Dear Body

Dear body

sometimes I feel like you’re a picture taken by a blind photographer

like the framing’s just not right

All this colour doesn’t fit inside the lines.

I’m no stranger to the feeling of being a visitor in an empty house with all the lights on

not sure how to get comfortable

not sure how long I’m staying

It might be the biggest lie in the world that tom boys and tough girls don’t struggle with body image.

These scars are amnesia

the same amnesia that leads to anorexia and boulemia

Forgetting what this body is for

fooled into thinking it is a word in a sentence

as one dimensional as an ad in a magazine

A Big fat old lie embarassing beautiful

tricked into thinking the only function of these miraculous machines

is a three second impression

that’s how long they say it takes for you to decide if you’re attracted to someone

A Big fat old lie embarassing beautiful

which of those words have you used to describe your body?

I’m scared

when thoughts of masking cuts as stretch marks cross my mind.

See they photoshopped love to fit on a billboard

cropped out your friends, your travels, your family, your home

airbrushed out your scars, your freckles

your stories

things that light you up and make you who you are

are the understatements of our century

these are the things that have survived the trends in what is desirable

melting like mascara funnelled into a cookie cutter of food I should stay away from

that is not what this body is for

Dear body,

you are meant to be cherished

you are to be challenged and enjoyed

stretched

you are a complex menagerie of pieces and palates, tastes, touches, feelings

your feet are not only for catwalks

they are not meant to be static

freeze framed sporting high heels, mocassins, cleats, kicks, sandals, nail polish

your feet are meant to run

to dance

to explore

to compete

to travel

there are times where you must put your foot down

where you must kick your feet up

where you must stand for something

your hair is a forest

meant to be braided by friends

to feel fingers

to be strummed by the wind

your hands to hold, to give, to pick others up when they’re down

to conduct symphonies

to mould

to create

to slap knees

to count

to pray

to point others in the right direction

your hips are there to welcome life into the world

to shake more or less awkwardly than I do

your lips to speak truth

to smile

to quiver

Ears to be pierced by words

to recognize a song on the radio

or the sound of familiar voice

to ring from loud nights

and be tickled by whispers

what an exciting thing it is to be blessed with a body that functions as it is supposed to,

and yet I cower

embarassed by my blessing

my mind a graveyard of funhouse mirrors

incapable of accepting myself for the way I actually am

if you want to tell if a woman is happy with her body

look at her hands.

rings show a sense that she is willing to invest in the size she is today

my hands are bare

and my greatest fear

is that when I finally meet a man who wishes to slip a ring onto my finger

that when we clasp hands my fingers will not fit between his.

I’m sorry, body

I know it hasn’t always been this way

when I was a spunky twelve year old with a ratty braid bouncing off my back

riding bikes til the streetlights bled like solar flares in our hair

but I promise I will teach these scars to spell beautiful

to love you til you’re golden

but I’m going to need you to be patient.

see, the world’s got its fingers down my throat

and right now,

this poem’s the only way I know

how to spit it out.

Sincerely,

the rest of you.

She might be in love with the Rain

the cracks of thunder

shout 

and echo around her

the rain pelting down on her skin

the darkness

the rush of the clouds

her heart

finally finding an outward expression

the catharsis of nature

storyboarded on windows

streaming with raindrops

that bring light out of focus

she feels understood

when her skin is slick and her hair soaks tangles and tree-root spiderwebs

like the tumult has a home outside her

that pain echoes in the thunder

like a welcome

like doors might slam in heaven

like she is not the only one dying to unleash tears and scream

to let anger flash in her eyes 

striking those closest to her

this storm

is exactly the monologue

she needed 

to keep her company.

The Inexplicables

my eyes

are clouded by the crowded hallways of your conscience

residents of your mind, too many faces extinct.

way too many.

it hits my heart like a Richter scale

it drives splintering cracks down my aorta like roaring roots in dry soil 

planted in this garden,

you are adam and eve

and your children try to kill themselves instead of each other.

