POETRY

ccunningham-woman.com

 

Original poetry provides an emotional layering to textiles, capturing the essence of a subject, insight into personal and imagined experience to which the viewer can respond on an emotional level. The cancer series conveys the physical brutality of surgery and treatment with an emotional aftermath and fragility of post traumatic stress. 'Mists of Time' evokes a fragmented ego, damaged by an overpowering relationship. 'Grace' captures the emptiness of a parent haunted by the death of a child, unable to move on. 'The Essence of Our Being' is a love of fragile proportions, a roller coaster of psychological abuse. And 'Cocktails at Nine' demonstrates the urge to ''put aside all that I am'', to escape an ordered life of routine and commitment. 

Snippets of poetry create pictures to which the viewer can relate, producing ''a rich and vibrant tapestry'' ('Reducing Us to Simply a Heartbeat') within panels of patchwork and applique.

Poems are embroidered in silk threads and wool, providing additional texture, colour and a natural rhythm within the textile.

Click on image for detail.

WOMAN

ANXIETY HAS SEEPED (applied in blue silk thread)

Anxiety has seeped into my bones, into my dreams, masquerading as pent up energies. 

Always my shadow, lurking deep, to claw me back if I dare to seek any solace in my being.

I WAS THE SUN (applied in bright red silk thread)

I was the sun in summer season, ever hopeful with buds of spring.

But now my petals are all fallen and I will remain forever in my winter skin.

CARVE ME UP

Carve me up, cut it out and send me on my way. Tell me nothing of the aftermath, the psychological despair. Loss of sexuality and femininity. Imperfection guaranteed. This is how your life will be. Insecure, the ugliness implores how perfect you must have been before.

The dent, of such cavernous proportion, no longer a feast for loving eyes. A hollow where my breast should be, still tender after these long years. Brutalised and cast aside. I shall always fear the sight of me, my frail and frightened breast. Am I sexy now?

MISTS OF TIME

But I really must stop,catch myself falling back into the well that was you.Before you ripped me apart, absorbing my torment,turning me into your sport.I cannot recall when the mists rolled in,vacuous and blind,overpowering and unkind.How I long to visit you again.To feel alive.And so once again you visit my dreams.Less often,it seems,your presence digressing.A mere veil of our love.And now I watch you from another shore.Our love a mere trace of all that we were.

Mists of time begin to cloud my memories,vacant spaces where treasures ought to be.It happened so long ago.Drawn out,breaths of the dying.I witnessed,quietly mournful,as we slipped away,without you present,too self absorbed to care.And so I mourned my love,quietly drowning.The weight of all that we were bearing down.Soothed by the waning of the moon I ebb and flow to a motion sighing it's last breath.I am but a whisper so sweet,dancing and swirling,caught up in an eddy of fragrant dreams.I do hope to be washed again in love.To be engulfed so I can hardly breathe.To escape this urgency I feel, not to be alone.

Coldness hugs me like a soft winter shawl and the rains spatter,angry and cruel.Their fury insistent with the rising squalls.Dreamily he's calling my name,subtle tones of the softest velvet.I go to him,my lover,entranced,become entangled in the reeds again.Eyes closed,I drift into a haze,bathed in the softest of lullabies,swathed in transparent threads.I am a mermaid once again.Come my friend,absorb my mind,take me down to slumbers deep.Let consciousness fall away as I settle upon the oceans floor and filter weightlessly,undisturbed,of no fixed abode.

GRACE

A gentle waterfall caresses the windowpane and your tiny baby footsteps pitter-patter, pitter-patter into my mind, swelling my heart with joy again. I never know when you will call. You burst in as though you'd never been gone, filling me up inside. You never went away. Your laughter still bounces off the walls today, dancing amongst the flowered wallpaper in the hall. You did so love to trace the outlines, tiny fingers interlaced with mine. I love it when you return for I can swim freely in your loving arms. Singing again those precious songs, out loud now for there is no one home. And we can dance a waltz to the music playing only in my mind. I will never leave this place again my little angel child.

REDUCING US TO SIMPLY A HEARTBEAT (snippets)

Caught up in an eddy of fragrant dreams. A calm retreat in golden hues. Retreat back to much simpler times. Our joys and harmonies magnified. A rich and vibrant tapestry. Tradition steeped, of a bygone era. Our wisdom a precious commodity. Swathed in transparent threads. Idyllic daydream. Bathed in the softest of lullabies. With the vanities of youth cast aside. Steeped from birth in family tradition. Brightly coloured crochet blankets made over time, passed down through the generations. From Grandmother to Mother to Child. Old love letters still to be enjoyed. Cherished memories. Bound up in laughter and aged dreams. Enriched by the measure of time. Well kept secrets. Embellishments of a life lived. Your realm of glory. Signatures of our time. Fine linen and silverware. A blending of my life's works.

THE ESSENCE OF OUR BEING and other love poems (snippets)

Shafts of light play upon my sorrows,dancing softly to each new breath.Whispering energies lightly fragrance my dreams as I redress.Icing sugar sprinkles softly now upon my dying woes.I didn't know it would last this long.Kept waiting for the end to come.And it came many times.But still I needed to swim.And taste your smile.Lips of cherry.Eyes a bowl of sky blue icecream.I knew then that he was the one.Pick up the loops from your broken heart,retracing your steps from before the start.Knit one. Pearl one.Learning to knit on the doorstep at home.And still those warm rays shine through.

It happened so long ago,drawn out,breaths of the dying.I witnessed,quietly mournful,how we slipped away,without you present,too self absorbed to care.And so I mourned my love,quietly drowning.I really must stop.Catch myself falling back into the well that was you.''I love you''.How empty those words now.Sentiment thick in my throat.My weaknesses you did delight in.Ammunition for your games.You removed my armour,bit by bit,and crept into the folds.I still see you,your old self,the one that I loved, hiding in flowerpots,childish and pure.

With the vanities of youth cast aside we can now sit back and enjoy our rich tapestry of cherished memories and idyllic daydream.Our lives enriched by the measure of time.How I miss your tender heart.The way you opened up and let me climb inside.I was always so careful not to tear apart your fragile walls.Soothed by the waning of the moon I ebb and flow to a motion sighing it's last breath.I am but a whisper so sweet,caught up in an eddy of fragrant dreams.Years have quietly slipped by, seasons changed and come around again.And still you're by my side.My trinket box,locked away,to take out at will on my rainy days.Tiptoeing amongst the sweetness of our good times.A magical merry-go-round of beautiful horses and dancing gazelles in shades of pastel and cotton candy.Far sweeter than the truth betells.Our wisdom a precious commodity of well kept secrets to be passed down to a generation bound up in laughter and childish dream. 

SEXUALITY

COCKTAILS AT NINE

Oh what delight! To put aside all that I am and let the craving engulf my very being. To flow with the tides of passion just this one time.