RealityI refuse to write one more word
I refuse to open one more
That's why we have bandages; so
we don't have to look.
We can just trust
it gets better
and turn away.
Slow-drag with sorrow
I refuse to participate
in that old dance with death
the three-step guilt waltz.
The white flag of surrender
lights nightly in my dreams
the tattered, torn paper
that blazes like the moon
when I look in the mirror, still burning
grinning like my own skeleton
Blue glasses askew, one frame
bent out of place. Messy hair,
always running, a constant
lisping stutter. He had one real girlfriend; she dumped him
by text. "I never loved you. It was all
a dare." Red jumpers
with black shoes. His dad
beat him nightly. One night
he placed the note on his desk
(the note he'd had since sixth grade, just in case)
walked like a zombie up to the yawning mouth
and went back to bed
I refuse to write one more word
about suicide. If I
never wrote it, it
and again she can't sleep. It's the sadness,
she thinks, the memories like bad pennies
that keep turning up, burying her
under all of the debts she will never repay.
At times she tastes tears, alone in the darkness,
when the world refracts blearily
and the last of the light warps and
slips away. Sometimes, in these times,
she laughs like spent soda cans,
hollow and grating, waiting for recollection
to crush her and bend her and tear her inside.
Sometimes, in these times, she screams frightening things
all of the words that she never did say.
Stop no, please get off, please just
go away. The letters, the syllables,
they echo inside of her
like bullets (she wishes he's spared one
on her) But mostly it's just sadness,
the hollow inside,
and in the silver moonlight she takes off her shirt
looks at her bare chest in the mirror,
scribbles script with her fingers
here there be monsters
and here they will prey.
THAT POEM (Writer's Block)I sat down at my computer last Thursday night
with the full intention of writing THAT POEM. Oh, don't
play dumb. You know what THAT POEM is. We all know
what THAT POEM is. You with the cigarette train-tracks
charting your eternal drift to nowhere
on the insides of your arms, you
with the sludge of alcohol dripping thick & brown through
veins swollen & slow & pussy as zombies, you
with the eight children whose faces you can't remember
& the husband in the Hamptons whose name you sometimes forget
& the lover who never seems to come around as much as you pay him to you
all know what THAT POEM
is. It's the rhythm beating a dull staccato in your skull
when you've taken something to take the edge off, the weary shadows sinking senseless
into the black-slung cradles hiding underneath your
bloodshot eyes. It's the weight of the gun & the way its metal feels
when you push it against the squelching skin of your skull not to kill yourself, just to feel it,
to know you could. This wa
MEi. I fell in love with a girl who catalogued darkness,
sat in her room with the blinds closed and wrote down
187 ways it felt
in all of the different times she couldn't see.
My name was one of them,
#143, ash velvet, and I didn't know what she meant at the time
but the only description she wrote beneath it
was good night for stuffed animals
bad night for worn pillows.
And I'm sorry I made you dream of the rivers.
ii. I fell in love with a girl who never looked in the mirror
but dressed to perfection, somehow
in her blue skirt and black socks
white tennis shoes
and a smile crooked as the bottom side of Indiana
yeah, I fell in love with a girl
who could never quite get it straight but hey,
I've never been 100% straight either,
and the one corkscrew curl you have
opens me up like fine wine
each time I see you smile in that cracked bathroom mirror.
Makes me half-drunk,
iii. I fell in love with a girl who was depressed by Paris,
but loved Italy beca
what if this was the song of myself?1. god laced your eyes with opium
stitched them shut with cotton fog. wake, love cough
like a gunshot, breathe
like the blood eagle
has been carved into you. time didn't mean
to blind the moon's great eye, to
collapse it into the static horizon.
my lips can no longer pronounce the word mercy. wake,
2. the days crack like porcelain dolls
under my father's boots. there are skulls
hidden in the cabinets, & shadows too, hung in the closet
like thin-pressed coats.
3. razor, rohypnol, rope. bathroom,
basement. if i touch all three
before i leave
i won't pick one up when i
4. there is newsprint
my skin; the serif fonts
lock & jumble
like nephilim stretching
like barbed wire babies
crawling through my veins. this is
the same disease
you died of. without you here,
5. razor, rohypnol, rope.
razor, rohypnol, rope.
your picture smiles,
showing skin. that summer
we were always young.
to a womanYou see it coming from the men.
