pillow thoughts cover
pillow thoughts cover

LGBTQIA+ History Month Reads – Courtney Peppernell

I’m a hopeless romantic. Always have been. Always will be. Sometimes words can convey everything I feel, but sometimes my heart is too big to be put into a sentence. When I first started reading poetry in my English classes, I was amazed by how well a few deceptively simple lines captured what I struggled to articulate. I was also amazed by how deeply those lines—whether they were from Shakespeare or Frank O’Hara or Sylvia Plath—could resonate. As I got older, though, I couldn’t ignore the fact that there was something missing in the prose and rhythm and verse that had taught me much of what I knew about love. Me. I loved women, and I’d known I loved women for quite some time. It was easier to ignore the discrepancy between what I was reading and what I was feeling before I came out to myself. That changed when I started living my truth. I wanted to see myself and every beautiful thing about women in a poem.

 

Two years ago, I was lucky enough to find Courtney Peppernell’s Pillow Thoughts by chance in Barnes & Noble. I picked up the poetry collection because I was drawn in by the jellyfish on the cover. As I began to thumb through the pages, my heart caught in my throat. It was about loving her. Her. Someone had finally given words to what I’d been holding in my chest. Peppernell has since published three more collections to complete the Pillow Thoughts series: Pillow Thoughts II: Healing the Heart; Pillow Thoughts III: Mending the Mind; and Pillow Thoughts IV: Stitching the Soul. I’ve included some of my favorites below because poems just need to be experienced. My summary wouldn’t do justice to the wonder of her poetry and how artfully it captures love, heartache, and self-healing.

 

Pillow Thoughts

Pillow Thoughts

Image via @courtneypeppernell on Instagram

 

Pillow Thoughts ii: Healing the Heart

Pillow Thoughts II

Image via @courtneypeppernell on Instagram

 

Pillow Thoughts III: Mending the Mind

Pillow Thoughts III

Image via @courtneypeppernell on Instagram

 

Pillow Thoughts IV: Stitching the Soul

Pillow Thoughts IV Poem

Image via @courtneypeppernell on Instagram

Feature image via Courtney Peppernell’s Website