a scribble here, a scribble there
words you didn’t know i wrote
instead you attributed the poem to someone else
and not me as i had hoped

at least it’s a consolation to know
that in the end, i write these poems for me
it’s how i can assess the damages
after falling for you so foolishly

knowing full well you’d only break my heart
just like the others who came before you
the scars they left behind hidden in the poems i wrote
although their names have long fallen through

the cracks of my memory
widening with every passing year
as i grow ever older wishing i’d one day learn the lessons
that go with every broken-hearted tear

but maybe it’s a good thing you’ll never know
that i wrote all those poems for you
it allows me to salvage what’s left of my dignity
while i pull through like i always do.

nothing to say

i can write you a book
and tell you everything i know
about love and friendship
and laughter.
something i’ve done
more times than i
can count.

yet why is it when your own letter comes,
i can count the words you dole out
like they’re just too precious
to spare on someone
you have no use for

In Blackwater Woods by Mary Oliver

Look, the trees
are turning
their own bodies
into pillars

of light,
are giving off the rich
fragrance of cinnamon
and fulfillment,

the long tapers
of cattails
are bursting and floating away over
the blue shoulders

of the ponds,
and every pond,
no matter what its
name is, is

nameless now.
Every year
I have ever learned

in my lifetime
leads back to this: the fires
and the black river of loss
whose other side

is salvation,
whose meaning
none of us will ever know.
To live in this world

you must be able
to do three things:
to love what is mortal;
to hold it

against your bones knowing
your own life depends on it;
and, when the time comes to let it go,
to let it go.

“In Blackwater Woods” by Mary Oliver, from American Primitive.
© Back Bay Books, 1983.

quiet spaces

dark places, quiet spaces
you know them all
for you were there when i fell
when i ignored the call
my heart’s warning to stand back
and keep my doors closed
you were simply too real for me
your words, your voice left me exposed
to the many lies i kept hidden
the stories i kept believing in
yet you knew one day i’d unfold
every secret i held onto finally revealed
no stone unturned, nothing concealed
dark places, my quiet spaces
thank you for staying
till i healed

after we play

after we play, don’t look into my eyes
for you’ll find someone who’s fallen for you
every wall she’s built broken, every lie and every disguise
unmanned, unravelled, her heart split in two
she’s all softness now,
lost in the dreams you drew

instead fix your tie, comb your beard
we both know you’ve got somewhere else to go
give me time to pull myself together, my emotions secured
from every single yearning you will never know
until the next time we come together
and the moment i watch you go

at the table

there are things we don’t talk about around the dinner table
but it’s there, there’s no mistaking it festering like a hot boil

it can’t be hidden behind smiles anymore because we know what you are
even if you hold titles like dad or mom or baby brother

we see your hypocrisy, your racism and deep-seated hatred
as you pass the potatoes with a smile, your bigotry translated

behind carefully crafted words of inclusion and tolerance
words you know nothing about so it’s best if you remain silent

for there’s no more hiding no matter how hard you try to convince us
actions speak louder than words. what else is there to discuss?

“I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you simply, without problems or pride: I love you in this way because I do not know any other way of loving but this, in which there is no I or you, so intimate that your hand upon my chest is my hand, so intimate that when I fall asleep your eyes close.”

~Pablo Neruda
100 Love Sonnets


i thought i was being smart
to listen to your words with a guarded heart
but little by little, your words made it through
and before i knew it, my heart lay bare before you

i didn’t even realize it happening
until tears ran down my cheeks, so unsettling
how could such words break through all the years
of walls and fences meant to cover up my fears?

maybe that’s just one of the ways love weaves its magic
little by little, healing armored hearts so fragile
reminding them there’s magic out there just waiting
if only they step out of their armor and taste the rain

2020 © morrighansmuse


let them talk behind your back
let them ridicule the way you dress and look
let them tell him he can do better than what he got
let them even help him look

let them laugh about the poetry you write
let them joke about the worlds you built
let them exchange looks whenever you arrive
yet never let them drive you to feel any guilt

but let yourself feel the feelings you need
maybe even break down and cry
but when morning comes get the fuck out of bed
and never forget your why

why you do the things you do
why you love the people you love
why you stand up for the ones you care for
why you don’t care if you get kicked and shoved

you don’t have to explain yourself to them
you don’t even have to say goodbye
just pick yourself up every time you fall
and when things get tougher, never forget your why.