Focusing on the
of convergence, standing in the hall
Burning me so wonderfully
Smell of smoke, and the attention comes
Men in white coats, so dutiful
Please don't put out the fire-
Dead Man's BellsKnock-Knock, greeting a dead man,
Offer him some tea.
Cup, saucer, brew
floral heart medicine,
a dose- times three.
Dead Man's Bells
ring up the walk,
and he's almost finished the cup-
We just drink and talk.
FlashlightsI run on the line, the straight line
Between the metal boxes
Filled with Things
Run, run, on the dotted line
Flashlights, explosions, silence
Fifty HorsesWe set out today.
Fifty men and fifty horses
Each a member of the armed forces.
We marched through the rain,
We marched under the sun,
at times it almost seemed like fun.
Supplies ran low-
We didn't care-
We were nearly there.
When a tree re-appeared,
Spirits began to sink.
And they disappeared- naught to drink.
When we were almost there-
We met our foe.
But we couldn't even strike a blow.
So here lies fifty men and fifty horses.
Each a brave member-
Of the armed forces.
BoulderI am a knife.
without a handle- a grip-
i slice at the Truth
speeding merrily through spiderwebs
Until a boulder blocks the path.
it laughs-Silly knife!
I am too big.
Ha Ha! I am too big! I am too-
ThunderingToes kiss the ground
to the unknown-
the Big Lie thundering
in my head
cupping me gently
over the madhouse
I'm so happyLook at the moon
its half full
Reflecting the low tide
It drains my face
Making me a model
I'm so happy.
My feet squish
the salty sand
A temporary imprint
On the earth
Laying down on the bed-
I'm so happy I could die.
Cause theyre afraid of thunder.
I need a partner
To swing from,
And I want her.
I'm a wolf in wool
On the dance floor.
CandlesI've set out candles
Rose petals and romantic stuff on the bed-
You love me too
Im still often in love with you.
LessonsIn forty-seven minutes I will be twenty-one years old and my throat is tight with this notion
that every passing moment is a boat taking me further from the boy on the side of the road.
I am terrified of the swelling tide of time, the ripples I will create,
the creases that will be etched into my face
without the laughter lines I know he would have left and
one day someone will ask me how many siblings I have and I will hesitate
because he will be so distant and I can feel it coming.
I never intended to swim without him, but
I am drowning under the weight of pocket-stone-people,
the ones I love who he has never met and won't ever meet
and its forty-four minutes until I turn twenty-one when I realize the relentlessness of this;
how I will age away from him and I am disgusted with myself, with his ashes on the bookshelf,
with this world that keeps making mistakes that can't be fixed.
Twenty one years old and I am a semi-colon, a shuddering pause on the floor,
remembering the time I broke
Dear Homophobic ParentsDear homophobic parents,
How the fuck do you think it makes me feel
When you walk out of the room crying
Because you can’t stand the thought of something I can’t control.
I’ll tell you that it makes my insides burn.
The living room feels like a closet.
Suffocating, and yet I can breathe fine.
I am choking on the air,
Polluted by your homophobic slurs.
Making uneducated guesses about things you know nothing about.
Someone ought to teach you to look shit up
Before you go about, shouting your false claims to the world.
My very existence is an error.
Some messed up chemical defect that went wrong,
I don’t belong
I am the Titanic,
To you I am supposed to be perfect
I am supposed to be straight, and happy, and fine.
But I am so very far from fine,
When my lungs are filling up with water,
Your words are an ice berg,
And I am sinking fast.
beautiful.i hate my stretchmarks
the vertical the horizontal the ones running miles down my arms
stripes on a circus tent
my body is a freak show
75 cents a ticket
they are the bars on a cage
trapping me inside this prison cell of flesh
(not letting me run away
from all i once was)
reminding me that i am
still that little girl who
was told that she had too
much weight in her stomach
and in her thighs
to be called beautiful
my stretchmarks are the debris from when i tried to collapse upon myself
tried taking up less space
because beautiful is small beautiful is skinny
diets upon diets
because i've been told that
i am only worth the sharpness of my collarbone
why i never wrote you a poem.last summer i tried
to use the words that you fell asleep to
to write you a love song but
every time i tried
my fingers froze up.
i failed the test of describing you
in a paragraph
in a sentence
in a word
there is nothing in my head adequate enough
to describe how you look
on the train station platform
when you smile at me.
i can tell you that
my heart climbs into my throat and
my body prickles with heat and
everything disappears, for just a moment, but
the thing i cannot describe
your mouth caresses my name
like it’s the most beautiful sound
it’ll ever know,
like it understands me perfectly,
you are not made of verses.
you have no meter.
you are not written in stanzas
that i understand
and i find myself captivated
at how beautifully complex
your language is.
you say i’m the mesmerizing one, but, baby,
you've stumped me.
you have left a girl,
a person who wants to build their life
girls that photosynthesizeI.
i asked my mother to buy me sweetener,
and she said "no," and she said "no,
sugar is better for you it's more natural"
so i shrug and i clamp my teeth over
my tongue and sew my mouth closed
and i steal sweet n' low
from the pizza place
my friends watch me pick at my lettuce,
a rabbit-food-lunch that makes me sick
to my stomach, and when i run to the
bathroom during science class they
follow me and ask what i ate for breakfast.
i say "waffles" because they can't know
i won't let them stop me
my therapist asks me if i think i'm sick
and i'm not, i'm strong, but i can't be
not here not here, and the $$$$$$$$
are ticking away as i consider my answer
so i say "yes" and she asks me what
i will become and i say "better"
because that's all they want to hear
my dietitian sets up a rough meal plan
and she says i won't gain weight on it
somehow i trust this woman with art
on the walls of her office and i pick
through the day in corn-kernel bites,
There is a weight
You asked me to hold.
(Just for a while,
Just for a while.)
My tendons strain and snap,
I lack your Atlas strength.
The crushing force of gravity
Makes me weak, makes me sore.
Take it back, take it back,
But you’ve gone away.
I’m sinking down, I’m sinking down.
The water rises to my throat.
Pushing down, rising up
Drowning and drowning and drowning.
Take it back, please take it back,
Where have you gone?
I’m pinned beneath this weight,
With water to my nose.
My lungs fill up with salt,
Choking and screaming and breathing
Only freezing thickness of water.
Where is that mild friend oxygen?
Where has he gone?
My stinging eyes are blind here.
I cannot to escape, unwilling
To shed this leaden snare
Wherein I dwell confined.
I grip it tightly.
Surely I will die,
Sweet air has left my blood
I lay back and let black water take me,
Frozen fingers loosen on Your weight.
And all at once
it falls away
I watch i
Was Beauty, Now BeastComing back again, the same situation,
Everything has changed due to my perpetration.
Beauty used to be in every word that I speak,
But I spat so much poison, that I can barely squeak!
I used to write a fantasy and now I'm simply dreamless,
I'm struggling with this sickness, it leaves me solely listless,
Or maybe I'm just soulless, my eyes are milky blind,
Where once I saw the beauty; I only see the grind
It should be a crime, a poet falling low,
The world has lost an artist; it gained a rapper though.
But all I have is acid, recriminating bile,
My style is simply vile; I've lost the will to smile.
But maybe if I try, I might get something back.
I guess I need to stop the hate to put me back on track.
The Girl Who Was Afraid To BeShe speaks to me fondly
of passions and talents,
of guitars and stars,
with such breathless intensity
then stops short and
for speaking at all.
All because somewhere in her life,
someone she loved broke her heart
her beautiful words
and telling her to
keep it down,
People aren’t born sad.
We make them that way.