Saturday, April 21, 2012

"Awake" and Other Poems

by Shawnte Posley

Photo by Worradmu
I’m being lifted.
Strong hands haul me like a sack of potatoes.
I’m taken from where I was to another strange place.
I am on a mattress.
It is wet and I can feel the floor beneath it.
Thick chains wrap around my ankles and wrists.
I am tied down.
The smell …
Urine, feces.
I don’t like it here.
Heavy breathing to my left.
I am not alone.
My mind is blank as if my memory has been erased but I don’t like this place.
I want to leave.
I want to wake up.
This is a nightmare.
I open my eyes and blink into darkness.
I am terrified.
I’ve been awake the entire time.

My biggest fear was drowning.
And yet I love water.
I always thought something might happen,
But I wasn’t concerned.
The day I died was interesting.
The ocean is what took me.
I swam out, neck deep.
I played, jumped in the waves.
The tide picked up; wrapped around me like barbed wire and caught me.
I panicked.
I thrashed.
It swept me out to sea like the dust my mama used to sweep off the porch.
I stopped.
“The water has taken me; I can’t fight it.”
And so I floated away.
I thought it would be terrible,
Surprisingly it didn’t hurt.
I could hear people screaming as the water filled my lungs.
I felt myself sinking lower and lower,
Into the darkness.
A fish swam past the last visible ray of light.
I blacked out.

She Does
Around and around it goes.
The curl wraps perfectly around.
It was made for this.
Absentmindedly she stares,
At the clouds.
Pop. Pop. Pop.
Her gum.
Crushing between her teeth like a car being smashed at a junkyard.
As she stares,
She twirls.
And twirls, and twirls, and twirls.
Her index slides to the bottom,
But her middle is right there to catch it again.
Quickly climbing back up,
Regaining the curl.
And she sits.
And she stares.
And she pops.
And she twirls.
Around and around it goes.

Nothing more than I piece of garbage.
I am picked out of a stack.
USED, to clean up spills.
USED, to wipe the mouths of filthy little kids.
USED, to wipe the floor after that same, FILTHY kid throws the remains of their food down.
And now I am trash.
No longer worthy, no longer white.
Stained, permanently.
Sometimes ripped.
And then I feel It.
I am being crumbled into a ball,
And I fly.
I fly from the hand of a disgusting human,
Straight into the cesspool of the garbage receptacle.
And now I am garbage.
Nothing but.
USED, garbage.


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