Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Gypsy

There are red-haired Gypsies, you know.
Have you ever seen a blackbird against a pink sky,
or a silver ring balanced on its edge beside the bed?

Red is the fox, the bad wound, the roadside house
abandoned for years,
but once the first home of the then-young, now gone on.

What I wanted to tell you was this:
how I kept a wasp in a jar--
how it beat itself against the hard glass air of its artificial world
until, out of pity, I set it free
and it stung me in my throat.

Ever since then,
there is never enough water,
but always enough anger;
I have sent cardinals into your dreams to be my messengers,
to try to explain
that my silence is my love for you.

Now, today,
the wasp's sad mate has come
as I was gathering lilies,
to sting me on my wrist, just above the onyx bracelet I wear
but which did not protect me.
Her sting is harsh, and now her pain is mine
and it is merciless.

Her revenge makes my eyes water,
and forces my singing,
though some would call it moaning.
Our house will disintegrate,
or burn,
and it will have been my doing.

I don't expect to find, ever again,
a soul that can reach me like yours has.
With my silence broken, any answer I might receive is drowned
by my own endless grinding shrieks;

still, I weave a bright red message through all of it--
come back.
forgive me.
dig into the wasps' nest and find my heart.
_______

17 comments:

Joanna Jenkins said...

Oh my, this is so sad but fabulous.
xo jj

Sam Edge said...

amazing Shay.

Cloudia said...

How many terms and shadings are there to Shay's pain?

ALOHA from Honolulu
Comfort Spiral
=^..^= <3
> < } } ( ° >
> < 3 3 3 ( ' >
><}}(°> ~

LaTonya Baldwin said...

beautiful.

TexWisGirl said...

so powerful...

Daryl said...

just signed up to get you delivered to my inbox so now i will be able to read you every day!!!!!

G-Man said...

Damn Lady, Mother Nature is kicking your ass!!
Metaphorically of course...

Loved your stinging poem.

grapeling said...

slipping into your veins: you show us how to bleed

Poet Laundry said...

Red is my favorite color and cardinals are one of my favorite birds. Gorgeous write Shay.

Buddah Moskowitz said...

The stinging and the longing were viscerally felt here. Don't hold on to wasps - they'll just sting you.

Sara said...

First of all, I loved that picture!

Wow. This one definitely stings with loss and our reactions to it. Sometimes we can wait too long and lose the people dear to us.

Mama Zen said...

"there is never enough water,
but always enough anger"

I love that.

hedgewitch said...

Nothing stings like the past, especially when you think it's flown on. Even if I were fond of quoting, I couldn't here, there is just too much to even know where to start. But I especially liked the onyx bracelet.

HermanTurnip said...

It's funny how physical pain doesn't stay with us as well psychological pain does...or pains of the heart.

Awesome piece!

Vesper said...

I have sent cardinals into your dreams to be my messengers,
to try to explain
that my silence is my love for you.


I love this...

chamomile sea said...

I love this poem. It is definitely on my top-ten list of Shay Favorites.

These are the best lines, to me:

"Have you ever seen a blackbird against a pink sky"

"Red is the fox, the bad wound, the roadside house
abandoned for years"

"I set it free
and it stung me in my throat"

"my silence is my love for you"

"to sting me on my wrist, just above the onyx bracelet I wear
but which did not protect me"

"and forces my singing,
though some would call it moaning"

the last two stanzas

Excellent, creative work.

Lolamouse said...

Dang, girl, you've done it again!