I wrote this poem in light of a performed poetry piece I heard by Rudy Francisco, called “My Honest Poem.” I liked the bare bones of its naked-truth-ness. I haven’t much tried my own hand at poetry before, (I’m used to novels and explaining something I can’t quite say clearly 3 times over), But there’s something to be said for brevity, and frankness, even if all the parts don’t connect.
At 6,000 feet altitude, I was born a sick baby.
My mother left, prayed, and returned – a 3 step cure
but I suspect that something about being human keeps us all unsettled, unwell
day one, and thereafter.
I stopped taking naps at age one and a half and I’ve slept poorly ever since--
I want to be here, awake, turning the world over in my hands.
I still write my Q’s with the tail on backwards,
and if you tell me a pun I’ll respond with a knee-jerk smile.
Words were my first and finest love,
and in my free time, I like to think of two syllable words my heart might be beating to.
cool socks complete any running outfit even if it makes the colors clash,
one should always check what state is on the back of their quarters,
and no one should ever go a night without wearing their retainers.
Even so, my teeth are slightly crooked.
Hi, my name’s Nicole.
I’m an introvert but I will blossom if you water me with intentional time and thoughtful questions.
But sometimes I’m scared I’ll run out of willing strangers.
Each person harbors meanings
that are not meant to be said in lines – not static ones, anyway.
Emotion is a motion, a being moved
This is what words are, have been, to me.
When I get nervous I feel adrenaline in my thighs,
I’ve never watched a scary movie,
I get lost everywhere I go,
And I’ve spent too much time with boys who won’t hold my hand.
I have been in love twice in my life.
There is too much more to say on the matter to say anything more here, or now.
But if I fall in love with you I will write about you.
The entries will be like flowers, firmly pressed between pages.
I want to preserve beautiful things, but my grip often strangles them, these days –
I am still unlearning fear
and dismantling regret.
Yes, my name’s Nicole.
I was born with blue eyes and black hair
which naturally turned to green and blonde (respectively, at least)
but sometimes I’m afraid that I have too much in common with a chameleon.
But I still believe
That we all need to grow and change
sometimes beyond recognition,
shedding old selves like overcoats from our shoulders.
And yet I also believe
That we’re always the same, same, same
just as our skin renews, but our neurons refuse to.
These are my fragments.
And I am still learning the difference between having, doing and being
Just as I am still learning what the w is
that makes the difference between hole, and whole;
And I am still learning how to leave healthy spaces where they are needed
Just as ‘a part’ does, and ‘apart’ does not.
And I am still learning
My hand deserves to be held
And maybe my Q’s don’t have to be written the same way as everyone else’s.