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Stories From the Edge of Blindness

In 2002, Retinitis Pigmentosa changed my life. This is my story of a slow approach to darkness.

Coming in Last

I spent 2 of my high school years in Carbondale, Colorado.  It was beautiful. But, that is another post for another day.  Anyway, on a flight from Denver to Los Angeles,  when I was about 15, I had a conversation with a woman who I will never forget.  She talked to me about birth order and the significance it has on personality and life choices.  Like me, she was the youngest child, and although she was probably about 30 years older than me, I found we had a lot of similar characteristics, and that we saw our older siblings in similar ways.

I was the youngest of 3. Continue reading “Coming in Last”

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I Will Be Retribution ~Susan Richardson

On Morality Park Today!

MORALITY PARK

You left me on the hottest day of the year,

tiles blistering beneath my feet, the sting

of treachery skirmishing with the taste

of rage that flickered on my tongue.

In a hollow gesture, you bequeathed me a

house full of echoes and a box of matches

to burn our caustic memories to the ground.

Laden with hungry fingers and a thirst

for Jim Beam, you skulk through

murky nightclubs looking for a dimly lit

blonde to awaken in the middle of the night.

You eat up the thrill of drunken sex and

fuck in hotel rooms paid for in cash,

twisting beneath sheets stained with indiscretion.

You think you’ve seen the last of me,

but I am waiting on the tip of a ravenous blade,

vapor torn from a slice of reckoning.

I hide beneath a cloak, woven from threads

of betrayal that darken the creases in my resolve,

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Unwavering

I never wrote love poems, not about the good parts of love anyway, until I met my husband, Joe.  Perhaps I had never really been in love before him, or perhaps I didn’t know what real love was supposed to feel like and look like.  What I do know, is that my life and my heart have not been the same since I first met him, almost 10 years ago.

This month is his birthday month, my personal favorite month of the year because it is about celebrating him, so it is perfect that today my poem, “Unwavering” came out in Foxglove Journal.

Badass Ballerina

My friend Sarah, who you may know from “On the way to the Barre”, is not only an extraordinary person and beautiful ballerina, but she is also an immensely talented writer.  Her essay, “Spider Woman” appears in the current issue of Ducts Literary Magazine, and she will also be reading at their launch event, this Saturday, in New York.

If you are in or near New York on Saturday, don’t miss Sarah reading her incredible essay!

Epic Summer Issue of Sheila – Na – Gig

I am thrilled to have 2 of my poems in the Epic Summer Issue of Sheila -Na – Gig.  My huge thanks go out to Editor Hayley Haugen!

This is a huge an amazing issue with so many wonderful poets and poems.  There are also a ton of submission opportunities at SNG that all poets should check out!!!!

Perspective on Suffering

I approach the idea of suffering from 2 angles.  One is from the knowledge that there is always someone who is suffering more than me, suffering atrocities that I cannot even begin to imagine.  The other, is that as individuals, our own suffering is indeed the worst in the world. We walk in our own skins, live in our own minds. Ever since my RP diagnosis, 16 years ago, I have had people comment that they shouldn’t complain to me about their own suffering, given that mine must be so much worse.  I have also had people tell me that RP isn’t so bad, that it isn’t going to kill me and there are people who have it much worse than I do.  I believe we are all human, we all have value in our pain and in our joy and in our expression.  Our plights are our own, but hopefully by sharing our experiences with each other, we learn and find spaces of healing and understanding.  Or is this all bullshit?
Continue reading “Perspective on Suffering”

Wax ~ Susan Richardson

MORALITY PARK

I sit slumped at a table weeping,

peeling the skin from my hands

onto a rickety landscape of linoleum.

My tissue holds the scars of depravity,

a tangle of frenzy that sets itself on fire.

My blood is frozen in tendrils of ice

that encase the echoes of ecstasy.

My bones are made of wax, fractured

and cracking into fissures peppered

like land mines across my knuckles.

I wake up alone in a gale of laughter,

sitting naked on the edge of the bath.

©Copyright Susan Richardson 2018

You can read more of Susan’s work at Stories from the Edge of Blindness

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Perfection has no Sound

My June contribution to Visual Verse is up!  If you would like to read it with the image, you can go here.  There are some incredible pieces already, including a beautiful poem from fellow writer, blogger and RPer ( technically Ushers Syndrome, which is RP with hearing loss), Carrie Ann Golden.

Perfection has no Sound

You are carved from wax,
youth preserved in a gilded shell,
voice torn from your throat.
Your face is a sculpted fantasy,
glamour painted into your eyes,
rage pinned to the roof of your mouth,
trapped behind shellacked lips.
Your image is puzzled together,
hand stitched bits of plastic
that stick to your ribs and
keep you motionless under hot lights.
You are re-created under the
precision of a steel blade,
your undesirable bits left like
scraps in a hazardous waste bucket.
You trade in your identity and buy
yourself expertly crafted slices of beauty,
searching for a place in the spotlight,
but you begin to melt and realize
perfection has no sound.

©Susan Richardson 2018

Eating Barbequed Iguana

I fell a few weeks ago, on the sidewalk, while gawking at another new group of hideous town houses that are being built in our neighborhood.  When I fell, I cried, not because it hurt, but because I felt humiliated, broken, slapped in the face yet again by RP.  My depression and self loathing voices took center stage and told me I was useless and really shouldn’t even be outside if I can’t manage to walk a block without falling down and scraping my knees.  I wanted to hide, from the RP and the day and the world.  I wanted to hide from myself, pretend I was graceful, dream I could float.  My sadness turned to anger and I stumbled home, terrified that every step may be the one to send me back into the unwelcome embrace of the pavement. Until very recently, this had been my usual response to falling.
Continue reading “Eating Barbequed Iguana”

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