Hija del Mar

I feel waves of life move through me with universal rhythm

Like an oyster, I have no eyes to see my own pearl

I form my little shell, defenseless to the ocean’s swell

Unlike an oyster, I am learning to treasure my inner self

I’m sorry oysters, if I underestimated you

As a woman, people often underestimate me

I am a daughter of the sea

I want to remind every girl

That she is a precious pearl

Within her lies the whole world

Surrender

I tried so hard to do what I thought was wanted of me by my parents

I aborted my pregnancies conceived out of wedlock

I got engaged and married- thought I was following the script to be accepted and approved by my family

Yet my marriage somehow sparked a crises, as if it were an unforgivable crime

In their eyes it wasn’t with the right man or at the right time

I tried so hard, gave the ultimate sacrifice

Yet I still haven’t come close to getting it right, in their eyes

I give up on trying to make them happy

I surrender

I no longer take the bait of their meltdowns, no longer jump to their rescue

I live for my own happiness now

How much more obtainable a goal

How effortless compared to the burden I’ve been hauling

I practically float away from the wreck of our relationship

Womanly Body

I move my womanly body- sway my hips, shake my coccyx

‘I’m dancing like a little girl’ I judge myself half-jokingly

I once again feel like that terrified child- the skinny, shy girl of my youth. I tell myself that I am safe now, even if I don’t believe it

Back in the now; I am a full-grown woman in the prime of her life, albeit a late bloomer

Practicing gentle loving-kindness towards self, cultivating vibrancy

My uterus is a powerful creative cauldron, and I’m due to brew up something magical

In a flash I am an elder, a medicine woman with a wrinkle on her face for each hard-won ripple of wisdom

Knitting in a rocking chair on my porch, with a subtle smile and a twinkle in my eye

Though I do not yet have a rocking chair, nor do I know how to knit

Perhaps I should learn how to knit

No- I knit words instead of wool

Though what I want to impart to future generations is beyond words

I do not know if my body will live to the elder age of my imagined older self

Lord, let me not take my life or health for granted

Lord, be with the hurting children

May they survive their childhoods to heal themselves and serve as beacons of hope for the hurting

We are all hurting

I embody hurting and healing in my womanly body

Hold Her

Treat your woman right

Hold her day and night

She is fire, she is earth

She holds power under her skirt

She is lava, she is water

She is your mother, she is your daughter

She is fire, she is earth

She holds power under her skirt

Treat your woman right

All day and all night

She is fire, she is ice

She is everything that’s nice

Like the earth she is made of clay

She can sculpt her life her way

Brothers and sisters, misses and misters

Treat women right

Don’t start a fight

If you do, that’s on you

Don’t say I didn’t warn you

She is fire, she is earth

She holds power under her skirt

You’ve got to learn how to treat a woman right

Hold her tenderly all night

She

She scratches her secrets on the dark side of the moon

When she bends her bones she can make any man swoon

Old habits die hard but she is learning to live softly

She sweeps fear away with thoughts large and lofty

She dreams of peace for all and peace within

She drinks from the oasis hidden in the desert of her skin

Only she knows the truth she has lived

Darker than the night sky

Are the ripples held between her thighs

She hides them deeper than the sea’s sigh

Dredging up salt with her tears cried

She sees beyond the sight of man’s eyes

Her blood is her sacrifice

The fire in her heart melts ice

If you think this rhyme is simple like plain rice

Just come closer, you can taste her spice

Basement

If I were a guy

I wouldn’t have to choose which pregnancy lives and which dies
I wouldn’t have to lie
To keep my body balanced precariously over a precipice of shame
I wouldn’t have to remain silent about my pain
If I were a guy
I wouldn’t widen the depths of a woman’s trauma by asking her about the depths of her trauma
I wouldn’t judge a woman on the depth of her trauma
If I were a guy
Life would be simple and easy
You ask me about every fuck and every fetus, like it is your business
It is not your business
Do you really want to know about the countless rapes I’ve endured
Not just at the hands of guys
Girls and women, my own mother was the mother of all trauma
Do you want me to describe what it feels like to have your inside pried open and the most vulnerable part of you wounded, scraped raw as you sacrifice the new life you desired, the miracle at your core from another night as a whore
Left to wonder forever unknowing what might have been, who they might have been
It was enough for me to cut the ties
From guys I didn’t want in my life
I cheated on every last one of them, a string of infidelity leading to you
Why do you want to hear that, what would it do?
Maybe then you’d know who you married
But I’m trying to build a new life, live my best life, start anew with a clean slate, move with you to a new state
I don’t want to lie anymore, don’t want to hide anymore, but let me be myself or I’ll show you the door even though it will break me even more
Try as I might by inviting drama into my life, I am unbreakable
You try to crack me not knowing that I’ve been practicing for this my whole life
I’m sorry you are a part of my web of lies but let’s make the best of it I don’t want any more terrible surprises, even as I plant these words like a bomb under the floor.
Triggers are an invitation to see what is in the basement
My heart is in the basement but even our basement has a plant growing where the concrete is cracked
I’m trying to be that plant, don’t hold me back

