Bree Barkwell – Four Poems


 Sidney Pier, Vancouver Island


There is a wharf I like to walk
where the pieces of broken bottles
break upon the shore until
their edges are smoothed and they
become lovely, polished sea glass
that accumulates in the pockets of
vacationers perusing beaches.

I never collect these shiny baubles
because I have always felt that
the metaphor would suggest
that we, the broken and jagged
just need to be worn down until
someone finds us safe enough
to add to their collection on shelves.

I would prefer to stay in the ocean.


I Am Not Pretty and It’s Okay

I am not pretty like the girls
that are champagne and roses-
I tend to favour the company
of whiskey and dahlias and
lipstick darker than my blood.
Ink on the tips of my fingers
has become my manicure of choice
and I wear more black than
a nun at night, but consider this:
maybe my sense of beauty
comes from the lack thereof.
Please do not be afraid
to sacrifice what others call beauty
in order to be who you are.


Glass Half Full 

I wish you could pour
your faith into a bottle
and it give it to me sealed
with a cork and wax.
It would taste of black cherries
hints of liquorice root and an
aftertaste of birch beer.
In my darkest, coldest moments
I would uncork the bottle and
bring it to my lips so that I
could savour the sweet concoction
of knowing that although I may not
believe in myself at that moment…
someone, somewhere, has enough faith
for us both to share.



Clear Skies

Do not fall in love with someone
that is afraid of storms.
Fall in love with someone that will
dance with you
in the madness and the darkness
and when the dust settles
will love you more for your
scars and bruises
and the way you wear your bones
like you’ve been fighting
longer than you’ve been living.


Author’s Statement on Beauty

I believe that the world’s abundance of beauty is infinite.

Give the world something beautiful to connect with and the meaning and value of it changes with every angle it’s perceived from, not to mention subject to the influences of the person evaluating it and the context it is being experienced in. The possibilities to find new instances of beauty are limitless.

My objective is to connect with people through poetry, and never the same way twice. The greatest accomplishment is having a reader say that a piece I wrote meant something to them. They might not interpret the piece in the same way that I originally wrote it, but I think that is beautiful and wonderful in itself.


Bree Barkwell is a Canadian alumna of the University of Alberta, published in GirlSense and NonSense.  More at:  and