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No Shame

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Below is the poem entitled No Shame which was written by poet Katie Pukash. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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No Shame

I used to cry every Sunday morning
“Mama, why do I gotta go to church?”
“Mama, why do I gotta wear a dress?”
“Mama, why do I gotta bow my head if god is in the clouds?”

It’s a funny thing really	
Were taught to look at people square in the eye
Shameful people look at the ground
Proud people look up. Shoulders back. Eyes wide saying here I am. 
This is me today.
So when I pray does it have to be in shame?

My church is the soil,
the murky pond water,
the algae in the pool outback,
the gum stuck to your shoes,
the dirt hidden on the underside of your pores.

No Shame. 
For the woman I kissed
For the man I tangled sheets with
For the ****ing words I say

No Shame. 
They will crush your good intentions
Telling you to only love one of the opposite gender.
But I’ve only heard one thing about love
and that is that love equals vulnerability
and vulnerability equals love
and no girl should have to hide underneath her
silver studded push up
no boy should have to play pretend
no shame for who I am. 

My Gods Blood 
is Sailor Jerry in a shot glass
coating my stomach in liquid apologies
is the salt water of my eyes 
trailing down the off center of my cheek
as I pull my head back
eyes to the heavens
No Shame. 
For the hand I am holding
For this pack I am smoking,
For the boy out back gladly toking

No Shame. 
For the girls who don’t get on their knees to pray
For the girls that just need their god damn pay
For the girls that don’t get to go outside and play
No Shame. 

My Church is the sand,
drifting away with the sea
salty like tears
I cry. We all cry. And They cry too.

“Mama, why can’t I go to the beach?”
“Cause the ocean will take you away.”
“Like God?”
“Kind of like God, except God keeps you forever, 
and the ocean always drops you back off at shore.”

My God is the ground. 
I’ll look down. 
Not in shame, but in exhaustion
from following all these ****ing books
but there will be the soil below me
firm, steady, reliable.
for wherever I wander
I’ll be grounded to my god. 

Copyright © Katie Pukash

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