Tara Teeling

Tara Teeling Poems

How strange it is to wake in a foreign land,
To try to spy the sameness here, as it was there.
Suddenly, nothing feels close, nothing in my acquaintance.
I look around and see things that should be familiar to me.

It’s after midnight,
and the snow is unmarred,
free from angels and stomping feet.
The flakes that fall are like


It may have been the long hair,
the way the honey-brown curls
undulated while he moved,
rubbing me in all the good places,

While staring at an innocent yellow wall,
I decide I want my first kiss back.
It was mine, and it was wasted
on a boy without a face.

I lie awake in the deep blues and soft creams
A long day, tucked in tight
Aching muscles, tight scalp, weary eyes
Requiem for consciousness undisturbed

On the roof, outside the window
are glare crusted humpbacked whales,
carved by the unforgiving wind of early March
as it pushed through the last breaths

Not everyone
is meant to be more
than ordinary, you say.

Blue nightgown, you’ve served me well.
With your delicate white flowers
and flirtation with maidenhood,
you gave me many nights

Your perfumed words and rose-petal theories
have long since lost their potency, as have you.
The wine has turned to water, and there is no
salt with which to tempt my tongue.

Sitting in the chair
with its threadbare bruises,
I am home. The earlier-crimson cushions
look bled dry, hosting the smells

I’m a queen and a dream. I move
in grinding glitter and wanton sighs,
fluent in guttural growl.
My colour is green, and I’m a Scorpio

I think what I need,
is for a stranger to slowly braid my hair
while I listen to a soft voice

Falling white velvet,
vanilla eiderdown,
wafts toward the sleeping earth
all without a sound.

Tell me about your tragedy.
Spread it all over me,
layer over layer,
like buttercream frosting

An old question
rises up in an argument,
like lava or hot soup in a pot.

I am from glass bottles,
from Swatch Watches and an age without seatbelts.
I am from a bungalow with ruffled
curtains blowing in the kitchen window.

You have no right to haunt me.

I didn’t ask for this,
the lingering soul of something

The fear of each looming moment
is over before you had a chance to
know it in your lungs, on your skin.
It regenerates, comes alive and walks

Fat Girl

A fat girl stands on the corner,
the belt on her pants like a ring around Saturn,

Your anguish is in my blood
and it gives me breath,
erasing my various maladies
and self-inflicted afflictions.

The Best Poem Of Tara Teeling

His Side Of The Bed

How strange it is to wake in a foreign land,
To try to spy the sameness here, as it was there.
Suddenly, nothing feels close, nothing in my acquaintance.
I look around and see things that should be familiar to me.

On that side of the bed, is a pillow of cream and eyelet.
Propped up long ago, it sits, without interference,
Plumped and perfect, wrinkle free under the lofty covers.
Recall him lying there, whilst I lay on my side.

Remember now the gentle breathing as the sun woke,
I think of how the rhythm would change during the night.
I used to sleep beside him as the moon would rise,
Clutching the blankets close, smiling safe under the down.

At times I dare to stretch my legs across the equator,
I toe the sheets and let the diaphaneity fondle and graze.
At times it hurts, despite the cool of cotton,
Satiny barbs bordering this no man’s land.

Deployed on nomad’s campaign many nights ago,
We ceased to share the place we once held dear.
Those long night talks and lovely, lazy cradling.
A memory now, for he wanders lost in reluctant exile.

I know this land will one day be my home again,
Lay down my head, and in only skin, roll blissfully about.
Both sides, be one, and be in my possession.
The battle ground becomes, with time’s sweet hand, a playing field.

Remember how he tried to loosen the sheets,
The edges that I’d fold so perfectly crisp.
He’d kick them out and say they were too confining.
I’d turn my back and curse him silent for destroying my careful corners.

I know I sleep alone because I asked to.
Certain he lies awake sometimes, looking up at floating flashbacks.
If only he’d crossed the line, dissolved spiteful borders,
We’d both have been afforded graceful sleep.

For now I look forlorn at the perfect pillow,
I hate its form, its teasing, mocking plumpness.
So many nights have passed since he slept beside me.
I trace the shape of him as if he’s there.

Tara Teeling Comments

Max Reif 18 September 2007

I look forward to the opportunity to see through Tara's eyes each time she confronts yet another aspect of experience. I've read four of her poems so far, and she's not disappointed me as far as having something to say and saying it in a really original way. You won't find any prefabricated phrases or perceptions in Tata's poems. I'm looking forward to continuing my journey through here ouvre. ps: Sometimes I think Tara might make sure EVERYTHING in a poem is as whe truly wishes it. I encounter an occasional, apparent contradiction and am uncertain whether it's a deliberate ambiguity or an oversight. Sometimes too, I find a comma that doesn't seem necessary..but my dominant impression of Tara is, wow, I want to read more!

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