She Told Me So

“I’ll tell of this love that I know”

She said to me one day

“So please, if your will should allow

Listen and hear what I have to say”

She spoke of the soil cushioning her

The grass tickling her ears

The sunflower towering above her

Yellow soothing and easing her fears

She told me of seeds and their spurt

How spirit moves heavens on earth

And the force that grounds deep roots

Is the same as us knowing our worth

“Don’t forget you are no different”

Her whispers I still hear

“What makes the sunset so beautiful

Is you seeking you, my dear”

And with all this love that I know

From the listened word, not spoken

I conclude that I was, all along

Whole, not once ever broken.

No Longer Asking

 

Spirit, lead me someplace to find you

I ask them to make themselves heard

And make it bright, with flames I’ll see in the mist

I waited, for a day or two

Their response I’d so clearly plotted

To which I believed they’d ignored

I prayed to the moon

Clasped within a wishbone cage

“Am I to ask you instead?”

Sunk are my pleas as I notice nothing

So I tug at myself, limbs that entwine senses

I must find a place to curl into these wonders

Surely the fineness of these landscapes know something?

And with broken tissue, I fight on

Nothing came

But soreness, buried

How am I to know the order of this chaos?

The beginnings of inquisition, I cannot remember

But I do remember answers, logical

Yet still the questions poured

And deeper I clawed

But the crawling, it hurt

So I cry to the clouds

“You impersonal temptress!”

Enough is enough

I’m too tired for this precision

Instead, thank you and goodbye

For your love is swollen

And I’ve no time

Thinking time is all I have to waste

But darn it, it was me

Holding on for instruction

And I am bursting at the seams with knowing

Harnessing needs

Silencing birth pains

And thank god, spirit transcends suffocation

I asked for forgiveness, for the blaming and taming

But not before my cells resonate

With the unfolding of bestowed blessings

Mastery in motion

To see myself as that

In the dirt, with blood on my knees

And pimpled skin and bones that ache from dancing in the dark

Brilliance is what I am

I am the perceiver of every sign I need

And I’ll dance as one

With those I’d once requested reassurance

No longer asking

But thankful to know already.

 

Wild Opals

I saw you

Above the tiles that promised to keep out the rain

Your eyes were opal, that’s how I remembered them

And the sun was always setting but your hair was more golden than the light

I sat crossed legged

Like a child waiting to hear a fairytale

Your nails were short

But not bitten, you had been working on the land

And your fingers were stained by the soil

Or the cigarettes you used to smoke

You told me smoking was bad for your health

I assumed you stopped, you never told me you had

And we were there

Saying very little to each other but then we never did speak much

My joints loosened as you spoke and your rhythm pulsed within me

Your voice

Still, those whispers caught in the tide

Are your way

Go North you told me

Catch the red berries

Place them on the ground around your shivering body

Breathe into your cold palms

And let your warmth remind you

That you are enough

I called you a witch

Because I couldn’t pen you down

You were defiant against description

Beyond the madness of sanity

I was haunted by you

And as I prayed to understand you

Your craft I wished to home

I was gifted with an empty note

And a furious breeze

That beckoned towards the northern sea

Keep moving, I hear

Don’t stiffen with the wanting

As then you’d be like those

And I, I hear

Have become, already.

Bury Me

Bury me where the brambles grow 

Sliced by unforgiving thorns

Let my tears crumble 

Like salt drops repelling the slugs

But let them come 

And leave silver trails across my breasts 

Whose majesty I’ve only imagined

Let me feel the break in my bones  

And scream as discs slip and roots wilt

So shallowly planted by frightened fingers 

I have known to ask of moulding discreetly, to feel common amongst the mass 

But my shedding mimics no other 

What comes up, too big to fit

And the dirt under my nails 

The dirt now choking my rusty cords

Feeds the hunger I feel, surpressing the swell

Full on words I’ve never spoken 

And they claw deeper into memories, ripened words sculpt outside of me 

Developed in your world  

But fallen in mine 

I am calling you, death of a stranger 

I’ve known what I’m allowed 

But forgot why I yearned for less 

For a naked me, stripped bare for saviours sake

I request that my core, sore and bruised, may rot

Welcomed back home

Please bury me where chunks can be bitten 

Where I can feel worthy enough to feed the worms 

And grow again, live again

Die, again 

Because I’m A Woman

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Because I’m a woman

I weep

Unapologetically

I feel

Unapologetically

Wisdom soaks my morning prayers

Forget intellect

I woke up

Aware

I did that, no one else

Stifled by words, sometimes

But not my words

And to know the difference

Is key.

