Amy Barlow Liberatore… stories of lost years, wild times, mental variety, faith, and lots of jazz

Tag Archives: Love

Pink, Above and Below

Pink
above and below
She knows this tavern
is a cavern of
half-truths and full-blown lies

Icarus and ice

Yet, this morning
la colorosa* bathes
the barstools and bodies
laid waste by last night

Sunrise brings the glow
of a knowing
that this day
there will be change

Her heart will melt
inthe pink glow of sundown

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil
Image by Oxag at Wikipedian Commons:
Sunrise at Angkor Wat (Worldwide Usage Permission)

* la colorosa means “pink” in Spanish – at least, in Puerto Rico.

Hannah at Imaginary Garden With Real Toads wanted color, a cave (and what better cave than a bar!), a hunger, adventure, and ice. Pull up a barstool and tell me yours. Also on the margins at Poets United.  Peace, Amy


PEACE IS POSSIBLE (a Fibonacci)

One
mindset
among many
will cause peace
to flow all around us
like a mighty, majestic river of unfathomable love

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

This is my prayer for peace, as prompted by Mary at dverse Poets. Of course, I did not make the deadline, so perhaps I will submit this for dverse Open Mic Night as well as the sidebar at Imaginary Garden With Real Toads and Poets United.  And, yes, I managed a form to boot, using the word-count version of the Fibonacci Sequence (1-1-2-3-5-8).

The latest carnage in Kenya, at a mall in Nairobi, took many lives at random. And yet here in the States, gun violence continues to claim veterans, spouses, children, and people caught in the wrong place (or school) at the wrong time – also, a gun on hand means access to a fast suicide, rather than trying to reach out. The Second Amendment provided for armed militias, like the National Guard, and was conceived when one-shot muskets were the standard. I’m not against others hunting (as long as it’s for meat, not ivory), but the proliferation of high-powered rifles with huge magazines – and people with violent histories being allowed to own guns? Is Ted Nugent running for president or what? Get a grip, people. Peace, Amy


LONELY GIRL

Face of oblique glitter hears
Whispers that he done her wrong
Restless spirit, frozen
Hearing again their sad old song

Shine it all on, lonely girl
You know I’m kin in spirit
Face it now, lonely girl
That song, you know I can hear it

Neither of us had no loving since
January, February, or so
Why not climb off that lonely perch
C’mon – ready, steady, go

We’ll speak of days gone wrong
We’ll snicker at misbegotten men
We’ll hide our eyes from strangers til
We do it all over again

Find others to do us wrong
To keep us stuck in one place
But I’ll remember our big time out
Each time I look at your face

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

Ha! Betcha didn’t know the subject of my poem. It’s

… and yes, we did trip the light mediocre one night eons ago, back when the world was full of vague regrets but more possibilities.

The subject was the moon, courtesy of Izy at Imaginary Garden With Real Toads. Catch: We were not to place the moon in the sky, speak of night or starry night, etc. So I took my girlfriend off her perch and we talked it over. Sure, she’s seen same place, same time, every night, but now she does it by choice, because we got so plotzed on Margaritas, she doesn’t want to come down to earth again. My bad.

This is also “visible” at my poetic lunacy rompfest, Poetic Asides.  Amy


Of Love and More

First love lost; ‘twas not worth keeping
(or it’s cheap red wine a-speaking)

Then came city boys who gave
me lessons: How To Misbehave

(Married, briefly
Much grief, chiefly)

Then I found a righteous man
Values, charm; he had a plan

Liked my daughter, and loved me
She saw “dad,” I saw me

Going for another marriage
Diff’rent style; no horse-drawn carriage

Love was true that second time
Faithful, solid, and sublime

Now I know what life has taught:
Love is cheap when cheaply sought

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

Kerry O’Connor at Imaginary Garden With Read Toads was celebrating the August birthday of poet Sara Teasdale. Reading Teasdale at first seems dated; but, like many poets, she has wisdom in those couplets and free-form writes. I read some of her poetry, per the prompt, and was inspired to tell the story of my rough-and-tumble path to Lex.

Also in the margins at my poetic love nest, Poets United! Peace (and real love), Amy


Yes, it’s true, I’ve joined the “700 Club”! Oh, wait a sec… actually, this is a poem that Pat Robertson would do well to read, since he’s all about putting down anyone and anything he doesn’t understand, and using God as an excuse. He makes the phrase “bully pulpit” come to life in a new way… So let’s talk about love, shall we?

Love is Not/Love is

Love is not the flip side of hatred
Love is not a sexual act
Love is not what your parents told you
or what your friends brag about
Love is not locked up or meant to be hoarded

Love is friendship to the nth power
It’s giving up what you cling to in the world
for the sake of helping another
Turning your back on Honey Boo-Boo in favor of
cradling abandoned crack babies in the NicU
It’s holding hands that are colder than yours

Love is vast as creation
Warmer than bread fresh out of the oven
More beautiful than your granny’s eyes

Each day we are given the chance
to show love to others
Love is the only thing that can heal our fractured world,
and it starts with each one of us.

