Looking Pinched

Hourglass figures from days of corsets cinch’d tight
Constricted breath and contained all movement combined
To make a sphere constrained and thoughts smaller
And birthed ideas bubbled forth
And birthed ideas bubbled forth
Women wondered, heard, held their heads taller
Took baby breaths and baby-steps from roles assigned
Fought battles from boudoir to basement for their rights

This is an Amanda’s Pinch. It is a rhyming, syllabic form that contains a refrain of repeated lines 4 and 5. The syllable count is: 12/12/10/8/8/10/12/12 with a rhyme scheme of: a/b/c/D/D/c/b/a. Its centered on the page to give the idea of being pinched in the middle. I first wrote one for the Scavenger Hunt this last September and liked it so much that I thought I’d give it another go.

I’m old enough to remember when I couldn’t have a credit card on my own. My father had to put me on his card. I remember being told I had no place in Veterinary medicine because I was female. In fact, it was shocking to the guidance counselor that I was even considering a career working with animals. When in college I took an aptitude test for possible career directions. I was told that I would make a great beautician, dental hygienist, nurse, even a passible mortician (because the dead don’t care about your gender). If it hadn’t been for the counselor (a woman in the armed services who had broken many barriers) I wouldn’t have seen the career at the very bottom of the list – veterinary technician. I have many women to thank for my rights – the right to vote, the right to own property (including real estate!), autonomy over my health care (but now not including reproductive rights). But I’m seeing an erosion of those rights and perhaps they will disappear completely. Now there is a lessening based on how much money I have, how mobile I am, how educated I am. If I’m rich and have the ability and the knowledge, I can travel to where I can access the care I want and need. If that’s not the case, I’m at the mercy of short sighted politicians. The struggle is real and the fight is not over. It was never over.

Looking at a Dead Tree

My roots crush the sepulcher, grind the bones to ash
No sustenance from skeletons long dead is found
Life is blighted, leaves and bark fall away
From graves I draw up only loss
From graves I draw up only loss
Foundation’s anchor is steeped in decay
No new leaves are put forth, to death my growth is bound
Gravel wind mourns life, lightning strike and down I crash

This is my first entry for the My Name Scavenger Hunt (My Name SH) where I write an Amanda’s Pinch. This form consists of a poem of 8 lines with a syllable count of 12/12/10/8/8/10/12/12, a rhyme scheme of a/b/c/D/D/c/b/a where the 4th and 5th lines are identical. The form is centered and should give the impression that it is being “pinched” in the middle…

This is also my entry for David’s We’ave Written Weekly (W3) on the Skeptic’s Kaddish. The Poet of the Week, Steven S. Wallace has challenged us to write an ekphrastic poem inspired by his photograph (above) he has shared with us.