Feral daughters

Forgive me,
I gave up writing.
I thought I was a fool for loving it,
but I see now only fools abandon what is more real than the paper towers
of blowhard men.
You breathed into me a muse,
and I forsook the gift,
the sacred obligation
to feed that which was fed me.
I laid down and I let them
make concrete of my salt marshes
and chic purveyors
of the seedy alleys of my mind.
I didn’t know I let them,
but I let them
civilize me. Forgive me!
I was born feral,
born with no apology in my mouth –
a howling, uninhibited
was my first song
and shall be my last
godswillit.

Fettering my wild edges
quietly erasing a past that might lead me back to it,
slick as a mackerel
silent as an owl.
Don’t dare anyone call it an invisible hand,
nothing more deliberate was ever done
than wrest the wild-eyed naked daughters of my grandmother’s grandmothers
from the embrace of the thicket
and fence the commons,
conquer and divide,
divide and conquer.

Little did I know that the words which tumbled from me
were their whispers –
I knew they were not mine.
I believed them madness,
fantasy and folly,
when they failed to fill my belly or satisfy the clerk.
Forgive me grandmothers,
hedgewitches and druids,
faithkeepers and mythtellers
shining-eyed rune casters!
I misplaced my doubts,
I snagged the hem of my skirts on civilization
and became indebted to their mending.
I should have torn off my clothes
and plunged myself into a cleansing spring,
I knew better even,
I denied the deeper voice – it was a cacophony!
Forgive me!
I hear you now
growling,
yowling,
it rises in my chest,
and a woman bewitched, I leave the door half-open to stand blank as a snowdrift under the midnight sky
praying that I may know still how to answer.


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