When (g)ods Say Nothing

My first ever “found” poem, written in response to Writing 201 | Poetry, Day 6: Faces, Found Poetry, Chiasmus. I “found” my poem on page 135 of ‘Til We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis, one of my favorite books. Judge for yourselves how well I met the requirements. I had fun doing this – though I think the design part of the process gave me an ocular migraine…seriously, though. Pic and text poem both below:

Photo © Nichole Q. Perreault

Photo © Nichole Q. Perreault

Say more than gods
When the moon’s full
The King himself sacrifices a man, the Word
Determined, He answered
What’s unsaid
In the valley, dark
When gods say nothing

© Nichole Q. Perreault

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The Skin I’m In

Skin by Nichole Q. Perreault

Photo by Nichole Q. Perreault

I can’t stand the skin I’m in. I say that often, in my mind, at least, which lies trapped behind my eyes, within this skin. Oh, to claw my way out, scratch through burning layers of anger and regret, scrape away the anxiety and worry and fear and foreboding that crawl all over my arms and legs and back and knees like a plague, a curse, a damned itch I cannot scratch, peel back the sorrow and the shame, and leave the slough behind me on the unforgiving earth. Maybe then, maybe then I would be free.

It’s a terrible thing when you can’t stand yourself. A terrible, lonely thing.

Because there’s no getting out and there’s no getting in. My mind, my soul, my spirit begin and end inside this skin. This prison-skin, this divided mind, this hermetic heart that followed the fall. We touch and tangle, flesh on flesh – handshakes, hugs, and making love – always aching, reaching to be un-alone, to be known – but even when two become one, there’s three.

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Unbreak Me

Memories reach up and out of the dark places, long fingers that
grasp and grab and wrap around the tendrils of my thoughts, tangling some
together, binding others apart, tinting truth the shades of shadows.

Nagging me, dragging me down, down, down until I’m drowning
in mud that sucks at my skin and I shiver, cold to the bone…like the night we
played tether ball in the rain until we were mud-caked from hair to toenails.
But that was fun, wasn’t it? We ate pizza at 10:30 and I said
it was the best night of my life. I was six, so that was probably true.
Besides, the mud washed away and I had a towel and someone to cook me dinner.

But the downing, drowning, sucking, mucking mud pulls with all the weight
of leaded memories. Continue reading

I Will Stay

A poem about heroes, most often found in ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

He stood upon the front porch
Watching his daddy walk away
His mama stood beside the boy
His mama, she would stay

The boy, he heard her swallow hard
Watched one tear slide down her face
The boy took her by the hand
And said, “Mama, I’ll stay”

She stood upon the front porch
Watching the boy smile and wave
In the dust from the tires of the yellow bus
His mama, she would stay

He watched, as his mama grew smaller
He watched, as she faded away
As the bus jostled onward beyond
Where his heart would always stay

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Success!

Watching the Red Sox in San Francisco | Photo by N. Perreault

Watching the Red Sox in San Francisco | Photo by N. Perreault

My husband and daughters and I
Drove the car almost 10,000 miles
From east coast to west
And then back again
Still everyone came home alive!

© Nichole Perreault 2015

Inspired by our 32 day cross country road trip, which I chronicled here.
Written for Writing 201: Poetry;
Day 2: Journey, Limerick, Alliteration.

How to Rock the Boat Without Drowning Anyone, Including Yourself

When my family goes canoeing (which isn’t often), I hear things like this:

“Nichole, sit down in the middle of the boat and I’ll push us out. Just…just sit down and remember to stay low.”

“Nichole, would you stop moving.”

“You want a turn rowing? OK. Hold on and let’s…no, no, wait!”

“Mom! Stop!”

“For crying out loud, Nichole! Are you trying to capsize us?!!!”

I guess some people were just made to rock the boat.

I was rocking the boat before I took my first breath. Babies who start out in a teenage girl’s womb usually do. Our very existence causes disruption, forcing issues and conversations no one wants to have: You did what? With who? Are you keeping it? How are you going to take care of it? Will you finish school? Get a job? Get married? Do you even love him? Who’s going to pay for all this?

I didn’t ask to ride into life on the wave of a storm I didn’t create. But it happened. I didn’t want to force difficult conversations and tough choices. But I did. Just by being.

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