On Love

I will never write about Love.

For when I did

I believed I could capture

Something so uncapturable.

I thought I understood

Something so unexplainable.

When words stay fixed

And are subject to interpretation

While Love is mutable, because alive

Yet fixed

But in the opposite way to words.

I will never write about Love.

For today I don’t know what it is

It is not what I thought it was

What I heard wispered in my ear

Unnumbered times

I wish I never pronounced Its name.

I will never write about Love.

For all definitions

All the teachings

Don’t match with today

And make me question my yesterdays.

I will never write about Love.

For it’s the only thing

We shall not write about

But live

And tell no one

So everyone can be caught by surprise

By a whirlwind

By a smell

By a word

By a coffee

By a kiss.

And know.

Still unable to name it.

On Beauty and Silence

I haven’t written anything on my blog about the book I have written and published this year. Perhaps because it’s in Italian, and most of my readers of this blog are not Italian so I thought why should I even bother to speak about it? … Now I decided I want to translate the poems and will put the translations on my blog in the section Words & Stories.

I never thought I would publish my poetry, perhaps because unlike fiction or other forms of writing, poetry is incredibly intimate. At least my poetry is.
I began writing obsessively last September and it’s not until I had a good amount of poems that I thought to turn them into a book. I had gone through the roughest time of my life, a low I didn’t know how to overcome so I wrote down my feelings as a way to turn pain into something beautiful. Also, I wrote it to never forget and to not allow the same things happen to me again.

This week Italy is raging about the multiple newspapers that write articles about the last femminicidio (woman murdered by a man) case. The headlines excuse him, saying he was a good man, he loved her too much, he didn’t mean it… and yet he killed her. We raise girls in a culture that teaches them to excuse every violent act of men, to understand men, to help them… never mind if we lose our life in pursuit of “saving” him. My book talks about the pain and the consequences for a woman to be in a violent relationship: be it physical or psychological.
Psychologically violent relationships are the most vile, for the simple fact its scars and bruises are unseen on the outside. Many times I tried to confide in another woman (who on the contrary was in a physical relationship with her husband and father of her three children) but she would brush me of saying I am ungrateful and that the man I am with is so good and helpful… I should be ashamed of thinking anything bad of him. Well he was all that she was describing, just not with me. Anyway, somehow he also did the very best thing he could do (I didn’t know at that time though), that being kicking me out of the house – only to try get me back multiple times. Though the moment I was out of there and surrounded by my family and girlfriends, I began to write… to try heal, make sense, make something out of the nightmare I lived in.

On the beauty of life, and on the necessary silence to translate that beauty into words. My book is a reminder to women that they are not alone, that love has nothing to do with violence, that when you start sensing something is not right… it most likely isn’t!

Every word written has a meaning and a reason for being there. Every poem has multiple layers which can be reached differently depending from who reads it and its sensibility. I wrote and wrote only to understand many months later the reasons of those poems and their meaning. And only a year later I asked myself: why did I begin the book with Vasilisa…..(which you can find here).
Why is it the first? Why Vasilisa? Who is she? … Do you know the Russian story of Vasilisa The Beautiful? I wasn’t sure why that name came to my mind when I was thinking of a title to give to this poem, but it makes sense as Vasilisa’s story on a symbolical level stands for the beginning of a quest: the quest of oneself. Vasilisa is a story of female intuition.
So everything, every word, every paragraph, every sentence has a baggage.
I hope it touches you – like it touched me.

 

P.S. here you can buy a copy of the book 🙂

I am…

I AM the whore you’d wish to fuck,
I AM the mother of your children,
I AM the lover you long for
and the fiancé you want to become your wife.

I AM the storm
and the calm surrender.
I AM the hurricane in your dreams
and the dark forest you never enter.

I AM an animal,
I AM the Holy Priestess.
I AM the Oracle
and I AM the beggar.

I AM the most luminous light
and the darkest darkness.
I AM the flesh
and the smell of sex.
I AM the open arms
in your times of need.

I AM your sister
and I AM your daughter.
I AM the sage grandmother
I AM the nurturing woman.

 

(Tanya Gervasi, written 26.07.2018)