mostly i weigh suitcases & really need no fancy muscle/body fat thing

my birthday flowers...

my birthday flowers…

white flowers speak to her of death
she says,
yet brought me some
cause she knows
how much i love them,

through the night
i watch the candle shine
touch their fragile cheeks,

back at work after the break, i had
onethousandsixhundred&fiftyfour mails
in my inbox,

& an india travel guide,
leaning back to back
with my laptop,
a yellow post-it with a message by my colleague
(who’s heading east right now)

“have fun & happy new year!

india is the most exhausting land to visit
but you’re gonna love it”

my new bathroom scales (black retro look)
sit by the dinner table,

i take midnite, how the moon leans round
against my breast,
the ups and downs,
cracked spots // frazzled seams (of me)
place ’em on the velvet womb
(extra soft, so that your feet stay warm
he said when i unpacked it)

let ’em slip//careful
from my hands,
& watch

the needle move


smiles…the flowers are already withered but still thought i’d share a bit of my heart with you… posting early for #OLN @dVersePoets…pub doors open tuesday at 3pm EST…

77 responses to “mostly i weigh suitcases & really need no fancy muscle/body fat thing

  1. cracked spots//frazzled seams (of me) –place em on the velvet womb—these words speak so the beauty and vulnerability that this piece breathes–Loved this write Claudia

  2. you have to be careful what you take the weight of…and what you decide to do with that measurement…hopefully the beauty of life outweighs its burdens….

  3. Interesting about the white flowers speaking of death. One would think that white would be of birth or wedding but not of death. Wondering if you did receive an India travel guide, and if you are planning to visit India!! (Whew, you are quick with your OLN poem!!)

    • i was one of the winners in a haiku challenge and won a one week india trip… told my colleague about it and he was in india quite often already and said he would borrow me his india travel guide… haven’t made my mind up yet if i’m def. going… will decide as it comes closer…

      • What a wonderful opportunity, Claudia!! Very, very cool….I hope you do decide to go. Perhaps you could meet some of the poets in the blogosphere!! Smiles.

  4. Belated Happy Birthday Claudia. Regardless of the seams and other fragments of you, your essence will remain as you age. Thank you always for sharing your heart with us.

  5. Beautiful, reflective poem. I love how you seem to have mastered stream-of-consciouness in your writing and how well it works for you. I know I saved FB notice of your birthday but we travell-ed that day and I’m pretty sure I missed it and I so much wanted to wish you much happiness and creativity in the year to come. You are a very special lady.

  6. Interesting encounter with indian friend, white flowers, your birthday (happy belated), weight challenge… and the painting – such a bouquet today! Thank you, Claudia for sharing with u. Much Love :)xx

  7. In one of his plays, Aristophanes determines the relative value of Euripides and Sophocles by weighing their dramas on a set of scales. I thought of this as I felt the white flower bouquet with candle-lit cheeks drop–or is it the night, moon, and seams that move the needle? The narrative is passionate, the painting is too.

  8. And was it your heart you weighed along with the moon? Love the “cheeks’ of the roses…so beautiful. Thank you for sharing your birthday (belated good wishes) and your gifts–in every sense–with us.

  9. Too many emails to read ~ Belated happy birthday ~ India is one of my places to visit, so I’m envious if you will indeed go ~ Lovely painting as well ~ Happy Tuesday ~

  10. Perhaps Bjorn is correct, and death can be, might be, should be beautiful; maybe one should wear white for death, red for marriage; as in India. Stream of consciousness poetics always intrigue me, and your work takes quantum leaps & hairpin turns regularly; never too tame, lame, or lifeless; nice job.

  11. Introspective. The weight being measured… there is that shade of human fragility to your words in those last lines… had me thinking and weighing some things myself.
    I hope you do come and visit India… the country is populated and polluted… but every single street has a humanness to it, speaking of a life conflicted between the believes seeded from the past and the modern complexities.

  12. It’s so refreshing, like a new lease on life. I love the moon leaning round your breast … and the flowers. Check out the book by Jungian analyst Robert Johnson Balancing Heaven and Earth, a large part towards the end is about living in India. The whole book is good.

  13. you have the eye and the heart of a poet… every time i read your words i am in awe of their charm. i so love seeing the world through your eyes.

