On Writing

Poem 82 – Nervous


There are leaping lemurs in my belly
pushing off branches of worry & snapping
them against the bottom of my rib cage
my stomach a cage of sorts…
a jungle of anxieties I can’t name
it’s a right undiscoverable terrain in there
that my logic can’t discern

This type of steadfast flustering arrives
unannounced & somehow knows the
entrance password…
breathing helps &
soft rubs clock-wise but mostly
it’s blind acceptance & a collaboration
with trust that the lemurs will tire
or rest or even better escape
out an ear or a nostril


I will be writing poems on demand every day in April to celebrate National Poetry Month. If you would like me to write you a poem, please follow the steps below!

1) start an email to shieldsvanessa@gmail.com.
2) in the subject line write: NPM POD Request.
3) in the body of the email include your FIRST NAME (or who the poem is for if you’re gifting it to someone); 3-6 words for me to use in the poem OR a theme for the poem.
4) donation payment – if you’d like to pay for your poem in any amount, please let me know how much. All donations will go to the Aboriginal Child Resource Centre. You can pay via e-transfer when you receive your poem. (email: shieldsvanessa@gmail.com)
5) send the email by March 31, 2021!

I’d be honoured to write you a poem! At the end of April, I will let you know how much money we’ve collected for the Aboriginal Resource Centre.

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