Poems from RC deWinter

new boots

just spent some bucks for boots

they're light and comfy

tie above the ankles

perfect for tromping out

into the underbelly

of an unknown land

i've been wearing them every day

for awhile

better to break them in now

than to find out too late

in the middle of nowhere

there's a spot that rubs wrong

and there's nothing for it

but to bandage blisters at night

so far so good

they seem a perfect fit

i got some new boots

for the inner woman too

they're also light and comfy

but they don't tie at all

pretty skimmers

another perfect fit

slide 'em on

and you're good to go

equally suited for


tripping the light fantastic

or navigating new territory

sturdy enough for whatever terrain

needs exploring

comfortable enough not to rub

i've needed those new

me-boots desperately

it's been too long

stumbling through life

rough and clumsy

in the old ones

too heavy for everyday

laces knotted and fraying

soles worn down to the soul

scraping it with every step

against the ground

not sure why i kept wearing them

just lazy i guess

or maybe afraid of change

but now

i got me some new boots

for outside and in

and neither pair

is more or less real

than the other

and yes

i'm really good to go

The One That Got Away

You know those movies

where two people meet

and instantly bond –

heart mind soul

and sometimes but not always

flesh –

like temporary magnets

the kind that can't resist each other

when in close proximity?

I’m not talking red hot lust here.

No. This goes beyond itchy pants.

This is


There's cosmic glue…

Oh shit, I’m mixing metaphors with the magnets,

but the magnets are important


there's a point I forgot to make back there,

and that is:

Temporary magnets only bond

in the presence of the electromagnetic field

energizing them.

Move them away from that and


They're demagnetized.

People, on the other hand

are hardwired for memory:

shortterm, longterm, sensory,

explicit, implicit, declarative,

procedural, semantic, episodic.

Hell, there's even muscle memory.

And THAT is the point.

When that happens in these movies –

the instant bonding, I mean,

because it's Hollywood,

when those people are separated –

and they ALWAYS are,

temporarily or permanently –

they never forget.

No matter what else happens,

that experience is an invisible mnemonic –

an emotional tattoo.

Yeah, I know

a lot of you say love isn't unique,

fashioned to fit only one,

but I’m here to validate Hollywood.

For some people there is only


the love of one's life,

the (disgusting term) soulmate.

Hell, even Conan Doyle knew this

when he assigned Sherlock’s dried-up

misanthropic heart to Irene Adler.

How many have lost


to death or some other unavoidable,

irrevocable separation and lived alone thereafter

unable to reassign that love

to an inferior substitute?

And what about the ones who

found each other, stayed together

and when one finally gives up the ghost

the other dies within weeks or months

because life has lost its meaning

in the absence of


They're uncountable.

I bet you even know people like this.

For some of us there really is only


Yes, everyday life goes on for most,

but it's only a half-life;

the real living takes place

within the boundaries of that emotional tattoo,

within the mnemonic of


who by whatever means –

death or disaster or just rotten bad luck –

got away.

surgical steel

after our dizzy fling was over

i kept up with your shenanigans in secret

i bit my tongue bloody

to keep from snapping out some snark

about your endless string of conquests

even if i had given voice to the venom

it wouldn't have so much as scratched

the surface of your inch-thick hide

nothing i said in love ever did

nothing i'd say in anger ever could

i marvel at the swath you cut

mowing willing sacrifices down

like daisies under a sharp blade

you always were cold and clinical

there's no accounting for taste

About RC deWinter

RC deWinter is a writer/digital artist whose poetry has been anthologized in New York City Haiku (NY Times 2017) and Uno: A Poetry Anthology (Verian Thomas, 2002). Her poetry has appeared in print in 2River View, Pink Panther Magazine, Another Sun, Plum Ruby Review, Garden Tripod well as in many online publications. Down in the Dirt will feature two of her poems in its forthcoming Jan/Feb 2019 issue. Her art has been published, too, and also used as set décor on ABC-TV’s Desperate Housewives.


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