The most blonde woman in the world

isn’t blonde at all on the inside.
She’s blackened blue, the hue
of shiny spider-backs uncovered
in the corner, the scuttle of hairy legs
and see-through sheen of web strands
strung one by one by one.
She’s the red of bone after the dog’s done,
marrow sucked out. And the alabaster stone
of its teeth as it yawns and lays down its head
tired of this long-legged deer that tasted divine
but now licks empty like water, cool and unfilling.
She’s that off-white of the written page,
the kind that dulls your fingerprints with ink,
makes you wish you’d spent a little more
in the printing process. She’s the grey trail
over silver sinks, the curved blue of seven
eight nine times you wash your hands
and still she remains.
She’s the green heat of an inside twig.
Bend, won’t break. Cast a switch along
that unbroken line of skin, open her up.
Russian dolls. An open book. The Invisible Woman.
Inside she isn’t golden hued
gold starred
Marilyned or Monroed.
She’s not even the wick flicker of the candle,
casting dancing shadows.
She can never remember if it’s black
that is the amalgamation of all colors
or if that’s white.
But she knows these things are true:
Light attracts the eye.
Blonde is a diamond’s best friend.
Everyone wants a piece.
Don’t try to color in this line or that.
Crayola doesn’t cut it with
mocha brown
periwinkle blue
seafoam green.
she’s not a fucking rainbow.
Or a living room wall.
The sky will never be as blue as her eyes.
The sun will never be as golden as her hair.
The earth will never be as big around as her heart.



About This Poem: I’m staying at a writer’s retreat as I write this, and there are all these books laying around that aren’t mine and that I’ve never read (one of my favorite parts of staying at retreats). This morning, I picked up Judy Grahn’s “The Queen of Wands” and opened the book to her poem, “The most blonde woman in the world.” I remember reading this poem when I was about twenty, and had the most visceral reaction to it. I hadn’t read it again until there it was in this book, and it seemed like a sign. So I stole her title and ran with it. I should also say that traditionally, I’ve been a narrative poet, so I’m working on being less narrative and more word- and sound-oriented. Which is fun, but hard.

About Poem-A-Day: For the month of April (National Poetry Month), I’ve signed on to write a poem-a-day (eeks!). To make it slightly easier on myself, my rules are that I have to write each poem in fifteen minutes or less, and that I have to post it here on the blog as soon as I’m done. No edits. Just rough. Raw. Right out of the gate. (Of course, if you’re playing along, I hope you’ll post a link to your poem in the comments here — mainly because I’m selfish and I want to read them!)

See all my Poem-A-Day poems here.