“You have to give to the world the thing that you want the most, in order to fix the broken parts inside you.” 
Eve Ensler 

Shame to give it away
this iridescent thing inside you
rooted in your being
the thing you can't express
no matter how many poems paintings
works of art new colors you invent.
It was always going to mean death
to get it out; like the quest for the human soul
this one requires that you spill blood
open the body cavity
eviscerate everything in the search.

Shame to give it away
to find the words for it and hand them over to
some stupid boy in a campfire-lit moment
that he will not remember
and if he does, will not understand
nor care about.
He was merely listening because
he thought wide-eyed attentiveness
was the gentle crowbar
that would prise apart your legs.
When he found you were naively pleased
to have an audience he grew impatient
did the prying by force
and this is how you learned:

Pinned down, screams clenched between your teeth
silent chaos, cruel intimacy--
ultimately these become fuel
for the flame at the center of your being
the thing that makes you you: an alchemist
that takes every evil indelible moment
and transforms it into light.

Shame to give it away
but shame is a liar: the thing itself
can never be taken, it is you
and you are here
and no one gets to say how, or why
or in what form.
So spill your blood. Pry yourself open.
Tear it all apart until you find you
and hold yourself high
this being human, this human being
this thing made of light and hate and love and fear.
Show us. Light us up, be truth, heal for us.

KB © 9/13/14


  1. This is probably the best poem I've read in years, KB. Thank you. You are definitely gifted.

    1. Well thank you--so grateful that someone is reading. Makes the dark a little lighter.

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