A Lighter Shade of Grey

grey eyed girl


A lighter shade of grey her eyes were,

No quite solid steel, no exactly misty sea,

And under the ochre shadows of twilight

You could even mistake them for green.

But grey they were. With golden specs,

Like a dream weaving gleaming fetes

On the lashes of an awaken sage.

A lighter shade of grey her eyes were,

And on them all the possibilities of the world

Shone, like a stained-glass window

In a medieval church -all that she could be,

Could achieve, imprinted in the hues

Of her eyes, grey as a foggy morning hiding

Summer buttercups under its ethereal arms.

A lighter shade of grey her eyes were,

Looming a dimension not quite here nor there,

As if she could walk amid realms,

Time and space opening their gates for her,

For her own magnificence, for she was ready

To burst and light up the sky with the sheer strength

Of her one true self. A lighter shade of grey her eyes were,

As she dared to unmask at life’s shimmering masquerade,

Stamping with bare feet the

Status quo’s empty, wrecked shell,

Allowing her soul to absorb it all,

Transform it all into the template etched

In the light grey of her eyes, no quite metal,

no exactly bright, taking in the world and its might.

And she, of the lighter shade of grey eyes,

Claimed the globe as her own. And made it shine.

My Albatross





I hear it in the scream of the caged albatross,

Trapped within the caves that make up my heart:

The plea, the prayer, the demand.

An asking for open gates and swift

Air beneath the wings, a rising, up, high,

Unafraid, untamed, uncompromised,

The claim, inherent by blood and life,

To expand the wings and fly.

A right to dream, to hope, to dare.

To expect more out of every day,

Out of every rising sun, to wish –

No, to call for, so much more, than

The breadcrumbs I am supposed

To be satisfy with.

I was born to be free.

From the fears, from the threats,

From the monsters in my mind, the mean

Step-sisters living in the inside,

Burning me in the acid attack of their hate.

Now I know I was created for more.

I was born to dance all night,

To charter the stars,

Climb the mountains on my path,

Go down into the dark

Of the cave, mother of wisdom

And fright, holder of the mirror

Of who I am.

I was made for the laughter and the

the mirth, the lovingness and the caress.

To live life, deliciously.

In awe of all the potentiality

Within myself.

In greatness I was born,

To change with the moon,

To play with the sun…

Anything less than so is too

Small for me and the

Sovereignty of my life.

I have seen the truth.

I have left the fear behind.

I have stolen the key from my jailer

And crash open the cage wide.

The wings of my liberty, strong and big,

Unfold, unfurl, extend.

My albatross is set free.

And it soars to the edge of the universe.

Life and I



I’m going to walk it out,

The hurt, the ache,

The burdensome pain,

Eroding my bones away,

My soul, cracked into

A wasteland, parched,

Longing for a little rain,

A little hope, a little faith.

But right now there isn’t any.

On my hands and knees

I tremble, wondering if

I have it in me: another

Stand, another

Fight, another

Rise from the dark to

Confront the rage.

As I crawl on the floor

The answer is, I don’t know.

I hurt, hurt so much,

I want to roll into a ball

And just forget. I am not that strong.

But life doesn’t care.

It kicks and bites

And I feel as if I am about to die

And the last thing I will see

Will be the hate in its eyes,

And part of me refuses to accept that.

Life screams. It throws another blow.

And I realize I had enough.

That I will rise up,

Again and again,

I will do it until the end,

Whatever the end may be.

Life steps back as my knees straighten.

Its hand slaps, but I hold on.

It punches and I bend, but do not fall.

I rise up.

I walk the fear away.

Life smashes, breaks. I get up again.

It shakes, my heart’s bumping deafens

Me to its cries. It pushes. Up once

More I go. I rise up,

Rise up and up,

Repeatedly, once more, until my fear

Jumps to life’s eyes and it stops.


The world stops. The pain, the gore,

The terrified beating of my heart.

The horror, the terror.

Life staring, silent and cold.

And I rise up,

One last time.

My demons shattered and caged.

Life steps back and I

Walk it out,

The pain, the hurt, the chains

Now broken, coiling at my feet.

