Twelve Portraits of Intimacy
Issue 108 Fiction Poetry Nonfiction Art + Photography Film Music Books For Creators more

Twelve Portraits of Intimacy

 Daniella Derraugh
 Daniella Derraugh
Twelve Portraits of Intimacy
by Daniella Derraugh  FollowFollow
I'm eighteen and my name is Dani, and I don't really know what to say about me in this bio, but it told me to be funny and original, so more it is: Freshman year, before I became a girl, I dressed in drag and went to school for a play. Is that interesting?
Twelve Portraits of Intimacy
324 7 6 4shareShare
1.)        there is more than blood in her veins,
did you know that?
            there’s something brighter than the electric dark
            of times square which blares outside her window
            like music through a tinny speaker.
            it’s                   she’s                of
                        like                  full                   seeds.
2.)        at first sight,
            you would only see white.
            but she blinks,
            she smiles,
            she talks,
            she moves,
                        she thinks
                                    in heavy brushstrokes.
did you know humans are made of paint?
3.)        sometimes,
            she spends way too much time in the bath.
            her fingers wrinkle up,
            and she thinks about when she is old one day,
                        she thinks about children,
she thinks about her insides,
                                                she thinks about her ovaries,
                                                            she thinks about sex,
                                                she thinks about rape,
                                    she thinks about too much alcohol,
                        she thinks about lukewarm water,
            she remembers that her water bill is due.
4.)        she’s glowing in the television light, almost ethereal.
            she’s sleeping on the couch,
            one arm           hanging off
            one leg             crumpled up against her,
            because there is no one left
            to wake her up and send her to bed.
                        she wakes up with a sore neck.
5.)        she stayed in bed too long.
did you know she makes minimum wage?
            her room is covered in pictures,
            (but she can’t draw to save her soul)
            and there is laundry piled in the corner,
            (that has been collecting like a blood clot)
            and she wonders to herself
                        how will i afford this?
                        (there are only so many ways to tread water).
6.)        she cut her hair off.
            she didn’t donate it to cancer,
                        she just cut it off
                        and threw it     out
            because there was too much to
deal with.
                                                            it isn’t easy to blink and be different.
7.)        she thinks about too much alcohol,
            and the one time she held her friend’s hand
            as she vomited acidic vodka and redbull
            in an alley on gay street.
                        don’t leave me,
            her friend sobbed,
                        i’m sorry, don’t leave me.
8.)        she isn’t scared of the dark anymore.
            she isn’t scared of thunderstorms either.
                                                                        she’s scared of the dreams inside her
                                                                        that she can’t drain like pus from a wound.
9.)        did you know she doesn’t believe in god?
                        she used to pray,
but now she talks to herself
when she feels like she is drowning.
indistinguishable from dreams or reality,
she remembers bubbles always travel to the surface.
10.)      it’s thursday.
                        she thought it was monday,
                                    because three years ago
                                    it was.
            she only gets up to water her plants.
11.)      did this actually happen?
            she’s riding the subway,
            and all the stations pass by in a blur.
            she thinks everyone on the subway car is someone she knew.
            (there are only so many ways to tread water),
                        and      she’s    running                        out.
12.)      there is more than blood in her veins,
            there’s something brighter than the electric dark
            of times square which blares outside her window
            like music through a tinny speaker.
did you know she doesn’t remember her past?
                                    did you know it’s for the best?


  6 months ago
Really nice job here. The spacing you use is technically called "open style", and lots of great poets--e e cummings, William Carlos Williams and Octavio Paz--have used that style. A super-cool poem.
  7 months ago
Very poignant!
  7 months ago
I loved the poem but I really find the white space feels so disjointed. I know this is widely accepted but I find I struggle to bridge the gaps. Standing ovation for this talented young woman!
  7 months ago
Excellent poem!

Join Red Fez

Start your adventure

By signing up you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy.
Already a member? Log in

Log in

Continue your adventures