Ode to Bukowski


People think it is easy to sit all day and write,

but what do they know of working and not making any money?
They would think it absurd, an absurd comedy out of a play. Waiting for a book deal.

Waiting for a reply to a magazine.

Waiting for rejection letters.

Waiting for no one.
Years of this. No partner would accept this kind of relationship. I hate
myself. I hate those

so-called poets

who get book deals.
Why do I suck?

Why must I collect

rejection letters. My

poems tell no one’s

story but mine.
I am so poor, I am so

hungry. At least I have

my music

record player

books

typewriter.

I will be dead one day

and everyone
will finally know
I was a poet.
Not that I even care what

society thinks about me

thunderstorms ache.

trees cry

sidewalks shake.

 

I write poems to make a living

rejected

artist. A few times in my life,
I had great connections

with the homeless
the poets hated me.

but not as much

as I hated them.

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Ariel Poets

The exciting part about social media is networking and meeting like-minded people, especially if you are a writer or poet. A writer is a poet.

I first met Alexandra Meehan on Twitter. We have never met in real life, but our souls have probably met before. We became friends and we have come to appreciate each other’s poetic styles. I approached her a few weeks ago with the idea to open an account for lovers of poetry. We are both immensely inspired by Anne Sexton and Syliva Plath, who are two women who wrote about their turmoil life experiences. Men and women appreciate reading these two poets because through these women’s tough eyes the shape of humanity and relationships unfold in unique, female, poetic voices.

The pursuit of writing is an on-going struggle for writers and poets, especially women. Since Sappho, women have come a long way in poetry, but still struggling along. Emily Dickenson and Christina Rosetti are female poets who are world-reknowned and admired, but Sexton and Plath are still not a household name. In America they are. Just pushed aside for contemporary crap. The dark side and mental illness that haunts their literature takes too much of a front seat. Deconstruct it. Their brilliance shined among all. It seems there is so much more to their writing– to being women– that continues to fascinate us.

We created The Ariel Poets account on Twitter to further explore the inspiration that Sexton and Plath have given us throughout our studies of English literature. To be honest, when I was a young graduate studying English literature, in downtown Montreal; at Concordia University, my professor of modern literature did not even have them on our reading list. I discovered them on my own, like a deep secret you could not contain. That was the early 90’s. Ironically, Alexandra’s college experience has been similar, whereas the only poem ever covered was “Daddy”, which according to her, was not even taught properly.

 

Alexandra Meehan and I hope to inspire you with this account. We want to combine our efforts in writing, and give you some inspiration so that you never stop writing or reading.

No matter how a poet dies, it is how they live that matters most.

We both admire the bravery in Anne Sexton and Sylvia Plath’s writing style, and the brutal honesty.

Our Twitter account: @ArielPoets from:@ArielPoets
Thank  you so much for your support,
Christina Strigas and Alexandra Meehan

http://www.alexandrameehan.com

Poets sleep awake

Photo by @dan_cretu from Instagram

 

I need my naps

I am a modern poet

in semi-deep sleep

never fully awake

dreaming about pre-raphaelites and the Rosettis

still thinking

in all the colors

you left behind.

I hug you close

yet you disappear

into orange clouds

and sunset lawns.

I want to forget

the long trails

to your heart

and climb up

your mountain

to kiss your eyes

to sleep.

Alas, I slumber awake.

Awake, yet not.

International Women’s Day

To the beautiful women who I read and who inspire me daily, thank you. I admire your strength through words and images. Celebrate being a woman and surround yourself with people who love you and encourage you. Kick toxicity out. Bring in love and acceptance.

If you know anything about me then you know that I read and write daily. I find the poets who I have read for decades are always the ones who inspire me, but some modern poets are breaking through into my heart. I am picky and critical when it comes to poetry, I am in love with the ideals behind it and less with the stigma of it. I have discovered some phenomenal women poets who have inspired me lately, Sharon Olds, Joumana Haddad, Mary Oliver, Dorothea Lasky, Clementine Von Radics, Sarah Howe, Lang Leav, Natasha Head, Warsan Shire, Sarah Kay, Yrsa Daley-Ward, Amber Tamblyn, Melissa Bull, Julie Bruck, April Green, Rupi Kaur, to name a few whose poetry books I connected with on a humane and spiritual level.

Thank you for reading. Please leave a comment as to the women who inspire you.

Sunday Musings

I woke up to write

before the coffee, the sunrise

it was words that fancied my skin

to forget my dream the moment my eyes opened.

What is it that makes you want a woman like me?

