Monday, April 16, 2007


My teeth were whiter and prettier before I discovered the sweet addiction of coffee. Years of caffeine staining each tooth their own individual color, cream, butter, rice paper, ivory. The sharp edges got thinner daily from aging and pregnancy. The calcium leached from my perfect teeth to feed the fetus that used to live inside me until the enamel was near translucent. I don’t smile much anymore. Aleathia Drehmer 2007 Published by The Outsider Writers 6/07

Friday, April 13, 2007


If I had but one moment to trace the shape of your face with the tip of my finger, I would find myself held unaccountable for my actions, I would find myself at the mercy of your eyes, I would find myself malleable under the warmth of your hands, if I had but one moment to trace the shape of your face with the tip of my finger. Aleathia Drehmer 2007 Published by Poems for All 6/07


Ten Acre Run is a mythical place in the desert for children, who believe in the miracles of the world. In the midst of hot sun and cracked mud, lay a haven of grassy fields, maple and oak trees, and flowers not blooming from the spines of cacti. It is a place for riding horses with smooth, shiny saddles smelling of leather oil and alfalfa, instead of riding like heathens with cinched horse blankets, bare feet rubbing the ribs of our beasts. The saddle horn silky and worn as I pull myself up, right leg floats over his rump gracefully, fluidly. I feel eyes on me watching in anticipation, as boots slide loosely into stirrups too big for my feet, reins gripped firm in my hands. Holding the bridle, Tara leans toward me whispering, “Don’t forget to lean in.” I nod, sitting proudly atop this fine muscular horse, she releases the bridle, I nudge him to go the heels of my boots digging into his side expecting him to break into a gallop But he rises in slow motion, hooves beating angrily into the heat of the air. My face rises up towards the sun, light blinds all thoughts from my head, all lessons learned vanish quietly, I am left with instinct and she is screaming for me to hold on. Feet hover out of the stirrups, hands grip the reins tighter and tighter my body dancing with gravity. twisting in the wind like a paper lantern. I make an imprint into the grass and dust, eyes snap open, as if waking from a nightmare to a sea of horsehair painting my face, swimming in my mouth, cutting my tongue like a thousand microscopic razors. Whiskey rolls over my body, his spine a bony axe dislocating my hip, then my shoulder trying desperately to get vertical. I am powerless to escape his swift hoof as it connects to the right side of my head ripping a portion of my ear from my head. Everything is dark now, silence is deafening, there is a pain I have never known, a throbbing inside my head, and the warmth of my blood strangely soothes me when it trickles down the side of my face. Aleathia Drehmer 2007

"One of the Girls"

I have never been one of those feminine girls that fawns over fashion, make-up and hunks. I spent my time slightly to the side of popularity, with a book in my hands, and a song in my head, trying to maintain a balance. I wanted to be considered one of the guys while still having just enough intrigue to be one of the girls. Aleathia Drehmer 2007

"Hog Tied"

There is a hog-tied girl in the back of the police cruiser, screaming the same five words in a loop. Three cops pick her up like they are carrying a pig on a spit. Her shaggy, black hair falling into her face, red and swollen from crying and fighting. Soft folds of her stomach become visible to this lion of a night as her shirt cannot defy gravity in her present position and the edges of her jeans ragged hang around her dirty feet with misshapen toenails painted purple and chipping. It takes seven of us to strap her into leather restraints, the same five words streaming from her throat like a torture. voice manic and strained eyes black with vacant rage rocking her body on the stretcher so violently it moves across the room rails bend to their capacity. I want to take my tape and fix her mouth shut. I want to tape her whole face to shield that look of empty hatred. I do not like being a nurse. Aleathia Drehmer 2007

Thursday, April 5, 2007

"Disregarding Danger"

