Leather Flappers – Monday Night Poetry

October 27 2023

Wednesday night Spooky Poetry Slam was so much fun!! Thank you @seemedisco for facilitating! Photos by @sidewayseightprojects and @amethyst_noir.photography!!

I didn’t make it past Round 1. But I had a blast! Round 1 was a poem connected to your costume. I wore a dress decorated with bats.

My poem:

Leather Flappers

With forelimbs and adapted wings
The only mammal capable of sustained flight.

Batshit crazy
Bat out of hell
Blind as a bat

The spirit guide who stripped me of my old,
limiting personality and enabled me to step into
a larger, wiser self.

Bat your eyelashes
Bat along
Bat an eyelid

More than half the species is endangered
Pollination that gifts us with
Bananas, avocados and mangoes

Bat five hundred
Bat for the other side
Bat on a sticky wicket

Pedal to the metal
Or wings to the air
Capable of reaching over 100 miles per hour

Bat the breeze
Batted out
Bat an eye

Living in bat colonies
With pups who feed on breastmilk
Longevity is their super power

Bat around
Bat for the other team
Bat away

We might have matching navels
Is yours an innie or outie?

Bats in the belfry
Bat guano
Batshit crazy

Able to eat up to 1,200 mosquitos an hour
You’re welcome to dinner at my place anytime, flittermouse

October 2023

An Endless Expansive Stage

October 26 2023

The sky over the past few days.

Master Storyteller

Upon your endless expansive stage
With an ever changing set
The stories you tell
Mesmerize those who open their eyes to your theater
You charge us nothing
For the shows you create
I just can’t get enough of
The shows you produce.
Thank you beautiful sky. ❤️

Poetry: Released


The path to love
the path to one’s self
strewn with broken pieces covered in darkness
showered with light
pieces put back together discarding what no longer fits
like a sculptor releasing
the masterpiece buried in the rock. Chisel, buff, shine
until one day she is
released from the confines
of the rock.
She is free to know
free to be
free to love and be loved
free to have and free to do
the path to love
the path to one’s self
is the longest and
the shortest path
ever traveled.

October 2016

Poetry: Water Dance and The Space Within and Shining Star Bag

September 24 2023

Monday Night Poetry! I read some oldies, plus a work-in-progress. I’m not ready to share the WIP yet so here’s the oldies.

Water Dance

As the suns reflection
Becomes a dancer
Of the water,
She takes by the hand
the one who walks.

She whispers sweet reminders,
To the walkers heart.

She dances elegantly.
She dances of love and grace.
She dances unknown
To many who see her
Only with the eyes.

For those that catch
Glimpses of her water dance
Life loses the illusions
of trickery.

She dances to
Guide them in
Remembering what
Their hearts continue
To know.

She reminds them
They are all different.
Yet, they are all the same.
We are they.
They are we.

The hand she
Took the walker by
Melts into the Sun.
The Sun swallows her
And she swallows the Sun.
They become One.

The one who walks
continues her
Walk of life
Having been reminded
Of what the brain had clouded.
What the heart always knows.
And lo, free and lighter, she continues to Walk.
-©️2018, Camilla Downs

The Space Within

There is a space within
A space occupied, it was.

Occupied with judgment
Occupied with harshness
Occupied with unkind thoughts
towards others.

There is a space within
where the darkness
of judgment used to live.

Judgment lives
here no more.
It has been.

There is a space within.

A soft space of love
of compassion
of empathy
of understanding.

For a journey
of a thousand miles has
been lived with
the understanding
that each one of us
has traveled a similar journey.

To be sure,
not the same journey.
No, not the same.
That matters not.

Each has traveled a journey
of a thousand miles.

And each viewed not
according to their journey,
yet viewed with eyes
that flow from the heart.

A heart that knows the two
are connected,
viewed with eyes flowing
from the heart that only
knows unconditional love.

Eyes wide open to
the Truth of each one’s journey.

The Truth that judgment of another is
simply a reflection of judgment
held within one towards oneself.

There is a space within,
a space that was once filled with
the darkness of judgment.

A space that is now
available for compassion
and love for one self and others.

Space to breath easier
Space to live easier
space to live peacefully
Space to allow all to BE
and travel the paths chosen.

