in the grip of my saboteur

inktuition ballerina

My saboteur grips his fist

around my waist

and shakes me.

I’m a ballerina to his giant,

his fingers and thumbs

all flesh and fear.

My head becomes his,

my voice his own,

with an added twist of rage.

As he flings me round

I’m dazed and thrown

his wrath has been uncaged.

What wakes him up

is a critical word,

a sigh, a lie, a frown.

He will crush what isn’t liked.

Work smashed, hopes burned,

darlings end up drowned.

He makes me collude

in destroying

all I have created.

Every rhyme, every verse,

every colourful phrase

he shreds until he’s sated.

My ballerina frills

are ripped and sad,

The dance is forever seated.

My pointes won’t twirl,

my spins won’t charm,

my life force feels defeated.

My saboteur thinks he’s saved me

from the shame

of mocking failure

But as I sit amidst the harm he’s done

I begin to wonder

what he’s there for.

(image courtesy of sattva/freedigitalphotos.net)

a poem for panda ice cream

inktuition panda ice cream

 

You’re so transient and so cute,

your button eyes squinting and sunk,

your pert little nose so pointy and pert,

your mouth a happy half-moon.

No matter you started from average choc chunks

or your taste is vanilla ice cream,

‘cos you manifest as so ingenious, gorgeous:

your creativity can only dream.

NaPoWriMo Day 6: Needy Garden

The squirrel, with its impudent tail,

scampers up the newly lush tree, showing off

as if it owns the entire garden.

The shed, with its failing structures,

leans too far into the neighbouring wood, knowing

the next door will lay into it soon.

The moss, with its fluffy yet treacherous mould,

spreads across stones like a fungus, meandering

as it pretends nonchalance, but failing.

My Trickster Soul

inktuition dandelionYou give me fleeting hints that you’re looking after me.

You throw me toxic trails that you’re teasing me with glee.

You remind me of my sadness through scents from deep indoors.

You show me cheeky glimpses of the chance to feel restored.

I think you’re trying to prove that

I should relax and get the groove.

But I’m tussling with the tension:

is it far too late to mention

that I’ve kind of got you sussed?

In my soul I totally trust.

A poem for my love of writing distractions

How can I distract myself? Let me count the ways.

It’s amazing how I can usefully and helpfully fill my days.

My sink is super-shiny, my rubber gloves worn out.

My fridge has no more mould, just freshly prepared trout.

That old shed of mine, with boxes of old books,

is now a spider-free den; a children-friendly nook.

The piles of beauty sachets in my bathroom cabinet

now languish in the bin. They give me no regrets.

The stray strands in my eyebrow, the split ends of my hair

are now all clipped and neat. All are gone, I swear.

The clothes from years gone by, that I promised I’d wear again,

are stuffed in plump black sacks, going to causes humane.

The oven’s clean and spick, dried-in dribbles gone.

Anyone would think I’m a domestic goddess reborn.

But every writer has to go there,

to a cave-like, darkened gloom;

to that wibbly-wobbly place

before you move from womb to bloom.

So when the deadline’s there

and you’re picking up the pace,

remember to give some space

to creativity’s ultimate grace.

A poem pleading for the right to journal privately – at whatever age

My response to recent reports that a mother shared her five-year-old daughter’s journal online (fearing that she was sharing sad thoughts with paper, rather than her mother) is this:

My diary was always mine, unless spying eyes stole

my secret-est thoughts from the heart,

or spied my flaws, my dreams, my holes.

 I always write to heal, never to share or flaunt

my shadow stuff that’s too far too delicate

to bring to public taunt.

I’ve written daily words from at least the age of nine

from the clothes of Charlie’s Angels

to the depths of Freud and Klein.

So spying on a little girl’s words leaves me frozen with self-doubt.

I can only think of one grown person

whose probing left my craft in drought.

So as I tense for the critic, hoping for the praise

that moment of potential brilliance

gets lost in a fearful malaise.

So, mothers, for creativity’s sake, don’t censor your girl’s every move.

Leave her to find her voice,

through pen and page her groove.