Dragonfly’s Wings

dragonfly14

K. Barratt

 Once I thought my heart was strong,

But it’s made of dragonfly’s wings,

Beautifully, delicately, ethereally weak.

I guess that is why I weep so easily.

Why beauty tears me up, why loving

Fully seems to be the only way for me,

With my transparent, crystal clear,

Papery heart, unable to see the shadows

As it only reflects the light, and when happy,

It flutters and flies, high. Oh, so high.

So like dancing over water, waltzing amid the

Reeds, tango among the flowers, my delicate

Heart, who learns nothing from the scars on

Its drangofly-wing skin.

It brakes so easily, my dragonfly’s wing heart.

And like dragonflies, it seems to die

Suddenly, live for a couple of days and then

Fall to the void of disappointment and disillusion.

And each death hurts so deeply. It leaves a raw,

Gaping wound that seems impossible to heal.

Until it does.

And with the dawn my heart emerges

Once more from the cenotaph of pain,

Unafraid to go and love

And trust and soar,

High, to the cupules of the cathedral

Of willows, sighing by the road.

And it gives itself completely,

Each time,

My, oh so stubborn, heart.

Learning nothing from the scars.

Refusing to let them dictate its life,

For my brave heart will embrace

An eternity of deaths any day,

Over a life time of happy endings,

Where it’s not allowed to be its true, whole self.

My heart is made of dragonfly’s wings

And that makes it splendid

And sturdy, with wilful might,

Each day ready to love back the world,

And make it beautiful,

Through its sparkling, rainbow eyes.

 

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Number Eight

woman opening window        K. Barratt

The first time he hit me,

I thought it was an accident,

As he knelt, begging for forgiveness.

The second time he hit me,

He curved me like an “S”,

Until my knees bent and

I bit my lips, to not scream.

The third time he hit me,

The radio-clock left me with

A black eye and a grazed cheek.

And I knew there were no accidents.

The sixth time he hit me,

He threw me against the low

Back of a chair. It bit hard

My sternum and ribs.

The seventh time he hit me,

I was already on the floor.

And he kicked and kicked,

The womb cradling a baby.

Or so we thought.

He told me not to shriek

And me, the obedient wife,

Obliged. Because I knew

There may be an eighth time,

Of him hurting me.

But never, ever, a number nine.

I packed my suitcase that day.

He offered his fist and I hit

Him with it.

He grabbed and ripped off

Part of my shirt

As I walked away.

I kept on walking, with

The red scratches made

By his sharp nails branding my

Now bared back.

He said he would kill himself.

I stopped at that.

Opened the window, me,

The obedient wife,

And told him to prove

Himself right -just

To make sure to land

On his head, to make it

Painless and fast.

He did not move. I left.

Bruised, bloodied, half-dressed.

I left. 

And as I predicted,

There was no pain after number eight.

 

Fences

fence       K.Barratt

And so it goes, the round-about.

You, me, her, him, us, we,

Freedom, slavery, threats.

I won’t leave him! I won’t leave her!

The hell with you!

You are not the master of me!

Yup.

It ain’t pretty.

But it is a rush,

A drug, waiting to kick in,

A tug-of-war between

Lovers who hate each other.

At least one of them, anyway.

And I burn.

In the lies, the betrayals,

The other hands and lips,

And it’s like ripping off my skin.

And liking it.

I’m playing with fire,

And you are not playing with me.

I want out, then.

Because I can’t stand

The immensity of a love like this.

I don’t know what to with it,

How to deal with it, surrender to it.

No. Surrender, never. I will never give in to it.

I ‘ll shatter my heart first. Drive it

To its knees, mangle it, with him, with her, with them,

Until you go away and let me be,

Alone with my hurt and your memories

And the love I will never stop feeling.

For you. Of all people.

Yet I wasn’t made for pretty loving.

It weakens, softens, cripples me,

So this fluke most stop, immediately.

Those words, your honey words, 

Most sizzle into nothingness, all the niceness

And kindness gone with you,

For they itch; they wrap around

My neck and suck the rancid air

I know how to breathe.

I don’t need a good guy.

No nice lad, fine bloke, I don’t want one.

I only know about swears and slaps,

Of bitches and fucks and whores,

And you are like a kid’s sugary drink:

Way to sweet for my acidity.

So, unless you are prepared to burn

In the anger and the pain,

Please, go away. Now. Just walk,

Not looking back. Allow me

To be my darkness by

Removing from me your light.

I’m asking nicely. Do it.

Or I’ll brake you.

I’ll stomp you, crush you, make you cry.

I can, I will, I’ve been there and done that.

Therefore, take your goodness back

And pack it in your suitcase.

And jump, with your unicorns and rainbows,

To the other side of the fence.

 

 

Savage Heart

woman walking_away_by_alongwayfromhome

K. Barratt

 

Adieu my savage heart.

