I wrote this in March of 2022 for World Bipolar Day.
I wear the stigma of a bipolar diagnosis and hide this big secret This secret has been a part of me since my teens This secret explains my sometimes uncontrollable insanity This secret at times robs me of my sleep This secret has taken me on many fun and lustful adventures This secret makes me write, write, write so I don’t want to die, die, die I keep this secret and take medication for it But one day, I’ll scream out loud my mental health truth I’m bipolar 2 I’m not enough to ruin your life but just enough to fuck it up a little at a time
me acuesto en mi cama en una vida llena de mentiras fingiendo que estoy bien mientras guardo una miseria profunda dentro de mi misma esperando que un hombre me salve Esperando que mi destino se transforme espero, espero, espero que algo cambie en mi vida para que pare de obsessionar por que nunca soy suficiente
Thanks to learning about my BPD I’m finally free to be me There is a reason for my numbness and for why I’m such an emotional mess Genetics and trauma played a part for me constantly falling apart There is a reason for my impulsivity and for why I distort reality There is a reason for men running away from me when I go from being sweet to being crazy And now that I know I have BPD I can conquer the world of DBT I hope that after I’m more calm And stop going off like a bomb Hopefully I have more control over my emotions And there will no longer be hysterical explosions
quisiera ser una maga para que te olvides de mi para que nunca hubiese existido en tu vida porque me odio por haberte causado un mundo de dolor pero no vivimos en un cuento de hadas
Vivimos en una realidad dura donde soy incapaz de decirte algo para que tu dolor sea más fácil para superar lo único que puedo hacer es rezar por ti, desearte lo mejor, y esperar que algun dia encuentres el valor para empezar denuevo con alguien que te sepa amar
I never needed anyone to teach me how to love what I needed was understanding and acceptance while my love is kind and sweet most of the time my love also cannot be tamed at times when it gets wild and out of control it’s better to just ride the big wave of it until it is tamed and soft again it wasn’t that I didn’t know how to love It’s just that most don’t know how to handle it my kind of overwhelming love is a crazy kind of love it will hurt you, challenge you and bring conflict it will make you want to slap the shit out of me because yes it’s that intense but my kind of of love is always worthy
maldito sea por pensar que era una santa y colocarme en un pedestal la mujer de cual te enamoraste fue un mito de cuatro meses todo estaba bien con nosotros mientras me callaba no soportaba tus gritos que yo era una estúpida, una loca que siempre estaba equivocada Entonces aprendí a ser lo que querías una princesa sin una opinión pero no podía seguir con esta farsa me estaba matando adentro guardar todo que era importante en mi tuve que escoger entre tu y yo y me escogi a mi no te estoy pidiendo perdón o comprensión no mas te estoy dando la razón por terminar nuestro cuento de amor
I’m tired of the bustle and hustle that comes with my social status and the color of my skin Why wasn’t I raised with privilege and wealth instead of being raised with poverty and trauma? And I try and I try and I try to find a way out of this cruel existence but it’s futile I take pride in my never ending hustling but at times it feels so exhausting There seems to no end in sight for this fruitless fight
ojala que algun dia tu entiendas que nunca quise causarte daño pero tenía que rompernos no podíamos seguir viviendo con un adiós en limbo y empezar a odiarnos ya nos tocaba parar esta farsa donde fingimos amarnos donde fingimos toleranos donde perdíamos el tiempo en algo que ya no funciona
Soy el escándalo de mi generación marcho a mi ritmo propio desordenado sin pensar qué es lo correcto o moral soy una mujer cachonda y alegre que le gusta una variedad de amantes porque la vida es demasiado corta para seguir siendo una niña buena soy una mujer caótica siempre actuando sin pensamientos a las consecuencias soy una mujer que ahora se arriesga a vivir su vida con ganas y autenticidad
lo siento por ser una cobarde al evitarte debes de haberte dado cuenta que no soy la santa que colocaste en un altar que no soy la chica de tus sueños que nunca seré la madre de tus hijos estoy llena con remordimientos por esperar tanto tiempo en cortar nuestros lazos de amor ojala que tu no cuestiones tu valor porque no supe valorar tu amor ojala que encuentres a una mujer madura que te aprecie y no te quiere cambiar
C.E Hoffman’s chapbook collection Blood, Booze and Other Things in Nature is definitely a must read if you like your poetry vulnerable and thought provoking . This collection is raw and in your face and doesn’t shy away from telling you the harsh truth about the world but the poet does in a way that’s witty and full of dark humor. The poet addresses complex issues of mental health, love, sex, parenthood, and poverty. They address the inequalities that hit you in the gut and make you question the status quo.. I’ve never read a poetry collection like this before. I’ll talk about 4 poems from the book that I really liked. Their poetry feels like thoughts I’ve had that I have been too afraid to write down; much less share with the world.
The first poem is “Bloom (Blow Job) “and I really liked how this poem transitioned from giving a blowjob to other things in the poet’s life. I interpreted as things to talk about or are talked about after a blowjob. The line in this poem that really resonated with me was “you wipe spit from your cheek when/your lover says it was the hardest they came in their life, and/you believe them “(Hoffman). I’ve had this said to me quite a few times and my friend has as well. It’s a common line that men say to their partners/flings. Yes, MEN, we do talk about these things.
Another poem that resonated with me was “Magnificent Shits” in which the poet talks about how they imagine their unborn child to be like and how much they already love them . I resonated with this poem because as a parent myself, I’ve had similar thoughts. I resonated with the lines, “But no matter where you go/forever drives your soul/YOU ARE A MASTERPIECE that shits and smiles and needs and creates and kisses/explores and speeds “(Hoffman). These capture that feeling of loving your child and acknowledging their humanness.
