I, female, lie in bed

I, female, lie in bed
dressed in Clark’s flannel shirt.

It is soft, encompassing, swallowing, immersing-
Like love,
but less human, less active, less person.

It smells like active, human person, though.
I deeply inhale his lingering traces,
trying to fill my shell with as much humanity as I can.

I cradle halves of soft fabric across my torso,
trying to touch as much person as possible,
to be swallowed, encompassed, immersed in,
and buried by something soft.

Kendra pokes her head in the door.
The rest of her follows.
She hovers above me, calls me, hugs me,
drops, puts her head on my bed, and cries-

She is too strong to ignore the pain, but too weak to fix it.
I invite her into my bed.

Prostrate, she fights with my pillow to maintain her respiration.
She could position her head differently, but then she’d have no need to fight,
and sometimes it’s nice to fight a fight that you know you’re going to win.

My pillow is to her respiration
the sweetest of antagonists.

I lie next to her on my side,
wishing my skin, fat, and muscle would stop obeying gravity.
We cannot even prove it’s real.
Still, bits of my body try to rip from where they belong
and fall down the sky, across my body, often crushing each other.

I will not ignore the pain, but neither will I stop it.
I choose to lie twisted, one hand on her head,
the other rubbing her back.

I develop an urge to throw my leg over,
letting gravity draw my renegade particles to her body instead of my bed
in order to further co-regulate her breath.

I maintain my leg, but I do rest
my arm, side, and head on her back, cradling her torso,
trying to touch with as much person as desirable,

trying to swallow, encompass, immerse, and bury
this girl in something soft.
My skin, after all, is no mere shell,
but is part and extension of, in fact inseparable from,
my person-

my person that smells of activity,
my humanity that she comes to inhale deeply,
to encounter, to be surrounded by and dressed in.
I am encompassing, swallowing, immersing, and burying-
I’m like Love, but I
am human.

My hands and eyes, thus, grow more tired,
and I almost wish my heart, soul, and spirit would stop obeying God.
I cannot even prove he’s real.
Still he, by love, moves my life to where it belongs.

Falling and rising, never crushed,
I am oddly glad to find myself twisted,
one hand on her head, the other on her back,
knowing I cannot ignore the pain
and he alone must heal it.

15 thoughts on “I, female, lie in bed

  1. This poetic composition is by far one of your best! What a great disposition of meter, flow, and rhythm! The storyline lends a beautiful kind of sensual twist. Your work belongs in a collection of work created by yourself. Keep up the super work.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you! This poem’s a decade old, and as you can imagine, I have a love-hate relationship with my poems that are that old. 🙂 And I do quite enjoy the particular level of sensuality in this poem, so I appreciate your noticing!

      I do have one completed full-length manuscript that I used to seek a home for, but I’m realizing it might be better to publish later in my career. As for now, I’ve yet to determine how else I might organize some of my poetry into its own collection. Working full-time hinders the process. But here’s to hoping I do have my own collection someday!

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I always love to rewrite my poetry. After letting them sit awhile they rewrite better somehow. You are an extraordinary poet and power in this genre. I would as an indie poet, self published, recommend you continue writing of your past, good or bad, as this creates not only variety, but powerful poetry. Your work is powerful enough that upon more mature writing will become superior over others. Work diligently. I wrote everyday, all day long for years. Best, J.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I wish to share with you my secret … sensual poetry mixed with hardship proves to be promising. You work well in this arena. Read Rita Dove … her poetry rocks! .

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Have you ever read Jane Hirschfield’s Women in Praise of the Sacred? It is Spiritual Poetry by Women over the last 700 centuries I believe. This was the book that got me started. Give it a try. Once you pick up on the metaphorical language you learn spiritual things in a new way and writing powerful poetry in a new way. Best, J.


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