yet all the oceans overflow

fire knuckle
cracks behind
me. i swallow
waiting pop
inside right
ear, left one
taking the pain.
i think night
when she
told my mother,
“wrap salt in
a washcloth.
hold it to her
the water
will draw out.”

I decided to take part in this challenge today. My ears are all pressured & all I can think is how my grandma would tell my mom try putting a washcloth full of salt on my ear to ease the pain. I always thought that added more pain and then, I would touch my ear to feel the heat from the salt. I’m such an odd child. But, I have my grandma’s voice in my head, saying, “It’s probably the change in the weather.” Or, the barometric pressure. I miss you, grandma. The wisdom. And the home remedy I disliked so.

deal with so long again

we visit ear
held to speaker,
eyes perusing

screen. we type—
hellos, how are you,
stress giving color

to laughter God only
hears, because your
voice reminds me

how far we still
remain—and i

FMF prompt: visit. Have you ever written something with particular people in mind, but a person comes to mind after reading? Someone you know you’ve been drifting from for awhile, but still hold out hope? I started this poem with thoughts about all the friends I’ve made here I’ve wanted to me. Then, I thought about my best friend. I read this post about breakups and instantly thought of our first. How many days I ached not being able talk to this girl, who brought me out of myself. Who made it easy for me to switch from Pepsi to Coca Cola. Who made pizza rolls & chocolate a normal dinner. Who showed me deviantART (weirdly enough I looked at this again and thought maybe i’ve grown..i mean, i am drawing now. maybe that’s growing down..) where I met some people who I’m still friends with today. Where I first fell in love with writing.

Who walked tough roads with you, left, and I couldn’t goodbye. So you tried again. And things seemed fine through same up & downs, until  my grandma passed. Sorries were given, but the distance has stayed. Because I think Jesus is trying to save me more pain, and bring me healing I’ve been better at avoiding. I’ve seen this coming again for months, but I didn’t want to admit it. I’ve seen how God has taken us down completely different paths. He’s brought people into my life who’ve walked beside me from miles away, but feel close. Who’ve let me go absolutely nuts. (“be human” would be better way to describe..) And love me even in their quiet.

I know things change, but sometimes I wish something from high school stayed the same. Relationships have ended. My love for reading sputters. Writing has changed,too. I no longer write about unrequited love or dreams of being loved by boys who didn’t love me, but grief. Death. Pleas to God. And the occasional love for family/friends. And I know what you’re thinking, “Poets are deep feeling.”

We ponder the hurts, more than joys. At least from what I’ve read. It’s almost easier to remember pain than kindness. It’s easier to write them, because when kindness comes, it’s staring at a mirage you can’t make out. And you fear if this is real, it won’t last. I never thought I’d lose my best friend. Or my grandma.

Maybe because I was always treasuring every single moment with them. I wasn’t concerned with an end, only giving love.

When there is silence from loss. you’re still in the love of Jesus. Who knew all this, before I typed a word.

Who knows I don’t understand why I’m saying all this, why it hurts still, but kneed I need him.

& he never stopped loving her


Drawing of come tell me, child. I totally had this song in my while working on this. I wanted to be in his Hall of Frames. where he showcased kids drawings that were sent in. badly. I have this vague memory of watching a particular episode at my grandma’s/ Waiting. wishing, hoping he’d be holding my drawing. When he wasn’t, I cried. I think I gave up on drawing after that. Silly, I know/ Way before I knew poetry, I used to draw stick people and flowers. And I didn’t care about perfection.

And Pappy made drawing look so easy. You just draw a circle and some lines and boom: a nice looking animal from earth. I think he’s the person who gave me the courage to believe I could be good at something. He’s also the first one who made rejection a kick to the stomach. It wasn’t enough for me to believe my mom & grandma, I had to risk this guy who reminded me of my grandpa, saying no.

I know now he wasn’t the one to blame. He most likely had a team of people selecting the pieces of art to be featured. And I’m sure I had way too much I would become famous. Famous as in, he would incite me on the show and teach me to draw. Or at least twirl a pencil. Pappy made drawing have a calm, a joy to express your soul without fear of judgement. He , but I think as a little girl, I hoped he was as kind in real life. Kind of enough to tell me personally, I was an artist.

But, maybe he did without personal recognition. In the way he made me believe I was already good enough. Good enough to let my stick figures and flowers out. Even if they weren’t like everyone else’s. It’s crazy to me that at 6, I wanted to be validated, known, seen by someone in New York as a girl who has “it”.

Right there is where my dreams were off. Because if Pappy (or his team) told me yes, I still would of been hungry. I probably would’ve gone into fantasy land, dreaming I’d be chosen every time. And that’s not healthy. Because, Earth to Julia: I already have “it”– a divine design aching love. I don’t need to be chosen every day to see I’m loved. I’m worthy whether or not, I someone tells me so.