And I go, free at last.

Free at last to live.



Just For Today

woman drinking tea


Just for today  I will get up again,

Dust my knees once more.

I will forgive myself for

Breaking my essence like

A stamped-on shell,

Cracked to the core.

And for today I will clear my eyes.

I will believe in fairies and talking stars;

That I can make it; that I can fly.

That mercy is there for me,

Born from the depths of my heart,

Where I am loved, purely, as I am.

And just for today I will shine,

Shamelessly, joyfully, in

The night sky of my life.

And I’ll have dreams, high and might,

Where all possibilities already are,

And I need to prove nothing,

No excuses to validate my existence,

For I am worthy, today,

I deserve all and every good thing,

Today, I will love myself, today,

I will cherish every quirkiness of my soul

And rise, up, to a place of light

Deep within. And I will no anger, nor worry.

I will trust, bloom, flourish.

Just for today I will embrace myself.

Every day of all the days

Where there is a today, I

Will adore who I am.

That’s my commitment from now on.

Just for today.

When it comes to myself.

I will love, love and love.

And then rise.




I feel the sun rise in me, the long night slowly pushing back, fading, the storm clouds gathering, away from the moon. They will come back, I know, and so they should. There are many nights in the Night. Some are gateways to dreams and stars. Some are the meadows of mares and fears, and unbridled terrors of headless riders. They will come again, I know it. But today the sun is rising, my day is dawning and the light is softly touching land escapes in my soul I had forgotten; places I did not know existed; a sea, soothing, turning pink and yellow as the sun travels up the sky.

I feel no fear.

Not today.

Not at my dawn, at the awakening of my young coup bearer, Aurora, stretching placidly from her long slumber. I feel no fear, no rush. No need to prove, to fight, to win the battle, although I will win it, when the battle does come. Today is not a day of war -not in the world of my soul. Today is gentle and sweet, and I smile as when looking at a baby sleep. Today there is a sea, swaying softly, caressing the sand inside of me -the small sail boat gliding with joy; the kite floating effortlessly, painting rainbows with its tail. Today there are picnics between my bones and my flesh. A country fair and kids running, as they eat cotton candy. Today the wind is gentle, and it tenderly kisses me. It plays with the locks of my hair; makes my dress an ethereal dancer of life. Today I am a piano, being touched delicately, pianissimo, by a curious five-year-old. Today I breathe deeply and it is as if I could inhale the whole oxygen of the world, so big and deep am I. Inside. In the place of truth, where my night sleeps -dreams perhaps- and my day shines like a perfect summer day on the beach. Today I am happy.

Today I am free.





I rise,

From my knees, from my bondage,

I rise,

Tall and mighty,

I rise,

Like the lark in the morning,

The nightingale at night,

Singing my song.

I rise,

Poor, lonely or ugly,

I rise,

Oppressed, broken, destroyed,

I rise

And become the sun and the stars

And every flower that ever bloomed,

Bloomed first in my heart,

For I held on to my dreams when

The darkness kicked me, I

Held them tight.

And now I rise.

To a new day that has my name,

My face, my still timid smile.

My day.

And on this day I give out my hand

To you my sister, and tell you,

Let’s rise.

Tall and high.



Sentenced- Karem Barratt

So I must die young,

So young I fit in a cupped hand.

So young my eyes cannot understand the light,

For all I’ve known if the balmy, pinkish dark.

And I’m not good enough for a chance,

To prove myself, to rise, high,

And touch the stars forbade to me

Because I will not be born a man.

I am just dust, dirt, a girl.

No silken cot will welcome me,

No warm bosom, no soft breath

Over my head, as I stretch my hand

And tangle a lock of hair with my tiny fingers.

And I must be sacrificed to give

A boy a chance to take what is mine,

Denied by those who ought to love me

The most, because, no matter

How perfect I may be, I won’t grow to be

A man. So I am to die, young,

So young, mum, you could

Have cupped the whole of me in your hands.



Roar- Karem Barratt


Roar, oh child, born in the night

Of oppression and bondage.

