Tag Archives: politicalpoet

poems from prison

what about when you sweat

and then wash under

a clean faucet

until the very thought of you

is open wide bee hives

pores drip honey down her sides


what about when you cry

so many do yoga, but why

c this all the temple i have

move like this, i get to be bad

and pray into hips

finger tips had

sparks flying off, i swear

black curling hair

cartwheel colors of care


what about parvati

and how she dance

a writer flashing stories

a fighter blind with glory

but i am forever

and this body is not

find the beat

monarch all youve got

butterflies choke the air

sound of orange raindrops in her hair



so much to say, thanks for reading!  -rs





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to be real: for twenty twelve

Dear Readers,

This past Wednesday I went out to dinner with a few friends, this macrobiotic spot by Union Square, and after we finished the delicious fish soup and seaweed, one sister pulled out a deck of cards.  Tarot cards, fairy cards, fortune cards, however you call it, we all did it, staying put at the table till they turned the Christmas tree lights off, letting us know it was time to be up.  One of the cards I pulled said, “Be honest with yourself.”  But when you’ve learned to lie so well, how then do you get back to being honest with yourself?  So I wrote this poem last night.  And before I share it with you, I want to let you know that I am chairing a panel on Cinema and Law for the Society of Cinema and Media Studies Conference coming up, and yeah, I’m still writing, but just not blogging or tweeting as much.  Maybe I will get back to this practice regularly, or maybe I am simply transitioning away.  Either way, thank you for all your comments and for reading. 🙂

To Be Real

whatever happened to a dream deferred

does it turn into the sun

glowing behind a perpetual cloud

called the soul conflicted


what does it mean to be honest with myself

does it mean to shake forth the silver studded bullets of my dreams

through the lattice vision of these eyes

into my palms upturned before me

awaiting the message

ready to build

to be honest?  with myself?

honesty was never an option.

honesty was always my rock.

growing up being honest with myself

would have split me into a million pieces

one for every day

two for every hour

three for every minute

four for every second

new selves ever blooming

ones that had never ever been defeated

that had never been raped

never even been molested

and so never had to lie

because nothing had happened

not to them


being honest with myself

that there was a me who was being raped, molested

hawked, touched, blamed, neglected, forced, tricked

and that it was the same me who was forever drawing

rainbows, suns, clouds, birds, hearts overflowing off the page

I have hated myself

I have loved myself

in exquisite balance

enough to stay alive, knocking down world class goals

enough to stay loving, plummet and resurrect all the way


I learned to lie, to cover up the signs, subtlest of deceptions

calculations beyond my years

leaving a trail

covering all tracks

both at the same time

when you learn this way

about the inside skin of truth

how far is the journey to honesty with self?


being honest with myself means

I don’t know why I am fighting this fight

I don’t know what this fight is about

except I am fighting for my life, the light

is righteous and deserves to live

is an arrow shaped cloud with rainbow flecked tail feathers

is heat in a clear pool of cold

I fight even in my dreams I fight

I ebb and flow through depression like a monkey swings trees

waking life galaxies to filter through before coming into stride

being honest with myself means understanding I’m still alive

and forgiving myself for knowing how, even back when

when time stood still and patience reigned as an eight headed demon


being honest with myself

I don’t know how to fight this fight

speculation fills my coffers with fools gold

should I, you should, we must, you can’t, hurry up

words pound against my skull, numb me to my skill

words pin me to myself, until I am a bulls eye full of darts

it never starts

and it don’t stop

the musical snakeskin I don and shed

chameleon finding colors to blend into a colorless world

being honest with myself

just be yourself and you’ll be fine

but they don’t tell you how to get there


is not a simple place to reach

it is a path, it is a place, I am space

energy rotating, lp’s in a crate


being honest with myself

is not filling journals with lists

is not focusing on the limits

is not doing everything every day

is not thinking my way to truth

is feeling my way to the sound booth

eggshells soft against my cheek

they know I sing when I speak

is picking up my pen

is turning the pages of a book

is flipping thru stages of how I look

is catching hold of the golden thread

that bread crumb trail of who I am

i find it where all the birds are

angels flying between me and the sun

run through me with winged shadows

like im the one

being honest with myself.



roopa singh


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rumi like ruminate: “on with the dance, let joy be unconfined.” (mark twain)

dear readers,

there’s so much going on, so much to care about, the poet ishle park wrote that when the japan earthquake hit, the world shifted on its axis, and some of us clipped on our wings. it’s a good time for flight, no? here’s a poem from rumi, i was feeling it so much this morning, running through that grey and green and dog filled prospect park. go brooklyn.

lovers are made aware, by rumi
you make a hundred resolutions to journey somewhere/
but He draws you somewhere else.
He turns the horses bridle in every direction/
so that the untrained horse may know there is a rider.
The clever horse is well paced because it knows a rider is mounted upon it.
He fixed your heart on a hundred passionate desires, disappointed you/
then broke your heart.
Since he broke the Wings of your first intention/
how do you doubt the existence of the Wing Breaker.
Since his ordainment snapped the chord of your contrivance,
how can you remain blind to His command?
Your resolutions and aims now and then are fulfilled
so that through hope your heart might form another intention/
which he might once again destroy.
for if he were to keep you completely from success/
you would despair:
how would the seed of expectation be sown?
If your heart did not sow that seed,
and then encounter barrenness, how would it recognize its submission to Divine will?
By their failures lovers are made aware of their Lord.
Lack of success is the guide to Paradise:
Pay attention to the tradition:
“Paradise is encompassed with pain.”

roopa swing

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