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Sunday, February 24, 2019

when it is - a poem

when it is your birthday but you spend the day
making everyone feel comfortable celebrating you
rejoice: you are about to relinquish your good girl status
in a royal boil of a temper tantrum
fists against a pillow
secret tear stains down the mirror no one else will ever see
but you and the cleaning lady you have called once a month
so that you can have a moment alone

when you are depressed and you have lost your will to try
do not read self help books.
those are for the mildly positive
who have little sense of humor.

listen to leonard cohen reading from
the book of longing

because he is dead now and you will not get to meet him in this life, after all,
but you will laugh
because he knows that it is difficult to make love to insects
if you are a man, anyway, the kind who penetrates

when you are a woman who has built so much of an empire on making it look good
which is what it means to be a woman in 2017
before 2018
before 2019, which is when i am writing this,
before everyone got tired and said
wait, i'm angry,
me too,
and i am tired of having so little time for pleasure

walk away now
and read your favorite novel and get angry again
and watch men explain art to you in movies about music
and let them get annoyed because
they are not leonard cohen

when you get hate letters telling you that you are not beautiful enough to be taken seriously
or you are too beautiful to be taken seriously

laugh in their faces
their words are all about them

and they are probably feeling exactly the way you feel
and they got tired of always helping
and always trying to please
and always being understanding
and they are taking it out like a troll
on some other idiot who endeavors greatly
and they tread on your dreams
and they do not go softly
and they do not see you are a person
and they do not write, yes, me, too

but that is what they meant

when it is sunday
and you gave up on feeling bad about yourself
and lying
and putting all your cards out on the table
and pretending
but you're still a human so you're feeling bad and lying and showing your cards and pretending
in all these ways you're not even aware of

light all the candles in your house
and turn on dance me to the ends of love
or bye bye miss american pie
or whatever makes you long for your true soul self
if not your father's songs, then that which brings you a fullness
of unfulfilled desire

and dance for those who are gone
for those who can dance no longer
and if you cannot dance
then sing
and if you cannot sing then smile
and if you cannot smile then go on with your own heart, then

the crows are calling
the clouds roll by

and you are still here,
when it is
where it is