You see the ways their eyes linger on you
When they're looking around the room
The way their bodies brush yours when you're walking through the hallways to class
The way they stutter and look away when apologizing for the accidental contact of skin to skin
You see it coming from the men.
You never see it coming from me.
God, was the world not complicated enough already
Without causing me to notice the interplay of textures in her hands
The calluses like mahogany mountains carving ridges of stone
Into her palms softer than Impressionistic sunlight?
I'm not supposed to feel this way about another woman. I'm not supposed to sit here
With a star around my neck and daydream about the way her tongue could taste like cinnamon,
Like my grandmother's home, like gingerbread cookies and the dawn of Christmas morning
These words are blasphemy, so I call upon God to give me a reason for my emotions.
Wasn't the world fucked up enough already without this?
Cut the coff
Stephanie - Collab(I wrote us in free verse over every inch
of your tattered surface ).
you were the beatific grin
of a kindergartener high off oxygen,
mouth stretched wide as the entrance to hell,
black tongue bleeding virtuous sin like ichor.
(You taught me praying was for the weak
as I fell for your gypsum nails,
white teeth scrabbling over my chalkboard frame).
scribbled flesh tells no love story
but three layers of skin
worn thin along the length of our feverish bones.
(Garden flowers tucked away worms and dirt,
my ribs hoarded misspellings of my mother's name).
dipping your origami limbs into my ink,
you lost yourself within the dark tangles
of my labyrinth roo
polarisshe was the kind of girl that filled her
chest cavity with stars and her mind with names,
never one to forget her friends of the sky.
she doodled comets and planets in the margins of her papers
where hearts with arrows and initials should have been.
rockets boosted her dreams into the sky, and
she insisted the martians take teeth from under her pillow, not fairies.
she hoarded her chuck e cheese tickets,
even went as far as to dig them out of couch cushions
in order to fill her night sky with glow-in-the-dark stars
so her friends would never leave her even when
mommy and daddy forgot to tuck her in.
sleepless nights were spent at the window with
her battered old astronomy book, teaching
herself to read with polaris and sigma octantis.
by high school, she was as distant as her life-long friends,
already burnt out, just leaving after-images in the sky.
stardust floated out of her ears,
and dark matter clouded her eyes.
nebulous thoughts wafted from her mouth,
catching on the breeze and s
Astronauti.238,900 miles away
the Earth gleams in the darkness.
A cat's eye, opalescent blue
flecked with terra verdant,
fifty-two cream colors
Under a heavy lid of night,
it glares. Angry.
As if to say to the Sun:
I was dreaming
of all the fish
in my seas.
As if to ask why
it had to be woken.
Thoughts are protozoan here;
with glass-thin skin
transparent as the first lie
he ever told as a child.
I didn't steal that candy bar.
He can see the mechanics,
They divide like dreams,
Whole and unbroken
as they tear apart. If
he could stretch far enough,
he could pop his home planet
like soap bubble.
he's too small
to make much
of a difference.
238,900 miles away,
there is a small click.
A tiny latch
as his 14-year-old daughter
slides her seatbelt
She's learning how to drive,
and how to feel a new kind of terror.
of collision. Of bone
or brick breaking,
Since You Took Your Love AwayHolding you so gently
I wouldn't have believed
And after all we've been through
Why did you have to leave?
What happened to forever?
Is nothing made to last
My whole world is broken
And I'm fading fast
...I'm fading fast
I need someone to save me
You won't know 'til you've been in love
I need to find a way back
But I don't know if I'm strong enough
I'm trying to forgive you
But it's so hard to say
And after all we've been through
It's hard to find a way
I'm trying not to hate you
For pushing me aside
Now my heart is broken
And it's hard to hide
...It's so hard to hide
I need someone to save me
You don't know 'til you've been in love
It's hard to find a way back
And I don't know if I'm strong enough
And though I'm running for yesterday
I guess there's really nothing left to say
'Cos now it's just a memory
Since you took your love away
Since you took your love away...
StayIt's funny how emotions move
How we're ruined by things we cannot prove.
Your image is burned inside my head
Along with all the lovely, broken words that you said.
How can this be wrong when it feels so good?
I know you won't stay but I wish you would.
