Dear End of the World: A Poem to Chinnamasta

Illustatration from Awakening Shakti

Illustatration from Awakening Shakti

the ocean herself
turns black
is aroused and
pressed to me
only ebbing inwards
to let our fierce
sticky fingers
dip low into the
and grow old
such multitudes

Dear End of the World,
this is our time
sticky as a mango
ever turning
tides and spurting
with destruction
but I feed the ones
who come with me
turning fierce
all we asked for was
soft dewy spaces
maybe mangos
eyes heavy
soft skin pressed
like dried flowers
rage absorbed back
here we hold heads
heavy of all sizes

destroyer Goddess
cuts off her own head
skill in action
becoming hungry
in our little death
destruction is natural
the itch starts, the rash
yielding under
soft and dew
like agave
skin turns black
tired of taking
you have done

your best

nectar fingers sweet
where the neck
clavicles, all tense
eating a mango
armpits, elbows,
warm against
becoming full
cuts off her own head
feeds herself and
our hungry mouths
she had to churn

the world

fierce and tender
sliding forever down
in rage and still
feeds us with her blood
returning into some
nectar of
the river

destroyer of worlds,
do not fear
your actions
we all contain
things mutate

on your tongue
let me turn red
slide sideways
the green leaves
the ground to feed

to fall through
sweet as

begging for a snack
floating in the river
fierce nurturer

watching the rain
with the sweetness
for transformation

(Chinnamasta is a Hindu Goddess whose name translates to “She Whose Head is Cut Off”)


Colleen Choate is a dancer, yogi, and writer currently living in Richmond, VA. She recently graduated with a degree in Dance Studies from Appalachian State University, where she researched the possibilities of somatic-based inquiry into writing, movement, and choreography for personal and collective healing.

Maria Borghoff