Another poem I really liked from this collection is “Prenatal Yoga aka Relearning Breath”. It deals with complex issues of “passing” and even deals with the poet dealing with privilege. The line that I really liked from this poem was, “And I know it’s strange to find peace in a space of appropriation/’cause 8 outta 9 of our faces are white/ so when it comes to “passing”/ I really can’t talk, can I? “(Hoffman) As a woman of color who’s spent most of her time in predominantly white spaces, I understand this sentiment of feeling like an “other” or “out of place”. Often at times, I try to blend in and 9 out of 10 times, I am able to without incident. However, there is that 10 % where I feel uncomfortable because something unintentionally prejudiced is said or a wrong assumption is made about me.
New Moon in Cancer (Radical Honesty 101) was my favorite poem in this book. I interpreted this poem as the anxiety of the poet written in verse. I loved how honest Hoffman is in addressing everything that goes through their mind openly talking about their mental health, relationships, and what it’s like to be a writer in today’s environment of instagram, twitter, etc. One of my favorite lines from this poem was, “I don’t believe in The One./I’ve initiated most of my break-ups, cheated on basically/even in open relationships-/Shit. Maybe I just suck at this.” )Hoffman. I feel like Hoffman basically describes almost all of my romantic relationships and the thoughts I have about that part of my life. Examining and deconstructing my relationships this past year, I’ve often thought, “man, maybe I just suck at this, let me quit while I haven’t slashed anyone’s tires yet”(haha). The other line that I really liked from this poem was “Honestly I’m sick of wanting to get better, dying to be better, trying to do better than whatever I am or can” (Hoffman). Being in this recovery journey from my BPD feels like that sometimes. I have a strict routine I adhere to, read so many books about BPD, monitor my moods and honestly, it gets tiresome at times. Like Hoffman, I get sick of trying to “be better” and I often wonder when I can stop being so vigilant and rigid in everything I do. When can I say I’m finally better and can stop doing so much?
Blood, Booze, and other things in Nature is definitely the poetry collection for you if you’ve ever felt like a pariah, like an outcast, like an outsider in this world that tries to tone you down for being too crazy, too loud, and too bizarre for it. Reading this poetry collection is the medicine you need for that beautiful and chaotic soul of yours that refuses to conform to the norms and expectations of normalcy in this patriarchal society.
Below is a link to the book:
Don’t believe me? Here are other testimonials about the book and the author:
Praise for Blood, Booze, and Other Things in Nature:
This book resonates with anyone who’s ever called a crisis line and had them respond, “Oh wow that’s a lot.” This chapbook isn’t a cocktail. It’s a shot.
This is no nipple-slip, no wardrobe malfunction. This is deliberate, personal exposure, revealing heart, head, and the wounds of living. The battle songs, the laments, and the healing gather here.
-Neil S Reddy
This collection is a dirty meditation, a longing for escape, an ecstatic fuck you to the traps and ties of societal expectation. A delightful, messy romp through the entrails of the heart.
This is the kind of writing that inspires fandom.
-Alexandine Ogundimu, Filth Magazine
Praise for C E Hoffman:
C E Hoffman is a fearless writer.
-Jack Wang, author of We Two Alone and winner of the Danuta Gleed Literary Award
The human spirit remains fresh-voiced, optimistic and youthful in Hoffman’s imaginative writing.
-Martin Millar, author of Lonely Werewolf Girl and winner of the World Fantasy Award
Hoffman’s writing style reminds one of Burroughs at his most straightforward or Irvine Welsh at his strangest, but with a presentation dominated primarily by women and queer characters- a refreshing change in this particular milieu.…Hoffman is definitely a writer to watch for, and I look forward to what they give us next.
Melia Cogan has done it again with her second poetry collection. She paints a picture of the beauty of love and the euphoria it brings to one’s life. This book will make you weak at your knees and perhaps even want to get you on a dating app to look for that special someone to experience the magic of love. Cogan explores the mosaic of emotions that come with love. Through Cogan’s verse, I was transported to the alluring and sometimes tumultuous journey of love.
I’ll talk about my 2 favorite poems from the poetry collection.
One of the poems that really resonated with me was “Should I Allow Myself”. I liked how profound this poem is-it speaks about allowing yourself to fall in love recklessly while risking your vulnerability. It’s risking everything to be in the moment of that special memory of love. This is presented in the lines “Together/the possibilities/reach for me in the night/and primarily/I wish they were you (Cogan)”. It’s a desire for longing to be with that special someone.
The other poem that I really related to was “I’m Hiding from Love”because that’s kind of where I’m at right now. This is captured in the lines “Well. I enjoy my boat not toppling over in the sea/and my house not catching on fire (Cogan). Cogan is perceptive of what heartbreak feels like and how some of us are so burned by it,we’ll avoid it at all costs. The metaphors of the boat and fire feel like a truth I’ve encountered many times. It’s how anger and sorrow makes me feel like I’m either drowning or burning inside when it comes to heartbreak. Cogan captures these strong emotions in an intelligent and creative way that I’m sure resonates with mine and others’ experiences with the agony and torment that grief from heartbreak can bring.
I would recommend this poetry collection if you like to explore the depths of love and the complex emotions that come with it.
I’ve had many Muses in my 41 years some have stayed my kids, my co-parent, my chosen family some have used me as a temporary destination countless friends and lovers they’ve abandoned me or I’ve abandoned them but all who have stayed or gone have inspired me in writing my life’s story through poetry so to my past, present, and future muses I am forever grateful for inspiring the most amazing and crazy creativity without you all, I wouldn’t have anything worth writing about-
borracha, me encontré en una cama extraña desnuda y vulnerable tratando de olvidar el pésimo dolor en mi corazón cubriendome con el calor de un hombre desconocido cedí a mis deseos salvajes para llenar el vacío que llevaba dentro de mí