Tag Archives: alaska

To Women

I’ve spent longer watching myself smile in the mirror than I’ve spent laughing with friends.

Has your mother accused you of scratching yourself because of the stretch marks on your breasts?

To the women who wipe it away with alcohol. I understand. I’m here if you need me.

Don’t qualify your statements when you speak. You’ve a right to be heard. Have something worth saying. I want to hear it.

To the women I’ve let down. I’m sorry. Tell me please, so I can get better.

Who fall in love with the cashier at Dunkin’ Donuts because he has a sexy voice and he kept my extra penny.

I’ve never seen a healthy relationship. What would I expect from my own?

Who have tried to turn over one-sided mattresses by themselves.

Who have hair on their bellies longer than the hair on their legs.

Who have used the same pair of panties, with a different pad the next day.

If you can’t eat goldfish without eating the whole bag.
Welcome. I have snacks.

Who have been the victims of sexual assault.
Domestic violence rates are nearly one in three.
Do you know three women?
You don’t have to move on with your life if you don’t want to.

If you’ve got in your car and never left.

Sing all the words to Dylan’s “It Ain’t Me Babe” if you haven’t had a hair cut in a year and a half. Light a big yankee candle, turn off the lights, put your crystal necklaces in a semi-circle and pray to the gods that Robin McKinley will write a sequel to “Sunshine.”

If you’ve never sent anyone a nude photo, you don’t have to be beautiful to be human. I hate my feet too. The only thing yoga helps with is passing gas. My thighs certainly aren’t thinner.

I’ve over-thought a two-second conversation because it was the last time I’ve spoken with anyone all day. My socks never match either. I like that it drives other people nuts.

To those who wear the blood of a crushed mosquito on their skin like war paint. Come hike with me.

To the woman who can’t find an entry-level job that pays a living wage and has snaggle tooths.
You are good enough.

Who read romance novels into the morning to self-sabotage their big day.

To the women who won’t give up control.
Don’t apologize.

To the women who are actually able to tell their accidental, fingering-on-the-couch date that, no they haven’t found the clitoris.
Can you tell me how you did it?

Who have scrapes from going skinny-dipping in the rocky Pacific at midnight in thirty-degree weather. Don’t ever start showering every day.

Who have to remind themselves that friends can have other friends, and they won’t leave you.

To the women who have gone to bookstores so they can tell this day from the last.

To the women who have changed in the backseat of the car because you needed to. I bet you can also take off your bra without removing your shirt.

To the women who wait for a text.
Who don’t want to be needy.
Who try to call out sexism.
Who have to live with someone they don’t love.
Jason Momoa is in your google images search history.

If you don’t have anyone to talk to, talk to me.

To the women who have cried for no reason at all and can’t stop themselves, and get mad at yourself because really, you’re old enough, what is wrong with you, why can’t you do anything right?

To my quiet women, who can’t tell someone how they feel. Try listening to Cat Stevens.

To the women who have stood up to their mothers. Did you hands shake too?

Can you tell a guy to shut up? Have you figured out how to be interested in his hobbies?

To the women up north who wear xtratufs, toting shotguns and dead moose. You’re heroes. Tell your Alaskan sons to stop raping women.

To my aunt who took me in when I hadn’t lived outside a village in too long and I was weird.

To the woman who was nice to me in Sitka. Who didn’t need to be. Who talked to me like I mattered. You don’t know how much I wish I could be friends with you.

To my sister who didn’t have that affair. I will never judge you for your sexuality or promiscuity. I will be there if you leave him. I will send you secret condoms.

To my mother who tries so hard.

To Kelly who doesn’t see how wonderful she is. You are beautiful in and of yourself. If you find someone to love you, great. If you don’t, you will always be the best of humanity.

I wish I knew all the women I accidentally hurt, who think about me as often as I think of the high-school girls who hurt my feelings. I want to fix it.

To the women who have picked at the dirt stuck at the corner of their toenails, who aren’t sure if they can make it on their own, who look down when they walk, who don’t laugh too loud because they’re not sure they have a right to be alive, who are trapped, who are scared, who are destined for greatness, who have a well-worn t-shirt of a college bar logo and a mug of beer.
You are my favorite.

You will be better than your mother, because someone loves you. I love you.

I love you as you are. I love you. I mean it.

I love you. I love you. I love you. Stop hurting the people I love.

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Leaving South

i left alaska. i’m back with my mom.

