Part of What Makes Me

I play with my fruit, talk to tart and sweet alike, let my tongue (and teeth) love it from peel to flesh to seed… I love a good piece of fruit, invite its lush to fill me, to become part of what makes me, to see the shape of me (from the inside).

I found a moist heart
chilling, just staring at me,
begging for a bite

 

“Passionflowers are weeds”, you say to me, your disdain for the bohemian bloom as ludicrous as the possibility of your opinion mattering to my garden (or to me).

“I’ve always thought of you as invasive, parasitical, and not at all pretty”, I say to you. “Aren’t you glad that laws (and people) I respect find you useful?”

my passion
flowers in wild twists,
by nature

 

My favorite place in the hospital blooms and buzzes in July. The chant feeds my all. I sit on grass, thoughts crowned by coneflowers, fingertips slow dancing with soil. Passersby glance, smile, or shake their heads (as if trying to dispel the slow-death escaping the chimneys they have made of their nostrils). The honeyed buzz, the life-song, the winged dance is ended by puffs of smoke. The coneflowers and I droop a little, wondering why…

bees and blooms
do it perfectly,
why not us?

 

Linked to the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads.

 

Trinkets and Armor, 1: What’s Your Passion?

 

If you are visiting from Poets United and wish to read only the poetry, just scroll down to the end of the post, and enjoy “Cackling Through the Storm”.

 

In my post, Let’s Make Trinkets Out of Horrors and Armor Out of Bliss, I suggested that when life rips our hearts out of our chests, we should make something useful (even fun) out of the bloody mess. Earlier today, I was exploring this belief with two old-timers at the hospital. One of them said, “That’s because you were born shooting sunshine out of you’re a**hole.”

After everyone was done laughing—the lady who uttered the words is shy and soft-spoken, but she was in pain… and if you’ve ever been in serious pain, then you know that brain-to-mouth filters don’t work under certain conditions. Anyway, once the roaring stopped, we continued discussing Trinkets and Armor. I told the ladies that I would love for them to join the project. “It’s nothing formal,” I said. “Just some friends and friends-to-be talking about how they soothe and/or smack their unwanted monsters.”

I was very disappointed because I got no takers. I was plotting a new plan of attack, when the most vintage of the ladies told me, “I’m tired of people teaching me things by the numbers. It feels like work. I’m too old for work.”

Her words continued to dance in my skull the entire time I was there. When I was about to go home, I asked her, “How would you do it, ma’am? I really want this to work out, for me and for anyone who might want to join in.”

She said a lot of things, but this is what stuck: “This crap-pile of a world is full of self-helpers that seem to only help themselves. Just show people how you manage your stuff and invite them to show you how they manage their stuff. That always worked for me as an instructor, a student, and a friend.”

I’m pretty sure she is correct. So, this is my attempt to follow her advice:

When I’m facing anything that can break me, I find strength and motivation in my passion: words… wild words with sharp teeth—for smiling or ripping or biting or for nibbling hard and tender bits (teeth are versatile). “Cackling Through the Storm”, the haibun at the end of this post, should give you a poetic glimpse into how I’ve slightly weaponized my passion for words.

Now, I’m inviting you to share a bit about your own passion… Show us how you use it (or could use it) to soothe or smack your unwanted monsters.

Anything goes, my Wicked Luvs (well, almost anything). If you write, and words are your superpower, show us how your writing make things better for you. If you craft, make something that shows us how crafting helps you deal with things. If you paint, paint something and tell us how the process feeds your spirit. If you dance or listen to old songs or clean your house or garden or paint your hair blue… as a coping mechanism, show us how your choice takes you closer to the Self you wish to spend all your time with.

 

And this is my poem for this week’s prompt:

“Cackling Through the Storm”

I refuse to fear might-be horrors. Fretting over what’s yet to kick me in the jaw, in the throat, in the breast… is losing half the battle (perhaps the war). Yes, I care. No, I’m not pretending or hoping it will go away—my monsters and I have always sipped honesty from the same clear cup. We slow dance brow-to-brow, mouth-to-mouth… our hearts bleeding into each other’s ribs. When bleak offers my soul a kiss, I show teeth, mount my Muse… and run to devour those cruel lips (ink at the ready).

holding my passion
by horn and halo, I ride
cackling through the storm

 

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