My suggested prompt for One Single Impression, “Defenses Down”, is their prompt for the week of September 7 (prompt #28). This is the poem I wrote for the prompt. Enjoy.



I drank to soften nerves that were
cutting me like unseen knives

at that party, amidst strangers
scared of the face in the mirror

the goody two-shoes, the freak
encased in stone

the stranger

I drank to plow down walls
constructed by a suspicious
upbringing and moral lessons
pounded into a mind

that grabbed onto concepts, oughts,
and shoulds with iron teeth
and pounded them into my flesh

until metal facades were
indistinguishable from my own skin

I tried to drown my walls
in a sea of beer, peach Schnapps,
something faintly tasting like blackberries,
and whatever else I could get
my hands on that night

and my walls, oh my walls

they melted until my eyes
couldn’t see straight
and I watched the party ensue
through alcoholic glasses

then she came

she charged into my garden
and stole my fruit

the gate would have stopped her

but it had been washed away
in the stinky fermented tide
of the last beer I downed
before my head began to swim

this is not how walls
should tumble down
a gate washed out to sea
can never be searched and found
in time to stop invading armies
from stealing your treasure

and I guarded mine
for years after that party
behind iron gates harder
than diamonds

and I still hesitate sometimes
to give it away
to the one who deserves it the most

Written 9/1/08
© 2008 Nicole Nicholson. All Rights Reserved.

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About ravenswingpoetry

I am a 38 year old writer from Columbus, OH and the creator of Raven's Wing Poetry. I am a poet, seeker, fellow traveler, and autistic.
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13 Responses to Walls

  1. Jim says:

    Hi Nicole, very nice. Thank you for this prompt, I think I can see where folks are going with it, a lot. Temptation –> defenses, some will resist, some will submit.
    BTW, mine is from a guy’s viewpoint–could be unisex.

  2. paisley says:

    very well told.. taught and emotionally charged.. i wonder if she stole more than you wanted to give?? that would after all be an excellent poetic leaning wouldn’t it???

  3. zoya gautam says:

    ..a beautiful poem,a lovely prompt..many thanks..

  4. susan says:

    From sea to garden and fruit made me woozy. Some vivid images here. Thanks for the read and prompt.

  5. cordieb says:

    Very beautiful, meaningful and hauntingly true words.
    “and I still hesitate sometimes
    to give it away
    to the one who deserves it the most”

    Perhaps you need to keep a some beer, peach Schnapps, etc. near by – ??

    PLL, CordieB.

  6. patois says:

    Nicole, I am stunned by the flow and words and rhythm and sense and timing and ending and everything else. Truly magnificent.

  7. Pingback: Afraid to Walk Barefeet « Looking in the Mirror

  8. pieceofpie says:

    hello raven.. glad to stop by.. like yr new blog format… lots to read… hmmm, fully charged… hmmm, some things can get lost along the way unretrieveable… spoken beautifully…excellent one single impression prompt!!!

  9. Lela B says:

    I really like your art and poetry together. Your description was awesome. Higher brain thinker.

  10. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    This is most gripping, soul baring, defenses down.

  11. Scot says:

    beautiful work nicole

  12. Thank you, everyone.

    This was about something that happened to me about 10 years ago, which I have just now been able to get the courage to write about. Sometimes, having your defenses down can be good, sometimes not. It just depends. I discovered the hard way that drinking until you fall over is not the way to tear down your walls.


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