Poetry

Exoskeleton

We are what we are, until

we learn what’s underneath

and what we’ve held back for so long.

Always paying attention to the ticks, but never the softer tocks.

Our outside skins will crack over time,

no matter how much moisturizer is applied

because they’re cocoons

waiting for the right moment

to let us stand on our own legs.

Poetry

Untitled

Untitled, I am simply me

to walk around and sketch the day

as I please. Or that’s what you might expect

if you spy me from a distance,

the woman who can take her time doing this and that,

including moulding time itself into whatever shape she likes.

Underneath the glass, however,

I have a structure that demands I do something deemed as an achievement

each day, and my body won’t let me rest

nor will my mind,

and in those rare times when I beat it back

guilt wraps its fingers around my heart and squeezes

until the enjoyment of whatever I’m doing for fun

turns dull and grey, as ash in my mouth.

Poetry

Masked Musketeer

The mask you always wore

now hangs up on the wall, collecting

dust in the gaps of its fine sequins and folds of silken cloth,

its paint chipped and framework cracked.

It’s an antique, a reminder of what was before

you allowed your real face to be seen.

 

Emotion now plays in your eyes and the swell of your cheeks,

tears long held back allowed to escape, caught and crystalised

to look within them and see the cause unclouded.

The uncertainty of allowing yourself to be loved,

to have someone willing to see all of you

and not give a damn about anyone else’s opinion of you,

for you are you and that is who they wish to spend time with.

 

The mask need never be worn again.

Poetry

Response to the Dead Poets Society

If you squash them,

if you bend them,

if you project your face onto theirs,

their minds will break:

reflections shattered, a mass of cracks and holes

where a person should be.

Their bodies will rot, bulge, blacken, weep.

Kindling that longs to ignite

if only to prove that it has some self-worth left.

And at the end of it,

still it will not be your name you see,

but theirs, as it only ever could.

You failed them,

yet stand where they still should.

Poetry

Finer things

Is it a diamond you seek?

Cut and shaped with princess blood,

adding to the value?

Pure, elegant, transparent.

Polished to perfection, mirroring

what you wish to see?

Should I congratulate myself for thinking

you do not care for those

neatly fractured inside, tarnished, imperfect,

but diamonds none the less?

You never wanted to see the wild flowers.

Only those cultivated over years

by expert growers and displayed by florists

to show their most enticing features.

But look how much life

those wild flowers bring.

That’s what I’d like to say, yet it’s too late.

Your eyes have turned to stone.