Sharing time with friends and family became a precious commodity during lockdown. I think it’s given us time to think. Is the grudge we hold against old hurts really that important? Does it really matter if Uncle Joe is a jerk when you see him once a year? So much of our reactions and attitude is within our control. We, as poets, often exorcise our hurt through our poetry. Through our poetry, we can heal and help others in their healing process. All of the poems I’m sharing today have hurt and/or healing as themes. Each poem is unique to the poet. Aren’t we lucky to be the recipients of their shared experiences? Enjoy!
Telling it Through a Broken Lens by Bola Opaleke in Rattle.
Sometimes, the cloud feels dangerously pinched
like a black man in his home country.
& like a black man in his home country,
it scampers away from its spot to find another,
then another & another.
The Vagaries of her Plot by Melissa Ostrom in Janus Literary
Will you impart some dignity
To our girl, give her intelligence
To tell foe from familiar, give her
The salt of endurance
The Moon is Cake by Madeleine Corley in Hooligan Magazine
will tell me what flavor
they taste: finished novel,
new baby, one last conversation
with their brother.
Ellipsical by George Burns in Right Hand Pointing
Six months ago, our planet ellipsed full gear into summer,
your pond dried up and you, green-bean green
beneath the drying mud, went to sleep.
Ruby on Fire by Kelly McQuain in Limp Wrist Magazine
I think she saw a sorrow of birds inside me. I think she thought
I had a broken wing. Ruby performed Fridays, got dressed
in back. My job was stocking beer, washing empties,
hauling the occasional keg, putting up with customers
who squeezed my arms and my ass——
We Named the Sky by Merril D. Smith on her blog, Yesterday and Today: Merril’s Historical Musings
And yet—we recall,
in memories of sight, scent, sound—however small–
within us all the time, sharing space
with those who came before—the interface
of body and mind.