Catching Myself, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

Catching Myself

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

 

Lately I have been thinking

When I was young I would

Buy butterfly nets, or make them,

And then go chasing after those delicate,

Powder-winged beings.

I swooped my net down,

Across, zig zag—anything to

Snatch a butterfly in midflight,

And when I captured one,

As gently as I could, I removed it

From the net, held it cupped in my hands,

Felt it tickling my palms

With fear-filled wings,

Examined its face, legs, and abdomen—

Resisting the traumatized impulse

To dog-ear its wings,

And then I would let it go

Like I was offering it to the world,

Like I was doing something kind,

Like I had every right to disturb

The life and heartbeat of these most

Cosmological beings, and then,

I would look at my hands

And see stains of pigment

Smudged on my palms—

It made me feel guilty,

It made me feel cruel,

And it made me feel like,

Just once, I had some form

Of beauty glittering inside me

as I fluttered into the waiting, stormy sky.

 

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Sitting With Sadness, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

Sitting with Sadness

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

Time slows like it does on long summer afternoons,

You smell the scent of rain even though there is a cloudless sky,

You get up to go about your day and sadness follows you like a moveable river,

You resist impulses to drown out her sobbing with food, sex, spending—

You feel her rocking back and forth in your heart causing you to do the same in your chair,

Trees whisper windy syllables through the curtains and gently tousles your hair,

Bees hover around your house making sure you understand sadness brings gifts of honey,

Cicada song drones through the sky in waves and settles into the hollow places deep in your bones,

A terrible longing–timeless and holy, lives in her tears and touches yours,

And when she decides to leave, she assures you she will return,

And if you are able, you will sit with her again as she weeps around the roots of your being.

 

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However, It Is, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

However, It Is

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

However it is trees really come about, however it is

The moon inhales and exhales, however it is

Raven feathers hold rainbows in their barbs, however it is

We have school yards full of children inside us,

However it is we grow, pouring cells into the world of form

Rising and falling, however it is, the soul is ever thirsty

With oceans living there, however it is birdsong

Follows us wherever we go, however it is we love,

Rising and falling, however it is we dream, however

It is we remember our dreams, however

It is we are immersed in sky, like fish in water, however

It is flowers are so wonderfully geometric, however

It is the earth spins like a whirling dervish, however

It is we search for ourselves in one another, however

It is we kill in God’s name, however

It is we still pray, however

It is, however, it is; however,

It is.

 

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Child of Sadness, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

Child of Sadness

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

 

She came to me in silence,

Stepping from a shroud of light,

I saw her coming from a long distance away,

And stood as still as I could.

When she reached me

And looked at me with tear-filled eyes,

I offered her my hand and she took it,

And we sat in the field

For long summer hours as she wept without ceasing,

Dragonflies and bees and dandelion seeds

Floated around us like dreams.

We sat there in the field—

Her sobbing from a river of sadness,

Me bearing witness to her pain.

And this time, never once trying

To take away her suffering.  This time,

Surrounded by the gentle hum of angel wings,

This time honoring who she was,

I listened, wide eyed, and heart open,

As she filled my soul with tears.

 

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Thank you for your support.  All donations go to medical expenses and groceries.


Where Are You Going?, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

Where Are You Going?

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

Sometimes, while driving,

I’m thinking:  All those other drivers–

Where did they get into their cars?

Was it at a grocery store?

Was it in their driveway?

Was it at a rest stop?

Was it at a church, mosque, synagogue, temple?

Was it at a twelve-step meeting?

Was it at a restaurant?

Was it at a hospital?

Was it at a funeral?

Was it at home after a huge fight with a loved-one?

Was it at a hike?

Was it at a corporate brass meeting?

Was it at the side of the road after changing a tire?

Was it at a pet store?

Was it at the midwife’s?

Was it at a meeting of the KKK?

Was it at a book club?

Was it at a bookstore?

Was it after a surprise birthday party?

Was it at school?

Was it at a soccer game?

Was it at the laundry mat?

Was it at a blind date?

Was it at a wedding?

Was it after having an affair?

Was it at the police station?

Or after a doctor’s appointment?

Or after going to a food-bank?

Or after visiting a relative with Alzheimer’s?

Or after going to a porn shop?

You get the idea.

My mind asks these types of questions,

And somehow I am still able to concentrate on driving.

Of course, these questions beg another:

Where are they all going?

Where will they step out of their car

And shut the door?

Will it be at a grocery store?

Will it be in their driveway?

Will it be at a rest stop?

Will it be at a church, mosque, synagogue, temple?

Will it be at a twelve-step meeting?

Will it be at a restaurant?

Will it be at a hospital?

Will it be at a funeral?

Will it be at home after a huge fight with a loved-one?

Will it be at a hike?

Will it be at a corporate brass meeting?

Will it be at the side of the road to change a tire?

Will it be at a pet store?

Will it be at the midwife’s?

Will it be at a meeting of the KKK?

Will it be at a book club?

Will it be at a bookstore?

Will it be a surprise birthday party?

Will it be at school?

