Temporary warmth

We’re walking on different sides of a sunlit street

The rain has ceased, everything glistens with temporary warmth

We are no longer the children of coal and sinking crafts

Who plucked our fear from our teeth like stray pieces of meat

In undigested land devoid of dental floss

I swam once

The entire length of a pool holding my breath underwater

The teachers eyes bulging, as he asked me why I didn’t drown

I could have told him, drowning wasn’t the worst fate

Nothing to lose with eyes closed, pushing against surly weight of water

Antiseptic smell in my nostrils and your voice

Catching with laughter like much played vinyl

We hung from tree limbs to forget the welt of sad places

Drifting in sunlight as long as we could, before shadows criss-crossed satsuma sun

I could have said; when you’ve nothing to lose

It’s easier to give your all

Even as you drown on dry land

But adults never understood us then, with our suitcases of pain and secrets

They stapled confessions together and told us

Don’t make up wicked lies

Sent us home, without pebbles in our pockets

To mark the way back to before we spoke

Out.

That is why

Diving deep

I would talk to you as we

Held our mutual spearmint breath

Swam fierce, then languid, until numb

Through unyielding padlocked worlds

So similar to all we knew

Save those brief moments skipping class

With the glory of a starting over day, all her unabashed radiance

Even nightmares could be beautiful

Braid their hair with pink skirted daisies

On days like those

Rebirth – Megha Sood

“A scar does not form on the dying. A scar means, I survived.”
― Chris Cleave, Little Bee

gaston-roulstone-441678-unsplash.jpg

You plucked my wings

feather by feather

pulled it out in pieces

from the blades of my shoulder

You can bloody me all you want

shred me into pieces

and rip them into halves

for everyone to see it.

Your hands sanguine with my

seraphic blood

your soul

deeply encumbered.

But you can’t douse the

eternal flame in me

the one which is burning

and giving me the intensity

the light of my being

my aura,

my personality

these wounds will heal

and scars will be formed

that is how the life sustains

that is how life is born.

Photo by Gaston Roulstone on Unsplash

Last Call to Submit Writing and/or Art for “We Will Not Be Silenced” Anthology

Midnight, Monday 15th October is the deadline for submitting art/writing/poetry, this is an important, very timely project at a critical stage in history, your voices need to be heard!

Bruised But Not Broken, Whisper and the Roar, Indie Blu(e), and Blood Into Ink are joining forces to publish an anthology about the lived experience of sexual harassment and assault. We believe that it is more important than ever before that more voices speak out and reclaim their strength by owning their survival stories. All contributors, female and male, can submit up to three pieces of creative work- these can include; Poetry, Prose, Essay, Short Fiction, Prose, or original Artwork, but should be limited in length (under 1,000 words) considering that this is an anthology. You will be notified if your work is accepted. Please do not consider nonacceptance as any diminishment of your experience, but as with any publishing venture, we must try to fit the individual pieces together into a strong whole.

  • Submission of previously published pieces is acceptable if you still own the rights to your work.
  • Artwork can be submitted in black and white OR color but all artwork should be black and white compatible.
  • Using a pen name or publishing anonymously is acceptable.
  • All submissions should be sent to bloodintoink2017@gmail.com by midnight, Monday, October 15, 2018.

Writers and artists will retain the publishing rights to their individual submitted pieces. Indie Blu(e) will retain the rights to the collection We Will Not Be Silenced.

Pieces accepted for the Anthology may be used in whole or in part to promote the Anthology. All writers and artists will be appropriately credited in all promotional materials.

Should the royalties from sales of the Anthology exceed the costs of publishing and promoting the Collection, 70% of the royalties above these costs will be donated to organizations that support survivors of sexual harassment and sexual assault.

 

Good girls wish to matter – Candice Louisa Daquin

Good girls

Don’t masturbate

They don’t politely rub themselves for hours

In the steam of locked bathrooms

Where no one can hear their need

Good girls

Sit cross-legged, thighs touching, wondering why

They feel bereft

Reminded that sex and its pleasures

Still considered a sin of sorts

When in doubt show comportment

Good girls don’t

Cut themselves and hide the blood

They don’t scream behind crimson closed doors

Chop off their hair

They don’t lose their shit in public and get asked

Are you okay? / Or worse … / Walked past

Good girls hold themselves together with stick pins

and butterfly wings, egg shells and lost names

tar and soot, the remainder of hope chest

stuffing leaking out like snow in 80 degrees

Even as their feathered heart and roiling ocean is fit to burst

Good girls starve the fat bits and cook them slow

God knows know how to please others

Even as they climb further down the hole

And I would say

If you are in need of feasting

Feast on me

There’s white meat and brown

Though dried up and dessicated, none the less

They invite the stranger to sup at table

Though my teeth are small and I whistle in my sleep

Good girls wish to matter to someone

And if they do not

They climb inside a foreign language

Speaking upside down in glue

Let me lap up

This spoilt milk and curdled cream

Good girls may not have been

Tenderized as well as beaten veal

Their warrior hearts may defy the need

To bow and scrape and lose identity

In rush of elbows, knees and worldly zeal

They may

Save their patchwork daughters

They may turn and talk to you on a bus

As it rushes through the traffic like a book of poetry

They may touch your arm and ask

Do you feel as I?

