Hanging SkeletonsDo not talk aboutthe skeletonshanging in your closet--bones bleachedwith wishesand mistakesare nothing to be afraid of.Prop open the doorand talk to them--you'll findthe answers you seekin their silence.
Shy TruthsI spilled a cup of oceanand opened my handshoping to catch the truth.Empty seashells,broken clams,and a palm-fullof worn pebbleswere all I caught.I guessthe truthis shy.
Hinging TimeAutumn's diarydances in the breeze--pages ripped from barren branches.My father's father's bloodwas the same color, once--an angry, untamed flame.My own blood is an oil-spillchasing the metal of my joints--each move creaks.
Space BlanketsPurple cloudsdraped over crescent hips--bashful twin moons.
Stitching SeamsI've been stitchingpieces of myself together for years,trying to make me whole.The trouble is,I don't remember how to sewand sometimes,my hands shake so badlyI lose bits of myselfaround town,a breadcrumb trailto the hidden me.If you find a piece,study it.Put it in your pocket.Forget about it.Maybe,when you finally rememberthe misshapen objectyou picked up,I'll be readyto face myself as a whole.Right now,I'm too afraidof the unknown spaces--the things I hidefrom even myself--to tie my stitches off.
Jean Pocket WeaponsYou hoard your emotions like weaponsin the pockets of your jeans,pulling them out and dusting them offwhen it suits you, when it's convenient,when you're trapped between a rockand a hard decision and you need an excuse to run...but I wonder if you realize you're only running from yourself.
Bashful SkiesThere will be nights you stay awaketo see, to count, to make wishes onthe stars...and they won't be there.The city lights will be too bright,the moon will take center stage for a tragic soliloquy,storm clouds will be thick and angry at you for not paying attention. They will get in your way.There will be mornings you get up earlyto see, to paint, to be inspired bythe sunrise...and he will disappoint youby wearing faded colors that wash him out,by being so late you have to go to work with unwashed hair and yesterday's wrinkled blouse,by deciding to wear no colors at allbut shrouding himself in last night's storm clouds instead.At these times, take a deep breath,think about all those moments you've had it rough,and remember this:even the sky wakes up feeling ugly...but the sky still tries to put its best foot forwardwhen the time comes.
Secret AbyssHold me.These thin cloud veilswill hide our dark secrets;don't think about those skeletons.Let go.Believe--I'll help you upif it means dragging you.Promise me you won't let the pastchange you?Forgiveall my mistakes--years from now, you won't carethat you shared yourself with a fool.Change me?ForgetI pushed you downto get what I wanted.I never put my heart intoyour hands.Let go.Those skeletons willbe our last. Don't think mydark secrets can be forgiven.Push me.
Counting LightningA faint flush of bluecrowded by angry coals;the sky holds her breath.
The Problem With Elia.she could have been a violin;born a week too late, she hadmelancholy in her bones: doctor lizbettook time out of her schedule to pluck hernewborn strings - calloused sanitation againstmottled pink-and-yellow flesh & thrashing limbs.in three more years, she will havenothing in her bones at all: doctor estairdiagnosed her with iatrophobia to fuel herinstinctive chords - ripple-free shells of liquidlobotomy & a capsule to callous her pink-and-yellowflesh against the thought of just getting over it all.ten years after that, her mother willfind her face down and thrashing: her dustbunny bones will flex as she retches up her memoriesfor display - lawyers will spend the next few years pawingthrough them with clawed hands and heaving breathing untilone day, they find lizbet and estair huddled amid the rubble of her bones.
mutterings from over the cuckoo's nesti.it is dark. thatis a judgment. my roommateis snoring, and somewhere,a girl is crying becauseshe doesn't have a heartso she doesn't havea home. if we are time bombs,I think I must have detonateda little late. it is darkand I can't seewhy all problems are definedbut their need to be solved.I dream in color, but I livein black and white. I drownin gray faces that don'tsound familiar; it is darkand I can't rememberthe last time it was bright.ii.I am afraidof caring. we are a strangepeople, we, who love byhating ourselves, by bleedingout anythinggood. Iam afraid thatone day, I might start crying,and I won't be able to stop andit will be the second Great Flood,all the world will drown inmy mistakes. Youdraw that out of me,like a marionette ona string, you pull theseanchors out frommy stomach until Ican hardly breathe. youlive on the other half of the mirror,andI am afraidthat distance is toowide.iii.maybe,in the end,it's all the same. everyhap
honesty isn't a weaknessI have a headache and not enough timeto explain the irony of how I want to beevery pretentious poet making art out ofthemselves, cutting open their side and writingin blood and pixie dust; or how difficultit is to make a good allegory out of carsicknessand household complacency. thisis every secret I ever hid. when I was 9someone dissected the world in front of me,showed me it was a living, wanting thingand that I was just a lonely cell, functioningthrough my dysfunction; when I was 11the boy I liked told me he’d be interestedif I were prettier and I learned starvationwas more a state of mind than a presenceof being. when I was 13 I researched the lethalityof cleaning products, because god, I felt so dirty,and nothing can clean you more than a couple cupfulsof bleach. when I was 15 I was old and decrepitand mostly dead, returning from war with flowersfor graves that weren’t filled and a heart oftragedy, vulnerable and draped in every shadeof mourning f
AsphodelA beckoning:watercolour sky shrinking,too late, teeth fall; pearlsfrom a broken string.Blink and the moon ignites—but the sheets are stillenvelope-stiff.
