The Personhood Project Episode 20: Rosebud Ben-Oni
This month poet Rosebud Ben-Oni sits down with Aaron Tyler Hand for the 20th episode of The Personhood Project. In this episode, the two discuss the ways in which poetry can offer hope when all other signs point towards there not being any and the ways poetry allows us to see people more three-dimensionally. The two also discuss the pain of watching a loved one get locked up as well as the importance of writing to congress to make change in things you believe in. Rosebud also offers insight into her chapbook 20 Atomic Sonnets and the full length collection that it's developing into.
Poetry doesn't offer hope, it makes it real.
January skies of
suffocate me completely
I wrestle against
the strong hold that tends
to feed on me like a slave
In brazen defiance,
somberly the songbird sings
a song resurrecting memories of you
Can the faith of a child
stand the gap for a parent
who never found the way?
Silence again, reminds me my fate
slowly faded, emotionally jaded… but wait
“Jesus save me”
the words I manage to
I hear you not only in my dreams
but all around me and in every
thing I see
I’ll never forget your words
“I’m gonna tell you how we will remain
I didn’t know that would be the last
time I saw you. You were so
upset as you walked away.
Now that you’re gone, I think
about you all the time and it's hard
to keep my tears at bay.
I hope I never forget your voice
and all the love you gave me. I hope
I never forget all that you’ve taught me.
I love you Ryan Hunter Smith.
The swarm of bees taste the honey
No one will ever know what it’s been like to lose you
but the cardinal in your window is still singing
your favorite song
– saying I’m wrong
The fresh smell of cut grass and rain
soothes my soul
but the swarm of bees that chase me
say this pain I feel will never get old
I hear your laughing
I feel your touch
I close my eyes to hold tight
to the things I see
because I miss you so much
It hurts, it feels like I can’t breathe
But if I trust God I’ll see you again
No one knows what it’s been like
to lose you
I know we all live to die
this much is true
Rosebud’s poem “The Songs We Know Not To Talk Over” explores themes of transformation, loss, and the mysterious connection between the living and the departed. While probing the emotions of grief, regret, and forgiveness, the poem reflects on questions surrounding life after death. The poem ends with a remorseful acknowledgment of missed opportunities and a determination to hold onto the memories of loved ones, never letting them go. Using the images of insects, birds, and the loss of the loved one, write a poem that speaks to someone no longer living. What things remind you of them? What do you wish you could still tell them? How do you keep a memory of them alive?