Sunday, November 6, 2011

Guest Poet: Mama Zen

A few short months after I began my Word Garden blog, I came upon The Zen of Motherhood, written by a funny, smart, and completely unique woman calling herself Mama Zen. Friendship ensued, but I'm telling you, the woman was holding out on me from the start. 

One day she posted a poem and I said to myself, "Bitch! get off my turf!" "My goodness but this chick can write." Fast Forward to this past July, and MZ opened her own poetry blog called, in true Mama Zen style, Another Damn Poetry Blog. I was stoked. 

Her voice is absolutely unique to her, and her range is remarkable. She can write story poems that will draw you in, snarky tidbits that will make you laugh, and she can also make you cry or fan yourself from the sudden heat. Fireblossom likes. I think you will too. 

Here are five of her poems that I have selected in order to show off some of the cool stuff I just bragged about her being able to do. I know you're going to love them.


I spend hours
roaming the stubbled hayfields,
catching grasshoppers,
and feeding them to the cats.
I've been told that eating too many will burn them up inside,
but I don't believe it.
The cats don't seem to believe it, either.

It's so hot you can hear it.

There's always a cool spot
in the mud at the edge of the pond,
but you have to crawl under
the willow tree to get there.
I go in slow and watch for water moccasins
curled in the branches above.

I've faced more fearsome monsters.

Sunset spreads like a bruise
across the sky.
The tin roof of the barn,
still warm to the touch,
bears my weight and holds my secrets.
I'm the highest point in the emptiness.

And, the stillness is so vast that I don't make a ripple.


If you lift my hair
and let the night air whisper
kisses on my neck,
my throat, my moon bare shoulder,
I will sway like a willow.


The roses that you brought this morning
smelled like dog piss
and wilted before noon.
That, and you tracked a mess
of strange dirt all over my kitchen floor.

My horoscope said that you was a waste
of my powerful carnal energies.

But, what can I say?
I love a nice pair of shoes.


If I go to crazy and don't make it back,
bring her up to love Jesus.
Remember that she likes her milk warm and her peas frozen.
Let her make you laugh.

If she asks, tell her
that a blue sky bird may break a wing,
but that broken bird will still sing.
Tell her to listen
in the quiet of the morning.


It was little summer,
and I'd promised you I'd come.
So, I packed my bag,
and left my pride
and took the last train out of Bedlam.

When you met me at the station,
I turned the other cheek,
but your scent
(richer than remembrance)
left me breathless on my feet.

There was a ride I don't remember.
A meal I didn't taste.
Careful conversation saying nothing.

Til I said,

"Walk me up the stairs.
Pretend that I'm your wife.
Swift and sure unhook my dress
like you do it every night.
Push aside the velvet.
Claim me with your kiss.
You've promised her forever;
all I have is this.
It's little summer,
and fall is closing in."

We made love in a strange bed.
We'll never have our own.
Then I packed up what was left of me
and took the train back home.

You returned to Autumn.
Some seasons never change.
Me, I reaped our season's planting;
Little Summer is her name.

All above poems written by Mama Zen.


Heaven said...

of course I follow MZ - she is awesome ~

happy sunday ~

Lynn said...

All lovely and compelling!

Marion said...

She's awesome. Thanks for sharing her work. There's nothing better than finding a new poet. xo

Mama Zen said...

Shay, I'm speechless. No, really; it happens!

Brian Miller said...

MZ rhymes with hot poetry...enuf said...

Scarlet said...

Thanks for introducing me to the poetic side of Mama Zen...I had no idea this other damn poetry blog existed. You are so right, she makes you laugh and then moves you, depending on the poem. Ecclectic and fun...I'll have to check her other blog more often. Thanks for sharing, Chica! xo

hedgewitch said...

The very first one I don't remember reading before--a fine poem--but all the others are favorites out of the large body of impressive work turned out by Mama Zen. You've selected one of each type you quoted I see, and ended on the strong narrative note of Little Summer, one of my *major* alltime favorites.

Thanks, Fireblossom for this exquisite array of gems, and greater thanks to the woman who wrote them.

Hannah Stephenson said...

Yay--I love reading new poets!! These are wonderful. Thanks for sharing her work.

Cloudia said...

yep, you right, Red Leaves Lady Shay

Aloha from Honolulu

Comfort Spiral

> < } } ( ° >


Anonymous said...

You picked some of my favorites too. I loved the intro and love MZ's words and marvelous reading/commenting skills (always leaves zinger lines). A wonderful tribute to a multitalented, unique poet!

Sioux said...

Jeezle--There's another one in the same category as you. Another monkey (blog) on my back.

Seriously, Shay--thanks for sharing.

HermanTurnip said...

I had no idea.

Please excuse me as I jam on over to MZ's poetry corner!

Lolamouse said...

Yes, I do concur. You choose your friends well. I love these poems.

Daryl said...

thanks .. she is indeed a wordsmith

Randy Behavior said...

Oh yes I love her too, and I love your selections.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Oh lovely, a guest poet! I loved every poem, most especially Instructions. Wow. Terrific writing! Thanks for featuring the wonderful Mama Zen.

Caty said...

I agree, Mama Zen has endless talent...and that last one is one of my favs of hers!

Sujay said...

So beautiful, nice, and important the site is.Perfect arrangement.Well done carry on.

me said...

Wow. I'm breathless.

"Then I packed up what was left of me
and took the train back home.

You returned to Autumn."


I really liked the closing of "Shoes" as well.

Anonymous said...

there are four or five poets whose work NEVER disappoints ~ you and Mama Zen are two of them. ♥

"SWAY" just left me breathless.