Meredith Johnson

Meredith Johnson is a writer living and working in Austin, Texas from Lafayette, Louisiana. She's been writing since childhood. 

Meredith just completed her first book of poetry, “Becoming,” which catalogs battle, surrender, sex, and what it means to be human. She is currently seeking representation for her memoir. Meredith created and hosts the podcast, "Remarkable Voices," conversations on creativity, culture and big ideas, available on all major platforms.

Perhaps I Was A Strand of Cotton (Structure)


Perhaps I was a strand of cotton
Or the wing of a cicada
Steel beam
Gust of wind
Denim string
A tiny eyelash falling down someone’s cheek as they laughed
uncontrollably at the joke of a friend


I was a jester at court
I was a pearl on the neck of Queen Elizabeth, watching her rule a
Kingdom with grace and dominance when no one thought she would
I was the first insignificant droplet of rain which no one saw fall during a
hurricane before the weatherman forecasted his report that terrified
everyone


I was the crack in the windowpane that saw families come together and
fall apart in a cabin, then broken down into a barn for dozens of farm
animals, then land restructured for reconstruction into cookie cutter
neighborhoods whose lawns held no space between them.


I was the rubber that Carnegie put on his first car when he thought he
could do it


I was the leather on Amelia Earheart’s jacket when she told everyone to
stop projecting their doubts onto her, which kept her safe from the wind


I was the chalk on the chalkboard that fell onto the ground which broke in
half when your teacher dropped it because you sneezed in class and she
turned around


I was the shoe that the soldiers threw into the machine during the
Industrial Revolution that bore the word Sabotage


I was the original ember burning up towards the sky when man first
discovered fire

I was saliva and cum in the mouths of millions kissing during the Sexual
Revolution


I was a plucked string on a porch the first time a child played a guitar his
brother gave him


I was a rock on a dirt, then gravel road


And all of my atoms have lived so many lives and adventures since then


We are all everything, crucial, and yet nothing

Shreveport, Gordon Crockett

 

My first memory is my sisters

Jumping on my parents’ four-post bed

Divorce, they said

I walked to the bathroom

Where my parents were yelling

What a thing to remember first

I know they think I don’t remember

But I do:

The house you built together

In the woods

Northern Louisiana

When you were still together

I was three

Before I got a chance to really enjoy it

And experience what family is like

With a father around

I loved sitting on your lap in the living room

Declaration

I agreed to all of it

I agreed to the living and the dying

The shedding of skin and bones

The screaming, the crying

The angering, the sighing

The nothing, the lying

The surrendering, the giving up

The finality

Nothing out of virtuosity

Out of no other choice but life or death

Little white flag

Nothing attractive or proud about it

Away

Everything I used to be

Crawled away from me

Slowly

Into the back alley shadows

Where I used to fuck

Strangers

Not easily

But

Everything I used to be

Crept away from me

Hauntingly

Stuck into ghoulish accounts of my history

Like a gnat stuck in honey on a hot day

And my transformation, my exorcism has taken so long

It is still happening

But

The more my exoskeleton

Breaks away from me

The more I move toward my now self

And whisper “away”

To my previous being

“I forgive you now”

Everything, Nothing

To bask in your love

Is to lay back in a galaxy of nothingness

A black hole of everything

A blanket of moving stars

As you count the tiny moles on my face

I am safe

I am loved

You are revered

Hammock of comfort back and forth

Swinging towards the south and north

No demeanor can be predicted

When we hold each other like this

What bliss