Bouncy Ball

Resilient sphere of color

I throw you down but you only bounce back higher

Dancing down the stream
You get caught on rocks and fallen leaves
I free you and follow you down the babbling brook
Your journey is again halted by forest debris
I dislodge you with a stick and you bound onward
Carried effortlessly by the water
I was told that all rivers flow to the ocean
I am determined to travel there with you, to see this through
Then I learn that water sometimes moves underground
Branch still in hand, we are both stuck on land
I didn’t account for this
Years later, I am an adult in a high-pressure profession
Just now pausing after years of running
As if I’ve been chasing a ball down a stream
Bouncing from one goal to the next
I am bewildered by the restless movement which only distanced me from my heart’s desires
In exchange for passing tests, I received more tests
No one ever asked me if I want to be tested
I value serenity and peace, meditation in nature
I was already where I wanted to be
When I was a girl with a rubber ball
Bring me back to that forest stream
I will stand in it
Let the cool water wash over my feet
Bouncy ball by my side
In stillness and simple satisfaction
We will stay

Good

I no longer strive to be labeled as ‘good’ by others

Like a trained fucking dog

I don’t want to act sweet
When I feel salty and bitter
I never wanted to fit into a box
Or stay between the lines
I don’t even belong indoors
I am a wild, free woman
If that means I’m not the angel you thought I was
Then light up the fire and brimstone
Too long have I carried the burden of trying to save the world while looking cute and put-together
Always satisfying other’s needs like plugging holes in a dam and I’m about to burst
I tremble and ache to let go of the many ropes which bind me
So many roles to play and expectations to meet
No wonder I have no time or energy left for me
I am the only person I can save, and my liberation doesn’t require fake smiles or insincere social pleasantries
To live my best life
I must aspire to be more than simply good
I must liberate myself from the ribbon I am wrapped up in
Rip off the docile doll’s dress and burn it,
Warming my hands and illuminating my night
I must feel my body and ride the waves of my emotions with shuddering ecstasy
You want me to be good
But I want to be better

Sex, Money, Dishes

Tell me you’ve never fought with your partner about sex, money, or dishes.
Sex
I used to fight endlessly about sex, mainly because I didn’t want to have it but my partners did, so we’d fight and fuck, then I’d cry and be blinded by images of destroying my body or their body just to stop the rape and the torture of not feeling safe in my skin. Amazingly, we all survived and now I have a loving partner with whom I have gold-medal sex; you have to experience it to believe it, it’s like I’m cashing in on some sex fund which I invested in long ago. Happily I don’t fight about sex anymore- I’ve got a man I’m attracted to inside and out, and he loves me the way I want to be loved.
Money
I used to exchange sex for money. It seemed like there was always too much sex and not enough money in those transactions, or transgressions. Even those back-alley deals were more straight forward than my relationships in which sex was exchanged for the illusion of not being alone, for food, housing or ‘safety’, though I learned that the cost to my physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing which false relationships exacted was not worth the dinners, drinks, gifts of lingerie, attention or the roof over my head. You might get raped if you travel alone, but if you travel with a man you are guaranteed to get raped. Live within your means because fine dining won’t taste good if you are eating with a strange man, believe me I know. If you have to learn on your own I understand, however if my years of pain can help prevent a moment of your suffering, it will have been worth it.
Dishes
Rare is the man who finishes the dishes. Common are the men who stack the dishes artfully in the sink until there is barely room to turn on the faucet. I have noticed this pattern during my co-habitations with men. I’ve done too many dishes. It especially irks me when men drown sponges in the rinsed yet still not washed dish pile, unperturbed as the sponge decomposes into a musty mess. Men seem deaf to the silent cries of the forgotten dish sponge. Day after day, I rescue the sponge, wringing it out and restoring it to its rightful place safe on dry land, in sight. My man shows his love for me not only through our award-winning sex, but also through money (ie, responsibility for personal¬† finances to contribute to our future together) and dishes: ladies and gentlemen, my man did the dishes tonight, thus allowing me time to write the words you read. If a man loves you he will want to learn your love language, which you must teach him with patience, positive reinforcement, and more patience.
I grew up doing the dishes, in poverty, and sexually molested by family and friends. My sister would beat me when she got in trouble for not doing the dishes with me after we were told to do them, but the alternative would have been getting beaten by my parents for not doing the dishes, so I was going to get beat no matter what I did. I wished that someone would do the fucking dishes with me. A girl can get lonely amidst the dissolving suds.

Man’s Medicine

I am surrounded by man’s medicine

Doctors like me are compensated in proportion to how much we dominate and penetrate patients
This is man’s medicine
But it would be nothing
Without Earth Mama
We are born from her
We are made of her
Yet we often forget and neglect her
Bedazzled by sharp and shiny surgical tools
Our tongues twist around exotically named medications
All the while hungering for the ambrosial milk of our Earth Mama
To thrive we need the roots of her body, her verdant leaves
Yet we are blinded by starched white sleeves
Were it not for her willow bark
We would still be in the dark
She manifests her love
through starry nights and petals of foxglove
Let us remember the rainbow which birthed us
The marvelous miracle from which we sprung
May we hear the beautiful songs yet to be sung
I’m not knocking man’s medicine
I’m just saying
It would be nothing
Without Earth Mama’s healing touch