dreams, love, nature, photography, weather, writing

question mark . . .

Eastern Comma

woke up from a tangle of dreams
dressing in black for a party
the sounds of a baby crying
and now … the sun full & bright
the snowdrops blooming in the garden
here to stay, and not melting.

i wandered out in my robe,
hair still tangled from sleep
and what should land on me
but a question mark
a butterfly asking me
what i am asking myself . . .
can you?
could you?
will you?
it’s such a lovely day …
and you should, love.

what a lucky girl i am
to know these things:
the warm sun in my face
a melodic song in my mouth
a daunting, haunting love
and always that series
of life’s unending, unrelenting
puzzling, perfect, positive


this girl

this girl

this girl figure skates in her bathtub
this girl is a repressed writer
this girl knows that a pair of shoes
can change your mind and change the world
or at least determine how far you travel.
this girl is friends with black and blue
but doesn’t need a place to sit down
or stand still, to count her bruises
and she doesn’t want her name tag
to read “wife.”
this girl will gently comb your body
examine your every shape for interpretations
in the small of your back
the length of your arms
the back of your calves
your hands.
and you will think to look for her
in dark places and she will laugh at you
standing in a shock of sunlight
eying you from under her umbrella.
and you will love her every contradiction
wish yourself underneath her coat
wonder what it’s like to be the pocket lint
riding soft alongside her hip
you will pack your razorblade suitcase
and this girl will fill the bathtub in the hotel
the room will go cold, your lips will pale
your eyes and hair go white rabbit snowshoes
and the voice of this girl will come
glass shatter blood trickle thirst
you will find yourself skating figure 8s
deep circles of infinite love
stretched taut for
this girl.

~ Andrea E. Janda


Plainest Nomer

i believe those Magickal and proper names
to be equally wondrous and profound.
but all good things elemental,
all things strange in nature
resist classification.

They move with the flitting light of Faeries
and fireflies,
here —
— now there.
Give them a name and they change it,
ask for one and they riddle you.

Sometimes a word must be invented
conjured from the nothing
taken from the foundry
where they,
the collection of fragrant and heady muses,
are able to describe the anatomy of a feather
and drop the understanding into your head.

To see in this raw
depends on which eyes you use,
which frame you have,
what mystery you know,
and which name you own.
More, which name you are accustomed to.

And the skill begins to evade us.

We are complicated by deeper things,
coiling black tree bark
growing red rotted roots,
that snake in like cellophane tubes
that used to be sharp fingers,
that used to be vines,
that used to be ruby kernels
stuffed with the ghostmeat of life.

What thoughts were made of,
what devices we allowed them
by calling them out
now pushes our insides apart,
dividing the sense so we are unable to remember
the first seeds of sorrow,
until it blossoms into revulsion.

We cannot come by those names easily now,
the sickness has progressed
to a renaming of our injuries
and insides.
Longer epithets,
chewing on taxonomy until it stretches out
like green-gray taffy.
Coaxing the pedigree from an otherwise
lovely mongrel
until we no longer recognize the ‘dog’
as pet, companion,
and friend.

We cannot help but respond to mythic patterns,
we have archetypes, we have Faerie Tales,
we have tomes of prose and religious books of writ.
It is all the same story and we
are curiously busying ourselves over the centuries
to tell it and deliver it in new ways,
new/old ways of healing the void and sickness
like medicine in variant doses.

We build tolerance in linear progressions:
we try debunking the old.
With great strides of scientific progress
we are fueling inbred science projects of spirituality
always looking for a more efficient way to be sold.

We forget how good it is to be ethereal,
how wondrous is an ancient thought,
how gorgeous it is
to be simple.

The stain of pomegranate under her nails
says she’s been digging again.

i worry . . .
I wonder if she will know what it is
by what it was.

i wonder if she will find her name.

~ Andrea E. Janda


i am

I am
a monstrous and lithe energy
just barely contained
in this luminous soft-candy shell.
right handed and dual-brained
hard on the heart
and easy on the eyes.

I am
always hungry
often cold
but a lover of sleep
which soothes both.

I am
moving towards daydreams
that are intensely private
but talk too much in my writing
and laugh too loudly
and give me away.

I am
singing my own song
painting my own image
writing my own story
photographing my own vision
and the whole of the work
fills my entire body with its art
and resonates with purpose in my mind.