NetherThe world unfurls:becomes a gemstone, sinkinga mirror breakinga thousand splintering realitiesand I am lost —forgotten who I ever was,forgotten how to breathe.
1,001 NightsIn a land ofdreams and dust:the curve ofa half-hazed sun,devoured.
LiliyaBright-eyed,bird-bonedwhisper girl;dark-dressed,moon-backedmistress of light.
.my cat has ninelives and i fear he willspend each one doingthe same fuckingthingstaring out of thewindow at the birds onthe fence, when he could beout there, sinking histeeth in
.crescent moon- silverhook in the sky fishing forstars; you catch my eye
.she wants to taste the moonbetween forefinger and thumb sheplucks it from the sky, and likesome great pearly gobstopperrolls it over her tongue,licks the dust from herlips,shuts her eyesand smiles
we're legal murderers.how to love a writer:don't. because we will turn your passioninto works of extended metaphors for death and decay,slipping you scarsserved sunny-side-up because, hey, we all want to befixed, right?not writers. writers want someone, anyone (usually the wrong one, because pain sells more thansmiles)to try and pour cement into the dents inside themuntil they realize that they're really justabandoned sidewalks located in the wrong side of townthat cannot be repaired. that is what we do.we break peoplefor a living.
dance with mewhen i told youon a waxed floor of broken glassthat i didn't know how to dance,i hoped you would noticethe way my voice shookor mention the hopehidden behind bitterness.i didn't mean itas a cue for you to walk away.i said itso you would lead me,and teach me where to step,and dance a pathwayacross shattered mirrors,telling me not to look downas we glide unscathed.ever since you left,all i do is hang my headand bleed.
Floored PetalsHe drowned the cheap motel roomin smoke, back in ‘53,when I was just a bud of seventeenwho had watched herself bloomin the mirror in her mother’s closet.I had seen the bloom and the budand had wished to be deflowered.So I had leashed myselfonto the back of a busand roared into New York Citylike the little dragonfly I am,falling into deep dreamson the laps of strange men.A pale girl with a patched-up suitcaseoff on an adventure in the citywith nothing but a few dollarsand a fear of the dark.The hotels were mustyand the dollars digested,but the lights loweredas the jazz flew upwardinto a shower of sparks,and I, a flower shaking off her petalsas she swung into his armsand into his life.A life of roads and roaring,and sitting half-still in the smokeas he mused long into the nightand down the drain, saying,“Poetry is daydreaming on paper,”wiping his grey lips on discarded poems, andcrashing between the waves of sheets.A life of racing
HeartBrokenMy heart isAnd in shredsI'll forever leave itSo it can't be brokenEver again
a map to icebergsHere is the truth: there is ice floating behind the calm of your eyes and the set of your jaw warns me to tread lightly around you. You are an iceberg, strong and silent and frozen to the world, and I am a shipwreck just waiting to happen. One of these days, we're bound to collide.Here is the truth: I've tried to scale your frozen walls a hundred dozen times but I always find a way to fall down. You are an insurmountable force of nature, and I can't help but stand in awe of your distaste for things that are not your own. My timber limbs are drawn to you and I can't stop myself.Here is the truth: I fall asleep counting the ways your expressions change. You have a different face for every mood and sometimes, I say something stupid just to watch your eyebrows shift. You are a hurricane and I am the ocean, swept along beneath your layered skirts, shattered and shaking, just trying to follow your lead.Here is the truth: you are always one step ahead of me, and I think I might be using a
.the reaper playssolitaire when he's gotsome time to killbut when your time'sup it's back to work, coshe's gotta make a livinglike the rest of us
UndedicatediI wrote you a poem.skeleton smile-- moonbeamsdrip from your unharnessedhabilitations; you speak andravens tear through your throat(I will be there) you area catalyst whose ghost eyesdied for a better dayiiunaware promise bearer, takeme away. as you live thesebeautiful vanities, take meawaysomewhere refined and romanticlike the lies you languish, wherea heavy heart weighs up tosomething niceiiiprimed and pruned, I ama seedling: an exaltation toall that is youwe both cry the same kindof quiet, and whisper the same brandof please-don’t-listen-close; Ijust want to leave before I breakwhen you [do it first] decide there isa life worth more than the scarsI bear (though I mostly want to askdoes it ever go away?)ivchurning repetitions of anunmentioned time, I carry youwithin my mouth; tucked away andslowly disintegrating the thingsI barely speak:(you saw more of me than either of uscould admit) the time for letting gohas passed me by
desiccatei.you were 22 years in the making,a sponge without watersince the day they plucked you from the oceanand left the sea salt to sink into your pores.ii.I was something too heavy to wade in,barely able to breathe,21 years in the makingwith floodgates barring my emotionssince the age of four.iii.At the first sign of droplets,the salt of you drew me inand eased the heaviness of my heart.iiii.In your confessions of self-love,in your tales of embrocation,I was only ever your liniment;our brevitywas a thing to be forgotten from the start.
Today, I am DrowningSome days,the pastweighs nothing--snowflakesfloatingin a tiny glass globewaitingto be carried awayon the wind.Other days,the pastbreathes with the sea--kelptangling about my anklesbeneathturbulent waves.