Oh, I wish you would, I wish you would.
I don't think I can live without your face,
So I'll suffocate in this forsaken place.
I'll give you my heart for you to heal
As you refuse and reject what you feel.
How can you hate this when it feels so good?
I know you won't stay but I wish you would.
Oh, I wish you could, I wish you would.
You're scared because there is no cure
And you've never known something that feels so pure.
But running and hiding won't take it away
Oh, god, oh god, I wish you'd stay.
How can this be gone when it felt so good?
I wish you hadn't left, but I knew you would
Oh, I knew you would, I knew you would.
Don't Let GoRestrained by insecurity, she is hard to love.
Her heart however, hides a passion unknown.
An unforeseen utopia, and still so much more.
The problem, huge hearts make easy targets.
The strategy is simple though, easy to learn.
Follow this formula and you'll find your forever.
Hold her tight through all of the happy times,
and the fighting and the anger, don't let go.
If you feel her falling take her hand in yours.
When you feel like she is letting go, catch her.
Protect her with your arms when she is scared.
When she is sad, especially then, don't let go.
Don't let her walk away, even if she wants to.
Bravery is an act, nobody wants to be alone.
It will take work, but the reward is her heart.
And she will treasure you, but don't ever let go.
I Like the Color Green"Hey, Quinn."
The phone cord is stretchy and new. I stick my ring finger through the curls and tug a little. "I missed you. Haven't seen you since the show."
"I said, who is this?"
"You know, Quinnie. I missed you."
"Stop calling me. I told you to stop calling me."
"I'm lonely. "
"It's three in the morning!"
No phone cord around my finger. I stare and laugh a little, remembering that there isn't any phone cord because I use a cell phone. That's more modern. Yes, that would make more sense. No cord, then. I take to staring at the pretty green wall.
"What's so funny?"
"Oh, that wasn't at you, Quinnie. Lovely Quinnie."
"This is a waste of time."
I smile and walk around the pretty, empty, green room. There isn't anything but me in it now but that's because I'm moving. Everything is clean for the house's next inhabitants. It's nice to have things clean. My new house will be clean.
"So do you have anything to say or are you just fucking
a.m.She'd heard that after an attempt some people see the world differently
The chemicals or wiring changes and they see the everything differently.
But she felt the same.
She couldn't even do this right.
I never cried."How're you?" someone asks me. I reply. "I think I died inside."
I wave away their sympathy, soon I'll be dead on the outside.
Her beauty ensnared me, entrapped my soul.
Her words tricked me, she played me and it took it's toll.
I had to tell her she was gorgeous today, and tell her I loved her.
It was her friend teasing me, but I still had to tell her.
I had to force myself to keep sincerity out of my voice.
I'm having to force myself not to question that choice.
I know she hates me, with all her soul.
When she phones, I ignore her call.
She asks whether I'm okay, saying we were once friends.
I tell her I'm not and why, but leave out that my heart never mends.
I cried when she dumped me, first time in years.
It didn't even matter to her, she's like clockwork, no heart, just gears.
She complained when people tried to make her feel bad.
But I think it's just because she got mad, not sad.
So now I tell the world, I am dead inside.
I had to talk to her, she killed me inside.
I ask you guy
It's kinda pathetic, but...I miss you, y'know... Soon as you're gone,
It hurts to want to hug you and there be no one.
I miss you as soon as I stop talking to you,
I miss you even when we talk, unless I'm hugging you.
I know it's pathetic, I really do...
But I guess it's just because I love you.
Sometimes I'm scared there'll be no one there
But then I wake up, and thank God it's a nightmare.
Jennifer, I want you to believe that I love you
And I want to hear that you love me too.
Jennifer, I love you and I love you true.
And I'm not ashamed to say that I need you.
It broke my heart.It broke my heart to hear you cry.
Even though I knew I couldn't stop the why.
Death is unstoppable, even to me.
And even though I know how sad you must be.
Honey, you know I love you, so so much.
And I am sorry I can't give you my comforting touch.
But as I try to help, from another country.
I hope you will know one thing. "He loves me."
Jennifer, I would have you know.
Just how much it hurt, how low you made my heart go.
And if I could, I would change the past.
But as I can't, I give you a future, I promise you my love will always last.