I am
sometimes cruel
particularly judgemental
and that is my protection.
still – i am
capable of profound love
and understanding and gentility
and that is my gift.

I am
the ace at seeing good
or at least morbid humor
in the worst possible things.

I am
not afraid of much
except losing someone slowly.

I am
terribly sarcastic
unwilling to accept “no”
impossibly stubborn
frustrated by time
and this means
I can do anything
once i learn how to carve the hours out
and forgive myself and others
for the occasional loss of ambition.

I am
constantly improving
by ups and downs
and always looking
for a new way to love
everyone i know
and especially
those i don’t,
because, through love
i am.

~ Andrea E. Janda


Great Expectations

“Chicka boom-boom,”
that’s what the old lady said
like an opening chant in Santeria,
bringing on the spirit of love/lust/desire in a man
with the sharpened hopes of seeing it all destroyed.
This is when you train a female to know
her supposed enemy, and assure her
to tear it down
is to win.

Masochistic Feminism.
No earth root sky there.
No Goddess bellies, no blood, no bread.
No offering of breast milk, no black honey.
No power in defeat.
No love in war.

It is what it is when you raise a girl,
for some, there is the other way,
like frosting a cake.
And you can add almondine
or strychnine to the batter
or you can leave her sproingy vanilla flesh
so the sweet perfume can find its way out.
Let her choose her own dressings.
Let her layer on what she will.

Not all of us are sweet.
Not all of us wear frosting.

Which brings me to ….
the old theme of neurotics in the suburban housewife.
went to see it once briefly. . . curiosity and the cat
and all that.
i have swum in those hip waders before
as did my mother before me.
Some of us choose the ironing board as our prayer altar.
Some of us get wise,
we devour the books and we breathe deep the intellectual stench.
and we are never the same.
we learn to accept our minor defeats
and escape our major trappings.
sometimes we gnaw off a few layers of skin
in order to run wild through the forest,
. . . but it grows back.

And some even say that this same tenderness
enables you to feel the next love to a greater extent.
if your flesh is open, you may certainly feel the warm breath of a lover
more distinctly at your shoulder.

Which brings me to you ….

i know this place in your life now,
i am no less or greater traveled than you
but i know this place . . .

darling, i wish so many things for you:
do know:
that i need your gorgeous inspirit dialogue so profoundly,
that yes, whatever body love chooses to live in,
whatever guise she chooses to wear,
whatever she means when she rises up
like nectar from the heart
and trickles from the mouth,
it is what it is when i say that i love you so fiercely
and always want to know where your growing pains are.
– i hope that this remoteness brings you your desired focus
or unfocus …
whatever it is you need this time to bring about the change.
– and this last wish has a bit for me too as we are always selfish
when it comes to magic genies,
— that when the change comes

i am still in there somewhere.

~ Andrea E. Janda


spring dreaming

she’s leaving in the dark
but she knows that it’s morning
those earliest quicksilver hours move with
the first chatter of birdsong
the whisper of lawn sprinklers
the soft rumble of bakery trucks.

she peels herself from the length
of his body,
the indentation where she fits
carved in his side
the nite before
last Sunday
a month ago
the day he was born
a life previous.

on the roadway
lit now by the wash
of a dull, pewtered sun
amber-orange street lights fizzle
wink out like paper lanterns
and the black-blue bird
eyes her from the powerline.

she regards her watcher
with a knowing smile
for he is messenger and muse
promising dreams
the return of Spring
the length of a lover
and the indentation
to be reborn from
every morning
a blood-red sunrise
in a milk-white sky

~ Andrea E. Janda



A contradict of forces
of white and spotted horses,
blue ribbons tied
to hold the lines
of gold-flecked fish
who swim away,
burnished and beautiful
to meet the day.
You’re a contradict of forces,
from grey and untamed horses,
red-murdered young,
my limber tongue,
so lily-white and silenced
by the day i met you,
burnished and beautiful
but black i chose
and kept you

~ Andrea E. Janda


bird of paradise

under the apple
a bird on its back
beak points black
stuck in red meat
pewter bead eyes
cloudy nectar runs down
a sweetness a blindness
and fruit becomes tears.

~ Andrea E. Janda