Jaz Persing is a writer, singer, and human living in Los Angeles. She works in television when she can. The rest of the time she’s just looking for a dare-to-be-great situation, hoping she can put a good dent in the world with the mess of broken love, vulnerability, and words she has. In the meantime, she’s immensely grateful for God and the many good people around her that make it all seem feasible.

Tonic of Melting

I used to be afraid to take the subway by myself
Today I rode alone
Not for the first time

With a little aid from the outside cloud
Navigating the world
And knowing I am a part of it

I used to be too sweetly square
To own a plastic square
I watched you hop the turnstile then
Waiting breathless as you helped me
Be carried away

I used to fear my own lips
Pouting in powerless fugue
But now
Now I know

Even on this hot sticking
Indian summer of a nightmare season
When I’m drippy and frumpy and feeling
Out of the shape I like
To be walking in stride
I know myself to be beautiful
Fearfully, wonderfully
Not just
In made up shapes and painted glory

But in paint dripping
In this expectorating expiring
humanity hellraiser
Of a woman showing up.
Laughing and loving out of equal parts panic and peace

But it’s hard to let fear strangle you
When you’re doubled over in stitches
Head over rub-my-heels wrong
In love with the tapestry of life
That I get to be a thread running through it
It’s all too expansive
To be consumed by today’s tornado

Indian Summers are when I fall
In love with plans awry
Loving alone more than I knew
Because alone’s hardly alone
When the heartbeat of the world
Resounds in your sternum

Every train makes me think of you
The moment you changed everything
By deciding
To give me a moment

But I keep getting on the trains
And I keep traveling wider, broader
My community ever more
The spectrum of color I begged for
From my undersaturated glass space

And this all started because I missed you
But it’s become so much beyond
Now I read feminist critique
And feel my soul waking up
My revolutionary heart still rising in action
While carrying a torch for you

And whether or not my torch
Becomes ours in time
I love you because
You want me to rise
And burn bright regardless

And so, my soldier, I shall
Because today
I know where I am


Subway Song

To My Love, On the Eve of the Solar Eclipse