Poetry/Creative non-fiction/fiction

A Natural Man (Your Hair Smells Like Hair) February 10, 2012

Filed under: Poetry — jessicacolleenmcdermott @ 8:48 am
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Safety pins synch up tears in

your jeans like stitches, shielding

thin calves from winter air. Spattered

spills of coffee, earth, and oil splash

across the fabrics front. Your blue eyes

slid away when you speak,


the natural man is good. You say.

I can crowd your possessions into

one solid box. You, a fleck of oneness

in a suspended universe fogged deep

with overstuffed objects that only dim

and retire.


Coupled with want is loneliness.

You do not want much, but do you want

me? Your breath on my neck, a bite of

my bottom lip, a suck of my mouth, a bare

night on your roommate’s pliable futon. If

I wasn’t fixed on being untraceable I might

have craved the feral words that you spewed


or the taste of your tongue after you took a

hit and slipped a sip. I am rotting from my

stumbles between friendship and lovers.

But I still covet your skin best from a distance.


Intrinsically I stroke your hair, your hands swim

down my body like a retraced path. And for the

moment we are simple. A boy and a girl linked

in rooted breaths.


A Poets Contribution February 6, 2012

Filed under: Essays — jessicacolleenmcdermott @ 4:49 am
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A poet contributes to society by reflecting reality. Poets, along with other artists function as creators of the moment. Through their words, poets are able to comment on a society’s social or political structure. Their poems communicate an awareness of a moment and an awareness of the humane or inhumane conditions of that specific moment. Thus, they promote social progress and change.

Some believe that poets only become useful or popular after their deaths, but this is because poets (along with other artists) hover on the outskirts of society. They do not always gain acclaim during their lifetimes due to the fact that they question the main ideas or beliefs of that time. A good poet reminds us of our humanity and our history through realistic depiction. Poet Dylan Thomas said, “A good poem is a contribution to reality. The world is never the same once a good poem has been added to it.  A good poem helps to change the shape of the universe, helps to extend everyone’s knowledge of himself and the world around him.”

This last October I attended a reading by writer Barry Lopez, in which he defined a writer’s duty as giving voice to the silent injustices that people fear to speak about. By writing about what we may fear or do not comprehend, writers make us aware of our world and more understanding of one another.  But perhaps the most meaningful contribution poets make through their writings is that they remind us that society is not life. Life encompasses more than simply belonging to a society, and it is a poet’s desire to express this truth.


My Scar February 1, 2012

Filed under: Poetry — jessicacolleenmcdermott @ 6:00 am
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It’s melted into my skin like a line of pink chewed bubble gum.

I got the scar last winter, living at the Nottingham house. I

Was pulling pizza out of the oven, when the cookie sheet

Bit my wrist. The stun of heat, like light after a nights

Sleep, made my eyes shut and hot pads slip. I ran

Water over my skin, it stung for days after.

Today it’s numb. It rests now, like a body

In a grave. It is silent. And with time,

It might completely fade until

It is gone.