In my eyes 

you are canvasses of white

you are boulders of goodness

smiles, flexed like muscles

it is natural for you to have joy.

and I can’t wrap my mind around it

I strangle it

I squeeze it between my fingers

i feel it pulse between my knuckles

i scream

I heave it as far as I can throw

this joy

makes me angry.

it makes me uncomfortable.

how can two people with such mangled pasts possibly

conceivably

live lives of such freedom

brows unfurrowed

shoulders 

at ease

eyes

sparks

happiness 

does not deserve you.

The grace you have shown to us

broken kids

when we lunged at you

hands for your throats with cutting words

ignored you

were ashamed of you

disgusted with you

we have turned up our noses at your gifts and refused your closeness

you have offered love

at every opportunity 

and we didn’t know

we didn’t care

that your stories were more scalding than our own

that misery had grabbed at your feet

that death

had washed off your hands in the sink 

that psychosis ambled amidst your loved ones

disability 

drunkenness

addiction 

murder

death

were all debris in the whirlwind that surrounded your past

you had been surrounded by pain inflicted by those you loved long before us 

and it makes me feel like this joy of yours is slanderous

a downright impossibility

that you drop crumbs of your past only when asked

mentioning catastrophe in passing 

crisis in a beat

letting it slip from your lips

as if each shock had been extirpated of its electricity,

and still kiss 

doing ordinary things like

going on walks in the valley and

watching Jeopardy

as if you are not champions of a disease

this world is scratching its skin raw over

sadness

has no hand on you,

even though you are two who have truly earned it

 I don’t deserve to be your child.

to be the summation of your love

the bearer of every gift you could muster

the recipient of your affectionate gaze

If I started now

i could not give you enough

safety 

hope

adventure 

wisdom

or unadulterated love to repay you

not ever.

If I started now

i couldn’t explain to you the gravity of your presence

together

 a rarity overlooked 

that your rings are like tree trunks that simply count your years together 

I couldn’t adequately articulate the value of your patience

of your steadfastness

If I started now

I would end up

chewing you out.   

because I can’t, in the humanity of my heart,  rationalize your hope any other way.

Mom and Dad, 

 the fact

that you are scarred

but not marred

by the tumult of these tidal waves,

the fact

that you bite your lip and go out of your way to see good

the fact

that there is not an inch of anger in you 

the fact 

that you are still standing today 

with hands clasped and eyes to heaven

makes me believe in God. 

PUBLICAN

He stands behind the bar

blank stare

white knuckles

he waits for someone to walk in

rush in

like they’re in a hurry

raindrops streaming down the window pane

he can’t see his breath

is he real?

Some things are unsure

he wishes he could see his breath.

the door is silent

no jingle or crash as the door swings shut behind a dubious seeker of liquid truth

journeyers who wish to find some sort of answers

he is the top of the mountain

he is the last resort

but today he stands behind the bar

with no one to keep him company

dark mahogany

a dripping tap

Will he ever belong?

A rag polishing the bar

his face like kerosene

burns in his eyes

am I here?

He will not spill his sorrows

not without someone to clean them up.

he is the one who cleans them up.

his heart is like a well

his heart beat the echo of pennies falling from the hands of hopelessness

his brows are dark

he is tired

and he waits

he waits for something to happen to him

and it does

little by little

then all at once

with a footstep through a door

a pale face

a sorry gesture

a strange moment

where he cannot bear to sour her with poison

hands expectant on the bar

scratched off nailpolish

streetlights flicker

few words

green eyes

he wants to tell her she is beautiful

but his voice is lost

like a man stuck in a well somewhere

yells for help muffled on the journey out of the dampness

bouncing and fading

sounding like whispers

from a copper tongue

but a whisper would be odd

he cannot whisper or yell at scratched off nailpolish

hands expectant

pale face

green eyes

he turns his back

hoping this moment hasn’t smudged into ignorance

or disdain

polishing glasses

ducking slightly to his right in hopes of getting a reflection of her delicate frame