Roar high, yelling out your pain,

As you wiggle and scar your

Wrists against the heavy chains,

Place upon you because of your gender,

A danger for some, so afraid of your

Greatness that they build boxes to lock

You in in, bend you in, break you in,

Make you small and twisted, half of what

You could be, so they can stand tall

And be no afraid of all you would be,

Had you been born free.

So roar, child, high and might,

And awaken the uncaring and the ignorant

And the fearful and the mad.

Give them no peace, no truce,

No quiet place where they can forget

The abuse of you. Embed yourself in their

Eyes, in their ears, in their mind, your

Roar demanding more than a passing nod,

A breaking of the endless night,

A dawn without chains where you

Are free to choose, to decide,

To fully embody the greatness of

Yourself with all your possibilities.


She- Karem Barratt


I am she,

Who screamed at the night,

Demanding justice for her blood,

Spilled by a knife,

Legs held by the mothers who

Were supposed to love her.

I am she,

Who held her baby tight,

As the bombs teared her world,

Walls falling down, her child

Of light, now the colour of earth.

I am she,

Looking at the boys passing by

On their way to school, laughter

And jokes echoing against her hut,

As she stays, alone, knowing she has been

Left, behind.

I am she.

Crying in the corner, silently,

The shadow of his fingers still

Hanging around her arms, she

Trying to drink her tears, telling

Herself lies, for no one would

Believe her.

I am she.

Alone, unfed, hurt, turned

Into a shade, heavy with burdens

Beyond my age. I am she, seeing

My young face reflected on the eyes

Of those who shriek a name, that is

Supposed to be mine, a name of colour

And religion and place.

I am she, licked by shameless sights,

Riding my body with slimy thoughts

As I sit on the train, just wanting to go home.

I am she, walking fast,

Afraid of lonely streets and half lit parks.

I am she, acting like a man, for

My femininity is a hindrance to my brain.

I am she, full of rage, betrayed,

By blood and kin. I am she. Hiding,

Escaping, fighting, defending, the bitch

Who dared to think, speak, hold a

Governmental sit. I am she, the cunt,

Valued and reduced to the V of

Flesh between my legs. I am she, the

ass and the breasts, the enforced virgin

And saint, the named whore, the menacing

Danger to the future of

Underprivileged boys, the demeaner

I am, the one who forgot her role,

The breaker of family and societies,

The bringer of the ills that have

Wane the greatness they

Once had, for daring to ask

For a little more.


I am Oliver Twist

Trapped forever in Nancy’s hide,

And it is okay that I die,

Twice a week, in the hands

Of my man.

It is fine that my purse is

Lighter, that I am punished

For daring to bloom

Into motherhood. Everything

Is alright, if I am shot

For wanting to go to school.

It is acceptable that I am

Attacked on line for

Expressing my mind.

I must expect threats

Of death and rape,

It comes with the game

Where I am to blame,

For my own subjugation,

For glass ceilings and

Violent bonds. After all,

I did wear the pink dress.

Painted my lips with gloss.

Drank a drink too much.

Defied tradition by loving

The wrong boy,

Spoke to soon, too fast, always

Rising my hand in class.

Believed the fairy tale

That human rights applied to me.

For I am she.

The mother, the sister,

The daughter, the friend.

The woman at the end of the lane,

Of the queue of causes that need

To be fought.

And I am irrational and selfish,

For not waiting for the proper time.

Ungrateful wench, showing no gratitude

For how far she is from where she came.

For I must lower my flame,

Not to blind the stars.

Be more like the firefly,

Humble and small.


But I want more.


I am she, all the “shes”, all the breasts

And wombs and legs and tongues and

Eyes and intellects and hands and feet

Of the She of the world.


And I am brewing a storm.



woman battered

He said he loved her as her flesh received the first hit,

The slap in her ears making the world ring

And shriek -or maybe it was her, screaming,

As he kicked, repeatedly, against her soft womb,

Her stomach, her spleen, her arms and legs, he kicked,

Whilst she screamed and swallowed the blood from

Her absent teeth, push out in one single blow from

His fist -the fist that loved her to death and was

About to prove it.