Did I ever tell you
she tastes of licorice?
And sometimes French brandy
the hairs on her arm
the nape of her neck
a night time covenant
when she sleeps
I long to unwind the ebony coils of her hair
run my fingers along the parabel of her shoulder blades
To know a woman
to love a woman
you must forgive your impatience
to possess what cannot be tamed or owned
you must relinquish the idea
you’re ever going to be in control
she is a faithless word seeking light
her tongue thirsting for your nectar
if you look away too long she will move on
to another flower
such is the delicacy of love
ephemeral and without weight
it skips like a hungered heart
for the right claimant.
it took me
walking on my knees through burning desert
composing words of love in my mind
attuned to her ficklety like
a cage without hinges
I drink in the sight of her
turning a corner, magnified in three way mirrors
like harpsichord strung hummingbird
lasting just a season.
In the night she sleeps
a cool blade
reminder of a child’s memory
the Italian store and how thinly
they carved meat
till held to light it appeared
as a moth
blue and changing
against the moon
In the New Year I am going to do something drastic. I’m going to close all my social media down and take the majority of my books/work offline/out of bookstores. The work that will remain is what I’m most proud of; SMITTEN This Is What Love Looks Like (an anthology, 2019), We Will Not Be Silenced (one of 4 editors/contributors, 2018) and Pinch the Lock (Finishing Line Press, 2016).
When I began, I really believed I could contribute something valuable to the world through the medium of writing. I saw many other people trying but I did not know how many and since 2015 I have seen that there is a glut of people all self-publishing, indie publishing, small press publishing, all with the same ‘dream’ of being a legit writer. Mostly wasting hours on social media futilely. I realize 99.9 percent will never be. The only ones who can do it are those on disability, who get a cheque without needing to work, or supported by husband/wife/family or you’re a retiree. If you DO have to work for a living then it’s rare you can put in enough work to even get to the indie publishing stage.
There are exceptions. One of my real friends whom I did meet on social media works full time and is one of the hardest workers I know. She will succeed I have no doubt about it. She goes home from a hard days work and produces consistently some of the best work I’ve read online. People like her are rare. They are one in a million. Others have the talent to do it but it will depend upon if they have the time to make it happen (you know who you are) but the vast majority have neither the talent, nor the ability to make it happen.
When I began writing I thought I was a pretty good writer. When you read some of the stuff online it’s easy to see why I thought that, a lot of it is really poor quality. On the other hand you need to be either absolutely brilliant or someone who is in the know, to get a really big publisher. I am neither absolutely brilliant nor ever going to be someone who is in the know/networked up to the hilt. Even those who everyone talks about as having a ‘good publisher’ actually don’t. They just secretly vanity press pay or exaggerate how much they actually earn. To earn a living wage as a writer unless you are an editor, it’s the 1 percent of the 1 percent.
I don’t want to be an editor. It’s a thankless job and underpaid. I have qualifications and I am going to use those and return to my previous career, hard as it is, it can earn me what I will need to take care of myself in the future. Maybe no job will be different, maybe I will always be taken for granted and used but I want to do it on my own terms. I have always supported myself from the age of 18 and I always will until I cannot any longer. I have never had any help.
Lastly, most of you don’t know but I was recently diagnosed with a very serious eye-condition that means I am losing my sight. I realize I have to adjust NOW rather than when it is completely gone. I doubt I will still want to live if I go completely blind and I have decided if that day comes I will elect for euthanasia as I am not someone who wishes to live as a completely blind person. Especially as I have no family who will care for me. However, if that day doesn’t come or it gives me 20 more years, (which is unlikely) I still need to change my life to ensure my eyes do not worsen.
As some of you know I had battled a serious illness in 2017 which radically changed my life. It was caused by a virus and I am still sick with it but I have learned to live with it and am high functioning despite it not having completely gone. I believe it will one day completely go but it is a long painful battle. I thought that was enough to deal with but in addition to this my mother told me she no longer wanted me in her life ever again. She and I have had our ups and downs but naively I thought as she aged we would get closer. I have always loved her very much even though she was not in my life that much. When she told me this during my illness, effectively kicking me when I was down, it was the last straw. She knew she’d hurt me as badly as she could ever hope for. She succeeded. To protect myself I accepted what she said and have tried to get on with my life knowing she will not be part of it. It has hardened me and I am bitter about it but I will never be as cruel to someone else as that. I will never succumb to cruelty to deal with my own pain.