scratched nailpolish fingers playing a ghost piano

downcast and shy

glued to the glassy sight of herself

she is waiting

after walking for too long in the near darkness

feeling herself become enveloped in the day’s heavy eyelids

drawn into a place with a door

fogged up windows with strict lines of raintracks

more sympathetic than ominous

the room felt like fog

and this figure was taking his time

and she was not too worried about cadence

not anymore

and this scuffmark of a man could do nothing to surprise her

but as this thought scuttled across her mind

he turned and inched a glass of water

in her direction.

LANCET

I’m not feeling very sharp

My eyesight is blurry

blunt like my granny’s sense of humour

I wish I was more like a surgeon and less like a patient

waiting for something to happen

finding little scratches on my skin I can’t find the origin for

I wish

from the bottom of my heart

that I didn’t feel like a basement.

like the lowest rung

like a place I don’t belong

like my lungs don’t ache enough

like in another lifetime, I’d be sticking my head out the window of a roaring train blazing through the countryside with colours so bright my corneas burned and everywhere I looked for the next few days would be coloured by tie-dyed-lens-flares of adventures I’m glad I’d had the guts and the cash to go on

Every time I consider the hills I wonder if there are people who look forward to the climb

I want to learn to find content in the scale

in the uptake

in the parts people fast forward, gloss over or romanticize

I think it is hard to say

if it really is good to live with glitter in your veins

to be so metallic and golden it hurts

to flash smiles everywhere you go.

I wonder if there is such thing as backalley-on-purpose

like throwing yourself into monotony to save it

or to relish it

to soak it in and smile.

I think that the only way to live is to be brilliantly amazed by everything.

The simple things have a way of hiding their secrets and the search is what makes anything interesting

The older I grow the more I learn that my imagination is more fancifully mundane than years ago and that I find more joy imagining things that already exist,

but the deeper I fall the more that makes sense.

I guess I’m just happy to be here

in a snowglobe of swamp water

in a web of subway trains, street lights and a lot of amazing stories

orchestrated like the music in the hearty laugh of a tired Father who waters us like weeds that spurt out of the concrete

colouring the ground in sidewalk chalk and apologies

He doesn’t mind the spelling mistakes

each step we miss he replaces with a friend or a feeling,

the artist with rough hands

creating like I could never imagine.

so Father, invade my thoughts

like highway robbery

Clean me out of the dirty thoughts and false teaching

set off bombs of blessing and beauty in their place

spray paint in my mind so I don’t ever forget it

"baby girl, I’d die for you again"

(again)

and I think in your life you not only consider the good things you hope will come to pass but also kind of expect certain trials or losses to plague, ones that match you, almost fit you- ones that almost make sense in a way. It’s as if our problems are visitors, and there are some you simply expect.

It is this almost expectant familiarity that helps us process and deal with the hardships we are dealt, and I think that is why the most crippling pains are not the most severe, but the ones which come to us strangers unannounced.

STOP distracting yourself

stop looking for short-cuts through suffering

healing doesn’t happen ‘til you look it in the face

and say, “I’m broken”.

Runaway syndrome.

Incredibly Lonley

a one man band.

The stuffed rabbit asked - What is real? And the Horse said, ‘Real isn’t how you’re made. It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long long time not just to play with, but really loves then you become real … And the rabbit asked, ‘Does it hurt? And the horse said, ‘Sometimes.’ ‘Does it happen all at once like being wound up, or bit by bit?’ … ‘It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen to people who break easily … Generally, by the time you are real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints. But these things don’t matter at all because you are real and you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.

The Velveteen Rabbit (via annersbananers)

jacksonisaacson:

“Here. Here is simple and happy. That’s what I meant to give you.” -Oliver (Ewan McGregor)

Fixed. theme by Andrew McCarthy