A poem

Two stained hooks, one on each side of the cheek
Pull and pull; the factory kids have no time
To sleep, they keep on working, greasing the
Arms and the chest and the neck so it all
Adheres to a hug. This must be love.

To love without asking for anything, the blessed, penitent motherhood.
Your own work of art growing and leaving the house on its two cross-stitched feet.
The older I get the harder it is to bargain
For it to stay longer, the more I need to offer
To keep its interest. A shortbread, frosting,
Fresh cherries, fresh toys. How easily…

A poem

A sage cage around her beaten skin.
The dress slips from her shoulders
Like dry flowers leave the trees.
The old and the new stitches on the fabric
Match the old and new scars on her feet.

A copper crown of hair surrounds her head;
Her thoughts in line and sharpened at the ends.
Not snakes like Medusa, she does not care for stones; statues are for the rich and timeless.
No, it resembles the humble needles of a seamstress, freezing, selling comfort for food, clothes for a home.
A naked, barren seamstress, hands working but never full. …

A Poem

Poisonous dew leaks from my mouth
In the form of familiar syllables and old lullabies
Sang to me inside this very own cubicle.
Homunculus dreams and thumbeline hopes
Wake me up in a squirm; I thought I had seen the hands
Of a long-gone ghost
Brushing off life’s sweet nectar from my body.

My poison ivy sting buzzes in tempting vibrations
For me to join the other side of the hive, the queens
I’ve buried over time, under the dust.
Honey seals every fate as the wax over a beautiful goodbye letter
Sorrow has never been bitter but nauseatingly sweet,
The regret after…

A poem

The light flickers as I stare at my reflection.
The cheekbones pulled up, a mock-up of a happy person
A half-way smile that never reaches a destination
And the angry sound of the glass, fizzling.

But the sound is not mine, although it matches my heart.
Anxious wings dance to my own anxiety, both wanting
To burn, both hoping there’s something hidden
Inside the blinding obviousness of the light.

What if another is standing there, watching me struggle.
Attempting to punch my own light bulb; hands on the switch,
The power of ending it all,
Of destroying dreams with the serenity

A poem

The square is packed
Freezing ghosts dragging their own soaked blankets,
The hems blackened, collecting grains of cement and cigarette ashes.
I think of last night’s tempest and how
Rain can make tears invisible.

Musty children run from side to side.
Suppressed plays leave their minds as they leave
The settlements; a doll’s corpse hides deeper into the mud,
The irretrievable youth, no time for a funeral.

Masked people walk by as if the plague had a face. …

A poem

The bile-yellow room seems to diminish
The more I walk through it.
A compilation of hair and eyes and agony
Become one with the plaster, and I wonder
How many faces are engraved on the walls,
How many voiceless mouths are trying to scream
From beneath the jaundiced tint.

Fleshy eyelids denounce those
Who could not sleep for three nights in a row.
The masks camouflage bitten lips and purple tongues.
Madness adheres to the back of the uvula
Like a malaise you can’t swallow nor throw out.

Even the large maroon vases seem depressed.
The plants seem exhausted, the soil…

A Poem

The ghoul lifts me from my dreamless sleep; I think it is the third time this week.
Tired as only the dying could be, I pull my skin along with the sheets off from the bed.
My hands reach ahead for a purpose, a shift in the winds, a vibration other than the alarm
Going on and off and on and off, just as I wish my tears were. I cannot cry anymore.
I cannot remember the last time I did. …

I own a red bookshelf. Not exactly made of wood. It is much more fragile than wood, which makes it even more dangerous the fact that I’ve been stacking books on it until the shelves form a half-smile.

Promise me you won’t break.

I push another book into a much smaller space. Is not that I’m a bad person to my books, but I’m a spaceless person, with a lot of books.

The top shelf for them…

The women I cannot catch a grasp of. Plath, Woolf, Sexton, Smith, Palmer… Women out of reach, the greasy bone glued to a…

Or how juices were literally flowing…

It was a warm Saturday night when I made the wrong decision of using a professional knife to tear a pumpkin apart. It was not a festive, Halloween-ish pumpkin carving session, but a late-dinner kind of thing.

The knife had arrived, by surprise, a few weeks ago, wrapped around an apron and a note from the company I work for, a gift.
I guess I have a weak for sharpness… sharp blades, sharp minds, sharp words.

I had been waiting for an excuse to put the knife to use ever since. …

A Poem

My grey thoughts hit the grey walls of the buildings.
We share the same holes and a malnourished sustenance
Plastering what we can, when we can, with the resources we have.

We celebrate the tiny victories, an open window, a weed pushing
Against the concrete.
The ups and downs of the streets remind me of life and how I should
Be able to hold tighter to the metal handle that keeps me in my seat.
I see so many faces enjoying the thrill, the chill on their spines
While I’m almost not there at all, nearly giving in and flying.
Sometimes I think it would…

Giulia de Gregorio Listo

Get my book “Longing” here: bit.ly/LongingPoetry Poet. Artist. Witch. Mental Health Advocate. Find me everywhere: linktr.ee/giulialisto

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store