On a positive note, I am stronger for all of this. But having the eye sight issue on TOP of all of the above, was just too much. I do have it in me to change my life. I have decided to once more change my life. I am not going to carry around the rejection, fear and grief of her hate of me or anything else, anymore. When I began my blog/writing in 2015 I felt it was a chance to try my hand at writing. I don’t regret doing that but I see now realistically I have to move on.
If you know me, truly know me, and have my number and my address and we talk, then I am bound to call you real friend and will keep in touch. When you get sick you realize who your friends are and it is a good clarity. For those of you I call friends thank you for your friendship and I hope we keep in touch. We may not as we may no longer have anything in common but I wish you all much success.
SMITTEN will be my last personal project in the publishing world for the foreseeable future, although I have also been involved in YOU DON’T LOOK SICK and hope Indie Blu(e) recognizes me for that when it is published next year. SMITTEN is a wonderful ending to this chapter in my life. It is a testimony to the talent of women when they come together. Just because we are minorities doesn’t mean we support each other and lift each other up. I hope projects like SMITTEN help future women do JUST THAT because THAT is what is needed. We need to be good to one another! To support one another!
I want to personally thank the following whom I have met on WP for their loyalty, friendship, goodness and inspiration. I think you are incredible human beings; Mark. Eric. Derrick. Bob. Crystal. Erik. Jane. Karen. Raili, Rita. Susi. Anthony. Laurie, Tony. Nicole. Tara. Helena. Philip. Sarah. Tremaine & Monique. Thank you to Christine and Kindra for letting me work for Indie Blu(e) I really hope all the work I did helped and you succeed. Rita.
RIP Natalie Scarberry you are loved.
Thank you to anyone who read anything of mine. I appreciate you. I wish you only the best.
Candice Louisa Daquin
Though I may not deserve it
Lazy as I am
In ways of discipline
But I’ll give you my rotten core
And every discarded pip
The very dear and marrow of me
Just to believe
I’m a satellite in your sky
Or even stardust
Something rather than nothing
Nothing comes from nothing so
We are all fools when in love
Lest our allotted time runeth dry
And dying we plunge to dusky grave
Unfulfilled, not finding
That God of morsel and mercy
What if when it grows final
And trees no longer spring their buds
For one more year
What if you are gone from my side and I
Empty without your solace and the shape of your mouth
See only endings without playback
I rewind all the years
Each bitter marinated cherry
Tart beneath tongue
A losenge, a comfort, a poison
You wormed into me and I
Welcomed the intrusion
Your familiar vibrate a reminder
Not all that lives is alive
Without some movement
My heart beating faster for its attempt at love
Causes arrythmia and constriction
You wound around me a silken thread
One end tied to skin, the other dangling
Over the edge where all who dream
Let me then
Take your small hand in mine
For there are no safety wheels stable enough
For how I feel …
Though I may not deserve it
I cannot eat without you, there is only
Nourishment when you look upon me
And my arms behold your surround in half light
Making prisms of dull walls and music in movement
We are figurines in our own clock, counting the seconds down to eventual loss
Let me loose then with you reflecting back
Our echoes in the center of the flame
When I close my eyes beloved
I see with your gaze the sum
And with your ears hear my cries
As I crest and fall beneath you in rivers and fire
We exchanged the key
With open mouths
Red from touch
And I never withdrew
In the blossom of your kiss
Take it, turn it to gold, bury our hearts beneath the miracle
So long as I follow in your step
No time is long enough and no regret
For we are but whispers on the crest of day
It will dawn without us and I hope when that happens
Our branches and roots have thickly woven
Deep beneath our flight we become
Not two, not divided, but one
Reaching through time as I strive to call you now
With my longing and the pearl within my very bones
Though I may not deserve it
We are nothing if not the wild in the wind
Dashing against our inevitable ending
Come beloved, follow the trail
Where it leads I know not, yet am I sure
If we fuse like glass nothing remains behind
But some memory before this
The match was struck
A scent of sulfur
You entered the room
And I felt the dagger of joy
We as thunder
We as electric
Striking down obstacle
Falling into mutual devour
The sweetness of eternity
Near in summer storm.
