Feature Poet: Sage Ravenwood

Many Persons, Faces Covered Over
tsu'nigadu'li (Booger Dance)

Who am I supposed to be today
Go ask the wind tugging at my clothes
Delicate snowflakes pinwheeling
Tiptoeing along diving board branches
A pile of giggling children free-falling
On the roof of cars and telephone lines
Gentle, gentle lay a whisper of clean
Across the dirty thresholds of men
All the quiet thieves' window perched
Eyelashes flitting powdered irradiance
A joker’s smile stretched cheek to cheek
The thumping radio of a car rolling by
The smoked effusion of a catcaller’s breath
Promising it’s warmer inside straddling vinyl
Hold out your arms, you’re unarmed
Fingers fluttering like wings
Catch the floating children
Stomp, shuffle, stomp
Like a drunken whirlwind
The snow grows heavy
Stomp, shuffle, stomp
Scapula sprouting feathers
The night wears a white shawl
Searching for her missing daughter

I Swallowed Winter

Breathed in deep the frigid cold
Some say my skin was snow white
            it was more a sickly sheen
Eyes an overcast sky
Jack Frost had nothing on me
            I felt the bitter cold bone deep
Not bitter like lemon Biting
Hyperthermia needle pricked loss of limbs
            Bitter bitten remorse
            snowed under whiteout
Blinding highway of forget waiting for the crash
Eiderdown smothered empathy Suffocating denial
Under the weight of powder-snuffed memory
        nerves were tree limbs dumping their burden
            cracking at the weakest point
Tears froze into stalactite teeth hanging from my chin
            Body cracks splintering Breaking off limbs
All glacial demeanor
No one knew how to thaw a heart
The days grew short The nights too long and dark
I had forgotten even in the midst of winter
        Roots tunneled beneath a frozen tundra
            searching out warmth,
            the hard exterior of life into scattered remnants
If Autumn is for dead things
            winter is for hope’s rotted burial
Death becoming a never-ending season
            Iced over withdrawal from the living
Loss    Icy aloof to ’I’m sorry’
A broken heart chokes in your throat
Eschewing my body’s snow packing
Winter eats us all

Death’s Calling Cards

Twilights aerial dark
Gloaming black winged sea
Starlings, Grackles, Red-winged blackbirds
Tumultuous waves sky rise, tree fall
Between gluttonous blackening seed hoarders
Crows and Ravens lording the perch
A hum, a muttering, a rushing
Murmuration crackling sky
Soft flutter shush, autumn nightfall
Captivated dogs low growl watch
Hush, hush, you black beak sea of noisy
Harbinger’s warning
Hoard fat, fly heavy against the wind
Winter prowls around the bend
Stay close, protect the many
Tonight shots boom the roost
Door banged open, slipping on ice
I found death’s calling cards cold to the bone
A raven laying prone in a driveway
A crow middle of road
To my knees, I fell in headlight’s glare
My brethren’s tear-stained bodies
Wrapped with care, feathers smoothed
Claws curled as if still in flight
I sang their spirits on, plead for mine
Winter has come again
Cumulus fading quietus
The black-winged sea no longer
Comes ashore at forest door
Only murmur to be heard
Is what’s left between heartbeats
In twilights silent gloam

Bio: Sage Ravenwood is a deaf Cherokee woman residing in upstate NY with her two rescue dogs, Bjarki and Yazhi, and her one-eyed cat Max. She is an outspoken advocate against animal cruelty and domestic violence. Her work can be found in Glass Poetry - Poets Resist, The Temz Review, Contrary, trampset, Pittsburgh Poetry Journal, Pioneertown Literary, Grain, Sundress Press anthology - The Familiar Wild: On Dogs and Poetry, The Rumpus, Lit Quarterly, PØST, Massachusetts Review, Savant-Garde, ANMLY (Anomaly), River Mouth Review, Native Skin Lit, Santa Clara Review, The Normal School, Pinhole Poetry, UCity Review, Punk Noir, Janus Literary, Jelly Bucket, Colorado Review, Pangyrus, PRISM International, 128 Lit, and more.

Twitter - https://twitter.com/SageRavenwood
FB - https://www.facebook.com/sage.ravenwood
Email – ravensquietscreams@gmail.com
Website - https://sageravenwood.com/

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