This is our true, for-real-now, 

Good-bye. I’m locking you in

And throwing  far away

The key , to the edge of the earth,

Where no one will find it,

Specially not me.

So long, then, my savage heart.

Farewell to our wild times,

Howling at the moon, running

With the pack, singing half naked

In the road side bar.

It’s time to part, my savage heart.

No more screaming love making

With strangers, passing by,

Smelling of mystery and desperation

At the same time. No more dancing

With cowboy boots on tables

At the blues café. No more

Poetry reciting at the bank,

To the bewildered teller.

No more singing raunchy melodies.

No more sinning, our greyish soul

Brimming with laughter.

No more packing our life

In a suitcase, and just walk away,

To next place, to the next race between

Destiny and us. We have lost.

We’ve been lassoed with the cruellest

Weapon. Love they call it. Love,

The slaver. The enabler. Love,

The decision maker.

And I can’t keep you both,

You and him, for one will

Break the other.

And I can’t stand the breaking

Of this other.

Love makes you a traitor,

My savage heart, and tonight

I am betraying you.

Adieu, then, my savage heart.

I leave you my wild child,

My feral woman,

To keep you company

And remember me by.

As I go to him. Half empty; half

Expecting, hoping, begging,

That this thing call love will

Fill me up. Make me complete.

And so I depart, my savage heart.

Limping to that other side of life

We used to mock so hard,

When you and I were one.

My savage heart.

A Symphony of Peaches and Pinks

holding hands hospital        K. Barratt

I open my eyes, looking how the stars

and the horizon meet. Sky and land.

A kiss. And I think. Of you. Of me.

Of the touch of our hands, that first time,

on our way to Amsterdam,

the full plane, the snoring lady

of gigantic arms, who kept

pushing you to me.

Our beautiful fairy godmother.

And I see the first rays

of the sun and breath.

The beep, beep is still going on

and you live, made it through the night,

the doctor busy, doing his thing.

My lips bite each other, in hatred, in fear.

In hope. Then Mr. I-don’t-smile doctor

shows all of his teeth.

And it’s no longer a dream.

You live.

You are alive, breathing,

heart pumping, here, with me.

I weep.  I laugh. I hold your hand,

The sky turning into a symphony

of peaches and pinks.

And my heart beats.

Again. Once more.

You and me. One more chance

To defy the dammed stars

And be.

And you open your eyes.

 

Thirteen

R in autumn close up 2a                                                                                        K. Barratt

To be thirteen again and cry over scuffed shoes. To laugh, wildly, at a friend’s joke and then cover your mouth, to hide the braces on your teeth. To be thirteen. To run with the pack, sometimes lead. To love and loath boys in the same minute, to pretend you don’t know that he’s looking at the back of the school bus. To hate the teacher, just because, and then to adore her when touched with a little of her grace, in a math test. To ignore your parents and then frown, because you have gotten your morning embrace. To speak nonstop with your bestie; to just want to be alone and mourn some unmentionable tragedy that no one understands. To adore the world. And find it a bore. To play cool, wanting not to be daft about life’s questions and answers. And deep down cross your fingers, and hope for happy-ever-afters. To be thirteen and have a heart like the sea. Innocence, walking with barrowed stilettos to school, only to change them fast as you reach the gate. To wanting to play with Barbie again and wishing to have all the money in the world, to buy everything in the girl section of Next. To be thirteen, once more. And to live it from afar, reflected in the brilliant beauty of your daughter’s eye.

 

Hades

hades_and_persephone_by_rgveta-djw2ov

Image by rgveta

 

K. Barratt

So, I finally held the

Knife to my neck.

The bloody mess

That exploded

From heaven and hell

And everything in between,

As my husband screamed,

(Not much of a negotiator, he)

Things about our home and

The sleeping kid, the dog,

The parents, the old, lady Guinea pig,

The dreams yet to achieve,

The places yet to see, lies all

Lies! Except perhaps the

Part about the love, the child,

Him. The parents. The dog and

The old Guinea pig. It’s for

Them that I held the knife,

Between my neck and my cheek.

But he did not see it.

I did it to free them.

From the madness, the invisible

Racoons hanging from the lamps,

The loser they are tied to,

The waste of space that I am.

But not, he cried and cried.

As if people did not die

Every day, all the days,

In all the times,

Babies and grannies and cats.

Whole towns and lonely

Homeless men on a bench.

We were born to die, and I’m  just

Spitting at my destiny’s face,

Doing it my own way.

He listens to nothing I say.

He just begs.

Looking at me with the

blue eyes I have never 

Been able to say not to.

I weakened and demand:

No doctors this time,

No hospital beds.

He promises just a hug in exchange

For the knife; the key to the door

That’ll let me escape this hell.

And I give in.

I give in.

And he lies, of course.

‘Cause he loves me,

Scorns the voice in my head,

With a sing-a-long tone.

