Esoteric (for #sayhername)


She stands bare footed 

On a marble bathroom floor

The temperature outside has not

Risen to the predicted low for today

These days she keeps mostly to herself

No one else will bear it with her

Cold solitary dawns


When she thinks of love

She’s confronted with the clumsiness 

Of language

Saying too much

And not enough

So she lives inside her libidinous smells

Subtracting anxiety multiplying 

Amorous intelligence quotients


When they ask where she’s going

She tells em’ where she’s been

It’s what she knows

She tells dark stories

Channeling duende

Tales with no translation

Into language 

She hears deep songs

Of longing without objects  

Troubling sounds with Gnostic moans

Deep trouble with cutthroat edges of

Dreams held hostage


What the world around her won’t admit 

Lives on in skins of drums

Scars on protesters           

Bodies of dancers

Accomplishments by some

Formally enslaved and 

Burr-throated threnodists

Who whisper

Imagine love is a glass of water

Your love

My love

Our love

And pour it where it’s needed


She pours it on herself

Then stands

In a puddle

On the cold floor

Drenched in what

She's never understood

In what she thinks God is

Dripping love's dysfunction

So she poured a river past a rock 

She understands the poetry of love

That’s the least of it

It’s a cloak hiding daggers

Roses disguising thorns

Neither the bathroom floor nor its mirror

Were esoteric enough to reflect

The hysteria of romance 

It did uncover revelation:

To find her way she must acknowledge 

She’s lost it

Wearing nothing but new courage

And a shiver she embraces herself

Along with a new name












◄ What is Ours

Black Again for the First Time ►


Profile image

Cynthia Buell Thomas

Wed 9th Nov 2016 12:41

I like this too. A bold subject well-explored.

Any thoughts about cutting down? Or maybe having it in two parts?

Profile image


Wed 9th Nov 2016 06:03

I really like this Otis! At one point the tears were welling in my eyes.

There is such sorrow within the poem, such hurt from the point of view of the experience of the character.

Nice one blue. You truly are a wordsmith.

If you wish to post a comment you must login.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

Find out more Hide this message