  14. Claudia, I hope you go. That’s a trip that’s on my list of places to go to. I love your painting and your words. 🙂 take me with you 🙂

  15. I always enjoy how you let your thoughts just flow through your poems…it is amazing. And your choice of words…always exquisite! Congratulations on winning the haiku contest and getting a week in India! Way too many emails though. I hate when that happens!

  16. India? I’m betting you will GO. *I* would! Lots of blog-and-FB friends there now. Also, country with ageless history, diverse cultures, MUCH beautiful architecture, and HAPPY people–the ones I’ve met!

    It is now my “country-of-choice”…to visit.

  17. I love your artwork as much as your poetry. I might have said that before, but it’s worth repeating. Very apt description of India. I’ve been there and I took my measure of life. I loved it, but it is exhausting, though worth it, imho.

  18. Just want to say that I love your watercolors of late. You have quite a knack for capturing your images, including your self-portraits. It’s fun to view the “uniquely you” style that you are developing, and I say that with much admiration!!
    I like how your story of travel develops around the scale. How wonderful to read of your possible trip to India! I know you travel much for work (though unsure what you do that allows you to travel so). Envy you for the places you’ve seen though!! Nicely done, both art and story!

  19. it’s so magical how the moon can be such an intimate object and other worldly cultures less familiar. well, i guess the fact that we see the moon all the time is a good reason:) but i like how the moon seems to be shining a light on what your heart wants, which the moon seems to have a crazy knack for. happy belated birthday. your artwork is cool.

  20. A most beautiful composition. It flows wonderfully. I was captured and even raptured away by its message. The poem teases by leading in one direction, then gently changing direction. This represents the brilliance of your poetry, Claudia, and keeps me as one of your longtime fans. A marvelous piece of poetry.

  21. You captured the beauty of wilting flowers in your painting, Claudia. Lovely. Congratulations on winning the Haiku contest–where the prize many times is a badge for your blog, it’s very impressive that you won a trip to India. I say Go For It–sounds like an adventure.

  22. I am going to make a copy of your painting and put it above my desk. You art work is really stunning Claudia. The poem is good too. Happy Belated Birthday

  23. gosh there is so much here… the scales really a fulcrum of sorts in this poem. your imagery, as usual, stuns with color and texture. favorites: frazzled seams and velvet wombs. I love your painting.

  24. I am from India yes it is a lovely place……… Do write to me so that i will take care of all the arrangement i can so that you will have the best time…….. I am from South…. so u planning My small apartment is open for you

  25. To be overwhelmed with all that. To go on a break and inundated under an onslaught of email when back. It may need another vacation to get over it. Nicely Claudia!


  26. Bewitching, sometimes mystifying, but your poetry always captivates me, Claudia; so richly full of meaning and subtlety.

    P.S. And yes, India is tiring but assails all your senses and one more besides 🙂

  27. Your inbox at work sounds like mine..dread it sometimes…Congrats on the win to India..I think it would be an amazing opportunity. I hope somehow you are able to go on the trip. A journey worth taking on the path of life. Peace with your decision..

  28. a lot of weight in this poem, and love particularly that penultimate stanza…I like much, the intimacy you always describe so well in your poetry. ~jackie~

  29. I love white flowers too, but my mom used to say they were for death…
    Your painting is beautiful and your poem a fascinating stream of consciousness.
    Happy belated birthday:)

  30. I sense the struggle between life’s normality and death’s eventuality. I especially love the line about “frazzled seams (of me)” because I see the messiness of life so clearly, but how cut and dry death can be. Thank you for this beautiful poem today!

  31. Yes, when don’t you share your heart with us? I read that it was your birthday and thought I had sent you best wishes in a comment but can’t find here it is again – Happy Birthday, Claudia!! I love your watercolor with the palette on the table and the white flowers …says a thing or two about you…did I tell you I am stating watercolor classes in Feb?

  32. Congratulations on winning the contest.What a opportunity you have been given. Would love to hear when you decide if your going or not. Great painting of the flowers-happy belated birthday. When was it? mine was Jan 13.

  33. I really enjoyed this and at the end I smiled, I think it would take a Cattle prod to get me on a scale.

  34. I’d be glad to see joy and happiness going out of bounds in the scale. Other than that, I try to avoid the scale like the plague. 🙂 I enjoyed reading this piece, Claudia. 🙂