And there goes my

Happy ever after.

Cerberus is grabbing me

With all his heads,

Pinning me, in the name of love,

 into the Dantesque

Darkness within myself.

The silly doctor asks all

His ridiculous questions,

As he watches.

My personal Hades.

Sitting on the other

Side of the bed,

Light and dark, small and grand,

Holding his Persephone’s hand,

With all his godly, loving might.

 

Rain

Paris raiinK. Barratt

 

It rains when I come to Paris.

It always rains, no matter

The time of the year.

It rains in that Parisian way

That is not quite here nor there,

Like a fleeting kiss from

A mischievous kid, that

One feels, kind of, and when

Turns around he is gone.

There is something about

The rain in Paris. Something mellow

And demure. Elegant even.

As those girls walking on flats,

Who seem to slide in stilettos

Of shinny, patent leather.

Something Fitzgerald-y and Zelda

Like. Something soft, alive,

Each drop a caress I don’t run from.

Wet from Parisian sky kisses.

I sit in a café, shivering, delicately,

The last notes of the piano

At the blues bar.

And I see the grey and blue and violet

World around me, the silver

Streets, the people leisurely

Walking by. And I know I

Am not the only one

Being worshiped by the rain.

In the misty, drizzling interlude.

we all are making love to it.

In our own, very personal way.

 

ON A SPACE CALLED LAND

woman-walking-awayK. Barratt

 

And so it happens that we are all walkers:

Runners, joggers, skippers;

Trail blazers, some of us.

Path finders.

And that is the answer of the ages.

Of the “who am I” and “what am I doing here.”

We are machete wielders, creating

The path unique to ourselves,

To our laughter and our tears.

We are charterers of the unknown

Jungles that our lives are, similar

To many, yet different in every sense.

We do not travel the road less travelled:

We create the way.

We build the bridge, draw the maps,

Write the memoirs that the

Next generation will forget or

Misunderstand, because I am not

You, nor you I, and my yellow

Brick road is  blondish, buttery white,

Whilst yours is coppery gold.

And so, like the Spanish poet

Said dear walker, there is no road.

The road is rendered by your feet when

You start your walk.

And that is life. And who you are.

A walker of dreams on a space called land.

 

 

 

Liar

K. Barratt

woman pill

 

At night, she pretended she was one of them. She

Did her oms and chants, anchored her feet behind

Her ears, shared the organic rice with pure, cold-pressed

Virgin oil and laughed, with them, about

The rest: the junk food eaters and murderous meat

Eaters; the zombies attached to I-phones and I-pads;

And the junkies getting high in the poison Big

Pharma had convinced them to buy, to be well,

To think well -oh poor dears, not seeing the truth

That only came from a dedicated life of oms and chants;

And cotton weaving and whale watching from a kayak.

And she would remember the whales watched

From a tourist catamaran. And the hamburger shared

With Mike when Mike was still around and she

Was part of ‘Jenny and Mike’, and there was no tombstone,

Somewhere, polluting the earth, saying ‘Mark’.

Mark with no Jenny. And on and on they spoke,

About all their wisdom, masters, gurus, shamans.

One even swore he had seen a fairy and no one doubted it.

Yet she dared not to confess about the gorilla

In the kitchen, the child in the corner, how she

Knew she belonged to another dimension, and

There was a planet where fish behaved like men

And they came and visit, some times,

Through the multi-plane hole behind

Her fridge door. She breathed deeply

With them, a communion of air, someone

Said, and she heard the noise in her head, the

Voices pulling left and right, and the anger

Raging, her heart pounding, like a giant

Drum in a slave galley, and all she wanted

was to scream that she wanted to go home,

Wherever home was; yell them out, to get out,

Shriek them out existence,

Tell them to go, that she knew not

their names, their words meant nothing

To her, nor did the hated green

Smoothies and raw nuts, and she just wanted to

Vanish, disappear, and find that quiet

Place inside of her, to which no prayer, no

Meditation, no gong bath or drumming session

Had ever taken her before.

She was sweating, panting, but not one noticed.

They were deep, inside  their holly, hallow selves.

She tipped top to the bathroom

And took her magic pot, her miracle

Pill, velvety white.

Swallow it.

And waited, until upside down became upside right.

She was out of the hole. She could breathe.

She could slither back to her place

And joint the meaningful silence,

Just in time. In time to smile, beatifically.

In time to adjust her saintly mask.

In time to lie, again, to lie because

She did not know what else to do,

Where else to go, who else to turned to.

And as they left, one of them commented

She had not finished her smoothie. She said she would

As she close the door. And then threw the

Green concoction down the drain.

The gorilla handed the cola as

He faded and she sat in front of the TV,

Drinking her coke, eating her chips,

Watching her game show, at peace.

Accepting herself completely just

As she was: a pill-popping nut

Case wanting to fly. Like an angel.

Like a saint.

And for today, that was okay.