September 20, 2016

16 Poetic Excerpts That Will Stir And Ignite Your Lonely Soul

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Nicki Varkevisser
Nicki Varkevisser

Sarah Xerta is a poet I was introduced to by a friend this past year and now she is one of my absolute favorites. Her words have pierced my soul and given me endless inspiration. Here are some of my favorite moments from her book, Nothing to Do With Me:

1.

“…it made me want to write a love poem, so I could say something about being nervous under the pink sky of your breath, about running barefoot through the fields of the neon summer that is you when you laugh, which I wish could be you all the time because when I think about you crying it feels like all the trees in the world are turning into oceans.”

— “This Morning the Dew on the Grass Was so Beautiful.”

2.

“I was going to tell you that I am the nicest girl you will ever meet, that in my hair there are daisies the size of moons, but then I started thinking about lightening bolts flashing across the nape of my neck, and I got very scared, because I didn’t know they were there.”

— “Daisies the Size of Moons.”

3.

“I could spend all day thinking about colors like cranberry and ivory, the warm bath they pour over my brain when they lie down next to each other like two people who fell in love 50 years ago and are still falling.”

— “Daisies the Size of Moons.”

4.

“Nights like this I love everyone but myself and wonder which pill would let me into my own heart.”

— “November.”

5.

“…it’s not that I don’t believe in heaven but that I’d rather go on touching you forever. Fuck the church. I want to reincarnate as the tree that someone carves into your coffin so I can hold your bones as they crumble into the star dust they came from, the space that mouthed you.”

— “November.”

6.

“But I am always looking. Always trying to sip the champagne from her elbows, pull her into the sky like a flute, pull her spine apart one pearly bone at a time. I’d like to hide red velvet petals between her vertebrae, watch her grind them to dust as she arches her back into a bridge and stares at me upside down.”

— “Pretty Head.”

7.

“…and I’m trying so hard to have a belly and lean against a tree in the shade with these women, smoking clove cigarettes, pulling out grass with my toes, for the first time I want to be bigger than I am, thick like a mango, I want sex to be meaningless, to eat salmon from the lake where I bathed with these women…”

— “Unborn.”

8.

“Lately whenever someone asks me where have you been? I want to say In love, and then I wonder who I am in love with and for how long I’ve been there. Do these cigarettes count?”

— “Revolution.”

9.

“…it’s Elizabeth in her gray romper, stretching like a cat in the half-light she’s always writing me a bout, the way cotton candy melts into your tongue as if it’s been dying to taste you…”

— “Revolution.”

10.

“…and in a few weeks the flowers won’t try to bloom, the won’t even know they are flowers, but they’ll rise up all the same, and be beautiful, their soft mouths hanging open, like my daughter when she was one and pointed at the moon every night there was a moon, the well of awe inside her, the light we were born with, the natural order of things, I want you to spend your days moving toward me without ever knowing why.”

— “Everything Beautiful Happens in My Mouth.”

11.

“I should have asked him if he knew what love is, what burning ever engulfed him, if a creature had ever tapped the maple from his spine, filled his belly with a feeling like lava, like at any moment his hips might melt together, collapse, and then spread into flame, a new sun for planets to spin themselves into life around…”

— “Red Paper Heart.”

12.

“I’ve spent most of my life trying to be better than myself, like a horse always squeezing her eyes together, trying to grow a big sparkly horn, some flag that says Look at me I’m special…”

— “American Spirit.”

13.

“Then I fell in love with one boy after another, held their hands, and felt like a Christmas tree surrounded by a family in red flannel pajamas, unwrapping white lights and vintage gold ornaments, hot chocolate steaming on the stove. And I decided we should always be in love with someone, even if they don’t love us back, even if we end up feeling like a Christmas tree in a wood chipper…”

— “To A Real Party.”

14.

“I can never seem to say what I really mean to say. And why do we expect the mouth, that small sliver of our bodies, to do all the talking, when we have so many other parts?”

— “The Soft Dark.”

15.

“I keep hearing stories about the trees in people’s childhoods, the dogwood and the peach tree, the willow by the pond, and I wish time was a pool I could dip my hand into because there’s something between me and my brother when we were kids that I’d like to put under my pillow tonight…”

— “All the Birds from the Trees.”

16.

“If Victoria’s Secret knew everything about sexy they wouldn’t be selling bras. Just white t-shirts and mango-flavored chapstick.”

— “Bruises.” TC mark

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