A Month of Poets – Travis Atkinsonsessler

          We have come to the last featured poet for this month’s celebration of National Poetry Month. I introduce to you our 4th featured poet, Travis Atkinsonsessler!

            This man is funny, smart, and kind. He is a warrior with a big heart. He is also extremely versatile in his capabilities. I am not biased I swear. Okay, maybe a little. Okay, okay, maybe a lot. Today I get the privilege of presenting one of my husband’s many skills. His poetry is surprising and moving, filled with depth and imagery. Take a small peak into the mind of a veteran by reading his poem below.

A Little About Travis:

            Travis was born and raised in Orange County, California. In highschool he tried a barrage of extracurricular activities. From theatre group to football, and everything in-between, he allowed himself to be multifaceted and did not lock himself into one definition.

                At age 20 he joined the United States Marine Corps. Where he learned to speak Arabic and developed a passion for language. Words are something of intrigue for him and communication was an essential element in his career. This is probably why writing poetry comes so naturally to him.

                He is now a retired veteran pursuing a degree in linguistics with a minor in German, all while being a personal hero in the roles of father and husband.

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Please enjoy, Travis Atkinsonsessler:

Tempest in a Glass Bottle

by Travis Atkinsonsessler

Behind my eyes lies a tempest in a glass bottle.

It starts with chill up my spine.

Hairs stand on end.

A cool wave courses from back to fingertips.

A warm rush follows.

Body becomes tight.

Eyes widen then narrow.

Breathing becomes deeper and faster.

My voice is gone.

Obscenities swirl in my mind.

Foul words in a thousand scripts form, each rolled swiftly and placed away into the bottles swirling vortex, begging for release.

Images of violence coalesce into actionable pathways to their fruition. Each course of action is carried into the maelstrom, awaiting the cork to pop. 

The tempest struggles against its confines, staring through the looking glass at the world.

It is a tortuous existence begging to feel empty, longing for zephyr.

When needed, i gently and firmly pull the cork, just enough to fill my sails. 

I replace the cork and seal again with wax.

It frightens me, the atrocities 

swirling about in my glass bound tempest.

And I know that neither I nor any man should linger too long in this storm. 

And I know that glass is fragile,

and the pressure is great from within.

Yet I hold on gently, firmly to it. 

But do not mistake my fear of this tempest

I long for the sweet release of the storm. 

I lust after the fury of her gale winds

I ache to bathe in the swell of her tides

I hunger to deliver those crashing tides.

Take heed, I do not fear the storms breath

I am wary of the rapture that grows inside of me as it swells free,

knowing that I can not have the tempest and those I love.

So ask yourself, can you weather the storm? 

Know that I beg of you to give me reason to drop my cargo to shatter and set free my tempest in a glass bottle.

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