I brought you this box of leaves. I know it isn’t a special occasion and you weren’t expecting anything. But, I had this box, and I thought it would be the perfect size and shape to hold the gift I wanted you to have.
I know it sn’t wrapped. I didn’t take the time to add any bling – no swag to brag about. Still, I thought it would suit this occasion.
And see, I hand picked each of these leaves that lie here so serenely in this old shoe box. Some I chose for color, the perfect mash-up of summer to fall – still sporting a green smidge at center and blooming out to the edges with campfire yellows and reds.
Leaf as fuel Leaf as covering Leaf as shelter Leaf as beauty Leaf as me
You took the closed box from my hands tentatively pried open the top and peeked inside as if you feared its contents
You smiled a sly smile upon seeing your gift and shut the top back quickly after taking only a snippit of a second to admire then looked down at your feet
Leaf as comfort Leaf as sponge Leaf as warmth Leaf as art Leaf as you
You looked up at the sky and watched the leaves twirl down and catch a breeze falling gently to touch the earth
and you said this is a shoe box I was expecting shoes
Leaf as love Leaf as faith Leaf as spirit Leaf as conscious Leaf as us
Looking for more love poems? My recently published collection includes sketches and poems that bear witness to the cyle of romantic love and relationships.
Lately, I’ve been deeply moved by so many stories of oppression and persecution in the news. It seems as if women and men all over the world now refuse to be kept down and the tide of freedom is gaining momentum. All of these strong emotions inspire me to write. What else is there to do when faced with so much horror so far outside the span of our control?
While watching a Democracy Now! news report about the brave women of Western Sahara and their fight for self-directed governance, that little snarky voice in the back of my brain said, “Ha! And men use the word pussy to call out a coward.”
Now, she’s telling the story of the indigenous peoples of Morocco in Western Sahara. Genocide and oppression cloaks the earth; no race is safe, no religion blameless. The women are out on the front lines. They go out into the streets and demonstrate publicly. Police and military beat and arrest them.
The women are draped in brightly colored robes with complicated patterns, intricate designs bringing to mind all the lush blossoming places on the planet. Sahrawi women speak for Sahrawi peoples.
Sky and blood and life. The colors of their robes reveal the pulse of the people, even as same coverings hide lost hair and gained scars. She is strong. Look how strong, how sane she seems. Yet, the men will still say the police are cowards for beating women. Scum of the earth pussies.