Heather M. Browne is a faith-based psychotherapist, recently nominated for the Pushcart Award, published in the Orange Room, Boston Literary Review, Page & Spine, Eunoia Review, Poetry Quarterly, Red Fez, Electric Windmill, Apeiron, The Lake, Knot, mad swirl. Red Dashboard released her first collection, Directions of Folding.
Follow her: www.thehealedheart.net
Dragging My Insides in Churn
There's a rusted rake pulling my belly
Dragging my insides in churn
That greasy cream of butter
Maybe too much wine yesterday
Never enough sleep
Needing salt to soak up that greasy
The ocean perfected its drunken fest
Waves that crash, tides that sway or roll
And salt, salt to preserve and
Everything needs to be carried
Somewhere far from here
Messages in bottles, hope corked and
I wish someone knew my name
Remembered I'd teetered across these rocks
Looking for a castle on which to dream
Darker Than the Sky
I bought her a cactus the day after her Daddy died
in a little dark blue pot, darker than the sky.
It looked like a brain or a teeny tiny coral world covered precisely, perfectly
with needles fatally sharp, reminding me of fairy tales her Daddy had just read two
pricks ago. At least it was protected.
It made her laugh, that neon orangey ball, the color of a cartoon heart
scribbled rapidly, carelessly outside the lines, missing its beat.
She left it alone to fend for itself as other things, others tales and pokes
took precedence, forgetting all about his voice decomposing within
its bulbous shape, its bright, little pricks prepared to protect.
She watered it yesterday, she, a swimmer and a splasher drowned her cactus dead
and now it merely hangs lifelessly, listlessly
with its waterlogged head like it’s just been dragged
over the edge futilely of some kiddie pool. Drooped and sleepily dead,
its tips now darker than the night time sky.
With its papery thin stalk, wet and soft, its beach ball head, so transparent
you can see every vein, every single poke now only tender hairs,
hairs you could brush with child like fingers patting her Daddy’s head, her prince,
no longer needing protection, never missing a beat.
To sleep like stone
settled, in grounded weight
nestling under earth’s dusty sheet
humming ancient Indian chant and song
the rhythmic tap of geodes
the beat of drums
To sleep like sea
sliding softly into slip
sun’s strong warming blanket cooled
the sigh and snore in ocean wave
lullaby of rise and fall
the tinkling of shells
To sleep like glass
sheer and transparent
allowing light to travel through
entering, shining and stirring gentle rattlings
lucid dreams and clearing visions
But oh, to sleep like stone
I Wanna Get Laid
It’s been six months now. The longest I’ve gone in 21 years. I think about it a lot, probably too much, remember how it feels. That hollow hunger within pleading to devour and be fulfilled.
I am so empty.
I could grab someone off the street, meet someone on-line, but the only one I know is gone, and with it all my security. He knew how I moved, understood my eyes and my eager mouth, knew just where and when.
I wanna get laid but without the fear of sin, or pregnancy, disease, will he call, how fat are my thighs, am I even any good? I wanna know how to please, but I’ve lost all I know and
I’m not ready for questions. What’s your favorite color? How’d you get that scar?
He knew every single scab, all my vulnerabilities. He gave me band-aids and
my last name.
Oh by the way, my favorite color,
She's lost within the mountain
uncertain of whether to switch or back,
lays her head upon earth's
There is no comfort.
She listens to the groan within
the cracking that comes
the avalanche and fall.
She forgot the chosen path,
misled herself along the river
stepping into today's current
and slipping half way between
and just below the surface
right on top of everything
everything falling next.