"I am hearing poetry when awake, dreaming poetry when asleep, breathing poetry with each breath, I am living in a poem."

Sunday, November 29, 2015

A Waiting Divide

now Now NOw NOW

Patience is a test
the eye on the
clock hand fails.

There is so much
hurry in waiting.

A diagnosis
stands on the edge
of a cliff watching
tears erode tomorrow
while selfish flips
through a magazine
and grumbles about
minutes collecting
on a parking meter.

A stone wall divides
patients by hours

©Susie Clevenger 2015

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Friday, November 27, 2015

Beyond Rattlebone Jumpy

Fear makes me
rattlebone jumpy
peeking at shadows
where questions huddle,
but dread pushes
me to face the music
when I hate the song.

Recently I spent hours collecting
sour notes to string with excuses
until I was devil decorated
and short breathed with half truths.

Some like to say they have
a slip of the tongue.
Not me…I walked a
word right across my lips
spouting “bitch” like I owned
the trademark on it.

Oh, the lady never heard it.
I made an eye judgment;
translated it into snarky
with just enough volume
to keep it close to my hip.

It didn’t take ten minutes
for her to prove me wrong.
She offered a smile and friendship
that left my conscience slapping
my brain around in my skull.

No, the woman didn’t hear it.
I spun “bitch” across the table
into the ears of my husband and friend.
Mean is mean no matter how short the dance,
so here I am with dread demanding payment.

Confession won’t erase I was an ass.
Sorry digs in the wound to see
if truth is ready to thread the needle.

©Susie Clevenger 2015

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Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Comb Over

You attract
more haters
with bull shit.

Lies and flies
enjoy a politician’s
picnic with the
same fervor.

A comb over tweets
from the bottom rung.
It doesn’t take much
height to reach bigotry.

There's not enough green
in a deep pocket to buy integrity.

©Susie Clevenger 2015


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Saturday, November 21, 2015

Carving Wishes

The stars are there, faithful, quiet, watching.
They hold the seeds of a thousand wishes
I've planted with fingertips reaching for dreams.

Tonight I carve another wish into midnight
at the fork of anger and forgiveness.

I am not ready to forgive the boot marks
left by a preacher high on drugs and lies
so direct my outrage into words of change.

This grief is cheap whiskey and I drink the swill
until drunk vocabulary batters my brain with
speech I won’t utter, but the belly burn of bile
is getting harder and harder to swallow.

I’m tossing up a wish for inner peace, a smile
not hiding pain, and an end to my hypocrite’s war
stoning forgiveness.

I’m weary of being judged because I no longer
pay my dues into the till of the righteous crock.

©Susie Clevenger 2015

I call writing poetry my pencil therapy. I have been dealing with something
painful for years. For the most part I have kept it in its cage, but lately the
banging at the cell bars is getting louder. I won't divulge details because
it is too personal and many fall within its net. I've forgiven a lot of things.
I'm afraid this has a lot more miles to go before I reach forgiveness.

Real Toads ~ The Heart's Desire

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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

A Beggar's Cup

Heart speak to me
not of romance, but love.

Two paths to Armageddon
converge at the bullet point
that promises the rose blush
of heaven lies in the ankle
depth of carnage.

I want to rise above
the thumbprint of inhumanity.

The wrinkled veins of ancient texts
tout God held the editor’s hand,
but if so why can’t God hold back
hands eager for war?

The protests of absolutes damns
kindness because it isn't enough
to unlock doctrine's gate.

Peace break down the stones
on my tongue I yearn to toss
into the river of dissension.

I approach the well of love
with a beggar’s cup.
Let me drink from the water
until hate is flushed from my truth.

©Susie Clevenger 2015

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Monday, November 16, 2015

Welcome to My Tilt-A-Whirl

Image ~ Karin Gustafson 

I don’t remember…It’s a plague
following me from room to room.

I have the attention span of a
four- year- old chocolate stuffed
and Kool-Aid drunk.

I have no grand excuses
of putting out fires,
burning floor space
to accomplish goals.

I see what needs to go there
while here is a mess.
I wander there finding here
is not the there I was supposed to be.

Sticky notes are my preferred wallpaper.
They are multi-colored ink smudges
penned with good intentions
only to end as funeral bouquets
for mental lapses.

I don’t remember.
I am fidgety,
easily distracted,
dive into hyper focus,
forget to eat,
lose time,
have outbursts
of giggles or anger.

Hello, my name is Susie, and I have A.D.D.
(Attention Deficit Disorder).
Welcome to my Tilt-A-Whirl. 

©Susie Clevenger 2015

Real Toads ~ Blocking Writer's Block

I couldn't write about the horrific events that have occurred over the past week in a world gone mad. I am too numb to even approach it at this time. 

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Thursday, November 12, 2015

Starlight Eyes Are Blind

I am supposed
to carry a ring
that will shape-shift
me into a shadow.

Two little girls
who vowed nothing
could separate them
are now two women
divided by a veil.

Her soon to be husband
smiles with liar’s teeth,
and drips honey from
a wolf’s tongue.

I spoke truth to her,
but starlight eyes are blind.
The choice is a stone
with the weight of gold.

How can I watch her leap
when it will be my heart
that can’t bear the fall?

 ©Susie Clevenger 2015

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Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Skull Song

My last days were melted wax lips and roses.
Eyes swam in water pools around my head
until goodbyes drowned at my feet.

I always dreamed of pretty boxes
where secrets slept on satin whispers,
but in this wooden box the only sound
I hear is the skull song of flies.

Life is moments written on
the hyphen between birth and death.
The ink wasn’t even dry when
my ending was chiseled in granite.

If I could reach through six feet of clay,
I would dance with the bright colors
November places upon my breast.

©Susie Clevenger 2015

This poem appeared in Yellow Chair Review's  Horror Issue, October 2015.

Real Toads ~ The Tuesday Platform
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Monday, November 9, 2015


One day… Just one day
of pouring ourselves
into a coffee cup
and tasting the grounds
was more than enough
to show me your toothbrush
didn’t match the shower curtain
or my first impression.

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Friday, November 6, 2015

Bonfire of Mirrors

We borrowed light
from a candle and
stole awe from the moon
to illuminate humility
on the night vanity died.

Self images tossed
on a bonfire of mirrors
burned misconception
from the blind spots of truth.

We raked the ash
of narcissism’s woe
until yes smothered
every regret.

Imperfect rose
on phoenix wings
as we sang in the
newborn tongue
of flaws.

©Susie Clevenger 2015

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Monday, November 2, 2015

Disciple of Autumn

When death demands its due
let me die as the death of autumn.
She doesn’t go quietly or dimly.
The north wind tears at her limbs,
but she bends without breaking.

With glory stolen from the sun
she drops leaves of red and gold
on shorter days gathered on her doorstep.

She is harvest, thanksgiving, the comforter
to spirits walking the valley of mortality.

I want to be a disciple of autumn,
spread her gospel of riotous dying.
My flesh one day will succumb
to the reaper, but my spirit will join
the soil of another soul’s evolution.

©Susie Clevenger 2015

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