“Day6 – Moonrise” by Briyanna Hymms

Briyanna Hymms

Day6 – Moonrise

  1. Better Better,
       i liked you best;
       have you come up with an excuse for me?
  1. I Like You
       though i think we keep dancing
    in circles
  1. What Can I Do
       except stay in my routine?
    i’m not going to break my own comfort for you
  1. I’ll Remember
       all the missed moments,
    all the stolen stares
  1. Whatever!
       stop this, you’re leaving soon!
    he gave no hints anyways
  1. Be Lazy
       be cautious, be careless, be myself
       maybe the cycle will never break
  1. Hi Hello
       yes, it started this way
       you never asked me my name then
  1. I Loved You
       but perhaps its the same way i loved
    everyone who came into my heart
  1. When You Love Someone
       doesn’t it show in your eyes?
    i thought everyone could read mine
  1. All Alone
       in this sterile room
    i have so much space to think
  1. Pouring
       out all my thoughts onto graph paper
    i’m trying to reach a conclusion
  1. I Need Somebody
       i needed a body
    it would be unfair if i “loved” you
  1. I’ll Try
       to stop myself from going farther
    beyond just physical affection

 

 

*

Note: Hymms’ poem relies on song titles from Day6’s album, Moonrise. For more on this strategy, view this blog-post:
https://poemsforthewriting.com/2017/01/04/musical-echoes-1/

 

“Fantôme” by Benjamin Teperov

Benjamin Teperov

Fantôme

Sometimes I stop, peering down the road and trying to make out shapes in the fog.
There is something hanging from the trees. Yellow eyes wide. Watching—
—“What are you?” I call out.
It grins wider, mocking me in my own voice
Ore no kanojo?” I echo, “Maybe I should bring a bouquet for you.”

I looked away, into the trees and the mist. If I went off the path for a little bit—
just a two-hour vacation—
what would I see there?
A mermaid, twisting through the grey air,
or jewelweeds twined together with their friends?
I could catch a midsummer shower,
run with the wolves in the wilderness,
follow them to the edge of the trees and peer into oblivion—
It might be the best day of my life.

I step forward onto the road, flowing cherry blossoms catching in my hair.

 

*

Note: Teperov’s poem relies on song titles from Utada Ikaru’s album, Fantôme. For more on this writing prompt, view this blog-post:
https://poemsforthewriting.com/2017/01/04/musical-echoes-1/

“Rats” by Devin Williams

Devin Williams

 

Rats

 

Nesting in abandoned burrows,
Coastal cliffs,

And caves.

I am present when food is abundant.
Companion of Daikoku,
Savior of Sesshu,

First sign of the zodiac.

I am the scavenger of the night,

Recycling human refuse.

I am ruler of the underland.

Symbol of success
And prosperity,

Industry, and intelligence.

A prisoner of science,

I give you self-knowledge

And awareness.

I listen

With my nearly-naked ears.
I learn
From watching and repeating.
I feel

With my body and my soul.

It is only language that separates us.

Yet, you avoid
And attack me.
You don’t know me,
How can you claim to know how I feel?

*

 

Note from Williams on the use of found material and research in this poem: While browsing the reference section of the library, I came across The Encyclopedia of Animal Symbolism in Art by Hope B. Werness.  I immediately turned to the page about one of my favorite animals, rats.  I was intrigued by the fact that rats represented so many different things in cultures around the world.  I knew I wanted to write a poem celebrating this often unappreciated and hated species for their intelligence and sentience.  So, I picked out the most empowering words and phrases from the book, and combined them with my own knowledge about rats, as well as facts I found in Wildlife of the Mid-Atlantic by John H. Rappole.

“Caught” by Jada Gossett

Jada Gossett

Caught

She finds herself wandering the after-school playground
on tall leaning metal twists of uncertainty,
starting a new life after what once was stable.
A single push of the memory of Dad packing his bags
gives her all the momentum to keep the
two-by-three arc of her turns:
an effort to keep her head on straight by making
Everything Else spin.

The slide keeps this six-year-old girl occupied,
swiveling between houses of outgrown love,
curving tightly into itself.
“Three-times-five is fifteen” she rotes in preparation
for a cruel test of aptitude forced on a kid
who can barely hold her pencil straight from the trauma
of a cycle where she only sees Dad on Saturdays.

On a different dawn she finds the merry-go-round,
her head much taller than the guarding bar now,
half of her stressing about a boy in class, and half
watching over brothers of a new family,
five and eight, tossing crunch golden leaves.
They don’t really need her there but the gap between
eight and thirteen justifies her presence in her mother’s eyes.

Thirteen through twenty-one years stretch beyond their time,
or at least that’s what the dissonance between
her mind, the dates on the calendar,
and her syllabi shouted out to the gaping darkness
of that same after-school playground.
She sprints a perfect arc in the dark looking for answers,
or an escape from the spiral where she got caught
between battles of two sets of families
that would never make one whole.