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

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Life Is A Game Of Solitary

Life is a game of solitary. I keep shuffling and
laying down cards until I win.

Some call me the queen of hearts because
I have a cardboard box filled with Valentine corpses,
Hallmark dribble glitter glued to overpriced.

I love wearing sensible shoes, a solid base
for supporting my hip sway when making exits.
It knocks the brag swagger off a man’s tongue
when he realizes I didn’t buy what he was selling.

“You got a match?” I’d like to add a little more
atmosphere for Nosey Eyes across the street.
She just Windexed her kitchen window.
I’m a regular topic at her Saturday tea and gossip.

Life is coffee stained grand with just enough
caffeine to wide eye boredom. Stop back in
the next time you want to exorcise silence,
pulling words from stone is just one of my talents.

©Susie Clevenger 2016

I chose to replay:

Fireblossom Friday: The Art of Gerda Wegener

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Saturday, May 21, 2016

Hashtag Me Bitch

List, always lists…
The highly offended
put you on their shit list
because King James
edited a book.

Please don’t preach at me
while screwing hypocrisy.
You have a whole list of fucks
to give about public bathrooms,
but not a tear for a lesbian
who died in Afghanistan
to protect your freedom of speech.

Oh, I know..You have another list
to put me on…vulgar tongue.
Sorry I can’t sing pretty while
you justify hate by cherry picking scripture
from a pulpit decorated with Trump.

You talk about persecution in the U.S.
because of your faith. Really?
Dine on homeless shelter soup
with a homosexual boy who calls
an alley home because his parents
camped out in Leviticus.

Yes I’m pissed. Hashtag me bitch…
Tweet the hell out of it until it
gets twitter marked trending.
People with compassion have open arms.
I am so tired of those who talk about
unconditional love with closed fists.

 ©Susie Clevenger 2016

I am not throwing an entire religion under the bus. I know kind, loving Christians, but I have felt the claws of those who aren't.

New York Post: December 22, 2015: "A female officer in the Air Force who was one of the first openly gay service members to marry was identified on Tuesday as among the six US troops killed by a suicide bomber near Bagram air base in Afghanistan.
Facebook postings on Tuesday by friends and family of Air Force Major Adrianna Vorderbruggen mourned her death on Monday and sent condolences to her wife Heather and son Jacob, who live near Washington, D.C."
Left Behind: LGBT Homeless Youth Struggle to Survive on the Streets

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Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Saturday Night High

I once danced with Jim Dandy,
held his guitar to my breast
and felt electricity strum my skin.

Mixing tunes with Mary Jane
I was on a Saturday night high
watching rainbows spin cut glass.

Wired by Speed I fell into the envelope
of bodies hip to hip in a Cowtown Ballroom
where dilated eyes time stamped unity.

Long hair, bell bottom tall, and too young
to count tomorrow’s price I was saved
by angels building fences around addiction.

 ©Susie Clevenger 2016

Process Notes: The first stanza is metaphorical of course, but my husband and I did do some grunt work (carry in instruments) a few times when Black Oak Arkansas was in Kansas City.

Mary Jane is another name for marijuana which in the 70's I smoked in abundance.

Speed is another name for Amphetamine which we bought under street name Mini Whites. 

The Cowtown Ballroom: " Anyone of significance in the 1970s played at Cowtown, including the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Van Morrison, Frank Zappa, B.B. King and Linda Ronstandt. Ronstandt’s backing group would eventually become the Eagles.

I kept my guardian angels busy back then. Marijuana is not a gateway drug, choice is the gateway. When you hang with drug users it isn't much of a leap to become a user yourself. It was so easy to get amphetamines in the 70's. I even had a legal prescription for it...diet pills. When  I was first prescribed it my doctor told me to fast for three days. That was easy, the drug took away my appetite completely as well as any desire to sleep. "Wired" felt great until exhaustion begged for release. I am extremely blessed I never fell into addiction. I applaud those who have battled the monster to become clean and sober and my heart goes out to those trapped in the monster's eye.

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Monday, May 16, 2016


NeverMore sings its Poe song
in the first light of mourning’s match.
I should cry, but my eyes are dry.

A broken, broad chest lies in satin oak.
Karma waited until the right wheels
could squash a reign of terror.

My heart aches for my grieving father,
but I am a daughter feeling relief
arms stilled by death can no longer reach.

Still stitched to the breath of a victim’s lung
I hear NeverMore speak,
“Freedom will guide you through the unraveling.”

©Susie Clevenger 2016

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Friday, May 13, 2016

Destruction Has An Antonym

A knife tongue chipped at mortar
until my soul couldn’t bear the weight.
The destruction of brick words
piled around my ankles,
can’t, won’t, ugly, impossible, failure.

It was hard to see the horizon
when my eyes were eating dust.
I had clung so long to the tail of comparison’s coat
I was threadbare, bruised, lost.

Somewhere in a glass half full of ashes
my spirit learned to breathe without air.
Stripped down to truth I began restoration
by silvering the mirror with my own reflection.

I claimed my quirks, normal is a vacant lot,
and imagination deep enough to drown in.
I stopped chasing someone else’s shadow
or trying to squeeze myself into a bitch’s tongue
just because she liked the pain.

©Susie Clevenger 2016

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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Bouquets of Irony

Your goodbye has me surrounded
by all the roses you never gave me.
It is unsettling to have my senses
assaulted by bouquets of irony.
I hear you whisper in my ear,
“Scissored petals only steal
green from my pockets.”

Like a deposed witness I answer questions
with expected answers of where and when,
but why is deflected by, “God only knows.”

Is this Tuesday? Sunday still shows on the calendar.
Time flies…Well, the fog has wings…
A depth of six feet requires too many choices…
metal or wood, decorated dignity or austere,
definitely not a gray lining, the hierarchy of padded chairs…

Now I am expected to shed tears just because
eternity is punctuated with stems in pretty vases.
I want all of it to be over…You’ve already reached silence.
I hate to sew, yet here I sit stitching wounds….
praying I have enough thread.

 ©Susie Clevenger 2016

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