#Poetry Wed: “How to Stop the Bleeding” by Patricia Killelea

“Separate me into what’s real and what’s spoken,
and I’ll show you the ocean sprouting up between the two.

Each morning, you arrive at the doorstep of my voice
and turn away before knocking, so no one ever answers.

I am trying to explain the doorstep and the seashells I set aside
after failing to find a song for the tidepools after Fukushima.

You remind me that shells are made of keratin, just like hair & nails
and suddenly I’m inadequate for not taking the form of a spiral…”

-Read the entire poem at Barzakh.

#Poetry Wed: “Three Windows” by Patti Smith

In the garden of the fugitive
he knelt singing
I am with thee

In his white cassock he cried
I pray for that brother
who shot me

A black crucifix appeared
as he lay dying
forgive me

I am one

Crepe streamed from three windows
a flag dropped bound in mourning
these words entered the heart

You have come
the door is open
you will not find me
you will find my love

#Poetry Wed: ​”Prodigal” by Mia Sara (aka the girl from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off!)​


I’ve gone belly-up for my prodigal
and his knock-kneed swagger of hit-or-miss.
It suits him, the fall from grace.
Wafer-thin, minty-fresh, proto-punk.
Everything wasted becomes the boy,
crowd-sourced collar of hickeys blooming,
the headless glamour of youth,
all that I’d given up for lost.
My prodigal returns to me
without his keys, his coat, his shoes,
tapping his familiar tattoo at my door
as if I still had everything to give—
a kingdom, a cigarette, a fatted calf—
and all he had to do was ask.


Some mothers fear the worst. They still believe
in the fiction of control. Poor kittens.
Poor mittens. Poor sacrificial cotton socks.
I seem to be the bearer of bad news;
blue-eyed princeling, anime-bright,
articulated idol, towhead intactus.
A smile so sly you’ll forget your lunch.
That smug reflex of maternal pride.
Been there, done that. Took the fall
from the broken bough, cradle and all.
Almost a year since I almost lost him.
Lost the plot. Lost my head. Lost the habit
of believing in a time when “the worst”
was still good enough….”

-Read the entire poem at ​Mudlark​.

#Poetry Wed: “I Guess By Now I Thought I’d Be Done With Shame” by Franny Choi

“I Guess By Now I Thought I’d Be Done With Shame”

“but I opened my coat to prove a point
and kept coming home with colds.
I thought I was done stuffing fists
in my mouth to mute the sound.
Done lying about what trails my throat
had charted. I practiced looking tall
men in the eye, spoke loudly,
pronounced every ‘R.’
I chopped wood at midnight.
I left the shower and kept
singing. I sang about my body
like I was proud. I was proud.
I was…”

-Read the entire poem at The Offing.