Fling wide open your arms
Dance to the sacred rhythm
Unlock that latched love and give it to the world

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

For Poets United, where Kim Nelson was looking for poems about locks. I wrote this earlier today before encountering her prompt, as though the planets were in alignment! Also “in the margins” at my poetic Imaginary Garden With Real Toads. Peace to all, and let the love begin. Amy


Life Cycling

First come the three little words
Then, “I’ll love you ‘til I die”
Vows to share a lifetime as one
Down the aisle into Real Street

Change begins to take hold
She feels faint over nothing
After a march to the drug store, she
Places calls to her doctor and OB

Family planning worked, a baby is on the way
To create life within is a special calling
She doesn’t mind the stringy stretch marks
Nor the RR train to La Maze classes

in order to master the art of patience and breath
while bringing new life into the light

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

Riley tattoo b and w

I remember being pregnant with Riley.  Ask women who’s ever been pregnant, and they’ll probably say they felt like the most powerful person in the world. Submerged, cradled within, this growing child… I am getting misty because my girlfriend and bandmate Karen’s daughter Amanda is in hospital just now, dilating and all that good stuff.

Riley is the best thing I ever did. Not just giving birth, but raising her, watching her tap out complicated drumbeats from the age of four; seeing her first pictures – and for years to come, finding manga characters scribbled on the margins of homework. Startlingly smart, easy to be with, and wicked talented… she’s a force to be reckoned with, and, as you can see by this photo shoot (body painting, not tattoos), she’s gorgeous.  Love you, Riles. Mom

For the Sunday Whirl, the wordle can be found HERE
. Check out the other poets as well! Peace and soda crackers for the first trimester (!), Amy


At dverse, Hobgoblin asked us to attempt a poem in a foreign language. While I did spend years in Puerto Rico, my Spanish is a mite rusty; that’s why I buy bilingual volumes of Neruda, to strengthen that connection. Let’s see what you think (the English translation follows).

San Juan por la noche

Noches en la playa
de mi Borrinquen querido

Con mi amor, sin abarcas en la arena
y la aroma del mar

Besos dulces, cervezas frias
Manos entrelazarse

Estrellas bialando
por la cadencia de nos corazones

Muchos anos pasados,
yo recuerdo este amor… suave y eterno

TRANSLATION

San Juan at Night

Nights on the beach
of my beloved Puerto Rico

With my love, barefoot in the sand
and the scent of the sea

Sweet kisses, cold beer
Hands intertwined

The stars dancing
to the rhythm of our hearts

After so many years,
I remember that love… tender and eternal

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

Also at “la casa de poecia,” Poets United!


UNSUNG HEROES IN MY INKWELL

My ubiquitous inkwell, home of
fluid blue poems-yet-to-be

Out pops an indigo sprite who
scribbles sillies and twizzles about
the ‘California daze’ or who’ll
juke-jive to the jazz

Sometimes a slate drudgeluckless
slithers over the side of the inkwell
seeps to the page
smears thoughts of illness and
acidic, acrid, lucid memories

There’s a crotchety navy man
who marches out, ten-huts at paper’s edge
and vigilantly decries the evils of war
He’s a vet of many battles and says
victory has neither a smell nor a hint of glory

My favorite inkwell denizen is
the periwinkle fairy who dusts the page
with a harvest heart and loving words
Who inspires hope with ageless
meditations on love

© 2012 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

For Three Word Wednesday (Battle, sumptous, harvest – what a combination of words!), and for ABC Wednesday, brought to you by the letter U. Hope I post this in time…

And to tell the truth, I do have an inkwell on my desk for inspiration, but I write with my trusty Ticonderoga #2 pencil. Peace, Amy


First Time, No Charm

Fifteen
and the only girl in her class
who hadn’t “done it” yet

Sharp gossipy tongues
of her peers rendered her
brittle, an underachiever

Sure, she had the fever, but
no boy had the charm, the
romance she longed for

Fearing she would develop
a discernible crust beneath which
no one would wish to explore

she began to wear shorter skirts,
willowy legs bending, swaying
as a breeze blew through her branches

She spied one guy, gave him the eye
that said, “I want,” and he knew he’d be
Her First, and thus accoladed by his buds

That night, they threw down a blanket
Some pot he’d rustled up for the occasion
dilated their pupils, lazy balloon eyes

A few harsh kisses, some fumbling
some mumbling, but not calling her name
He opened the packet of the sheik sheath

Almost exploding as she put it on him
(like the banana in health class) and then he
crushed her with his weight, piercing her

It was all of ten minutes, leaving her with
the wound that never needs mending
And an unbearable feeling that there must be

more than sex than this, a barbarian invasion
Otherwise, why would musicians bother to write
love songs?

© 2012 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil
For The Sunday Whirl: Sheaths, Explode, Unbearable, Fever, Willows, Crust, Mending, Breeze, Piercing, Brittle, and Rustle. Click on the blog name and see what everyone else got from this interesting group on the Wordle! I am glad to say this is NOT autobiographical.

I’ve chosen this poem for dverse Open Mic Night. Also at my home base for all things poetic, Poets United.


Real Women

Real women have curves
nerves of tempered steel
Watching promotions
granted to men of
lesser talent,
their hearts stolen by
lesser loves
until…

Real women revel in truth,
revive opinions stifled
again and again,
say their piece and
back it up with actions.

Some women shape the future
by giving the world
the next wild, willful
generation of humanity,
nurturing and guiding.

Others act as guides,
spiritual doulas,
friends who also nurture
the character of those children.
The Aunties Extraordinaire.

Real women love.
We love to love.
To make love, to share body and soul.
Even when swallowed by self-doubt,
surfacing with the pliable beauty
of sirens,
assured,
assuring,
ascendant.

© 2012 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil
Photo from History Central, archival shot of the inimitable Mae West, who once said, “No man ever loved me like I love myself.”
For dverse Open Mic Night, because real women ROCK!