
We real cool. We
Left school. We

Lurk late. We
Strike straight. We

Sing sin. We
Thin gin. We

Jazz June. We
Die soon.
Gwendolyn Brooks