Paranoia and Pop Tarts, but you know how we roll

Posts tagged poetry

156 notes

People who think that Sylvia Plath was a poor, sensitive poet are not getting that she had great amounts of ambition and anger that moved her along, or she wouldn’t have been able to fight against that depression to produce such an incredible body of work by the age of thirty.
Elizabeth Wurtzel (via hepburnt)

(via g-gg-g-deactivated20120417)

Filed under sylvia plath poetry

79,748 notes


[I hope y’all don’t mind my snipping comments to make room for transcription.]

IT by Kavindu “Kavi” Ade

You wanna be Peter Pan

You wanna be that fairy-dusted disaster that conquers Hook and slays pirates, because

That’s what strong boys do

But they gave you a dress

And a name to match

And a lot of pink stuff you never played with

You love action figures just as much as dolls

(Yeah, you love dolls, don’t lie)

You don’t walk like a lady, though

You flunked ballet class

You can’t go; it’s boys only

Don’t wear swimming trunks, wear a bathing suit

You’re too old to be a tomboy, grow up

You can’t fly

You never will

Even days when you’re wearing the perfect clothes, people will stare and say

Is that a girl or a boy?

And you smile to yourself because today, maybe you might just pass

But then you see their eyes

Register no facial hair, no knot in your throat, no bulge in your pants

They say it again, louder, tauntingly

Is that a girl or a boy?

This time they know and they just wanna see you squirm

And you do and they snicker

And give you that look that says you aren’t human here

You’re stuck

With that body you’ve got and the gender you don’t

There’s no fairy dust

No flying away

No childhood dreams

So you’re doing the best you can

You rock your indecisive parts proudly

But there are days when you can be shattered by a quick tongue

Days when men argue about the lines of your body and then one says

It’s got tits


Because you’re not worthy of any other title

Days when girls will hate you for what you are

Whatever you are

You aren’t human here

But I’ve got tits

So on that day when he said to me

"I don’t care if you’re gay I’d still fuck the shit out of you"

I should have been willing right? [Note: The last bit is unclear, but I think that’s it.]

But I wasn’t

So I walked faster trying to escape his leering face

The look of violence in his eyes that I’ve seen in so many other men

"I’ll fuck you straight, girl"

I don’t know how much of a girl I am, but at that moment

I wish I had the knuckle strength of men, but I don’t

So I left my pride in this throat

I will try to glue myself back together for tomorrow

Becuase there are always gonna be days like this

Days when you have to carry your somber heart like a coffin

Days when you pack [pass?]

Until you slip and let your words fall from your mouth carried by a feminine voice

And they know again

Know that you’re not a him or a her, but something in between

Not human to them

What an abomination, what a monster

Why can’t you be normal with [where’s?] your dress, your boyfriend, your virginity

They want to paint you the color of smashed hymens

They want to know that naked, you will always be soft like a woman

Naked, you will always have the parts of a woman



Your tell-tale breasts

You will never be one of those strong boys

You are far from Peter Pan

But learn to hold your back like a flagpole

It’s all you’ve got out there

There’s no Neverland

[Note: Throughout the video, the audience responds with exclamations and applause.]

(via bubonickitten)

Filed under poetry spoken word trans gender transcription

3,103 notes



they won’t let you hear the truth at school
if that person says “fuck”
can’t even talk about “fuck”
even though a third of your senior class
is pregnant.

I can’t teach an 18-year-old girl in a public school
how to use a condom that will save her life
and that of the orphan she will be forced
to give to the foster care system—
“Carlos, how many 13-year-olds do you know that are HIV-positive?”

“Honestly, none. But I do visit a shelter every Monday and talk with
six 12-year-old girls with diagnosed AIDS.”
while 4th graders three blocks away give little boys blowjobs during recess
I met an 11-year-old gang member in the Bronx who carries
a semi-automatic weapon to study hall so he can make it home
and you want me to censor my language

“Carlos, what’s genocide?”

your books leave out Emmett Till and Medgar Evers
call themselves “World History” and don’t mention
King Leopold or diamond mines
call themselves “Politics in the Modern World”
and don’t mention Apartheid

“Carlos, what’s genocide?”

you wonder why children hide in adult bodies
lie under light-color-eyed contact lenses
learn to fetishize the size of their asses
and simultaneously hate their lips
my students thought Che Guevara was a rapper
from East Harlem
still think my Mumia t-shirt is of Bob Marley
how can literacy not include Phyllis Wheatley?
schools were built in the shadows of ghosts
filtered through incest and grinding teeth
molded under veils of extravagant ritual

“Carlos, what’s genocide?”

“Roselyn, how old was she? Cuántos años tuvo tu madre cuando se murió?”

“My mother had 32 years when she died. Ella era bellísima.”

…what’s genocide?

they’ve moved from sterilizing “Boriqua” women
injecting indigenous sisters with Hepatitis B,
now they just kill mothers with silent poison
stain their loyalty and love into veins and suffocate them

…what’s genocide?

Ridwan’s father hung himself
in the box because he thought his son
was ashamed of him

…what’s genocide?

Maureen’s mother gave her
skin lightening cream
the day before she started the 6th grade

…what’s genocide?

she carves straight lines into her
beautiful brown thighs so she can remember
what it feels like to heal

…what’s genocide?
…what’s genocide?

“Carlos, what’s genocide?”

“Luz, this…
this right here…

is genocide.”