When I look at how I draw, I laugh a little because the 6 year old me is woven through those heart-winged angels. Clouds that look like flowers. And Jesus, who adorns a shaw & bare feet. I shouldn’t be ashamed if I coming to Jesus as a child. It’s how we receive heaven, by giving heart. Messy joy. full love. Somewhere in the midst to give Pappy a piece of this mess, I must have had the urge to share this love.

This love Jesus delights give. I’m thinking my 24 year old self needs to believe what 6 year old me whispers: He sees me, the child who’s falling in dreams where he is the color.

when joy feels unreal?

today i loathe
my words: i
need someone

to tell me i will
be happy again
all the time.

i know happiness
is temporal—books
i can’t read, food un-

tasteful. not even
chocolate satisfies
anymore. an ever

present help
in trouble, where
i’ve internalized

a physical tug

of war. not
ail of my
soul. you

say you
are my

can you
bear distress
I keep bidding

myself fill
by laugh

letter to heart eternal

Inspired this playlist that had me lost in love yesterday. I’ve missed writing to playlists where I didn’t skip every song to find one stirs up my heart.. I only skipped two with this, but I loved how I couldn’t break away. Or get distracted. My poetry has taken many twists in a few months. Within a few weeks, I was rejected by two magazines, combined with still mourning my grandma, I keep thinking I’m going to give up. But everyday, I wind up pouring out my heart. I feel the smallest ember glow within, wane, & come back. God, you are relentless through sleeplessness, loss of appetite, your fire is burning through me. You listen to me sing through this numb, watch the ink pour from the keyboard, and I love you in the chill of this untypical of February days with snow on southern ground

trees are bare.
standing trust

they enclosed
a promise you
keep by & by

until spring greens
branches, lilting
then my heart.

i’ve heard you
fish for sailors,
cursing their net

knotted with seaweed.
you say they can cast
upon the right & fish

will overflow their
hands; no more
running in self

circles around
the children’s song:
‘little ones to him

belong. we are weak,
but he is strong.’ i am
living in a land of death-

repined february
clothes adorn tired bones.
in christ alone, I breathe,

sing, laugh, cry. I choose
jesus, your son with whom
you are well pleased

water he has shed midst
unbelief at her goodbye
without word. i’ll talk to

her later, she said.
fire’s last ember
meant warmth

though her breath
caught up with his.
finally. winter has

paled my face,
but let your
love be strong.

carry me nourish-
ment despite
Marah winds.

you are he
who feeds
the ravens

& my belly
has grown

dove i learned
their crying song—

oh, lord, is there no
better garment than
b;ack? my vries over

the ocean, beg you
peace the waves,
salty. years i’ve

spent inside ached
oceans, crushing
strength, above

lift your head,
faint not, child.
there will be a day

she’ll call you missy,
laughter one consonant –
i, o. u no longer (vow)eled.

endless years
we only hope
your infinite fill—

dear grammy;

i can’t rid
memory where
you say: you

should counsel
people. I laughed
your thought out—

you listen. you
looked sincere.
sympathetic not.

if picking up
the phone was
an option,

my question
would find
repeat against

your ear. what?
can you help
without answer?

my intentions
would turn

pill for your
trouble. i take
one when head

aches sometimes.
“julia, you shouldn’t
take a pill every

time you hurt.”
i turned robot
when serotonin

refused me
smile. i gave
up dependence

after day one.
i can’t tell you
i haven’t been

scared maybe
how alone

makes me
see, God’s
silence, head

tilted right side
down, raises
my voice up—

a notch above
my fear of no

to sweet dream again

rain falls down
windowsills & i
eat the second,

last piece of peppermint
bark. two squares a night
ensure i do not eat half a

pound of this mountain
air chocolate. every
time i exhale, i’m

inside a snow
pile. oh, sun

peeks out
behind cloud,
coy. warmth

i’ve forgot
since December
brought chill

i can’t quite
shake. rays
beckon tears

no stay, burns
come quietly
if under long.

but i am cold,
God, covered
by these blank-

ets, clothes.
inside my head,
a cynic laughs.

whispers end &
someone sings:
all we can do is

keep breathing.
in: i’m afraid
death is close.

inside every
shadow, under
my bed. out:

thank you a night
light holds my attention,
captivation you oath

night, morning, day
permanent smile.

God knows, i do now

i have fallen
off the face
of the earth,

she notices
my lacking speech.
i wonder if she imagined

my body falling into laughing,
giggly waters i lend sorrow.
or my shoulders pressed

forward/back against
harsh cement: life can
suffocate, make you

squint a glimpse
at burning gas
we call stars.

i tell dreams
i’m inside

i’m weeping
& you are
pulling me

away. from
sadness. i
thank your

beside me,
even before

i wept over
a lightless
body who

carried blues
i can’t pretend
i don’t know—