Thursday, June 13, 2019

Now Is Not the Time for Silence

I will not be a pawn
in a parade of penis’s,
or submit because
a book of men
arrowed me to an apple.

How bitter must a woman’s
heart become that she would
wound her gender to please
the dark eye of patriarchy?

I am a woman, mother of life,
and daughter of Mother Earth.
The man who walks with me
does not brag of ribs or dominance.
He values my strength and compassion,
and sits with me at the table of wisdom
so we may support one another
in love, life, and accord.

Now is not the time for silence.
If we don’t speak for ourselves,
who do you think will?
Women and men who love us
and support our equality know
when oppression is given free reign
it won’t stop at gender.

If freedom is given only to a few,
it isn’t freedom. Tomorrow
depends on today. May we rise
to build a world where our children
won’t suffer from our failure.

©Susie Clevenger 2019

Saturday, June 8, 2019

When the Ladder Has No Rungs

The water is muddy
and prayers make no sound.
Dying feels easy when
the world is saying drown.

Oh, where is mercy?
Where are dreams
when blaming owns tongues?
Too little is too late
when the ladder has no rungs.

It’s hard treading muddy water
with a sin tag on your shoulder.
Dying feels easy when
the world is saying drown.

©Susie Clevenger 2019

Today I had a conversation with a young woman on a Facebook comment. I didn't know her, but she responded to my comment about being a recovering Southern Baptist. Her words broke my heart. 

These are her words:  "I was on the wrong side of being Southern Baptist. They don't take too kindly to us gays, lol. But for real, growing up gay in a Southern Baptist church was traumatic.
I STILL consider suicide because I'm gay thanks to the shit my family says to me. Thanks to the shit "Christians" say to me. I LEGIT want to die because I'm gay. It's super lonely when you love people and a God that DON'T love you back." 

I told her I cared, because I do. You would have to be heartless to not feel the pain in her words. She will always have a place in my heart.

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Mud and Blood

The calendar announced spring,
but the sky didn’t bring a bounty of green.

The heartland is mud and blood
loss and flood … amber waves unseeded.

In the valley of misery politics budgets war,
gives dimes to poor, and high fives the religion of division.

Even when the sky turns blue few notice the hue,
because they’re sorting through calamity fearing the next tragedy.

©Susie Clevenger 2019


Sunday, May 19, 2019

Denial Legislates

“A few of us are going out after work to pretend it’s not the end of the world,
if you want to join us.” Quote from New Yorker cartoon

There's a river in my kitchen,
swamp at my back door
(denial legislates - earth revolts).
If I can get government out of my uterus,
we can go out for a drink and ignore
our ice is straight outta Flint.

©Susie Clevenger 2019
For those who don't know, Flint, Michigan's water is dangerously polluted.

Real Toads ~ Poetic Irony

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Scarlet Gaslight

The Dystopian Tarot, The Lovers
Kerry O'Connor

Go ahead, tempt me.
I like to cross the scarlet line
apple stained with reasons
I shouldn’t dance with the devil.

Really? He was the snake
 who told me a tree was a gaslight
to fool me a book of ribs
wasn't already being planned
to write me into submission.

 ©Susie Clevenger 2019

Here is the link to Kerry O'Conner's Beautiful Art

Monday, April 29, 2019

Because You Scriptured Me

"I had a one-way ticket to a place where all the demons go
Where the wind don't change
And nothing in the ground can ever grow
No hope, just lies
And you're taught to cry into your pillow
But I survived"  Alive ~ Sia

When did the joy
of my heart become
your right to legislate?

I am counted among
those you’ve assigned
damnation because
a book of men scriptured
me vile.

Does ink and interpretation
mean more than life?

Does an attempt to break me
into your identity elevate
you in the eyes of God
or is it the throne of men
you cherish?

Will you deny mine
so your pulpit can
espouse yours?

©Susie Clevenger 2019


This poem is my response to Texas Senate Bill 17 recently approved by the Texas senate. This is personal for me. It effects family and friends. I understand if you have a different opinion, but I will not debate it. 

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Devil's Comedy

The forest floor sprouts angel wings:
the devil's attempt at comedy.

©Susie Clevenger 2019


Supposedly edible/recent years deadly