- Carlos Andrés Gómez

My Carlos

(Source: crazedcunt, via msenjoli)

Filed under poetry spoken word carlos andres gomez race

34 notes

My Short Skirt


My short skirt

is not an invitation

a povocation

an indication

that I want it

or give it

or that I hook

My short skirt

is not begging for it

it does not want you

to rip it off me

or pull it up or down

My short skirt

is not a legal reason 

for raping me

although it has been before

it will not hold up 

in the new court

My short skirt, believe it or not 

has nothing to do with you

My short skirt

is about discovering

the power of my calves 

about cool autumn air traveling

up my inner thighs

about allowing everything I see

or pass or feel to live inside

My short skirt is not proof

that I am stupid

or undecided

or a malleable little girl.

My short skirt is my defiance

I will not let you make me afraid.

My short skirt is not showing off,

this is who I am 

before you made me cover it 

or tone it down.

Get used to it,

My short skirt is happiness.

I can feel myself on the ground.

I am here. I am hot.

My short skirt is a liberation

flag in the women’s army.

I declare these streets, any streets,

my vagina’s country.

My short skirt

is turquoise water with swimming colored fish

a summer festival in the starry dark

a bird calling

a train arriving in a foreign town

My short skirt is a wild spin

a full breath

a tango dip.

My short skirt is

initiation, appreciation, excitation.

But mainly my short skirt

and everything under it

is mine, mine, mine.

I Am an Emotional Creature, Eve Ensler

Filed under poetry eve ensler rape culture

3 notes

mother to son


Well, son, I’ll tell you:
Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
It’s had tacks in it,
And splinters,
And boards torn up,
And places with no carpet on the floor —
But all the time
I’se been a-climbin’ on,
And reachin’ landin’s,
And turnin’ corners,
And sometimes goin’ in the dark
Where there ain’t been no light.
So boy, don’t you turn back.
Don’t you set down on the steps
‘Cause you finds it’s kinder hard.
Don’t you fall now —
For I’se still goin’, honey,
I’se still climbin’,
And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.

—langston hughes

(via theoceanandthesky1)

Filed under poetry langston hughes

49,578 notes




in1988:(via lionofbedstuy)

probably my most favorite poem

Still I Rise
You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,You may trod me in the very dirtBut still, like dust, I’ll rise.Does my sassiness upset you?Why are you beset with gloom?‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wellsPumping in my living room.Just like moons and like suns,With the certainty of tides,Just like hopes springing high,Still I’ll rise.Did you want to see me broken?Bowed head and lowered eyes?Shoulders falling down like teardrops.Weakened by my soulful cries.Does my haughtiness offend you?Don’t you take it awful hard‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold minesDiggin’ in my own back yard.You may shoot me with your words,You may cut me with your eyes,You may kill me with your hatefulness,But still, like air, I’ll rise.Does my sexiness upset you?Does it come as a surpriseThat I dance like I’ve got diamondsAt the meeting of my thighs?Out of the huts of history’s shameI riseUp from a past that’s rooted in painI riseI’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.Leaving behind nights of terror and fearI riseInto a daybreak that’s wondrously clearI riseBringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,I am the dream and the hope of the slave.I riseI riseI rise.




in1988:(via lionofbedstuy)

probably my most favorite poem

Still I Rise

You may write me down in history

With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.

(via dr-grumbles-deactivated20110315)

Filed under black poetry favorites best things in the world?

973 notes


Jasmine Mans - Nicki Minaj

Below, Mans explains her poem “Nicki Minaj” (often called “The Mis-Education of a Barbie Doll”) was not a diss. It was a “dare.”

A Dare.

I do not want Nicki Minaj to be the next Lauryn Hill or MC Lyte, I want her to rap as if women like Assata Shakur and Toni Morrison exist.

“The Miss-Education of a Barbie” is a call to action not only for Nicki Minaj but to all women in the entertainment industry.

My poem targets Nicki Minaj because I am a long time fan and follower of her work. I recognize and applaud her lyrical abilities and the affect she has on women older and younger than myself. If we, as an audience, do not hold up a mirror to our artists, then who will?

The “Miss-Education of a Barbie” questions the message that Nicki Minaj is relaying to her listeners. If Nicki Minaj seeks to simply entertain audiences with shallow concepts then my poem can be written off as irrelevant to her and her fans alike. However, if she seeks to make a difference in musical history and in the lives of her fans around the world then my piece questions her methods of doing so.

Her “Barbie” image is an objectification of womanhood. How can we expect our male rappers to pay homage and respect to women when the voice that is representing us is tainted with sexual innuendos and “child’s play?”

Most rappers say in response to this “look, I didn’t ask to be anyone’s role model, I am just doing me like always.” for Nicki, this isn’t true, she did ask to be famous. She engineered herself to be more marketable so that this could happen. Now that it happened, what will she do with that power? Will she be self-serving at the expense of her fans? Or will she be both entertaining, sexy and socially progressive for women? We don’t want the Nicki we know to go away, we want the Nicki we know to be 3 Dimensional.

W.E.B. DuBois said all art is propaganda and should be used to uplift and challenge the African American community, and if art does not do such it is useless. Nicki Minaj is too powerful to be useless.

My piece is not a “diss,” it is a dare.

I dare Nicki Minaj to be a PHENOMENAL WOMAN and not a phenomenal “Barbie.”

-Jasmine Mans

(Source: hearusmedia, via blackfashion)

Filed under nicki minaj poetry spoken word music feminism