The GateHe stands at the gate,
his smile proud and reassuring,
as he watches his baby girl
on her first day at kindergarten.
She turns around
her tiny pink lips wobbling
and her searching eyes filling up with tears,
until she finds him,
sees his reassuring face,
and then she smiles; a brave little soldier's smile
25 years later
he finds himself standing at another gate,
an airport railing,
as he watches his child
and her child
walk into their new future.
She turns around
and this time
it's his eyes that well up in tears,
his breath that hitched slightly,
and her smile
that washes over him in reassurance
The SecretShe's standing on her toes,
her arms are around his neck.
She's playing with his hair
talking a "mile a minute".
He's listening to her,
his head tipped towards her
and there's a soft,
indulgent smile playing around his lips.
His arms are around her waist
holding her close to his heart.
And then they tighten around her,
lifting her on to his toes.
His mind is still in their conversation
he doesn't even realize the shift in position
It's only his heart,
That he'd lifted her so she wouldn't have to reach for him,
So she could be more comfortable in the home of his arms
The girl with the glass heart.The boy with the black heart.
He pities the girl with the glass heart.
He is sorry that she is not made of stone like him.
He is sorry that she cannot deal with it all like him.
He promises to try help her, the best he can.
But please know this girl, he is only a man.
He cannot help you with it all, only some.
The rest is up to you, if you want it done.
He will help you with all he can, he promises.
But he cannot help you with some, he's sorry for this.
But as long as he is here, he will be trying to help.
Because you'd do the same for him, and you are his help.
So he welcomes you into his arms, with a smile on his face.
He welcomes you with a kiss, as tears fall from his face.
He is sorry you have to live with this, he really is.
But he will try help you, if only with a kiss.
He is sorry you are not made for this life like him.
He is sorry you have bad problems, just like him.
He is sad that you are, and will look after you.
Because he is your boyfriend, and his world is you.
AloneI'm terribly lonely here,
I can't begin to explain.
I was deceived again,
Left alone, in pain.
I thought this was my friend.
But they all seem to be.
Until that awful moment,
When they've had enough of me.
I could tell you all their names,
Everyone that left.
To my waves they're blind,
To my calls they're deaf.
Right when I open up,
When I really start to speak,
I'm suddenly alone,
As if I'm now a freak.
I never get a reason,
They never tell me why.
Maybe I should give up,
I shouldn't even try.
With each new person,
Hope begins once more.
But then they're gone.
Just like the one before...
Alone In A Crowded BedInches away but miles apart.
Drifting to sleep
With a confused heart.
Head on your shoulder,
Hand in your hand,
Why do I feel like the distance between us
It's like I'm sleeping alone,
But you're hogging the bed.
It's like I'm sleeping alone,
But you're all in my head.
Sometimes I wonder
If its totally hopeless.
Should I give up?
Should I regress?
When we're miles apart,
But you're stealing all the blankets,
I've never felt so alone.
Alone in a crowded bed,
But keeping timeshares in my wretched head.
You're breaking my heart
An we're inches apart.
How can I feel so lonely in your arms?
we aresky-spontaneous dreamers, who
have felt the cool granite
of green mountains
seen the proud-antlered stag
seasides, elusive in their
have ensconced our kerosene-wild
dreams into passionate unbeauty
who have been
brought to bed of locusts,
touched the fringes of bright
spring grass, and limpid streams;
refuse the persistence of religion
which cries out so we may conceive gods
but we laugh,
for whomever should believe
in christ and longfellow, both dead
is stranger than the poems we conjure.
Her last wishOne day her greatest wish came true
The footprints she left in the sand no longer there
A wish she was holding back all her life
She was finally lifted free from her nightmare
A wish that would take away all her pain
The minds that thought ill against her gone blank
A wish that would set her free
No one but herself to thank
The last wish she would ever conceive
The memories of her fading away like dust
A wish that would send her on her way
An unnecessary wish that she thought she must
A wish that she would finally have to herself
No one left to criticize her ways
A wish that would wipe her from this world
Gone from the world like the passing days
She didn't wake up the next morning
She didn't have any lungs to breathe
She didn't have a body to be struck
She didn't have the legs to leave
She didn't need to run to get away
She was already gone
There was no one to abuse her for her decision
No one to call her wrong
One day she made a wish
Then she never wished again
She wished for an end