Where do I go from here?

The path before me
hides like a playful toddler
giggling in the pansies,
Her dirty little toes sticking out
from behind the moss-covered
tree stump. The one with the sapling
growing from within it's burnt and battered bark.
Just as I catch up to her
she disappears. I follow.
Her melodic hum, a song
I've never heard, but know
by breath, lures me forward.
I turn a corner, I turn another,
there's a new friend, a new book,
a new treasure discovered
under the unturned rock
I just tripped on. Knee skinned,
I linger too long and the tiny toes
dance in the periphery. I run
towards them as they tiptoe
across sticky webs floating
on sunbeams too bright to
look at directly. Day after day
we play in the rainshine and
sundrops and breathbeats
we soak in them till our
fingers get all pruny. We play
till the moon says goodnight
but who can lay down, eyes closed,
when the playful path
wiggles it's dirty little toes
in silver pools of possibility

#30minutepoetry from last summer... 

1 summer solstice june 2014 jenny ryan amiabelle chambers bay park.jpg

Under the M in Tacoma

I'm too distracted
by double tapped hearts, distracted
by naggy red dots, distracted
by avoidance, distracted
by lost, distracted
by imposter syndrome, distracted
by the clacking of businessmen in brown wing-tips with black hoodies, distracted
by punny gnomes judging me from the rafters, distracted
by dusty rose silk cascading down young milky white "perfection," distracted
by words not spoken over coffee at this same table, distracted
by shattered shards I'm STILL tripping on, distracted
by opensure, by whysure, distracted
by fresh breaks and old scars, distracted
by twin mattress insomnia, distracted
by sacrifices made for nothing, distracted
by dreams unmet for unworthy, distracted
by fear of trailer parks, distracted
by my privilege, distracted
by your oppression, distracted
by 45, distracted
by Atwood prophecies, distracted
by all this fucking noise!
I came here to write, I left


People keep asking me about some of this. In Metronome Cafe there are big photos that spell out Tacoma. I was sitting under the M. Margaret Atwood wrote The Handmaid’s Tale. In MetroNOME they have a lot of GNOMES… hence the punny gnomes line. Double-tapped hearts: Instagram notifications. (plus another meaning). Red dots: facebook notifications. Some of this is vague on purpose.

point defiance oly birthday flowers garden may 21 22 2018 jenny l miller (11A of 107) SMALLER.jpg

My TA-50

My TA-50

A middle-aged man wearing an old Patriots jersey and burnout
Sized me down slowly from mouth, chest, hips, and back up again
Tossed three pairs of BDUs size M in men’s at me, then winked, yelling

A middle-aged woman wearing a stained tee and a hangover
Shoved my feet into several different sizes of black boots
Threw two pairs of size 7 in men’s at me yelling,

A sergeant in his forties wearing a wedding ring and lust
Joked about the number 69 on my paperwork
Gave me the key to my stagnant barracks room winking,
                            “see ya later, sweatheart!”

I, a nineteen-year-old wearing a new oversized hoodie and unease,
Organized, folded, and polished all of my new Army gear.
                                      I made them mine:

1 -Half Shelter, Green

500 –Addresses: “Sweetheart, Honey, or Hottie,”

1 –Shovel, Foldable

100-Sex Invitations From My married NCOIC

1 -Reflective Belt

250 –Orders to “smile, honey’ From Supervisors

1- Ear Plugs with Case

45 -Ass Grabs

1- Compass

25- “Unintentional” Boob Grazes

1- Eye Protection, Ballistic

15 – Uninvited Hands Slid Up My Thigh to My Vagina

1- Flashlight

9 –Emails Containing Images of Women Having Sex With Animals From a Sergeant

2- Towels, Brown

1- Sexual Harassment Court Marshall Against My NCOIC, Everyone’s Favorite NCO

1- Permanent Marker, Black

1,000- Comments: Stupid Bitch, Cunt, Fucking Liar, From My Peers and Superiors.

A few items on this list the Army said I could keep
little parting gifts to carry with me forever,
like Invisible shrapnel tattoos that only I can feel
just under the surface of my Army issued sex.



(Tahoma West is publishing this one. I'm so excited!)