Tenesha Smith

This coming Monday we return to the back room of McGeary’s for the February edition of Poets Speak Loud. This month our featured poet is Tenesha Smith, a familiar face in the poetry community as she has been performing for many years, recently at Urban Guerilla Theatre and Nitty Gritty Slam #11.

I’m from Oakland, Ca. I’ve been writing poetry since I was 11 years old. I am a member of Urban Guerilla Theatre. I graduated from The College of Saint Rose with a degree in Special Education and Childhood Education in the Spring of 2010.

Poets Speak Loud is Albany Poets’ monthly open mic for poetry and spoken word with a featured poet. This event is hosted by Mary Panza and held on the last Monday of each month at McGeary’s (4 Clinton Square, Albany) in downtown Albany. Sign-up for the open mic is 7:00pm, start time is 7:30pm.

Here is a sample of what you can expect on Monday night.

Steam rises
the mirror fogs
blurring my image
as I pull my hair into a ponytail
I notice the spider on the ceiling
crawling in a circle
around the light fixture
The cool tiles
beneath my feet
chills
The heat
from the shower beckons
I step beneath the shower
water as hot as I can stand it
I inventory my body
arms, legs, torso
some would say that
my body
is desirable
one
would say
he owned it
I am dry bones
seeking water
I try to scrub away
fingerprints
bruising my arm
the stiffness in my neck
the soreness
between my thighs
I lift my face
to the spray
wash away
the lip gloss
that makes my swollen
bottom lip
look
luscious
I will myself to become
liquid
acquiring the
shape of what
contains me
The spider descends
on an invisible thread
I survive by adapting
My strength lies in my
consistency
Constantly running
folding the muscles of
my stomach
around
fear
smoothing
the jagged edges of
anxiety into pearls
I have always hated spiders
The temperature of the water
changes
cools
I turn off
the spray
I am solid
a woman
body wet
eyes dry
I catch the dangiling
spider in my hand
and squeeze
the little bastard
has to die
it had seen me
naked