the need to create
Surging, pushing, pulsing
I am just beginning labor
Labor to birth
Birth that which is and lies
I want to write, write, write
‘til I’ve filled all the pages
in my mind
‘til every space of whiteness is
birthing womb of
color of the night sky
Wings of the Raven
Blood is almost black
border and center
all is black
©Nicole Barchilon, 1980
So I am caught I see
between what I am
and should be.
There is nowhere to hide.
The woods are no longer big enough.
I emerge from sanctuary to
There is no need to burn me.
The tarred roads are hot enough.
They singe my soul
and consume my roots.
There is no escape
and nowhere to escape to.
I am burning up now.
Watch me become
©Nicole Barchilon age 18, 1982
Painting by Helen Redman (my mother). That’s me in her tummy and my father behind her, summer 1964.
down to the roots
in my guts
of all the
the rape, the murder, the bombing
the constant torture
of the sacred earth and her people
there are no explanations which suffice
there is only my rage, my hurt
and my anguished cry
the laundry blowing on the line,
the broken bloody finger laying by itself
somewhere not too far off from where
your “justifiably” executed and
perfect mission placed it
any woman bloodied by violence
any man desperate to feed his family
or child forced to play in gutters of slime
is a reminder
of the men in glass rooms with big chairs
who discuss the fate of the world
as if they didn’t live in it
or have children who might
actually grow up in this
their plotted, planned and rotten
© Nicole Barchilon Frank 2/14/91
(the day the U.S. bombed an Iraqi shelter, killing hundreds of innocent men, women and children)
“There is no comfort in the geologic record.”
We are the whimsy of G♥d’s blink.
I may feel the warmth and roundness of my children’s bodies.
I may feel my husband’s tongue deep inside me and all around me.
I may feel the sunset in the singing of my blood.
I cannot know when I will die, or when my children shall.
I can love every day.
I can make mistakes over and over and over again.
I can complain,
and I do.
The clock ticks
who is counting the seconds,
who can count them?
When will I know I’ve arrived?
Is there anything more than my attempts at connection?
I’m comforted by his touch
by the sunset
by the taste of peaches
by the roses
my cat’s rough tongue
and my fountain pen.
Poem inspired by BBC report on the random and “unsurvivable” (for human life now) climate changes of this planet’s history. The reporter ended with the quote that starts the poem. © Nicole Barchilon Frank, 4 Av 5759, July 18, 1999