There’s a space within.
A Beautiful Space.

May we all release
and expose this space within
for the Beauty it reveals.
-2018 Camilla Downs

This poem flowed forth from the below words I had written at a different time regarding judgments and compassion. For some reason I saved them. Now, I know why.

” ……. The space within me that held the weight of so many judgments …

Judgments against people who thought and felt differently, judgments against single moms, judgments against parents whose kids act out and the kids too.

Every single time one of those judgments was released, a cushion of compassion took its place. There are still some wee judgments hiding in there.

Some that stay hidden and some that peek out to see if its safe. Within me is not a safe zone for judgments … You are released and a warm, soft, loving cushion of compassion takes your place.”

Shining Star Bag

You can take
All the hearts
Nature puts forth

And put them 
All in a bag
Made of stars
Wrapped in a
Bow of beautiful
Green grass.

But there’ll be
Days when no
Matter the beauty
No matter the love
No matter the
Depth of knowing
How the Light
Shines within.

There’ll be days
When a heaviness
Envelops and that
Shining star bag
Full of love means.

Absolutely nothing.

There’ll be days
When the sweetness
And beauty of
Every breath
Is not felt or seen.

Yet, these days
Shall pass.
These days
Shall pass.

Pass, they shall.
And waiting will
Be that shining star
Bag of hearts
And love.

For Nature is
Nature is ever there
With love and light.

The Seed Pod
-2017 Lessons from Nature

Poetry: The Garden of My Mind

July 4 2023

Last night was so much fun! The poetry workshop before the event was powerful! Thanks to Brennan Defrisco and his lovely partner. For my non-local friends, every July is designated as Artown by Reno. A full month of celebrating local artists. 🎉🎉🎉

Last night’s theme was “in my garden”. Here’s the poem I shared.

The Garden of My Mind

Wildflowers sprouting from every fold and groove
Each wildflower overflowing with ideas

Red Hot

At times the heartache doesn’t want to leave
Clinging to the familiar

The Garden of My Mind

Mysterious, Wild, Confused
Difficult to contain excitement
Loving those dopamine hits
Lit by listening to good music

Working on this
Oh, wait, I need to finish this
Wait, I need to start that
Wait, I need to run that errand
Okay. Working on this again
Crap! What’s that burning smell?
Damn. Forgot I put toast in the toaster. Every freakin’ time!

Saying nasty things to myself
Saying sweet, good things to myself

In the past, never knowing who this person
Named Camilla really is
The Garden of My Mind
The Neurodivergent Mind
The Traumatized Mind
In the present, learning who this person
Named Camilla really is

It’s beautiful
It’s fickle
Blowing with the winds of the present moment

Healing from childhood trauma
Memories of something horrible
Done to her as a young child
Which led to teen and adult trauma
Becoming what was later coined as

Learning at an early age
To dissociate when horrible things
Were happening to the body

A mind now processing
Healing from such horrid happenings.

A mind experiencing freedom
Like never before
Freedom like when she was a teen, a young adult
Minus the drugs and alcohol

A wilding of the mind
Learning how to be kind to herself
Learning how to let the mind
And she, be the shiny, weird, quirky, wild, chaotic
Human she came here to be.

The Garden of My Mind
A magical, colorful, place of sticky ideas
Some wild, some amazing, some nonsensical
Yet always lovely and fragrant.

The heartache becoming
Letting go

It’s never too late to take
A stroll, stay a while, and weed

The garden of our minds.
2023 Camilla Downs

Wild Flower – New Poetry

June 5 2023

I went again. I absolutely adore this group of people. The poems shared were powerful, meaningful, and passionate.

I shared a new poem, written today.

Wild Flower

As a young girl she loved music,
moving her body to the beat
With her record player and 45’s
She was a Dancing Queen.

Music made everything better
The discomfort of Life melted
Leaving only the beat and lyrics.

She feels the beat, the words,
in her heart, her soul, her bones.

As a child and teen,
Soul Train, Solid Gold,
American Bandstand
Were her Saturdays.

Dreams of being a Solid Gold dancer, Being a Rockette.
She assumed these dreams to be out of reach.

As it went, as she got older,
Life took it’s twists and turns
With dreams of becoming a dancer unrealized.