Will it be at a soccer game?

Will it be at the laundry mat?

Will it be at a blind date?

Will it be at a wedding?

Will it be to have an affair?

Will it be at the police station?

Or to a doctor’s appointment?

Or a food-bank?

Or to visit a relative with Alzheimer’s?

Or to a porn shop?

OK. You get the idea.

Everyone starts wherever they are.

Everyone goes on a journey.

Everyone shares the road.

Everyone ends up someplace.

Everyone has the ability to get lost,

To change directions,

To turn around,

To speed,

To use the slow lane.

Everyone is moving towards a destination.

Everyone is risking a crash.

Everyone looks in their rearview mirror

And the road ahead.

Most everyone sings.

My parents used to have a medallion

Of Saint Christopher stuck to their dashboard.

May the angels and saints guide us all.

 

 

 

 

 



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On Notice, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

On Notice

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

 

At a moment’s notice

You’re on notice.

Did you notice that?

It may come person to person,

Or deer to person, or hawk to person,

You might receive notice in the mail–

It might be short notice,

Advanced notice,

Official notice,

It might be public notice,

Or you might be noticed in secret by a shadow, or the moon.

However it comes, whatever its nature,

Take it as best you can, for rest assured

One day you will be put on notice,

Or you will put notice on yourself—whichever it is—

There may not be further notice.

Keep in mind there are notes in every notice–

Musical notes that just want to be seen and heard and played.

For all noticings are musical by nature, every time

You notice another, the soul dances.

The thing to remember is this:

 

Nothing goes without notice forever.

When death comes with her eviction notice,

You will have no choice but to sit up and take it.

 

I notice your eyes,

The slight tilt of your face,

I notice you breathing on these words

Giving them life.

 

 

 


 

 

 




Thank you for your support.  All donations go to food and medical bills.

Transitioning, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

Transitioning

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

 

In the first place,

To begin with,

The first thing to remember,

By all means,

In light of,

In any event,

Moreover,

Then again,

To clarify,

As a matter of fact,

Until now,

As you can see,

When,

Surprisingly,

To put it differently,

Sooner or later,

Suddenly,

Altogether,

Coupled with,

Beyond,

Similarly,

Of course,

Next,

Now,

In detail,

Accordingly,

In the final analysis,

Together with,

For this intention,

For this in mind,

Here and there,

Alongside,

Be that as it may,

Again,

And again,

Nevertheless,

In reality,

To be sure,

I am,

Uniquely,

Granted, that,

In the same fashion,

That is to say,

I am whole,

For one thing,

I am here,

In like manner,

Owing to,

Being that,

As well as anyone,

I am,

Equally important,

At the same time,

Furthermore,

Above all,

I am here,

In essence,

All in all,

Here,

Regardless,

No matter,

I am here,

In the long run,

All in all,

Surprisingly,

Transitioning,

Here.

 

easter me

 

 


 

 




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Turning In, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

Turning In

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

 

 

At night, when our bodies

Begin to slow down, and our eyelids

Become heavy, we turn in,

And our attention

Recedes from the senses,

And we move into ourselves and dream.

And we all know dreaming

Is just the soul saying what it wanted

During the day but couldn’t,

And as we are drawn inwards,

And our breathing drifts like it was meant to,

And we rescind control over our bodies,

And our lips part and our palms open,

And our arms go this way and that,

We begin catching z’s—the buzz

Of fluorescent lights becomes the buzz of bees

Making honey out of our disappointments,

The hum of the fan of our laptops

Becomes the hush of owl’s wings,

And we yield like this every day–

Every day we relinquish the tenuous hold

We have on our lives and surrender

To the darkness living within us—

The selfsame darkness that holds the voice of desire–

Speaking like a lighthouse to approaching ships,

Speaking like the hummingbird daring us

To try and follow where it goes,

Speaking like moonlight on the river,

Speaking like our soul bowing down before us

Aching for us to listen.

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 




All donations go towards food and medical expenses.  Thank you for your support. <3

The Way, by Jennifer Angelina Petro

The Way

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

The seed,

The blossom,

The egg,

The wings,

The chrysalis,

The storm,

The spring,

The hands,

The voice,

The heart,

Covers and blankets,

Grief and rage,

The mind,

The memory,

The questions,

Faith and darkness,

Stories and galaxies,

The way and years,

Everything loosens

And gives way

To unfolding.

 

 

 

 


 

 



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TransHaiku (Transgender-Inspired Haiku) by Jennifer Angelina Petro

Some TransHaiku

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

 

Look in the mirror,

The self you’ve always wanted,

The rebirth is now.

 

*

 

What is in my pants?

The question so many ask.

Revealing their fear.

 

*

 

As I shave my breasts

Making them smooth as lilies,

I adore myself.

 

*

 

Walking through the spring,

Flowers and buds are in bloom,

This I understand.

 

*

 

Swallowing the pills,

The moonlight of estrogen,

Supporting my truth.

 

*

 

I am the spring,

A revelation of flowers,

A transgender bloom.

 

 

 

 


 

 

 


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