poetry

A weak voice is a symptom of heart failure.

abstract abstract expressionism abstract painting acrylic

I tried to say
important things
like ‘I love you’
and ‘I’m sorry’
but they came out
wet
crooked
aborted—
and I just let it happen,
let them splatter
like droplets,
like shattered teeth
spat in the sink.

© Nancy Botta, 2019

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poetry

A Banal Sort of Betrayal.

The mid century outdoor sconce
I helped your wife install last summer
illuminates;
your slightly receding hairline,
5 day old stubble,
sweat stains on a blouse,
the glint of a best friend
charm on my wrist—
your forehead slick with guilt
when my arms, encircling your neck,
remind you
that we never truly cared
about all the lines we’ve crossed.

© Nancy Botta, 2019

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poetry

Bouquet.

pink flowers photograph

 

She powders the clematis
blooming around her neck,
and dabs at red posies
planted on fat lips,
she paints her skin fresh
like the calla lilies he sent her,
to make up for flower pots
smashed on her doorstep.

© Nancy Botta, 2019

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poetry

Spotlighting Chicago Poet Nancy Botta

Thanks to John Aiello for featuring me on his blog, The Electric Review.

Electric Review

In celebration of National Poetry Month2019, The Electric Review introduces Chicago-area poet Nancy Botta. As readers know, the ER rarely publishes original work. For me to publish someone, their work must be exceptional both in tone, style and originality. In turn, a single tour through Botta’s work evinces why she appears here now: A young master of Haiku, Botta’s imagery stabs and presses, embedding itself in the heart, haunting the buried layers of the consciousness with its raw honesty. Alas, there seems no better forum than National Poetry 2019 to let her work speak for itself.

Three Haiku

Downpour

Wet season arrives

with muddy hems and soft groans—

black umbrellas bloom.

Mire

Drifting morning fog;

rivulets gather and wash

over broken trees.

Luna

A cool milky moon

spills through an open doorway—

she drinks in silence.

Original watercolor by Eric Ward, © 2019. All rights reserved.

Rosemary

I…

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poetry

Atone.

blue and cream abstract painting

Sitting on a bed
squinting at the sun
I peel skin from my lips
slick with guilt and spit.

A self inflicted
crushed velvet wound
drizzles down and stains
my lap with an ellipsis.

It’s hard to show up
stuttering apologies
and muttering mea culpas
past bitten fingertips.

But it’s time to rise
and spit blood in the sink,
it’s time to eat the pain
and swallow my bullshit.

© Nancy Botta, 2019

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poetry

An Unfortunate Bachelorette Party.

adult alcohol bar bartender

Oh my God calm down
no need to make a scene,
your hair is crazy
and the wailing is obscene.

Buck up buttercup
we ain’t got time for that,
dry off those cheeks
and re-adjust your cock hat.

[tick tock tick tock
you drag on and on,
leaking cheap mascara
after my buzz is long gone.]

Get a grip Rachel
being alone is not so bad,
at least you’re not marrying
a coke head older than your dad.

© Nancy Botta, 2019

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poetry

Bad habit. ( part 2)

pink flame abstract wallpaper

(I don’t know how I got here,
surrounded by temperance and emptiness)

old habits slide under clothes
and explore cross-stitched hips,
looking for new canvas to stipple
with flesh-wounds and rusted guilt;

(but one day I woke up unraveling,
thoroughly done with all this cleanliness)

angry compulsions knock around my head
under a hail of calcified shit,
like the pebble in my shoe
or a weeping scab on my lip;

(so I unsheathed the knives and got to work,
stripping myself of mercy and forgiveness).

© Nancy Botta, 2019

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