It’s Poetry Tuesday! We are going to go back through all my old notebooks and look at the god-awful poetry I wrote when I was an angsty teen and then you will get present day Michelle’s re-interpretation/headdesk horror-filled embarrassment.
Fluttering eyelashes over green eyes
Tickle my palm like butterflies in flight
Unable to know color my heart dies
Your warm breath ghosts over me, I hold tight
Smooth, flawless skin stretches out before me
Heady cologne and sweat swirl my senses
I still taste you from our last kiss, you see
You’re melting away all my defenses
I trace the shape of your lips and wonder
What would it be like to know your sweet face?
Impossible, just like tasting thunder
Or tatting spider web into fine lace
I will never know the gift of vision
But you say to stay is your decision
Yes. I am cringing SO HARDCORE right now. The melodrama is out of of control as are the similes, I apologize to every single poet out there. Oh, God, I am SO SORRY. I also apologize to every blind person out there, I obviously have no idea what I am talking about in this poem. Dramatizing and romanticizing blindness is not okay.
I wrote this piece for my high school creative writing class, so that means that this is SENIOR YEAR MICHELLE. There is absolutely no pride before the fall. None. I am not saying that 26 year old Michelle would be able to write poetry any better, but I am sure that I thought this was a good poem in high school – that is what hurts me to my very depths.
I think the only decent thing about this poem is it confirms that I did have a thing for green eyes even in high school (Brazilian Helicopter Pilot has stunning green eyes). What is really gross about this poem is the very sinister undercurrent of self-martyring and unworthiness. Just look at the last two lines “I will never know the gift of vision/But you say to stay is your decision.” This SCREAMS that the narrator sees hirself as unworthy of love and loyalty because ze is blind. What the hell, Michelle? Too many Harlequins, Michelle. Being blind does not preclude love and happiness! Obviously, as pointed out in the first paragraph, this is a naive teenage, who has her sight, writing about how she would view love and life if she was blind having know the “gift” of sight. A decade later I think I would rather have a poem rallying against the fucked up notion that a blind person is less than or hir love is lessened by lack of sight (also, fun fact, total loss of sight – meaning complete and total black/darkness – much less common than partial blindness).
This poem also demonstrates how until a few years ago I was the kind of person who not only wanted to save other people, but was waiting on someone to save me and fix me even while I was pulling myself up and doing it myself. I think I have always had a very romanticized notion of your romantic partner being able to magically fix everything bad about you. It has only been this past year that I have truly come to understand and accept that it is actually that your partner inspires you to be better and holds you accountable for your promises and actions. That is what makes you better. That is the “magical” power of a healthy relationship. At this point in time I would like to apologize to all my adolescent writing companions – I cannot imagine how annoying I was with my characters all running around screaming for their ONE TRUE LOVE and SOUL MATE to fix them – thank you for sticking with me through all of that.