From Woman: Splendor and Sorrow – Who Am I? poem by Gabriela Marie Milton

Gustav Wertheimer – The Kiss of the Siren , Public Domain

Who Am I? published first by Shabd Aaweg and republished in my book Woman: Splendor and Sorrow :I Love Poems and Poetic Prose.

For five times in twenty-four hours, I face in the direction of the sea.

The first time the morning star floats above the water as innocent as the breast of a young girl.  Soon the sun will try to catch her naked and burn her skin. She will escape. Pigeons will carry her across the sea. She will melt into yellow waters. Her last rays will fall in my lap like feathers.

I will rejoice.

The second time, divorced from her night bed, the light disperses itself on the shore. I can see myself washing clothes in the sea. My hair is tied in a ponytail. I am barefoot, and my dress is rolled up. The skin of my lips is cracked. I bleed. The clothes I wash smell cedar and spices. The shadow of a seagull positions itself on my forehead. The sea reflects the twelve signs of the zodiac. I can see no relationship between my destiny and that which I do. I am scared.  

At noon, the sun kneads the waters with rapture. Shells shed pearls on the shore. My own rational thought leaves my body. I delight in the waves like a gazelle in the grasslands. I feel the movement of the water on my skin. Its cyclical quality sends me in a state of ecstasy. No, it is not the ecstasy of Saint Teresa of Ávila. It is something similar to a soporific trance. I am dead, and I am alive at the same time. I come from the sea. I return to the sea.

In the afternoon, my rational self awakes. My mind spreads its wings. I get preoccupied with verbs. I set one triangle in the normal position, and I invert the other one. I bind them together. I make myself a dress from pieces of paper inscribed with old symbols. Oh, femininity! You are the goddess of vines, the mother earth, the chalice, the blood, the fertility of the womb. I mull over these desperate efforts to equalize the feminine with the masculine. There is nothing in these symbols that points to the intellect of a woman.

In the evening, the sky stretches itself from blue to dark violet. The silk of the gloves hugs my fingers. I feed my iguana with cookies soaked in champagne. She hisses at me. I open a package of silk stockings. The door opens by itself. You step in. I stare at you. You are in by your own volition.  One kiss and you borrow my tears. One touch, and I borrow your pain. A passage rite. I keep a coffin adorned with lilies in my bedroom. I sleep besides death like Sarah Bernhardt.

Did you hear that noise? A rosary fell from the Spanish chest.

The wind slips between the petals of a rose and opens it.

Who am I? If I knew, I would tell you.

Did you say you love me? The twenty-four hours are up. Nobody is facing in the direction of the sea anymore.

There is no me.

Gabriela Marie Milton
#1 Amazon Bestselling Author
Woman: Splendor and Sorrow :I Love Poems and Poetic Prose
Passions: Love Poems and Other Writings

116 thoughts on “From Woman: Splendor and Sorrow – Who Am I? poem by Gabriela Marie Milton

  1. Stunning and brilliant. Loved the development and the ending! Lo has cerrado con broche de oro Gabriela. ¡Enhorabuena! ¡Que pedazo de poesía! Que tengas una bellísima semana y que disfrutes del verano que este ha llegado con ganas de recordarnos que el cambio climático está sobre nos. Un abrazo.

    1. Muchas gracias, Francisco. Disfruta tus vacaciones. Un gran abrazo y una flor.

  2. I had a smile on my face for the whole time it took for me to read your –what? Your honeyed words? Your beautiful lyrics? Your vivid expression of love? Each one was a sheer delight. Thank you for indulging me.

    1. My dearest Daniel, thank you so much for your beautiful comment. It means a lot. Now you put a smile on my face 😉 Have a glorious rest of the day.