Because I’m a woman

I bleed

To shed

Not die

I bleed to renew

To birth

Again and again

To birth new linings

And cushion precious beads

Because I’m a woman

I may worry what others think

When hair blesses my body

And I leave it alone

But not worrying enough

To intervene

With art

A rawness

Flourishes

Stripping layers of education

Of how one should be

In being

Fuck should

Is

Is enough

Because I’m a woman

I delight myself

My own touch

Stroking flesh

My breasts, enjoyed

Just because

It feels good

My shell responds so sweetl

To me

Never alone

Each night it is me who brings love to bed

 

Because I’m a woman

I sting

When I want to

I fight

When I need to

I pull myself apart

Rip chunks of rotten doings

Rotten sayings

From the core of me

Yet my own forgiving hands

Catch misshapen identities

To bring home

To sculpt back

There is nothing insignificant about me

Because I am a woman.

 

Being Me

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My veins are full of iron

I’m not so sweet as you think

When my shadow pours acid rain

Don’t be mad that I muddied your pink

 

My eyes reflect what you want

To be as you want me to be

When I am the way that I am

Don’t act disappointed in me

 

My hands are to fondle this earth

To feel what my heart needs to grow

If I pluck something different to you

Don’t tell me I’m wrong and don’t know

 

My breasts will swell each month

And my body is mine to bleed

When I choose to nurse only myself

Don’t say that I pay you no heed

 

My legs they have shape and much strength

To explore lands my soul can call home

If you steer me someplace I hate

I’ll walk my next chapter alone.

She

Arms raised

To coast the rippling beat

Hair a mess from the scorching heat

Sweat dripping like rain from the roses leaf

Drenched is the crevice of her porous reef

With bare feet

Her toes skim the ground

Fingers clenched to her Venus mound

A violent thrust punches her core

She coils

She arches

Releases her roar

Skin like golden fields

Craved

Devoured

Enjoyed through the night into morning hours

Hands catching the fire

Branded with burns

Scars deeply set as she listens, she learns

A feral like creature

So skilfully wild

Taught from a knowing held dear since a child

She dances

Her smile salutes the moon

She dances

Hips sway unique to her tune

Labels

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Labels, I don’t like them. However, being a vegan (yep, a label) does warrant a need for labels on certain foods, i.e. has a cheeky pinch of milk powder gotten into this whole-food power bar, or is there animal bi-product in this bottle of wine? (why ALL wines are not vegan is beyond me). I try to live as simply as possible, not thinking about designer labels and trying desperately not to label and judge others due to their political views or dislike of animals (although in my eyes, animals are the best)

So there you go, I can’t deny that labels have taken on a vital role in our society. We are labelled as soon as we are named as children. We’re labelled at school to help with the testing system, seen as mass rather than individuals. We’re labelled at work with our job titles. We’re labelled depending on the colour of our skin or the god we worship. Labels are un-escapable, not just in the modern world, they’re part of our history and traditions too. It distinguishes left from right, the ‘good’ from the ‘bad’, it can give people a reason to feel powerful, the hierarchy of society – high to low. It’s safe to say we invest much of our sense of self into the labels bestowed upon us, or the labels we willingly adopt to fit in, merging with a tribe that suits us best. However, the most damaging labels can be the ones we give ourselves, building a limiting story and often being so far removed from our souls purpose that ‘failure’ is the most believed label, even before we give life a good shot.

However, over the past few months I’ve been discovering there are moments when labelling yourself can be the most healing decision, the only decision in order to surrender into feelings. To label the pain in order to admit it, no matter how dark, this can often be the only way to move forward.

“What’s happening to me, why am I feeling like this, am I going mad? Oh shit, I’m a crazy woman!” Leaving ourselves open, like a free for all for every emotion, not knowing why or how or what we’re experiencing can be the scariest thing of all. This has been my reaction to life for the past… well many years now. I’ve not wanted to label any of my thoughts, I’ve been leaving my front door open for a miracle to casually float into my erratic space and clean up the trash I’m pilling high. All has been a whirlwind because of my refusal to admit to myself; to lean into my discomfort, to scoop up the rising issue that I’ve been battling over the years. The truth of the story is, the agoraphobia I once ‘suffered’ many years ago has returned and it ain’t going anywhere, not right now anyway.

