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Fear

When someone is chasing me in a nightmare,

my feet are stuck.

I cannot move.

I am glued to all that is

desolate, betrayed, abandoned.

I stand upon this quagmire.

I cannot move.

I do not sink, but I cannot move.

I have no strength to fight

to free myself.

I stand.

I stand.

I stand.

I wish for something

to slip under my feet.

There is nothing.

There is no one around.

I am alone.

I feel the quagmire.

It breathes.

Sometimes it sings.

I do not listen.

I say the name of God:

The surface beneath me

smoothes like calm water.

I touch the water with my right hand

and a silver vessel carries me

across the river.

I row into the moonlight,

Then I row home again.

@ Katherine Posselt 2001

Katherine Posselt

war

We blanket your tiny forms in salt water.

From pods of viscera you inch into an outer space.

This act frees you.

We submit to the rhythm within us. The great bear licks her whelp.

The duck waddles low. Birds of prey and the huntress lion know this.

Nature seals a bond rarely broken.

The old instinct drives all creation.

She does.

I do not brag to say I express God.

In my dark belly sorrow mixes with love.

I will stir this potion until it turns to milk,

pours through my mouth and spills to earth—

where blood spills,

where people suffocate in ashen war,

where death tears skins from bones,

where bleached bones break all concepts of holy.

To this devastation, the mothers stand witness.

We gather in circles. We call to the ancestors.

In the soil, above layers and layers of broken bones and teeth,

we grow…

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Katherine Posselt

cal2wom

Crackle Glass

The pink crackle glass vase

stands alone among porcelain

and pottery variations of vase,

mingled with canning jars,

gardening tools, seed packets and

cookbooks littering the wooden

shelves beneath the east kitchen window.

The crackle vase begs for gardenias,

or a loose bouquet of calla lilies,

flowers with a shy aspect despite

their superior elegance.

The crackle vase rules the lot,

a loner appealing to kinder,

gentler times, times that do not

exist, but for imagining.

This February I will fill it with

her ashes, some of them, and

soften the water with perfume

as costly and delicate as she was.

Can a person be costly?

Things are costly,

yet she demanded much.

Nothing filled her,

and yet, still,

so much suffering

painted her face with

only delicate lines under

the contours of her high

cheekbones, beneath

the perfect straight nose,

at the corners of her eyes

when…

View original post 159 more words

Katherine Posselt

boat

Fear

When someone is chasing me in a nightmare,

my feet are stuck.

I cannot move.

I am glued to all that is

desolate, betrayed, abandoned.

I stand upon this quagmire.

I cannot move.

I do not sink, but I cannot move.

I have no strength to fight

to free myself.

I stand.

I stand.

I stand.

I wish for something

to slip under my feet.

There is nothing.

There is no one around.

I am alone.

I feel the quagmire.

It breathes.

Sometimes it sings.

I do not listen.

I say the name of God:

The surface beneath me

smoothes like calm water.

I touch the water with my right hand

and a silver vessel carries me

across the river.

I row into the moonlight,

Then I row home again.

@ Katherine Posselt 2001

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Katherine Posselt

the-red-dog-paul-gauguin


Blood on the Sheets

Not the drinks, not the
music that swung a loop
around my head, sucked
out my backbone,
not Frank’s blue eyes,
not the flash of his teeth,
not the thrust of his hips,
not anything outside,
but a strong, simple desire
to lose whatever held me
back from something
bigger than myself  and
very old, that’s what left

blood on the sheets.

The morning after
Frank stroked my
long, blonde hair,
spreading it like a fan
across the pillow, and
nudged the curve of my
buttocks with his lap.
I sat up and saw it,

blood on the sheets.

Not coy, not bold,
not wise, not happy,
not sad, not scared,
just curious, I saw it.

@ Katherine Posselt 1972

images-3

Partings

When I look at you,
father of my only child,
I see a seed itself.
I can’t see root, stem,
bud, leaf.
I see the…

View original post 219 more words

Katherine Posselt

Funny Guy
For A.K.

His muscles taut

in the region of

his solar plexus,

firm and yet I

know there is

a softness

about him

I like.

More than

like.

My muscles

contract

the same

way, in a

dancer’s

position,

contract

and

expand

like the

Universe

in

love

with

itself,

happy to

expand, to

contract,

like the

rhythm

of

birth.

Sweet

rhythm.

The rhythm

of the heart,

soft

pounding,

the in and

the out of

breath.

Breath,

the last

to leave

this form

that gives

us friends

that makes

us whole

that honors

the sacred,

sacred

I feel

when

I see his

muscles

in a form

alive

with spirit

breath

depth

love.

Happy,

happy,

happy,

to call

him

friend.

@ Katherine Posselt 2015

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Katherine Posselt

th

Give Me the Grit of Appalachia

Van Buren, Ohio

Heading South for what may be

a last reunion with a loved one,

I stop to rest. The river of Van Buren,

Ohio, flows murky green. The September

sun dries a cornfield amber. A young

woman with long brown hair wearing a

red hat poses, her infant son in her arms.

Her husband takes a photograph of this,

this innocence. This precious time

of innocence.

Berea, Kentucky

Berea, Kentucky, looms, my next stop.

An African-American girl, a student,

walks with pride in her high-heeled

sandals. She does not look at me,

intent on her purpose at Berea College,

free to those who strive for knowledge,

work as they do, to find themselves.

I say a prayer of thanks for this,

this innocence. This precious time

of innocence.

Pioneer, Tennessee

At dusk I reach Pioneer, Tennessee, eyes weary.

The mountains bathed in impenetrable…

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