Heather Rivérun


The Universe tells me
that my vulnerability
will make me dance,
if only I follow my instinct
like a wolf,
pull my creations up
from my shadows
and blow life into them
like so many shifting clouds.

              But I tell the Universe
              that I can find so many
              reasons to worry,
              so many thoughts
              to distract myself with,
              innumerable questions to ask.

like the forest,
my sweet.
Stand with your back
against a tree and feel
as rooted.

Let the rain wash away
your fretting thoughts,
readying you to emerge,
as the dragonfly –
dazzling us with
your wings.




Your beauty cannot steal mine
nor possess it.
Your beauty cannot diminish mine
nor dismiss it.
But I once believed that it could --

I served you my self worth
on the silver of my sternum;
Allowed you to suck it from me.
Leaving me
slack shouldered and
glassy eyed,

              fake smiled


Knowing somewhere
inside of myself
that I'd given it away.

And what's worse,
that I'd swallowed the hook
the world had let down for me.
The one barbed with the notion
that the only beauty is a body,

And ignored the gnawing need
to feed the creature inside of myself
who subsists on indulging my innate wildness --
the one who laps up laughter,
grows more youthful and wise
each time I step further into myself,
who is as confident as a river
in my own beauty,
and in yours.

About the author: Heather Rivérun resides in Madison, WI. Her work has appeared in The Far Field and The Phrasings Anthology; selected poems have been choreographed and performed by the Bellingham Repertory Dance Company. Her debut poetry collection, Upon Waking, was published in 2013. Her newest book is forthcoming in 2017. www.uponwaking.com