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KWBU's National Poetry Month Series: Isis Lee

(Photo Provided)
Isis Lee

For National Poetry Month in April, KWBU is highlighting four local poets to share what influences their work as well as how they entered into the medium.

Our third poet is Isis Lee.

Lee is a local musician, singer-songwriter and poet in the Waco area. She is the organizer and host of the Waco Poets Society and has been published in several magazines including the Stone Circle, Nota Bene and Bohemia. She has also performed in poetry slams and word competitions around central Texas. 

More of Lee's poetry and music can be found below. 

'A Trial of Explanation' by Isis Lee

A Trial of Explanation by Isis Lee

I stopped writing and I can’t remember why exactly that is. 

I always had such freedom here in this form finding myself

when in all other forms I felt lost. 

But not ever in this could I fall prey to that kind of uncomfortable exposure

Being naked on the page was freedom

Even in my raw and unhidden eloquence

I was able to explore every bit of myself without any shame

So lately I’ve begun to wonder, ‘Why now?’

How come suddenly I’ve developed this inability to explore that wilderness

That radical jungle where words and wisdom serve as time machines. 

Ever wandersome in this our own self-exploration and explanation.

I wish I could explain why I ever departed

from this one true form of being and have it actually make any sense

But it feels rather like sacrilege to try to rationalize it at all

See nothing is worse than going against the truth

The level of dishonesty that one must obtain to deny

the most elemental form of self-awareness is justly found in that experience

Of being a writer 

My most humble and virtuous moments come from when

my body and mind connect as one through the use of words

Words on paper is an absolute way of life

that I have always perceived as precious as much as necessary. 




'Dive Down My Way' by Isis Lee

'Dive Down My Way' by Isis Lee


She's the kinda girl you take out in public and 

quickly realize you'd rather not be seen by 

the kids at Headspace

Cool kids in fad thrash hipster cruise shirts and

killer faux leather jackets and denim cut jackets

Too proud to recognize the elevator music by rat 

pack stars like The Dean

I spot the swell of thrift stop sniffs and cold

drawn out swagger in her presence and I recoil

as if instantly I'd be recognized

So the weasel in pimp skid row skirt rips into

my girl and flashes fast cash down the pin

stripped tip smack-back that he unleashes like a hound,

and the smell of whiskey fingers brings me back down to cool

playing blues two rooms over

No need to rustle up feathers so a calm replaces the look 

of casual remorse with soft smoke muddled

murmurs that sound smooth to my new honey

so she dives down into her breast 

pocket and lifts out a sweet 

nicotine kiss that's supposed to 

replace all mention of what the word no means

to a guy like me as I rush past the exits and sneak her

kitten clutch bag intothe back of my cream leather cruiser

with the other pieces of the last few days

binging on stale smoke and waste

land liquor passes as we careen down

Highway 69 with the idea of free men,

as the sweat thickens on the beads

of my throat and I know in the morning

she will be gone 

replaced with the sweet illusion of freedom. 


'The Truth' by Isis Lee

The Truth by Isis Lee


'Echo in Time' by Isis Lee

I have not skipped in fields of grass

Or ran my hand along the side of beauty. 

For in my youth I found rebellion in my glass. 

As I sipped and swam in its deliverance. 

Time served to seduce ideas of youth

To alarm passion and to bleed for all lust. 

I relied on blurred vision to decide fate

And hurried along to delay my oblivion.

Dreams were left enchanted by the day. 

And as I awoke to not a single whipser, 

It was the cold that came to great the day anew. 


Kateleigh joined KWBU in January 2019. She is an Oklahoma native that is making the move to Waco after working as an All Things Considered host and producer at affiliate KOSU Radio in Oklahoma City. She is a former NPR Next Generation Radio Fellow, a Society of Professional Journalists award winner, an Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame recipient for ‘Outstanding Promise in Journalism’ and the Oklahoma Collegiate Media Association’s 2017 recipient for ‘College Newspaper Journalist of the Year.’ After finishing up her journalism degree early she decided to use her first year out of college to make the transition from print media to public radio. She is very excited to have joined KWBU and she is looking forward to all the opportunities it will bring - including providing quality journalism to all Texans.