Angela M. Carter

Angela M. Carter is an author, poet, novelist, motivational speaker, spoken word performer, visual artist and an advocate/activist. Memory Chose a Woman’s Body (unbound CONTENT, 2014) is a poetry memoir, which spotlights the effects of the silences endured after abuse, neglect, and depression. Angela is a 2014 Pushcart Prize nominee, nominee for the 2015
Virginia Library Literary Award (poetry), and has been featured in a multitude of venues, including The KGB Club in Manhattan and Busboys and Poets in Washington DC

To Tell the Secret

Why hadn’t this come first, to teach me?

It was the second time I’d been hurt, simply

from being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

When it feared my hand, the Honey Bee knew what it had to do;

I’ve always admired its decisiveness.

A hurting human stings themselves,

stays with what harms, beyond memory.

I daydream of a sting only allowed to touch those it should.

A hurting human is forced to carry tainted pollen.

This pollen–on my feet, in my hair, stamped into the future;

only dead flowers would dare take it.

I imagine the elation of that bee’s abdomen, as it presses into skin,

how in that moment, in all its pride–

oh, the fire, the fire!

Did it die pleased,

in the same way I am when I tell the secret

(gifted untouched pollen,

with the need to sting never known)?


I am a replica of broken stars tonight.

Thoughts of you have burned out into their final evening:

I added skin onto you,

tripled your bones,

gave deeper rhythm to your heart, it

didn’t request or


I arrived with intentions–

how wrong of me,

to whisper my longings into life’s ear,

to tell it when to wake

(when to wake another)

within its own


I begged you were a friend of the stars

the same constellations I’d lifted my chin to as a child,

and that you knew secrets of me I’d

yet to tell myself,

but the secret is

that secrets are what they’ve done, not what they didn’t say.

The reverie is dimming, dimming,

shooting into a thinning dust along the nightfall–