#ThrowbackThursday Poetry: I dream of wild strawberries

I dream of wild strawberries sprouting between the cracks of my dilapidated porch. Crawling on my hands and knees, I’ve regressed as this house; boarded windows, replace glass, cannot block the wind. The critters slip in at night, drawn to the dim light—a single lamp burns on my last paid electric bill. They settle in bed with me, finish eating the tattered sheets. It’s been days since the storm and still no relief, but I pry up the wood planks—splinters buried under fingernails. Fruit-shaped tear drops, the color of a summer sunset, red like the stop sign bent over backwards in overgrown grass. Seeds prick my tongue like taste buds; anticipation more satisfying than the bite. A sweetness that makes me forget the flood damage, the mosquitoes, the purple welts dotting my arms, the fever, the declined insurance claim, the spoiled milk and molded bread. A sweetness like Fourth of July cookouts, freshly mowed lawns, homemade ice cream melting on the spoon. A sweetness that reminds me of a lover’s kiss, saturates the mouth, explodes like a firework—as I sink in my teeth—and wake in darkness, cold, with drool on my chin.


Read the original, published October 17, 2017.

#BlaPoWriMo: I met this girl…

I met this girl–skin like polished mahogany, hair like lamb’s wool, lips like plush cushions–she ruined my philosophy of the mad black woman. It is not a frown on her face but a grimace as she holds the weight of every black man who has sat on her back like an ottoman pulled from under the table for guests to rest their feet, have a drink and discuss the politics of the world too sophisticated for a female’s mind, who should know her place in silence when company is around. My heart skips a beat when she finally stands–shows me how tall she really is.

—Nortina


Inspired by Marquessa’s Lyrical Fiction Friday prompt: …I met this girl…she ruined my philosophy…my heart skips a beat when she comes around…

Written for Black Poetry Writing Month (BlaPoWriMo). This year, we’re taking a journey through the different eras of black poetry and history. This week’s era is: Harlem Renaissance

I dream of wild strawberries

I dream of wild strawberries sprouting between the cracks of my dilapidated porch. Crawling on my hands and knees, I’ve regressed as this house; boarded windows replace glass, can’t block the wind, the critters from slipping in at night, drawn to the dim light—a single lamp burns on my last paid electric bill. They snuggle in bed with me, finish eating the tattered sheets. It’s been days since the storm and still no relief, but I pry up the wood planks, splinters buried under fingernails. Fruit shaped like teardrops, the color of a summer sunset, red like the stop sign bent over backwards in overgrown grass. Seeds prick my tongue like taste buds; anticipation more satisfying than the bite. A sweetness that makes me forget the flood damage, the mosquitoes, the purple welts along my arms, the fever, the declined insurance claim, the spoiled milk and molded bread. A sweetness like Fourth of July cookouts, freshly mowed lawns, homemade ice-cream nearly melted on the spoon. A sweetness that saturates the mouth, reminds me of a lover’s kiss, tasting my own balm on his lips, transferred to the back of my throat for me to swallow—until I sink my teeth and wake in darkness, cold, with drool on my chin.

—Nortina

#ThrowbackThursday Poetry: October Thin

Happy Throwback Thursday! I originally published this poem on July 31, 2015, looking forward to a skinny October. Well, two years later, and I’m still trying to lose those pesky pounds. I recently told my best friend I wanted to be Aaliyah for Halloween. So . . . *clears throat* . . . it’s time to get to work!

October Thin

I want to lose at least thirty pounds by October.
Odd month to set a weight loss goal, I know.
No one aims to have their bodies bikini ready
by October. The water’s cold by then. The beaches
empty. No one’s there to see your smooth wax,
your carved abs, your lifted ass. There’s no use
in being scandalous under the water, pulling off your
bottoms, brushing up against a fellow swimmer, spreading
your legs and peeing in the waist deep ocean where the kids
boogie board. It’s hurricane season. Those rip currents
will snatch those bottoms right out of your hand,
pull you under with them. No, October’s the wrong month
to get skinny. But it’s possible there’s a skimpy Halloween costume—
equipped with fairy wings, a tutu, a lace bodice and pushup bra—
waiting for my newly thin body when the clock strikes midnight October 31st.

—Nortina

SoCS: Rekindling a Forgotten Friendship

We were friends before I fell in love with him, and just in case you are curling your lips to accuse me of being a home-wrecker, I am only sitting in this dimly lit restaurant to rekindle our friendship. But as I wait, the warm, complimentary bread grows cold and hard, the Sprite I ordered for him flat, the ice cubes nearly melted into water. I wave for the waiter to bring my bill, and he guides a woman I’ve never met into the seat across from me, her large breasts sitting atop her protruding, round belly, perfectly visible in the form-fitting, black dress she is wearing. She places her left hand on the edge of the table, and the gold band on her ring finger tells me who she is, the side smirk on her face tells me he is not coming, and the drumming of her fingers on the wood tells me this impromptu reunion is over.

—Nortina


This prose poem is part of Stream of Consciousness Saturday and Love Is In Da Blog. This weeks prompt: acquaint and/or friend. I’ve been missing the prompts for Love Is In Da Blog in this last week, but I’m glad I caught this one!

wp_20150130_009

socs-badge

 

 

 

 

 

 

Featured Image: http://www.personalitytutor.com/dinner-table-setting.html