She Became Pickaxe and Shovel

“The best moments in reading are when you come across something—a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things—which you had thought special and particular to you. Now here it is, set down by someone else, a person you have never met, someone even who is long dead. And it is as if a hand has come out and taken yours.” ~ The History Boys, by Alan Bennett

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“Don’t pity flesh or bone
that doesn’t have to breathe
pretty poisons,” she whispers.
“Wail for people too deaf
(self-damned or senseless)
to listen to their dead.”

“People do listen,”
I say, “they wear their dead’s tongues
on signs, on t-shirts.”

“Showing without doing
isn’t becoming,” she tells me.
“Read the tombstone.”

I open my mouth to read aloud,
but her finger is on my lips.

“Feel the words,” she says,
taking my hand, guiding it
over the epitaph.
Through feel, I listen:

When conflict threatened
to take root in her soil,
she became
pickaxe and shovel.

“Become,” I say.

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the wee notes…
–  Linked to Friday Fictioneers. Visit Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ blog, to enjoy interesting tales. Then follow this LINK, to read what others have read (and felt) on the tombstone.
– Also, linked to the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads. Karin asked us to write poetry inspired by “Outsider Art”. Since I am my favorite outsider artist (I’m also very modest *cough*), I chose to pair Friday Fictioneers tombstones with one of my blackouts.

photo by Liz Young

Of First Loves and High Heel Shoes

“First loves are high-heeled shoes,” he says. “They affect flesh and spirit—straighten spines, tighten thighs, make you walk like you own the galaxy. Your first changes you forever. No other will ever make you feel like I did.”

I watch him,

remember myself

wrapped in him.

“Once,” I tell him, “the sight of you pulled little moans out of my middle. The memory of us (skin-to-skin), your scent… made me want. But I don’t lust after the way I used to feel inside your body. First shoes are just shoes—perfect (once), but irrelevant after they no longer fit.”

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the wee notes…
– Linked to Friday Fictioneers. Visit Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ blog, to enjoy interesting tales. Then follow this LINK, to read what others have written about my old shoes.
– Linked to the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads, where our sweetest Sanaa invites us to write about love, using a common everyday image.