cinnamon persimmons chilled
and ingrown incestuous
like bulbous non-plants in the desert
where everything breathing is sharp and aroused.
illustrious indigo in demand in the fish gills.
gift him to them and they will gift us with christ or dick
sickened and pink, pills and trimmed quilt sills
crinkle pink until quilted fists oil up and inherit it
christen the new born atheists with belugas and bunches of tin wheelers
restless bums for the hills to give
and rumpled to the pear leaves
suckle gold juice clean out the worm holes
the skin will be ribbed
for pleasure and then popped
with holes where the bugs came
but that just makes the fruit all the warmer for the intestines to swarm
but the sun will give me the light I lack and the sand and sea reflect the medicine even more
the big rocks where we peed, those are the wholesome loads that calm the tide and ground your skin in the heat
As a young writer perhaps the most daunting task I have faced is translating such a broad spectrum of budding emotions, opinions, and information into poetics. Specifically in the context of social media it feels near impossible to consume every relevant idea and convert it into thoughtful, easy-to-consume verse. I think over the past few years this challenge has been too intimidating for me to take on. I found that rather than use poetry as a medium to express my politics, my sexuality, or my insecurities, I preferred to use writing as an escape from reality. I have often written about utopian landscapes where natural imagery and flowery adjectives about color, touch, and sound dominate the narrative.
As of lately I have begun to explore the integration of such comfortable techniques with language that feels uncomfortable. My writing has always been about synesthetic exploration but why have I been leaving out an entire realm of sensory vocabulary simply because the sensations described allude to the explicit?
In my most recent pieces I aim not to exploit vulgar language for its shock appeal, but to show the hidden delicacy and elegance of words that might feel uncomfortable or unsuitable for a young woman poet.
Lulu Priddy is a sophomore at Scripps College in Claremont, CA where she is studying art, poetry, and film. In 2017, Lulu won first place in the Scripps College Journal Writing Contest. She is a member of the 5C Wordsmiths, a group of students who organize writing workshops and invite authors and poets to speak at her college. In the fall she will be leaving California to study abroad for a year in Florence, Italy and in Copenhagen, Denmark. Read an excerpt from Lulu's chapbook Swallow, Low.