Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Cristina Munoz

Cristina Munoz is a poet who doesn't shy away from difficult content whether it be advocating or writing a poem that's extremely personal to her life journey. She always comes through with a profound piece that leaves the reader to genuinely contemplate its subject. I had the good fortune of being able to converse with Cristina for a few minutes before writing this review -- she'd expressed to me how important music has been to her writing -- and in some instances the catalyst to her pieces. I am able to fully comprehend the impact that music has had on her work because -- it's even been a catalyst to mine from time-to-time. I can clearly see the musical influence throughout her work -- the letters from theses poems below could very easily be manipulated into: notes, bars, treble & bass clefs. Basically into a glorious sheet of staff paper fully adorned with a transcribed piece of versification -- which consistently doesn't disappoint.

If you could be so kind as to follow Cristina via social media on: Twitter & Instagram.

Monster Within

beast of fiery fists
wolf howling hate
forged a monster within
swelling, straining with rage
turned at six
why i keep flirting with risk, daring violence
swaggering up Smith St alone at 4.00am,
wearing a tuxedo suit in plain sight
silver women's symbol hanging from left ear,
whose behind, shouting out, "DYKE.",
switch around, shove him down an iron gate
"You picked the wrong girl."
i'm not a normal girl,
wasn't then, not now,
i'm a savage animal,
starving for a fight
right fist against his fragile throat,
fear tempts fury caged inside
five day shadow scratches my chin,
breaths mixing, can't help noticing,
similar, black short haircut,
"Never had a girl fight back, hey?
Now, tell me you're sorry."
hands rising in the air,
boiling apologies need a lid
loosening my hold,
letting him go
not him i want to hit
no man terrifies me,
the way my father did
alive or dead,
monster within,
will never allow,
anyone,
to take me,
from me,
again
What happens when the one person that is supposed to protect you -- turns to not only be your enemy but constant violator as well? This poem reminded me of my work as a Social Service Worker, at the centre there were a few children who were severely abused by their parents -- this instills consistent fear in a child's heart. What I relish most about this piece is the refusal to surrender to the past or anyone else for that matter. Clearly exemplified in the last stanza:
alive or dead,
monster within,
will never allow,
anyone,
to take me,
from me,
again
Are you kidding me? I mean read this again and allow it to enter your soul. To be able to validate yourself to yourself and resolve your own pain -- with that amount of tenacity in my humble opinion is quite brave.

I Don't Want Sometimes

i don't feel want
i get like this sometimes
i know it terrifies you
your tears look like crystals in this light
let me taste your furrowed fear
fast away, far from here
remembering our first kiss
captivating, you against a glittering pole
spinning around my sorrowed soul
like blood red, midnight blue silks
crowds of thousands dissolved to two
couldn't get close enough
feel this way still
these nights six feet under memories,
crawl out of forgotten graves by 3.00am
he's in my teenage room, over my bed
there's his scratched brown hunting rifle
aimed at my fifteen year old forehead
standing silent in his taxi driver uniform
i can't stand his hazel eyes mirror mine
when this way they bulge hatred black
while his right hand expert fingers
turn trigger grey and white
stealth fuels his nightly invasions
crime drama seeks his stench of mean
he's smashing glasses of scotch whiskey
furious after missing my mother's cheek
i can't trust completely, be touched tenderly
when my rage is a violent scream
benevolent father once a giant
keeps right on smiting me
needing a blast of time to halt
these constant triggers, fierce aftershocks
forged a battlefield of war within i will win
please be patient, don't give up on me
i am no one's victim, refuse surrendering
awaken shaken, bruised not broken
curled hot along your cool long body
you're my safe harbour
guiding my nightly escape away
off his vicious rocks back to you
when his darkness comes
i love the way you reach out for my hand
staying folded around every part of you
i found salvation held in your healing arms
my love
don't you know by now
when i do want,
all i want,
is you
As a human being who is also the parent of three young children -- I Don't Want Sometimes completely breaks my heart. I constantly look at my brats (loving yet playful tone!) while they draw, sing, read or watch television -- and begin to wonder how is it that anyone could seriously abuse a child. We as adults should be here to protect our children's hearts and guide them through their journeys of becoming decent adults. I suppose it is those horrible time we experience in life that makes us grateful -- to have something that we genuinely want and only that thing or person will do.
This poignant stanza completely hooked me:
you're my safe harbour
guiding my nightly escape away
off his vicious rocks back to you
when his darkness comes
i love the way you reach out for my hand
staying folded around every part of you
i found salvation held in your healing arms
The emotion ingrained within these words so strong yet delicate with expression.
Him
there's a hole there,
deep but near,
where the father should be
i have a mother,
even have a brother,
but i don't have him
never did
i see the scene clearly
a father pushing his child on the swings,
laughing with her giggles,
driving her higher and higher,
blonde plaits airborne
i was not that child,
though in sleep,
i cried,
almost feeling it be
i too swang on the swing
same playground,
exact swing,
just me
it took longer,
but i swung,
hoping to take flight,
needing to marry the sky,
and i did,
only alone
Independence is something someone grows into but, when they are forced into it -- there would be a definite struggle. This poem illustrates the importance of having a mother and father or father and father or mother and mother either way as long as there are two loving parents. The loving part is probably the most important aspect of the previous sentence. When I first read this poem I thought of those little Hummle statuettes that were EXTREMELY popular when I was a child. And, the image of a child sitting on a swing with a brave look on their face as they try to swing and reach for the eternal sunlit sky. A child's determination can indeed move mountains if they allow their aura to feel their strength.