(Nothing comes from nothing/ speak again. Quoted from King Lear. Shakespeare).
But I am divided. In a way that is hard to shape into words.
For women who love women are often the rarest night birds.
Theirs is a love that does not come easily and for this reason, it takes a great deal to stay
Sure and certain on the rainbow path.
Sometimes I understand my bisexual sisters, who having had their love affair with the curves and softness of a woman
Return to their husbands in droves or pick out that wedding dress and let the man
carry them over the threshold.
For a woman to be loved by a woman may feel natural but many times it is a struggle
we have no rule book, we may both want to have the other carry us or hold us when
and men are so good at being heroes
and women are taught to be saved and rescued.
I understand then, the desire for a woman and the longing for less strife
where if you have children it is sometimes impossible to find a way to describe
why you leave daddy for a second mommy and how
fractures in emotions are not easily translated for young minds.
Had I children, who is to say I would have been brave enough? Equally it is part why
I never did.
My sacrifice came because I saw no other way
for it was never as it felt in the arms of someone of the same gender
and in that I am unusual and possibly 1 or 2 percent of the entire world
though it will seem more during Gay Pride and other events
where everyone holds a rainbow and joins in.
Only the days when we are not celebrating, we may be struggling
to fit in with even each other, strange as we may be, these women who
in various guise and costume
fall in love with other women.
I don’t get on well I admit, with those who believe the only true lesbian
is one who shaves her head and dons mens clothes.
It is not that I cannot see their point, or how many years before
it may have been the only choice
but I did not fight this hard to dress as a man and love a woman
who is also dressed as a man.
I would rather pick a full cheeked feminine boy with long hair
and pretend he had nothing between his legs than sell out my own idea
that love of a woman is as feminine as it gets
and we shall share each others’ dresses.
Our history has been unkind and as such, we do not trust very easily
if at all and when we do, we are liable to judge or leave out and exclude many of our tribe
just as women have done for millennia in their pursuit of men
hated other women for existing and challenging that thin mesh of safety.
It saddens me then, to be ostracized when I walk into a gay bar
and do not fit in, or feel judged by my sisters whom I want to
take into my arms and feel less lonely by.
This is but one aspect of the kalidoscope of being the L in the LGBTQ and
few of your G’s and B’s and T’s and Q’s will rush to your defense
we are co-opted in a group who really knows little of the other
for we are as disparate and different as it gets and often we walk
alone, despite our legal rights and our social acceptance (some of the time).
Alone because we cannot befriend a straight woman for she may
wonder if we would fall in love with her (and quite possibly might)
nor a gay woman for her girlfriend will begrudge us, nor a gay man
as they have often hated women and especially those who forsake
men, there is nothing in common there, and straight men will
try to tell us we just need a good f**king and we’ll soon change our
ways so who is left? In the great wide world to be close to and share?
Those fears and our desires, the very stories of our lives
for whom 98 percent of the world cares not, they have their
1.5 children and ideas of normalcy and we don’t fit well enough.
Sometimes, how much I want to tell someone
of the love I have for a woman and the stillness of night
when we move together and how I catch my breath as
she turns like a thimble in my hands, silver against moonlight.
So quiet instead we are, often falling in love and unable
to share this or speak of it, for it is forbidden. No one will
listen, or be interested, they do not understand our strange ways.
Still in this day and this time we are shadows within
light and light within shadows picking our way through
mostly eaten strawberry fields, dreaming of a girl
who may like ourselves be wandering, looking for
a girl like herself who has only ever wanted to be
held tightly and hear the slow beat of a girls heart feel
the rise and fall of her soft breasts and know
she is where she belongs and needed every bit
as much as her own thirsty heart longs
in the early hours and late at night like the lonely
wolf who by himself will climb to highest point
in futile search of another’s call.
The void in my heart
As you grew in grief
You dreamed me
For I surely
Had no substance
Not a morsel of joy
Til you enveloped me
In the compass of your heart
And set forth
I clinging to your drift as
Stubborn snow will keen
Impossible they said
Until seeing with their own eyes
Things previously disbelieved
I had never believed
Until you lifted me from obscurity
And touching my chin
The unsaid hurt
Resting on my breastbone
Like a wounded bird
You reached in and
Struck the match
And I glowed
With your regard