Saturday, June 30, 2012

Skins


onion skin


Skins

There is no accord
no affinity the heart's
rough edge can't abrade,
can't peel away bit by bit; as a cook
unbuttons an onion, so I'm unwrapped to the
raw, each lover leaving rubbing off a skin
a thin epidermal sheet clinging ragged,
rucked off his receding back as he runs, 
already shedding my cells.

I should be nothing by now
but the pearl scallion core
that holds the green sprout;
instead like injured flesh I puff
with a pushing fluid, salt and sere
against the naked pain of movement,
the scarlet inflammation of loss, sweating
out a vapor that pulls from the unwary eye
trickling peardrops of aggregated regret.

A shame that having made my peace
with love, surrendered it up
so many times, it's still a cat I can't
call back, my wayward black spirit familiar.
Only its shades will come as they will,
its films of old sensation, soft
memories crackling, cast off voices
crumpled as the papery skins of 
a whittled onion.

June 2012






Posted for   Poetics   at dVerse Poets Pub
 Brian Miller is hosting today, and asks us to write about buttons in any shape or form or association.







Shared under a Creative Commons license

29 comments:

  1. this is painful to read and so excellently written that i literally feel the pain..the onion metaphor works so well...the peeling, the like injured flesh puffing salt and sere against the naked pain.. the vapor...sweating..paints a dense picture..

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  2. yes, but I believe that that *pearl scallion core* is our goal. We have to get rid of the peels that after all won't do us good and kinda star again...
    Lovely sad and deep

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  3. smiles....thats a fresh twist on buttoned today...smiles...i like the allusions to the onion...and the wearing away of the flesh to the pearlized heart...nice come back to the skins there in the end as well...

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  4. wow, you really bring it in this one. There's so much pain here. I hear your voice saying these words thru many tears, not hardened acceptance. The third stanza is especially raw and visceral, if it's about what I think it's about. If it's any help, I don't think love is reducible in this way, always regenerative, but then we must live in our own skins, where the light must penetrate so much darkness left by time. I do believe in many forms of love, so perhaps it helps to see the sensual, erotic, as a facet of a larger reality, colors emitted from a larger prism. That's what I believe, anyway.

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  5. Those first three lines are killer. One of the things I admire about what you create, Joy, is that you never sugar coat it, you never sacrifice what's real for what's trendy or obscure. You have the courage to tell it like it is, and not flinch. And you have the skill to do it damned well.

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  6. This is full of painful passion. Fantastic metaphore. I like it!

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  7. So interesting to go from onion to cat and back again, but it works here, and onion such a good metaphor, the tears and the layers that all end up being somehow somewhat the same - the skin of cells wonderful -

    I love onion as a metaphor - I use it not nearly so effectively in something and mine is rotten too now that i come to think about it (so kind of gross) - but you have made it fresh (in so far as it can be) by having it really oniony down to core, and after core.

    PS - thanks for the tip re tape - I don't know if I'll use for a while - it suited other poem, but I'm kind of lazy. k.

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    1. Thanks, k. It's an iold metaphor, but there's stll a little life in it, I hope. AFA the sound, not all of them need to be read, I think. Yours today was perhaps more clear and even as a visual.

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    2. Didn't mean to imply it was old or old hat, or anything like that - it's a great metaphor and super fresh in your hands. Sometimes people use metaphors without actually carrying them out, if you know what I mean, making them physical and vivid-- but you're always super vivid. k.

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  8. So much sad but beautiful language in here... as he runs already shedding my cells... the pearl scallion core... it's still a cat I can't call back. Amazing and heartfelt *sigh*

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  9. very descriptive, but the middle of the second stanza is especially beautiful

    3 radio button senryu

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  10. Pain revealed with your characteristic clarity of thought and emotional veracity. I was intrigued by the idea that there should be nothing left but core and yet...haunting and pierces the tender center of it.

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  11. WOW! FANTASTIC writing! I especially resonate with "it's still a cat I cant call back, my wayward black spirit familiar." Wowzers, kiddo. A mouthful of a poem.

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  12. Wow! This is no simple poem..like the onion metaphor you use, this poem peels and reveals layer after layer throughout the entire poem. Beautiful language peeling the onion of pain, sorrow and regret. So very impressed.

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  13. deep and raw. each lover leaving rubbing off a skin. pure beauty inducing and too close for comfort. ~jane

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  14. truly loved where you took this Hedge...the expression "unbottons an onion" still lingering with me, imagery of this is as brilliant as its woven metaphors. Beautiful my friend! ~ Rose

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  15. Pain and suffering are what's taunting the mind but the physical is true. One gets exhausted as time progressed. It may be nice when it lasted but painful on being left by the wayside. Nice write Joy!

    Hank

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  16. Clever use of the given theme and a beautifully written verse. I particularly like lines such as:-

    rucked off his receding back as he runs,
    already shedding my cells.

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  17. Unbuttoning an onion , , , I will remember that. I find this poem different from your norm somehow. The sadness and regret is here, but yes, it is more raw in the sense of real pain, the kind that happens from chafing over time, not the quick slice of weapons or blood. It is more difficult for that reason. But so lovely, the way a Persian carpet gets better with age and footsteps.

    When we harvest our garlic I sit and rub the dirt off before braiding, and the skins fall at my bare feet in the grass. I have a feeling when I do it in a few weeks (they are hanging to dry now) I will be meditating on Hedge's memories crackling.

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  18. Interesting resonance with this image as an onion creates tears the more cut

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  19. new rule: poems about onions, cherries, and taxes, can only be written while they are in season... no, i'm just teasing

    "I should be nothing by now
    but the pearl scallion core
    that holds the green sprout;"

    those lines are just beautiful, not just as poetics but as spirit too. i think you planted that seed in the perfect spot, not just in the poem, but in life as well. just my thoughts =)

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  20. Pungent and powerful as raw onions!

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  21. I feel the aggregated regret but I'm entranced by pearl scallion core that holds the green sprout.

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  22. "each lover leaving rubbing off a skin
    a thin epidermal sheet clinging ragged,
    rucked off his receding back as he runs"
    These lines resonated with me. You caught me think of dead love today.

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  23. 'but the pearl scallion core' - the weight and references of this line are sheer perfection..

    Overall a wonderfully convincing unpeeling of the metaphor - really enjoyed this.

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  24. Love as a cat you can't call back... I love that... I enjoyed the entire piece!

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  25. Holy Cow!

    "unbuttons an onion, so I'm unwrapped"

    If only we could get down to the core instead of living in the raked and ragged flesh, another skin to lose--implying another loss and another and . . . this is a truth, but there is another to savor someday, I hope.

    So, staying in this truth--Whether human or feline, a familiar leaving is torture. I remember reading in a Doris Lessing novel--the golden notebook, I think--that it takes 7 years to overcome an ending like this, and the 7 overlap with cycles from other relationships so that a complex weave accompanies any "nervous" breakdown . . .

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'Poetry is an echo asking a shadow to dance' ~Carl Sandburg