Where I Come From

Where I Come From by Valerie Parente

I made it personal on purpose,
so you could see the grace and the grit,
made the heartache so worth it,
’cause it’s an artist you played with.

Here’s the muse I choose to use,
thank you for seeing these metaphors through,
it got rough when I spoke the truth,
because of how much I love you.

Now it’s copyrighted to my tongue,
never resent where I come from,
using the fire in my lungs,
let’s flip the pages for fun.

My collection, my protection,
from any potential detriment,
it brought me the ideal lesson,
that’s the power of manifesting.

– Valerie Parente (6-16-2021)

The Architect

The Architect by Valerie Parente

She who wears the claw of chrome,
upon her right hand,
can create worlds,
from a pathological plan.

It’s the illness in her defective bones,
that whispers the blueprint,
adjusting the world order,
to rebuild from the ruins.

She’s made it her grand mission,
to map out this pain,
now it’s her duty,
to make a home out of a maze.

With bright pink locks of hair,
she has your attention,
they agree with the task,
but don’t understand the reference.

She’s called a freak when she lays it out,
with her architectural mind,
but her cultural impact,
is an outcome that doesn’t lie.

She has an eye for constructing it all,
knows where to lie the stones,
knows where to build up,
knows where to dig a hole.

Everybody wants the stigma to vanish,
but rarely do they realize,
that to see past the roadblocks,
we need to open our eyes.

– Valerie Parente (6-16-2021)

The Femme Fatale

The Femme Fatale by Valerie Parente

That woman holds the serpent
doing as she pleases
and wouldn’t you like to know
that’s why they call her deviant.

They gave her scarlet horns
so she adorned them with charms
reminders of her intentions
from the moon and the stars.

That woman is in charge
that’s why they call her malevolent
she didn’t kill any man
she killed man’s dominance.

– Valerie Parente (6-15-2021)

Divine Design

Divine Design by Valerie Parente

There’s no such thing as coincidence
there has to be design
because how can I find the perfect words
that just so happen to rhyme?
You’re telling me poets are just lucky?
That language just so happens to coincide
that there’s rhythm to the psyche
that can be written in artistic lines
that the material world naturally mirrors
the effortless world inside my mind?
No, I don’t believe in luck
I believe in the divine
based on every one of your points
used to describe otherwise.

– Valerie Parente (6-15-2021)

Nemesis (Not Me)

Nemesis (Not Me) by Valerie Parente

I’m finally happy
and my OCD still found me.
I see you in my dreams
with a tangible body
but when I go to defeat you
you’re the nemesis that continues
like a chain that keeps repeating
in a relationship so uneven.
I see you in so many forms
using my sweet slumber to return
and I punch, I kick, I scream
I wrestle to separate from the enemy
and I get oh so frantic
to justify my antics
begging the peers before my eyes
to understand that I’m the good guy
that I am separate from this disease
but then I wake up and it’s not a dream.
I still have this sickness on my skin
when I’m awake I’m still hallucinating
and it’s hard to believe I used to be afraid
convinced I’d be so lost without this charade
but now that I’m full grown I finally see
that this disease is nothing without me.
You’re just a sickness that attaches
used my puberty to take advantage
and I was far too young to understand
that your golden offer was a cruel scam.
How dare you stick yourself to me
even when my brain is asleep?
How dare you attack those I love
as if my entire psyche wasn’t enough?
And even though I’m so damn exhausted
by the nemesis in my subconscious
I’ve finally found my grace and solace
knowing I can manipulate you as an artist.

– Valerie Parente (6-13-2021)

Catharsis

Catharsis by Valerie Parente

When she asked “How do you deal with the toxicity of the public?”
I said “Write, write, write,
channel all your frustration in creation,
create, create, create,
channel all your energy into artistic placement,
paint words into memorable phrases,
find meaning in the oddest places,
make a collection of your lessons,
help the lost find their blessings,
the hardship will always get better,
and the wisdom goes on forever,
find your catharsis and give it away,
translate the world that lives in your brain,
be the God you want God to be,
and then you will find your peace.”

– Valerie Parente (6-7-2021)

I Want To Be Heard

I Want To Be Heard by Valerie Parente

It’s not that I want to be famous,
it’s that I want to be heard,
and I know I can touch you,
if you get in touch with my words.

I took a lot of carefully constructed time
from a child to the adult I am now
I try my best to add a positive spin
a piece of beauty in an ugly crowd.

There is nothing more important than a voice
I realized that when I was a sick teen
and if you don’t like what you hear
you sure as hell have the right to intervene.

I saw a lot of talk about mental disorders
that glamorized the illness over healing
and I knew right then and there
I wanted to patch over the bleeding.

There’s are always silver linings to our pain
and it took a long time for me to see them
but the one thing that saves me every day
is the process of creating and artistic freedom.

I didn’t go through hell for nothing,
mental health awareness is the goal,
there’s a darkness we can manipulate,
shedding light in the shadows.

Make it meta, make it metaphorical,
make these poems layered infinitely,
I’ve got your back and that’s a promise,
if you’re kind enough to listen to me.

– Valerie Parente (6-7-2021)

Jackalope

Jackalope by Valerie Parente

You’re just a mythical thing
a hybrid through taxidermy
jackrabbit ears
antlers that pierce
formulated after death
a concept used to make sense
of the world we don’t know
my dear jackalope.

You’re just a mythical thing
you screwed me up that morning
that’s why I’m a creature of the night
but that pain will not define
the way you broke me down
so broken but whole now
a fusion of my dual states
dark and light in the same place.

You’re just a mythical thing
two real entities mixing
to make one hell of a tall tale
and my mind went off the rails
a little truth behind the love
a little make-believe teenage crush
you got out, never quite mine
I had grace but I was chaos inside.

You’re just a mythical thing
made from the backstabbing
you don’t know me
you know a girl so naive
when I had you in my palm
before we sabotaged it all
but I’m content tonight
I found someone that felt right.

You’re just a mythical thing
my omen, my warning
you don’t play God with nature
you don’t tamper with your maker
that’s when you lose your appetite
become emaciated over night
that was no way to live
nearly got myself killed.

You’re just a mythical thing
a story I was telling
now you’re a thing of the past
and I won’t bring that pain back
a little bit of truth combined
became a tall tale over time
and I’m okay letting go
farewell, dear jackalope.

– Valerie Parente (6-6-2021)