    1. Thank you so much for reading my dearest Jaya. I am so glad you liked it. Sending love and huge hugs.

    1. Blanca, my dearest, thank you so much for your wonderful comment. I am humbled by every word you wrote. Sending lots of love your way 🌸🌺🌹❤️

  3. Gabriela. Firstly…..I am BEYOND overjoyed to read Your Sacred words this evening!!! This likely sounds dramatic, but it’s true….Your images are soul-feeding. I have sat for a long while with this amazing poem. It is sweetened by the fact that I’m part mermaid and have spent the day at the ocean. Blissfully hot and tired, a bit too sunkissed and in the middle of a lovely glass of wine I read this. Stop started over and over. Read outloud. Stared at clouds just simmering in it. Called a friend (who unfortunately wasn’t there!) to share with her….this incredible poem shook me to the core. The whole thing. For me it’s the passage of time/womanhood/Goddess Sea/growth/healing/resolution. All my lives and today and right now and the lovers I’ve had and the man who wants to meet me. THANK YOU!!!! You are a shining Seamstress of Words!!! A GIFT. I hope You and Your students had a lovely trip and that You are getting some MUCH (and then some!!!) deserved rest!!! Sending huge hugs Your way! I Love You and hope You are well!!! 🤗❤️😊

    1. My goodness gracious Katy, you left me speechless. Hon, I am beyond humbled and way beyond grateful to you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You are fabulous and I will always value your friendship more than you will ever know.
      Love you with all my heart. Sending huge hugs your way. Enjoy the rest of your day.

      1. My gosh….my absolute pleasure on every level!!! And Thank You!!! I value Your friendship as well! Love You right back, beautiful Gabriela!!! I hope You have a wonderful weekend! 🤗💕😊

      2. Love you more my fabulous Katy. May your weekend be magical ❤️🌸🌸🌹🌺🌸❤️

    1. Nancy, my dearest, thank you from the bottom of my heart. You are a gem. I hope you are enjoying your vacation. Sending lots of love.

    1. Thank you so much for your beautiful comment. I am very pleased you enjoyed the piece,

    1. My goodness, thank you so much for your kind reply. It truly makes me happy 🙏🌺🌸🌹❤️

  4. Your writing always stimulates the intellect and the heart, like a game of chess. The intellect moves, then the heart, and so it goes through the beauty of your words. Though this analogy seems competitive, it is not, it is symbiotic. A gorgeous write, Gabriela.✨🌹🌺❤️🌻

    1. Oh, Jeff, thank you so much for your kind words. They mean a lot to me my dearest friend.

  5. Gabriela, there is everything in this writing ‘that points to the intellect of a woman’ – and her poetry too 👌⭐️❤️

    1. Ingrid, this is a wonderful compliment. Thank you from the bottom of my heart 🙏🌺🌸

    1. Thank you so much my dearest Navin. Very grateful to you my friend. I hope everything is going well with you 🌸❤️🍀

      1. You’re welcome, dearest Gabriela…everything is going well…hoping the same with you…including your health ✨❤️💫

      2. I am glad to hear Navin. My health is so so, but thank you for asking. I truly appreciate that.
        Sending huge hugs.

  6. Incredible poem, I read it with great interest. It has a mysterious quality about it. It’s as if the woman is on a quest to get to know who she really is.

    1. Thank you so much for the praise and for the wonderful comment. It means so much to me 🙏🌹🌺🌸

    1. Sweetheart, thank you from the bottom of my heart for your gorgeous comment. I am deeply grateful for your kindness. I hope everything is well on your side. Sending lots of love your way 🌺🌸🌹❤️

      1. Always a pleasure, my dear. My schedule is pretty erratic these days but I will always find time to read your words for they fill me with joy and awe. 💖❤️💖❤️

      2. Thank you so much hon. I really appreciate that. My schedule is very hectic these days too. I think I am behind you on reading but I will do my best soon. Sending lots of love ❤️❤️❤️

      3. Gab, I know how hectic your schedule is. No worries about being behind in reading. Read when you have time. I am secure in the knowledge that you shower love on what I write. Take care and visit only when you have time. Much love. ❤️💖❤️

      4. Thank you so much for your understanding hon. I was thinking today that we know each other for about 5 years – if my memory serves me right. I want you to know that I value your friendship tremendously and deeply admire your talent ❤️❤️

      5. Yes, almost six years and during this time our friendship and love has deepened. Always grateful for your presence in my life. ❤️❤️

        Your awesome talent is a given and I have learnt so much from you. 🙏🏼❤️

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