“Song Eater” by Ruth Thompson
It’s rich here—
nice bits falling.
Comes my manta shape—
Song Eater, me—
I swallow what remains to be said.
I heard her letting go.
Then the noise of voracious worms.
But potential music
still clouds around her.
I come to gullet that—
until the sponge of me
is full with it.
Then I swim up,
swollen as a wave—
you can see me out here
if you look—
curved like a hammerhead,
driving at the shore—
that static you hear at night?
that’s me emptying.
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Ruth Thompson Artist Statement:
Ruth Thompson is the author of Crazing, Woman With Crows, and Here Along Cazenovia Creek.
In Crazing, Ruth writes about dementia, physical dissolution, and the death of the earth
whose body she shares. Woman With Crows explored the archetypal feminine journey through
darkness. It was a finalist for AROHO’s To The Lighthouse Prize. Ruth’s poems have won
the New Millennium Writings, Harpur Palate, and other prizes. Here Along Cazenovia Creek was
choreographed and performed by the great Shizuno Nasu.
Ruth received a BA from Stanford and a doctorate in English from Indiana University. She
now lives in Hilo, Hawai’i, where she teaches meditation, yoga, and writing; collaborates on
poetry and dance videos; and runs Saddle Road Press. She identifies as, and writes about
being, a joyous, powerful old woman.
For more information, poems, reviews, and videos, please see www.ruththompson.net. Ruth
talks about her poetry here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=obJBbK99zkQ.