She drove and gave me another hug.
She gave me a hug twice.
And told me she has a lot of friends, but not a lot of good friends.
And I got on the boat.
And watched it pull away from the dock.
And as we left the rolling hills and pine trees of the pacific northwest,
Driving through the fog dusted mountains on 90,
I kept thinking, turn around, I’m going the wrong way,
This isn’t right.
But I left all the same.
And I cried by myself in the midship deck that used to be a bar,
Crashed on the curved blue couch in the back,
With everything I possesed right there.
Now I have to go to yoga, and move all my stuff out of storage,
And find a job,
And fix my car registration,
And file my taxes
And figure out what the hell to do about my friends and these people I seem to have acquired.
When I just want to hide.
And I want quiet.
And they didn’t give me whipped cream on my smoothie.

I got to Seattle,
And I said the trees don’t look right,
These aren’t my trees.
This isn’t the Tongass.
I want my forest back.
With all its scars and its danger.
It didn’t care that I was this thing,
It didn’t give me a second glance,
But kept going with it’s own life,
I can respect that.

I miss the salmon strips and chips car rides.
Riding out the road with loud music playing,
And one of us sitting in the middle back seat with their arms on the passenger rests
Eating smoked fish with our fingers, skin and all,
And passing around a bag of sunchips,
Talking with our mouths full,
About how much we loved each other.

I remember driving down killer hill at one of the 3 p.m. sunsets
And the world filled with orange,
I thought, it’s almost worth it.
To pay eight dollars a gallon for milk,
And not be able to buy fresh meat at the store.
To know none of these kids stand a chance.
I left on the ferry, going nowhere, back to my mother’s house,
I watched the new terminal pass behind the boat,
Until I couldn’t see the light,
Standing out there with only the die-hard smokers in the cold,
In the jacket I was wearing when we got stuck out the road.
I stood there undecided.

I don’t want my life, my year up north to be some memory I use,
I won’t expose those people, who were good to me,
I wouldn’t do that.
I want it to keep growing, I don’t wan to lose them.
But I didn’t want to stay by myself. I couldn’t.

Poems from My Day (2-21-17)

hello again. it’s been a bad couple of weeks

1:
I apologize too much.
She told me, quit saying, “I’m sorry.”
I don’t have a problem with my apologizing.
Leave me the hell alone.
What have self-confidence-less people ever done,
But hurt themselves.
It seems to me, the people sure of themselves are the ones
Who never think they need to listen and learn.

2:
I fall under something called the Hatch Act.
It means while I’m seen as doing my job,
I can’t say anything political.
In all honesty, it’s a little bit of a relief,
To have an excuse,
When someone asks about my politics,
But, at the same time,
I want to civilly disobey that, and speak my mind, because I was told not to.

3:
Oh god so much has happened.
I can’t bring myself to write about it.
My support systems collapsed.
And I needed people,
I felt like I was being emotionally manipulative,
But I couldn’t spare the mentally energy to check my filters,
See if they were clearing the air before I spoke it.
And I felt abandoned.

4:
I had a day when I felt vulnerable.
A half-hearted breeze could have whipped me.
On those days, I want to hide,
But then the day is over,
The feeling isn’t,
And I have to go into work like normal.

5:
I needed to talk to my mother yesterday,
She called me today.
She told me how to live my life,
Her prophecies for the future,
And, really, what she knows to be true.
Then she told me her “stories”
I was so mad from the first section,
I didn’t bother with the minor sexism, and that little bit of racism that came
with her helping the poor, new african family from church.

6:
My step-father is thirty thousand in debt.
That’s more than I make in two years.
I try so hard to only spend thirty dollars a week on groceries,
I don’t get to buy ice cream. I only buy half a gallon of milk.
It’s not fair.
That’s all I want to say.

7:
She asked me if I thought game night last night would be more fun with men.
I said I was the wrong person to ask,
I don’t really like people.
She can’t process that other people work differently than she does.
I’m not sure why she’s a teacher,
If she doesn’t have the patience to understand,
That her normal isn’t my normal.
I learned that the first week of college,
After living with a woman who folded her dirty clothes.

8:
Officially,
I got searched and rescued.
Really,
Her dad came to pick us up in his truck.
And they called it in so they could get mileage reimbursement.

9:
I was the slowest when we were walking
Walking the miles to get cell phone service,
And they called me a little bitch for it.
I can only offer excuses.
I suppose I am, then.
I can show you my bloody, snowy socks.
I can’t make you feel my nausea that whole night,
Or the pressure of my sinuses with my cold medicine,
Or the three-day long insomnia battle that scrambled my brain.
My hips that ached because I didn’t wear my inserts.
I am, in most cases, an introvert,
I need planning time before I can be okay in a crisis.
And I was useless when we got stranded, because it had never happened before.
I can only apologize for not being better.
But god it hurts when they mock a weakness,
It’s why I’m quiet in the first place.
Maybe they would’ve handled my body better,
But there’s no way to tell.