#GunViolence: Yoga for Kids by Amy Baskin

yoga for kids amy baskin walter albertin

Return to child’s pose
and hide under desks.
You’re harder to shoot through walls this way.

Return to child’s pose
and don’t make a peep.
Play “Still as Statues” in the storage closet.

Return to child’s pose.
Place your hands above your heads,
or to the sides of each target— each body. Your bodies.

Return to child’s pose.
Find innocence in your age, your parents, and everyone
who sends you to this building each weekday.

Rest. Recharge. Revive.
Reflect on the circle of things, and above all,
remember to breathe! Quietly, if you can.

 

 

Amy Baskin’s work is currently featured in armarolla, Apparition Lit, Friends Journal, and more. When she’s not writing, she works to ensure that international students at Lewis & Clark College feel welcome and at home during their stay.

 

Photograph by Walter Albertin, 1962. Courtesy of the Library of Congress.

#MeToo: Draupadi by Amy Baskin

Draupadi_humiliated_RRV

Draupadi
—Heroine of the Hindu epic

let’s get this deed done right
that night he grips you with rough cold hands

that hold no heat of love
you haven’t served me well at all

takes a swig from a skin flask
stored in the folds of his dhoti

applies ointment to himself
a farmer priming a pump

oiling his plow a thousand times over
when Kauravas want to shame you

they try to pull off your clothes
tug at your very fabric yet

more silk appears
they cannot strip you of your dignity

clothe your mind in layers
too opaque for them to see through

let them leave with their bags of dice and flasks
let it be your little secret

when your eye turns eggplant purple
and you reek of sex and mangoes

say he was fumbling with a pillow
it was a new moon

say he couldn’t see in the dark
tell it over and over again

you choose your truth
filter each story through cloth into clay pots

that makes them potable
even sweet

 

 

Amy Baskin’s work is featured in Every Pigeon, apt, What Rough Beast, Riddled with Arrows, Fire Poetry Journal, The Ghazal Page, and more. She’s a 2016 Willamette Writers Kay Snow Poetry award recipient for her poem, About Face. She’s worked on revision with Paulann Petersen and Renee Watson of I, Too Collective, and participates in generative groups hosted by Allison Joseph and Jenn Givhan.

 

Painting Draupadi Humiliated by Raja Ravi Varma.

#MeToo: Infused by Amy Baskin

The teapot, still on the table
knows how to keep still. She waits here,
holding hot water and tea leaves,
insulates your brew, works for you.

Defense is not her vocation.
The teapot, still on the table
can’t scream or burn you like kettles.
Still, don’t handle her swanlike spout.

Thank her whether she’s full of tea
or empty. She can nourish you,
that teapot. Still, on the table,
she just wants to keep the tea hot.

What reason, if any, should you
respect her weak and fragile clay?
Can you hold and give and pour like
the teapot? Still. On. The. Table.

 

 

Amy Baskin’s work is featured in Every Pigeon, apt, What Rough Beast, Riddled with Arrows, Fire Poetry Journal, The Ghazal Page, and more. She’s a 2016 Willamette Writers Kay Snow Poetry award recipient for her poem, About Face. She’s worked on revision with Paulann Petersen and Renee Watson of I, Too Collective, and participates in generative groups hosted by Allison Joseph and Jenn Givhan.

#MeToo: renewable vs. disposable by Amy Baskin

the earth is a little coconut
crack her open for the meat
and liquid sweet
warm her up to tropic state
sprinkle her on chocolate cake
grate walls of her inner shell
keep nothing trapped inside

and then the metaphor fails

a coconut can be planted and grow
another tree full of coconuts to sell
but not the earth
planned obsolescence is built
right into her flawed design
ravage her once and look for another
the earth is disposable
but not the coconut

 

 

Amy Baskin’s work is featured in Every Pigeon, apt, What Rough Beast, Riddled with Arrows, Fire Poetry Journal, The Ghazal Page, and more. She’s a 2016 Willamette Writers Kay Snow Poetry award recipient for her poem, About Face. She’s worked on revision with Paulann Petersen and Renee Watson of I, Too Collective, and participates in generative groups hosted by Allison Joseph and Jenn Givhan.