Would you wish to cry?

And hold it in a blue dropper

Waiting for a quiet moment to pour out

Disguise the truth of thinly held together madness?

Good girls may be caught

In-flagranti and rolled over iron bed frame

In contorted pose of acrobats anquish

Many will say afterward

What happened to her? She seemed so well behaved

Before she became a whore.slut.fool.puta.cunt

Good girls may shout

From their confines in grimy mental ward

Behind glass only appear to mouth

Words of female repression and horror

For as a man will take his wont

A women doing the same, is twice judged

By her sisters and herself

Learned behavior owned by masters

Who seek to extricate her voice

The touch of a wave as it crests

Furiously over those barriers we believe

Protect us from harm

She is despite this, a creature of the sea

When they eventually tire of her

She finds salty pathway and is reabsorbed

Good girls are black pearls

They are made by rolling in worldly grit

Until they glow dark beneath the storm

Healing-Megha Sood

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My bloated thoughts

in my withered body

swimming

through the turbid emotions

unperturbed

unmoved

un-oscillating

dead and stale

lying motionless

in the stench of the old memories

I sit and sip time

my haggard face

and the crestfallen soul

carries those

inundated tales of pain

through the thin stale air in the room

carrying the silvery dust

through that sliver of sunshine

and the Brownian dance

which tangles in my thoughts and

titillate my senses

Till I choke

and purge

regurgitate

on my welting soul

and wait for

one more

day of

the silvery moonlight

to heal those

scars.

Photo by _Javarts_ on Unsplash

Malevolent Melody: a collaborative piece by the curators of Blood Into Ink

 

(Aurora Phoenix)

Your Urgency Pierced My Marrow

with vanilla milquetoast

pleadings

you spun a web

the envy of Arachne

smeared in syrupy cajolery –

I supped on hand-dipped flattery

your urgency pierced my marrow with flim flam

(Kindra)

Dilly Dalliance Bound Me

Lavender dipped

indulgent tongue

dripped incantations,

salacious songs—

your abuse was tender

dilly dalliance bound me with feathers

(Sarah)

The Honey You Gave

Those words were sweet as honey and I drank them down like they were all for me. I fell for each one. But slowly, beneath my rose-covered eyes, they soured.

And, piece by piece, you took all you wanted from me.

(My Valiant Soul)

Your Hands Are Stiff Wire

Cinnamon sticks plummeting

screeching lullaby with love and hunger,

A spasm spews on the back of an ant

The circle of disgust and disgust

My legs are broken, my arms are missing

yellow stingy archaic cry

Ruffling touch,

You disappear like a swollen pollen grain

As I chop my hair, chop the hideous you.

(1WiseWoman)

Lies and Propaganda

Anything goes, according to your arrogant agenda

Gaslight fueled, devotion fooled

Poisonous thirst for possession

And domination obsession

Believing exemption from

Sugar coated sin

As long as you win

Sticks and stones broke my bones, your lies and propaganda broke my spirit

(Christine)

No Longer Your Canvas

I throw out the bouquet of violets, saliva, red roses

you lay in empty contrition on our sheets of white linen

where I nurse the most recent bruises you have drawn with your fists

once you are gone, I adorn myself in essential oils

bittersweet for truth

thyme for strength

rosemary for remembrance

though my left eye may be swollen shut

I have never seen more clearly

than I do as I walk out the door, hidden suitcases in hand

I will no longer be the canvas for your unholy rage

(image: DeviantArt)

Tongue Tied-Megha Sood

kat-j-525332

I’m at a complete loss of
words
tongue-tied
unable to speak
as if I born into a foreign land
with no way to converse

I’m at a complete loss for words
with my mind unable to grasp
anything
can take a handle
at the verity of things
being uttered

My words are being twisted
misconstrued and remolded to
take a new shape and form
falling off the tip of my tongue
but unable to be reborn

My mind
a cauldron of
my thoughts and desires
where all the syllables
are simmering
on the fire

Yet here I’m
in a prison
of my own making
locked inside the cage
gulping and choking

These vivid dreams of my ashen mind
are getting born and dying
an untimely death
my inundate tales
of pain and love
are being long
forgotten

As I’m trying to give shelter
to these unborn voices
conjure up in my thoughts
to make them pure 

I’m fighting
until the end
to be heard
screaming
and skinned alive
to create a stir
scraping and
clutching the insides
of my throat
to be heard
Little did I know I’m born
in a land of living dead.

Photo by Kat J on Unsplash