Two Poems by Ashley Gonzalez

Artwork by Lynn Brown


Invisible Strings

Mother of Deep Roots and Prickly Weeds, cover me in spurts of dirt, rich in smell and color. Not another wellness trick. No Know No. Lay down the insta powders n’ insta pills, nix ditch eclipse the easy fix n’ hitch wellbeing to another star, one that honors Scars as part of Remedy, as door to empathy, clemency, spiritual identity rooted in legacy of supremacy over nothing, but transcendency over under All. Healing melodies that have been working presently and centrally since Time before Time, when people knew of all the Oceans under Oceans, Forests under Forests, All That Life under Life we’ve let dissolve into wisps of smoke, spiraling signals barely discernible against hazy summer skies. Substance abandoning body, leaving us light as feathers as we float Up Up Up from depths of meaning, reaching surface and settling there, pushed along by invisible strings, patient in force, gently guiding our course while we smile, thinking our efforts worthwhile, as if we have a choice in what we endorse and enforce inside and out.

Ay Madre de Brujas y Hijas, Witches and Daughters, help me feel my mystical weight again, standing firm, and when I take a step, however big or small, let it be because I want to, because I said so, because I am rooted in the most expansive yet inner part of my being, freeing not fleeing silent kings pulling invisible strings, their only power my unwitting acquiescence to surrender my own luminescence. But what is done can always be undone, one by one, thing by thing, tattered seam by tattered seam.



Slow as Stone

Slow as Stone, Sticky as Honey. Lovely. Warm miel that drips over lips and tips, nights stripped of pretense, no sense in self-defense, in life condensed, in Being other than you are,


Ay Madre, forgive me if I’ve been calling out for you too much lately. I’ve been shaky, needing safety from Shadows shapely that grow, turbulent throw of emotions pulling to and fro, incessant vertigo, Imago in sta

Slow me down, turn sharp edges round, sound of tip-toe, tip-toe, gentle flow of legato.



Ashley Gonzalez is an ESOL instructor living in Columbus, OH. She loves teaching English to immigrants, and sees language and stories as a way to build compassion for the human inside everyone. She believes creativity is a door to the spiritual self, and in the simplest and truest sense, she writes to remember herself back home.