My No Is. (I Am Just Like Everyone Else)

My no is
both scythe and scalpel,
cutting away diseased and dead bits
to make room for healing and growth.

My no is a sign
showing where respect ends
and disrespect starts, saying, 
"Cross at your own risk."

My no is a test
designed to offend only those
who think anything less than 
my complete and uncomplaining compliance
challenges their self-worth.

My no is not the reason 
this bridge is burning.

You brought the matches and the gasoline
only after I said, "Stop."

Liner Notes for This Groove: For my birthday, I decided to gift myself with setting a boundary that was long overdue. A friend had been taking advantage of my generosity for years, demanding I do a time intensive task for him regularly. Very recently he acted in a way that was highly disrespectful and minimizing of the work I did. I decided to tell him that I could no longer do it, and encouraged him to find someone with more patience time. 

I'd like to say I was surprised his response was to play the victim and end the friendship, but I long suspected I was only valued for what I could do. There is however a wonderful sense of relief I'm relishing. As I said, this happened on my birthday. And I was with family and friends who affirmed what good relationships look like (LOL, I owe a few of them a call back). 

As for the boundary breaker, I wish him well and hope he finds enough emotional maturity to honestly deal with why so many of his relationships go south. But he's not my problem anymore. Oh well, more cake for those I care about and those who care about me. 



Some memories

are sharp enough to cut

off my breath,


leaving me


like a fish

who just wants

her ocean


Song Choice: Breaking Down by Florence + the Machine

Liner Notes for this Groove: I know I'm getting serious about a new writing project when I start writing poetry in the voices of my characters. Rina has a some serious inner demons to face (and several fae beings are just complicating the situation). But I'm deep into the super ugly rough first draft and enjoying getting to know her world.

This poem is linked to Poets and Storytellers United's Friday Writings prompt, Writing About Writing.

Grail Quest

I have made a vow
to be a knight, brave and true.
And now all my vows
compel me towards the grail.

I know there is no true healing
for some of the wounds I have taken.
There are things beyond
even the grail’s power.

But that was never the point.

The pain will not end
when I reach the grail.
But at least then I know
a new quest can begin.

I am a knight, brave and true,
seeking both my reflection
in the water of the grail

and remembrance
of all the adventures 
still left to find.

Liner Notes for this Groove: This poem is linked to Poets and Storytellers United's Friday Writings Prompt, Small Victories.