15/30 - Small Cups

I will not regret this.

Your eyes twinge with worry every now and then
a hesitance, a distant
Reeling back like a dragon before it burns the entire village, I know
you won't stay.

and I won't burn.
Besides, the fire is in it's place, not your lungs.


Yours is the simplest house I've known, I
love that.
Few pots or pans, glassware, tiny
cups that are actually shot
glasses, but you call them 'small cups' and
I guess they are
So we sip from them, slow.
You, usually faster than me, but still slow
and we make poems about bicycles on the backs of steel plates
made in the USA.

I know you won't stay.
Have yet to delude myself and have zero plans
from here on out

Which is a freeing thing:  to know this isn't forever.
That we are not bound by the burden to build something here.
I won't get mad if you don't call every night, forget that I hate pepper,
or speak about your future like I'm not there.
I don't expect to be. Not much, at the very most...

I have spoken about futures
with men
as if they were in it. Believed
they'd be in it, felt that strong dream of love pull
my soul from my mouth so easy
like soft clouds over a lazy, blue sky
and y'know what?
They're not. 

If anything, this is the most honest place I have been.

I know it's not forever
But if we're honest, nothing is.

This morning a woman who invited herself on my porch to ring my bell and shake me out of bed
Asked if I ever thought about what Heaven would be like.
Typically, I think this is a foolish thought to spend any time with
because if there is one (and save for a few asshole moves here or there, I would be lucky enough to experience it)
Then I will know it when I arrive.
And if there isn't
my afterlife will be nonetheless without.

This might be the easiest place I've been since I lost my best friend.
Who is in Heaven, if there is one.

So I may see him down the line
but some other kind of Heaven still exists in the now
in the not asking questions, taking stock of what we've both brought
of who's doing the leaving and when
a kind of Heaven in the limbs of your body aligned with mine

And so if that's all the Heaven there is
Then I'm honestly pretty okay
with that.

12/30 -

The archetype of your face
a careful chiseler
pleated crow
feet, paper
thin smile

I let
my lips
linger too long
on wind-chapped skin
became bitten all over,
a wolf's playground

Last night we tornadoed in one place
avalanched in another,
became crane upon crane
building and crashing
into ourselves

making bent rock, metal, rusted joint
into whirlpool
into hot spring.

lets do that again sometime.

11/30 - Hate Map

Georgia is burning in wildfires
Up north
All of my friends wear face masks outside
Have trouble breathing
Panic Attacks

And I woke up wanting to do yoga today and work on my breathing.
Funny, the ways your body responds to things
You’re not really aware of

Well today
I saw a hate map
Of the US.
Looked like an ice cream cone
covered in sprinkles on two opposite sides
Kinda shaped like a wishbone
Heavy at the ends
Thinned out across the shank
Fat right down in it’s bottom-middle
A bottom-heavy, broad wing-span hate map
Spread out
Like an eagle

Kinda makes you wonder
If the rise in hate is just burning up the earth
Spontaneous earth combustion from toxic human energy
Have we’ve burned our national bird out of it’s own habitat?
So its image just pressed across the face of a map like an emblem
Of hate.

Could people burn themselves out of their own habitat?

With enough money, I mean hate
Anything is possible.

10/30 - Friend for a Gemstone

I wish i could take back the sad lament of Goodbye
cover it up instead with gumdrops or Twizzlers, your favorite candy.

It's been a while since I've written about you, my sweet friend
and your riling, whirling disaster of a self that was always so much
fun to dance

I wonder what your life is like now, in the afterlife.
Do you still sneeze at the light?
Do you still not want to kiss anyone?
Are your jeans too tight?
Are you wearing that "babycake" shirt I bought you?

if lament is regretful then i lament nothing.
but the living know well that death makes life valuable.
And so you are the most precious of gems I can imagine.

On days when I miss you, I carry you in my pocket
and we laugh at inside jokes, sing our favorite songs
belting out loud to Celine Dion or Mariah in the car
eat pizza and take too many shots of vodka, for you,
Gin for me

And we are always happy.
life is easy with a friend who's a gemstone. 
You can hold them in your palm, hide them for safe keeping,
Keep them close and imagine them giving you strength.

And there's not much more they need to do
than that.

You must be the easiest relationship I have by now.
So easy
it hurts.

New Poem: A Barrel of Wax

Originally penned/published:  November 19, 2012


Offer me nothing,

I need no gifts.


I am a barrel of wax now.

Hardened by                              persistent wisdom, neediness which once made me cringe, by the plethora of morning dazes that end

in a bowl of oatmeal, lukewarm and alone.

I have been sitting

in this den of birds                    amid the cacophony of my own silence and their senseless chirping.

The right amount of this on any given day would turn a fine person crazy.


But I have become a barrel of wax.

Hardened, for the strength that the future will require,

For my children, not yet born, perhaps never born, perhaps

For someone else’s.

“bear in mind alternate sources of motherhood”

bear in your belly:   nothing.

Keep moving.


For I am a barrel of wax now

No trick candle to light, no wick even visible.

‘cept to the vastly trained eye,

For I

Am a barrel of wax.


Need no fuel but mine own,

Need no love but the sun,

Need no crimson for to fashion this world into pretty

For a barrel of wax is nothing but eyes

And a barrel of wax                                                                      has no need for a deity.


©Tawny Powell

This might be 2 poems, written at the same time??? Thoughts?

Originally penned/published:  Sept 8, 2011

Just found this today, in my inbox. Totally forgot I wrote it and sent it to myself. That inbox… quite full right now, it needs organization. I need to sift.
So this might be 2 poems: 1. A Whisper, 2. Resuscitate.

Or it could stay one, with a better transition. Or I could write a 3rd to follow. Or do both: a third and improve transitions.

Thoughts??? (that’s all these really are anyway, right? Thoughts on paper.  :)

Thanks in advance, all who pay attention. Even those who read and don’t comment. I appreciate you too.  <3



A Whisper


I heard a woman screaming in the middle of the night.

Did you hear it?


Did you hear her insides curl and twist

Letting out an attack on her being from within


These screams,

vocal manifestations of the most intense pain,

pain, intentional,

And of disbelief.


They hurt us,

Our ears,

If we listen.


They hurt our hearts if we feel them.

If we let their pain inside

We can feel it

Absorb it.


People rarely do,

They are so closed,

Like a block of steel sat on a desk with no bigger purpose than to just be there.


Being is cool.

Our beings are cool,

But their utility is underused if we don’t engage them.


These beings.

Coming forth in the middle of the night.

Gathering light and wisdom, words wrapped around ideas

Like cloth on skin.


These ideas could be naked in the sunlight.

These beings could be naked in the sunlight.


I heard a woman screaming in the middle of the night.

Did you hear it?


Was it you?



You’ve gotta get out of these dry climates, people

You’ve got to get out

Dry climates do not yield enough food for subsistence

You will always be attacking each other for your survival

The fittest may win

But they are only fit in body.

These dry climates yield forth super-beings

Excess in physique.


But the opposite of excess is recess

To re-cess, to fall backward.

These excessive physical beings

They recess in their opposites:

Emotional, intellectual, spiritual.

Their inner beings on recess,

Out to play in fields

Reckless abandon of self and society.


These recesses are play in a field of work,

Fields stretched far and wide but not tilled.

The un-tillable, dry earth

Sucked naked from within, without

There is no fruit here.

No offerings from within brought to the fore

It’s just desert.


It will dry you out people.

You must move.

If you seek to live,

You must move.