As she became an adult, married, had kids
She hid that part of herself
Rarely dancing.

2023 has brought an emergence
After 8 years of withdrawing from Society,
Refraining from being social,

She says, No longer.
Fuck that!
I’m dancing.

I’m dancing when I go for walks.
I’m dancing when I’m in the grocery store.
I’m dancing in my seat while driving.
I’m dancing while working.
I’m dancing while at the gym.
I’m dancing while making out.

I’m letting the music, the beat, the words
Move my gypsy, Pisces soul
As I float into the mystic.
I’m here to let the Wild Flower Within,
sharing my scent,
My colors, my vibrance with all I encounter.

Let’s put on our Boogie Shoes
And do it all night long
Let’s Dance!
-2023 Camilla Downs

Group photo from last night. Beautiful people. ❤️❤️❤️

New Poetry: She Emerges

May 29 2023

I attended the Spoken Views Live Poetry Night tonight. Second time and this time I read a poem I wrote today. I freaking, absolutely LOVE this group of people. This is my new Monday night jam!

Photo of me on stage, a photo with the two people who welcomed me last Monday, Mountain and Marleta, and two photos of my new shirt (which I LOVE!!!)

Here’s the poem I read:

She Emerges

It’s been 15 years.
The amount of time it takes
For one to blossom from infant to teenager.

During those 15 years
She dove deep
Exploring her inner world
Drawing within herself.

No more socializing,
No more attending events
Attaching herself to the walls
Of her inner life.

Safely around herself
She spun a secure cocoon.

Weaved with the essence of
Her two kids, safe friends, family,
And healing and inspiring books.

Within this protective casing
She dove deep into confronting
Past hurts, past trauma.

Sitting with the pain, the discomfort
Allowing herself to feel every
Emotion that appeared.
Sadness, anger, joy, happiness,
content, shame, guilt.

She dove deep into experiencing
The silence of nature
The silence of life
The beauty of nature
The beauty of allowing nature to bring forth
Healing words to share with the world.

She spent many years of her
Life within this cocoon
Radically changing how
She viewed the world
And her fellow humans

Nearing the end of this molting period
She knew the radical transformaiton
Of her inner life, her heart, her soul
Was complete.

She began shedding
her protective casing.
Only to realize that her physical body
Was not yet ready to emerge.

The years of financial struggle and worry
Had taken a toll on her body.
She spent the next couple of years
In search of what ailed her body.
Finally discovering and addressing the reason.

Once her physical body was on board
With emerging,
And after learning that she, like her kids
Is neurodivergent
She realized there remained
Something within that begged
For release, for transformation

She spent months in search of
Just the right therapist.
This is exactly what the trauma
Of her youth, teenage years, and young adult needed.

An outside force to clear the
Remains of what she alone could not clear.

With each session,
the protective casing she had
Spun all those years ago
Began to crumble

She emerged as her authentic self
Her shining self
Ready to share
Of herself without fear
That shining and sharing of her true self
Would attract unwanted and unlovely attention.

For so long ago, as a young child she
Learned that when she shined,
It attracted that which felt wrong
And that which she did not want.

She is helping that young Camilla
Has hugged and loved her
Placing her in a special
Nook carved in her heart.

Behold the awakening of all that
Could have been
If she had felt safe to
Be who she wanted to be
Explore all that life had to offer
Choose a path that fit her
Feel attraction for who she was attracted to
Love who she wanted to love

The transformation is complete
She’s 16 again
Ready to LIVE life
On her terms.

A neurospicy Pisces
Lover of olives,
Dancing, Walks
And passionate kisses.

Get ready world
With no fear
With no holding back
She has emerged. – Camilla Downs – 2023

Monday Night Poetry – Leaving the Comfort Zone

May 22 2023

I stepped out of my comfort zone big time tonight. While Thomas was in their 6:00pm appointment, instead of sitting in the car for an hour, I drove 5 minutes to Shim’s Speakeasy.

This was my first time here, and I loved it. The atmosphere and the people were awesome. Plus!!! They have Guinness 0. Woohoo! I was only able to stay for an hour, but I plan on going next Monday, and I can stay for the full spoken poetry event, getting myself on the stage. 😱Thursday looks like fun with Old Skool Music. Yay me!! 💖💋💖