In the park near my father’s apartment there is a curious tree that grows horizontally over the creek. It’s origin, it’s roots never quite in the bright light of sun. The unlikely existence of this tree forced it to grow in an unnatural position. The trunk like a grown man’s leg, straight and long, hovers parallel to the ground. The bark is smooth and almost soft, perfectly round. The grass below it rises up around it, a mass of verdant hairs. As this beautiful tree reaches the embankment, it forms a bend and stands over the creek, growing from thin air, stretching towards the sunlight that filters through the other trees in the woods. My father lets me test my bravery and balance on this tree. He lets me take off my shoes and socks so I can feel every grain and knot, my toes curling around the edges as if on the balance beam in gym class. I walk out on this trunk without his help and at the bend I am suspended two feet over the ledge of the embankment. To fall the distance to the water and rocks below would mean breaking something. My father disregards this danger. No fear ever washes over his face as I do this and my soul soars with the freedom. My heart nearly bursts with the joy that he trusts in the grace of my being. Holding on to the upright branches, I am enchanted with the dancing light peering through the leaves of the tallest trees. It seems impossible to me that this tree can survive amongst these giants that it can continue to thrive against the odds. The pureness of the air, cooler and cleaner over the water, refreshes me. I get lost in the motion picture of pollens and dust floating by in the rays of light. Listening to the birds chirp their morning songs, I think of the stories my father and I made up the night before, listening to classical music with the window open to the summer night. He told me the music could tell any story that I could think of, each instrument a voice for a character that only I could create. The thought of it was magical and fantastical; it was so unlike the life I was leading. I fell asleep that night telling a story that I can no longer remember. He had treated me to stories of his own travels out in the world; stories of canoeing down the Mississippi river with his dog Napoleon, and how they walked the Appalachian Trail from stem to stern. I imagined my father out there as a young man with his head full of loose, sandy brown curls, and laugh that could shake the blues from just about anyone. I think of these adventures and his bravery as I test the mechanics of my body on this limb. Napoleon sits there at the root, half covered in the tall grass. He sits there without being told to, like it is in his nature to watch over me. His eyes follow my every move in anticipation of a rescue, for his trust in my skills, is not like the trust of my father. When I have lingered long enough over the water to feel strong and sure, long enough to feel like I have tested my will to the best of my ability, I walk the length of the trunk back. I sit down on its’ roots to put on my socks and shoes and I can see Napoleon’s tail waging, making the grass quiver. I place my hand on his velvet, black head as he licks my cheek. He is a loving dog. My father has walked far ahead into the forest and we run to catch up with him. Napoleon and I race each other. I push my legs to go as fast as they can, until I feel them burning. We look sideways at each other to see who will win. Napoleon always wins, but that never matters to me. It is the racing at full speed that matters. It is the pushing of the limits that matters. I smile at the way his long, pink tongue flaps in the breeze of his stride. I know my father can hear our approach for he reaches his hand out to the side, and lets my hand slip into it; the strength of his arms stopping my inertia. The callousness of his hands, rough from his work, with dirt ground in gives me quiet comfort. It is a wonder that a hand used for such hard work can be innately tender. My heart swells in the shining of his silent trust in my ability to keep myself safe. It seems too much to ask of someone to have that kind of faith in such a short time together. I cannot understand the nature of it, or how it can grow so quickly from so little. We walk the rest of the morning with this new feeling surging between us, each of us not wanting it to dissipate. As he teaches me about the nature in this forest and its offerings, I smile into myself at this feeling of wholeness that I have never known until this day. I did not know if I would ever feel it again, so I hold it close for all its worth, capturing its’ essence for a day when I will need it again. Aleathia Drehmer 2007

Wednesday, April 4, 2007


I am driving in my car slowly, the tires making dull thuds into the potholes, like small craters in the earth that are the remnants of winter's salt. Dried, brown leaves dart across the cragged pavement in the blustery beginning of spring. They remind me of tiny children running and jumping across the schoolyard, escaping their prison on the last day of classes. The sun fractures through the leafless trees somehow bright and soft simultaneously. I squint my eyes to its luminance to look upon the sky crystalline and blue like the waters of a warm ocean I have never seen. Clouds crawl like tortoises, their great humped backs like stepping-stones across a small, babbling creek. There is an old man with gray whiskers on his dilapidated bicycle in front of me, his frail, skinny leg a kickstand. He is still dressed for winter and his navy coat is stained with many years of misuse. His dingy, orange knit cap pulled tightly to his skull makes me think of aging, makes me think of the degradation of the human body over time, how year by year we lose fat and sinew as our bodies require less and less of us to survive. I lament the fact that each day spent living is another day spent dying, that each moment experienced is a moment of the past. The interchange so minute that we don’t begin to see it until it is too late. Aleathia Drehmer 2007