May 1, 2011

What Can Poetry Teach?

by Cristián Flores García

What Can Poetry Teach?

It taught me to fashionably dress
down. Feel comfort in my own words,
even if on first impression I believe these
a size too small.
It’s a lie
if you believe an active verb
is exempt of attractiveness
predicaments or that a noun alone
can’t hang
as perfect pendant.
Also a lie, that adjectives aren’t a must-wear
accessory when, like lipstick or under wear,
the right shade and t e x t ure are
singled out.
Still, times call
out when it’s best to go bare. Poetry
taught me to avoid whatever I am not
finding fierce as a feather or luxurious
as a thorn
less rose crown.
I learned that kiss, kissed, and making
out are various sizes not easy to bliss
fully fulfill and not to be confused.
clearly fit cunt,
count, and can’t as the same sound
in my ears when I was learning English
as my second weapon.
To search
and decipher cock
as in fowl, slur, or action after a misunderstood
metaphor was a bloated trying out phase.
One poem showed me to be a coward by not showing
what I meant,
giving what I believed others expected from me.
One poet asked, Can I kiss you? If you need
to ask
, although I instantly wore blushed cheeks
and wet lips,
then you shouldn’t,
I thought. YES! You can, I screamed instead.
A poem made me laughed and I cried
at the absurdity of its perfectly masqueraded
Poetry did
teach me that women and snakes must shed
our outermost skin when outgrown. Through
poetry I could admit that although I carried the Un
documented title
for twenty years,
my curves had all along unabashedly sashayed
the American style. Through Poetry I know
I best accessorize when I meticulously choose
those best words
not to wear.

Bio: Cristián Flores García was born in México City. Her poems have appeared in PALABRA Magazine, Connotation Press, and Mosaic Arts & Literary Journal. She was the recipient of a Canto Undo Fellowship and a MacDowell Fellowship in 2010. She now lives in the Southern California desert where she is currently working on her first collection of poetry, Brick Eater.

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