"I am hearing poetry when awake, dreaming poetry when asleep, breathing poetry with each breath, I am living in a poem."

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Black & White "What If"

I was so shy.
I should have kissed you.

My heart held your name
in the blushing cheeks of thirteen.

I grew wildflower tall in
a field of normal…
You didn’t notice weeds.

I was looking up while you
were looking down…
A mountain is a great divider.

Rainy days have me dreaming
in black and white “what if.”

I was so shy.
I should have kissed you.

©Susie Clevenger 2016

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Tuesday, March 22, 2016

A Garden Grows

The morning drinks
another cup of horror.
and some gather at
the knee of bigotry
to add salt to wounds.

A garden grows what is planted.
Cameras seek a field of weeds
to help spread hate’s seeds on the wind.

Tongues never think of the harvest.



©Susie Clevenger 2016

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Sunday, March 20, 2016

Twisted Prayers


Tucked beneath an overpass,
a makeshift lounge gathering
of apophatic theologians
kneels at a crack pipe altar
to smoke twisted prayers of escape.

Never knowing how long it will take
to reach rock bottom, blistered eyes
calculate the stretch in torn pockets
by the flesh crawl on the clock
to determine when to pass the dust.

Sitting in a red light meditation,
tongue primed to litter with condemnation,
I feel my conscience speak, “Although your
list of errors didn’t lead to this communion
you need to own your reflection in a broken mirror.”

The same sun shines on both sides of the sidewalk
casting shadows on two routes of escape.
A horn blast tries to crowd the line
between hope and hopeless….

All eyes watch for the color green.

  
©Susie Clevenger 2016


Karin Gustafson prompted us to pick a poem written by another poet. Ingest it a little.  And then write something of your own. I went searching and found a poet and a poem totally new to me. I chose Coffee & Dolls by April Bernard.



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Friday, March 18, 2016

The Net Without Emily


Locked behind walls
of ink and pen I stargaze
into an electric eye
that hounds my fingers
to step from archaic cursive
into a net trapping keyboard strokes.

I wish to be invisible in a world
rabid for detailed exposure.
The love I mother in my heart
doesn’t wish to drink from
a common faucet of outrage
or share depth where shallow pools.

I don’t want my voice stored
in a cloud, barricaded but never secure.
My world is a room where God
hears my confessions and pulls
my soul through ink until I surrender
translation upon pages only I can see.

©Susie Clevenger 2016

This isn't exactly steampunk poetry, but I brought Emily Dickinson into the modern age of internet exposure. I wrote her fighting it, but then again perhaps she would embrace it. There is a cult of electronic introversion I believe...see without being seen..speak without responding..It could be light or dark. 



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Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Painted With Mortality

Hold love in the tender
hands of freedom.
If it chooses to fly,
give it room to use its wings.

No one can cage
the heart of spring
or demand affection
in the tumult of a hurricane.

Forever forgets the moon
is painted with mortality.
A broken spirit will mend
when it stops writing its obituary.


©Susie Clevenger 2016

Real Toads ~ The Tuesday Platform
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Thursday, March 10, 2016

Emphysemic Hustler


I am hungry for your touch,
peace on leathered skin,
tomorrow left on the horizon.

The daylight work of damning consistent
sits on my alarm clock rattling its chain
to keep me working at dying empty.

Memory is the euphoric touch of blue sky
in the vomit covered gravity I find on 5th street
where a bus stop is my second home.

If cigarettes could touch the soul, I’d be
the shaman of nicotine, but I am an
emphysemic hustler bartering with death.

I miss the kindness of open windows dripping smiles
as I passed beneath them; the sound of giggles
playing music with taxi horns; yesterdays that weren’t digital.

Oh, hell, maybe my soul still knows the way to Shambhala.
I’ve been so busy drinking hard times I’ve starved hope.
There just might be enough blue sky above concrete to show me the way.

©Susie Clevenger 2016


For some reason when I was writing this I felt like I was channeling a man. My muse likes to mess with my head. :)


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Sunday, March 6, 2016

Orange Is The New Lack

Fat tongued with bloated rhetoric
he channels  a mustached beast
who had a perverse appetite for a white world.

With the bombastic bleating of a drunk uncle
he spoon feeds extreme to IQ’s who can’t
read the map leading to their own exclusion.

Orange is the New Lack…Integrity never reached the tower.

©Susie Clevenger 2016

Real Toads ~ Flash 55 Plus


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Cry Baby 24

Born with my head in the clouds
I took my cry baby entrance
right to the edge of dreamland.

Karma knew my heart would be
too soft for tap shoes so she infused
a bit of my mama’s grit into
that 24th day to keep some glue for broken.

I cut my teeth on idealistic…The sunny side
of trauma was the show tune I hummed
when hell kept tears from delivering a rainbow.

Fingernails ground down to absent
I am a woman of lost hours, too much thought,
and a sharp tongue with an expert aim.

Yes, I slipped past the day of hearts
to land on 24…February birthed me
a five-pound crier nursing on imagination.


©Susie Clevenger 2016

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Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Footprint Memory

Mud holding passages
in footprint memory
pull the DNA from
a Sunday afternoon stroll
to bind flesh and earth.

The ancient song of journeys
hums along legs too young
to know the horizon is a
demanding seductress.

Tomorrow will always
hang its carrot from the sun.
New shoes can never erase
the footprints of those who
divided soul and yearning
into hours chasing it.

©Susie Clevenger 2016

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