I didn’t want to admit this to myself as I’ve been here before, riding the road to recovery when I was 15. Being labelled agoraphobic at such a young age was one of the most difficult paths ever I’ve taken and this is why I don’t like labels, this is the story I’ve been running from, trying so frantically to erase.

“You can’t do this again, you’ve already battled this, you’ve conquered this already so don’t let it come back, you’re too old to be going through childhood trauma again… GET OVER IT! You have to, your future depends on it” Yes, I’ve been that harsh on myself and when I see those words written, just as I hear them in my head, I know I’d certainly never speak to another being like that, so why so hard on myself? This is why writing is so healing and marvellous on many levels. Reading the hateful words I genuinely felt, seeing them on the screen has been the dose of medicine I so greatly needed.

Battle, that’s the word I needed to see, battling myself, battling the labels, battling my way through life so I don’t have to sit through that pain I once persevered. Battling against myself. What craziness to be at war with ourselves, yet it can be the easiest habit to fall into, so readily done each and every day.

I did battle agoraphobia when I was young; I refused to go to school, as it became such an impossible task. I couldn’t socialise, I felt weak, pathetic, the black sheep as I couldn’t do all the things my friends were doing to live a ‘normal’ teenage life. I was at home, all the time. I was reading about alternative methods to heal (blessed with a mum who believed in the holistic path, who shared her knowledge and who loved me unconditionally) as I refused to take drugs, knowing even then that mood suppressants were not the fix I needed. However, as my whole family was included in this battle and we were being inspected regularly by social services, the need for my recovery was getting stronger. The law instructed that I had to get back into the classroom so it became a necessity to find a way to immerse myself back into the scary world, even if that meant jumping before I was ready.

Every effort was made to mask the open wound; I had GCSE’s to take and due to persistent reminders from the external world that I’d surely fail in life if I didn’t take my exams, I had no choice but to plaster up and face the world. I hated being the sensitive girl; the girl who wouldn’t go to the pub or the sleazy clubs that seemed so vital in the girl-snogs-boy process (it was the 90’s, snogging was our favourite word). I didn’t understand why I felt this way, even after a year of therapy the mystery of this complex mind matter continued. I’d been classed as mentally ill and I needed to be like everybody else to prove I was no longer sick.

I see now that although I did recover in order to continue with school, finish my exams and go onto university, I was running off the wrong fuel, adrenaline was overriding the pain, I’d planted my seeds in completely the wrong conditions, they were suffocating.

I did get back into the world, I did make it to the pubs and clubs and drink vodka most weekends even though it tasted like every sip was stripping away a part of my intestinal wall. Although I was back in the game, I’d made it, I’d battled an illness that was only working against me, my soul was deeply aware that I was so far removed from the real ‘me’. The cracks were deepening and I was craving something else… of course at the time, I didn’t know what.

The label of agoraphobia that I’d once found so debilitating, so isolating and uncomfortable is one I never thought I’d be facing again. “I can do it, I’m powerful, I’m bigger than my fears, I’m strong, I’m strong, I’m strong” Yes, I am all those things but I am also sensitive and shy and scared sometimes and I cry about things that happened over 15 years ago. And that is all OK. I’m done with battling, war never leads to peace, war never leads to forgiveness and love and acceptance.

So here I am, I’m labelling myself as agoraphobic, not because I want to slump into the pit of despair about the difficulties in my life at the moment or feed the struggle I face being in busy, public places. It’s not because I want to throw my hands in the air and say, ‘you got me agoraphobia, I give up, I’m not trying anymore’. I’m ready to step into this label again because I want to honour the girl I was, who fought so hard to become the woman I am today. I’m honouring her tears and pleas for self-love when all she could feel was shame and guilt and distance. I want to breathe hope and compassion into every moment of panic; I want to cradle the inner child that never recovered properly, who never got to express her true feelings or desires. I want to edit each page, adding words of strength next to words of fear, to become the healer I wanted to become before the filler of quick fixes hardened across the seeping wound.

I’m labelling myself agoraphobic as sometimes you have to take full ownership of something before you can let it go.

Agoraphobia is only one part of my story, it’s part of my now but that doesn’t mean it has to be written into my future. All I can do right now is inhale light and exhale acceptance until this chapter ends. If anxiety must live alongside my true being then all I can do is promise my soul that I’ll continue to listen and never declare war on myself, ever again.