Spoken Word Poetry from Kathy Parker

On her final day as Featured Artist, Kathy Parker gifts us her awesome new spoken word poem Ode To The F*ck Boys Who Taught Me How To Love Myself. (CW: several forms of abuse.)

Thanks, Kathy, for joining us!
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New work from Featured Artist Kathy Parker

Today we're lucky enough to have some previously unpublished poetry from Featured Artist Kathy Parker. Relax and enjoy the beautiful, haunting images of On Still Nights and Heat.
On Still Nights 
On still nights he hears the call of my bones knows my weakness comes to my door waits for me to offer a drink between nuances distraction between thighs
it is predictable the way this hungry creature in me pretends to be satisfied  with crumbs
how I send him home with a paper bag of leftover lies not to become gluttonous with wanting, myself
go to bed alone finger the rumble strip protruding from my side count bones  to help me fall asleep. 

I held your hand as the forest stilled and the air grew cold; a silent prophecy a prediction not felt but tasted upon our tongues your thumb drawing circles on my palm, the callous of your skin still felt against mine like a phantom limb gnawing at the empty hours of my sleep. 
There are twenty-three circles around the fallen branch  of the tree …

'Fast Five' Interview with Kathy Parker

Wildlings today we've got a bite-sized chat between Managing Editor Amanda McLeod and Featured Artist Kathy Parker - they're talking poetry as catharsis, literacy magic, and the art of the spoken word performance.

Amanda McLeod: Your collection The Unravelled Heart explores some really intense moments. How did you balance the catharsis of writing it with knowing that information would be out in the world?

Kathy Parker:The Unravelled Heart was not something I set out to do intentionally, as such. Poetry had become an outlet and a means of healing for me, but it was never something I considered myself to be – a poet. Then I began to publish my poems online, and had an outpouring of response from women who could relate to my words, and found healing inside of them. Over a number of months I had countless messages from both men and women asking if I had a book they could purchase, so I decided to put together this collection and send it out into the world. It was difficult to write …

Review of Kathy Parker's 'The Unravelled Heart'

Wildlings, today Managing Editor Amanda McLeod shares her thoughts on Featured Artist Kathy Parker's collection, The Unravelled Heart. You can purchase a copy from the author here.

Kathy Parker’s debut The Unravelled Heart is a collection of poetry and prose pieces that explore the darkness of abuse, the aftermath of having your world shattered, and what it takes to overcome it. Part poetry collection, part journal entries, and part manifesto, the book is not afraid to plumb the depths of despair in its search for sparks of light.

The book is divided into sections, reminiscent of Rupi Kaur’s The Sun and Her Flowers; each tracing a stage of her journey, although Parker’s writing style is quite different. This book is an exquisite blend of poetry woven with stories of bravery, forgiveness and freedom. Parts of it read like a series of love letters - tender moments in which Kathy consoles her past self, with a compassion that past self never experienced. In the piece ‘When Love Isn’t…

Kathy Parker On Slam Poetry

Wildings, today we're handing the (figurative) mic to Featured Artist Kathy Parker, to hear her thoughts on spoken word poetry. Over to you, Kathy!

“Spoken word is my outlet, it’s my means to let my inner self roar so loudly that it rumbles the innards of my audience.” ~ Zohab Zee Khan

With the Australian Poetry Slam competition currently happening here in Australia, I thought I’d share how and why spoken word poetry has become such a huge and important part of my life.

I never planned to become a spoken word performer. Purely by chance, about two years ago, I stumbled across a video of Clementine Von Radics performing Patron Saint of Manic Depressives. Something about that video moved me in a way I couldn’t let go of; watching that performance with tears streaming down my face, heart thumping in my chest, I knew that was what I wanted to do – use my words to connect with a room full of people in such a visceral and tangible and intimate way that would impact them the way Clementi…

Kathy Parker on Breaking the Silence

Today we look at Kathy Parker's phenomenal spoken word performance Breaking the Silence (Rules for Girls).
CW: Kathy's work discusses sexual abuse. Please exercise self-care.

Kathy Parker: On Why I Wrote Rules For Girls

My entire childhood was spent in secrets and silence; when I finally found the courage, at twelve years-old, to tell of the years I had been raped at the hands of my stepfather, I was accused of making up stories; a church minister brought in to remind me that lying is a sin. Many years later, when I chose to report him – a retraumatising experience shrouded in humiliation and shame – again, it was his word against mine; nothing more came of it.
Rules For Girls was written as a response to the hashtag trends, #metoo and #whydidntIreport. It was written in regard to the rules girls are forced to live by – rules that ensure we remain quiet and compliant. But mostly, it was written from my own experiences; the fight against the silence and the injustice and defeat w…

Introducing our latest Featured Artist, Kathy Parker!

Wildlings, come and meet our latest Featured Artist, the incredible Kathy Parker!

Kathy Parker is a writer, poet and spoken word performer from South Australia.

  Kathy’s poems are raw, emotional and unapologetic; encompassing themes such as trauma, abuse, domestic violence, body image, self-worth, love, loss and healing. She writes from the heart of a survivor and warrior; confronting the brokenness of her life while leaving others empowered to overcome the brokenness of theirs.

 When not writing poetry, Kathy is a contributor for Network Ten’s news website, 10 Daily, with work also published at SA Life Magazine, Elephant Journal, The Mighty, The Minds Journal, and Thought Catalog. Visit her website
Today we are lucky to introduce Kathy with a previously unpublished poem, And This Dead Bird Belongs To Me.

And This Dead Bird Belongs To Me

My mother pulls at the skin of her lips.

On stage, the poet speaks of legacy;
generations woven together
with tight-knit t…