Skip to main content
By Patricia Smith

I was birthed restless and elsewhere


gut dragging and bulging with ball lightning, slush,

broke through with branches, steel


I was bitch-monikered, hipped, I hefted

a whip rain, a swirling sheet of grit.


Scraping toward the first of you, hungering for wood, walls,

unturned skin. With shifting and frantic mouth, I loudly loved

the slow bones


of elders, fools, and willows.

Patricia Smith, “Katrina [I was birthed restless and everywhere]” from Blood Dazzler. Copyright © 2008 by Patricia Smith. Reprinted by permission of Coffee House Press.

Source: Blood Dazzler (Coffee House Press, 2008)

  • Nature

Poet Bio

Patricia Smith
Patricia Smith has been called “a testament to the power of words to change lives.” She is the author of six books of poetry, a mystery writer, a historian, a journalist, a performer and children's book author. She is a 2014 Guggenheim fellow, a two-time Pushcart Prize winner, recipient of a Lannan fellowship and a four-time individual champion of the National Poetry Slam, the most successful poet in the competition’s history. Patricia is a professor at the College of Staten Island and an instructor in the MFA program at Sierra Nevada College.

More By This Poet

More Poems about Nature

Browse poems about Nature