“My hatred will build you an orphanage” by Geraldine Fernandez


I’ve met people whose smiles
remind me of hospital beds
asking me to ‘stay’

(stay here, sunshine)

I’ve worn eyes that remind you
of solicitation letters:
father, lend me your name
mother, do you have a moment?

and I’ve read palms
whose lines whisper
death threats
on a daily basis.


Mothers, don’t tell the girls
they look pretty in sunday dress
don’t waste time teaching them table manners
or relating stories of the flower power

tell them gender is a cold war
and gods never play fair;
Eve you will die from breast cancer,
from blood loss,
from woman abuse.


I won’t forgive your rough roads
for coaxing childhood

to trade barefoot
for war boots.

I won’t forget
how your air reeked of bad ratio:
11 pig pens is to 1 playground
so I wasted sketchpads
drawing slaughterhouses
and never quite remembered
to take a snapshot of the schoolyard.


Dear ego,
your spine is not a fortress

Fear knows you’re such an easy climb
your womb is not a lotus pond
you’ll bleed to death
birthing a firstborn
you’ll soon baptize son-of-a-gun

and seventeen years later,
he’ll write:
mother, my hatred will build you an orphanage.


Author Photo - Geraldine Fernandez

Geraldine Fernandez (“Dray”) is a diagnosed wordsmith with comorbid attention deficit & mood a barrel of whiskey sadly ecstatic as the tic-tic-ticking of a typewriter at 2am, whose words come out blue and non-hypoallergenic as her mother’s laundry soap. She self-medicates with confessional poetry. She is a graduate of Bachelor in Secondary Education Major in English and currently a second year law student. Her works have appeared in various papers & poetry journals namely The Hundred Islands, The Plebeians, The Birds We Piled Loosely, The Fem Literary Magazine, Spillwords Press, etc. She is in love with the spontaneous poetic energy of Kerouac and the beat and dreams to follow her inner moonlight and become a travelling / performing poet. Instagram: gdraylovesgritty


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