Your list is long

and everything you say

makes me reevaluate my life as if it were a spreadsheet.

I know you only want to use your knees to spread my legs

my arms

across yours. It is what I want.  I really do admire

how you are so quick to the point.

You do not miss a song, I know I hate to text

and read way too much. I am quiet and methodic

concentrate on the typewriter as if it loved me back.

How could we be here?

People dying from cancer, heart attacks,

and I’m aching for you. It is not a myth,

or a legend, it is how my heart wants

to be pressed up close next to yours

with no fabric between.

I am not anyone special, trust me.

If you lived with me, you would see

so best to elevate my status by

being silent of all my defaults

eliminate my errors

by not telling you anything

more. I will keep it for my poems

my books, my next life.

This is what writers do,

we beat ourselves up with words.

The difference between us

is distance

yet all the words

you refuse to share with me

I know them already.

 

 

 

 

Spilt Wine


Start the night with wine

in my hair, on my dress,

in my stockings

brand new shoes

bare shoulder

and a few broken

apologies. I saw it

coming too,

and just watched it.

Kind of like life

that was yesterday.

Tonight,

now another bar

another jazz singer

singing the blues

under copper tiled ceilings

and feathers in her hair

you’d think it was suddenly

1920 art deco Paris.

But no,

it’s the house of Jazz

in Laval, Quebec.

Hanging with the girls

who sold my life away.

Cosmos and red chandeliers

blue bottine in the vitrine

and it’s a wonderful world

in here.

The only thing missing is you

with me.

It makes me cry

you’ll never see

what I see.

Not even pictures

do it justice.

Rita called me

she’ll be 20

minutes late,

god damn Montreal traffic.

It’s fine.

I’ll order another Cosmo

write a poem.

Listen to the jazz singer

and lament

you.

Hymns for the Hopeful

I will make this a Hellenistic hymn to all my ancestors

who believed in the twelve Olympian gods. We had to

memorize them in Greek school, learn how to write

them, practice our diction to continue the traditions

of people I never met. We learned that  Zeus and Hera

were the Queen and the King and everyone that came

after did so with intentions to create this world of caves,

darkness, silent roads,  mountains that reach the

sky. I learned to see mirrors in rivers. I was taught that

stories can corrupt my mind into believing myths

as real. So young, even Hercules became my idol and

my hero. Who can compete with the gods? No mere

mortal man could ever win my heart. I wanted the

top of the echelon. I wanted my own Zeus, who created

the world out of chaos. Who else could tame my soul?

All these hymns for the hopeful left me breathless

for such intrigue and adventure, not even Aphrodite

could have the visions of beauty I imagined. She

took hold of my body and showed  me how to dream

the imaginable. Could you see how I became another

person in my mind, the one that spoke to Goddesses

in Ancient Greek and touched the sky with her

fingertips? Artemis guided me to the moon, to hunt

for my solitude, to hide from all the demons claiming

to be on my side. I learned about deception, betrayal,

brotherhood and sisterhood through the ancient ways

and much like others I became invisible. People mocked

me, sold their adventures to me as golden tickets. All

these leaps, I have taken for no one but my ancient

soul that saw the constellations up close from a

chariot in the sky, along with eleven other friends.

 

Sonnet #1

Let us think of a road far off our path,

where we could walk holding hands in full view

and not feel the hatred of other’s wrath

while the letters remain in my pocket too.

Love will be aflame along the grey road

and a subtle caress will become law.

On your back you will carry my full load

sensing the drive in me is purely raw.

The streets will be silent full of false hope,

while our fingertips travel each other’s skin.

If we walk away we will stop at the rope

reach the line that tells us we can never win.

Here is one last wanting thought for your ears

there never was a road filled with these fears.

Surrender

The line up for free coffee
is growing daily up until
they too
take away the free love.
Not something I am unaccustomed to
all I crave is
the surrender to your clever ways
play me anyway
I’m game
raising flags at red lights
stopping my heart from beating
to feel yours
hiding away under the life machines
holding on to technology
like doctors
who are poets in their own way
like us
saving lives
with words.
It seems redundant to write
how you
have the words
I want whispered in my ear
you have the hands
caressing my skin
and all the other ordinary words
poetry stems from
but ’tis true. Yes.
Shakespeare is in love again.

I found these words scattered
around from six in the morning
where my notebook lay empty.
I raise my love to you
and bore you to death
with my obsessions
and that is how easily
you can forget me.
You are the air
I am of the earth.
(And this is another reason
I will surrender
for both
need each other
more than they know.
It could be science.
It could be love
it could be none of the above.)