His Breath, Her DeathHer eyes,
so pale yet patient,
swarms of orca whales swim inside her irises,
dancing along the sunlight in jewel tones,
so rich with reflection,
it's as though you are staring into the ocean
if the ocean were emptiness,
but when you look passed the beauty
you can see that she is broken,
she is a ship wreck in the making
with anchored hips and a drowning smile,
but that's what she gets for falling too fast
when everyone told her it wasn't safe to sail,
the waters too rough, too cold, too heart breaking,
it's too late now though,
she is withered and writhing,
intertwined with ribbons of seaweed,
she has nothing left to give anymore
because he stole her oxygen and
trapped it inside his own greedy lungs,
so now as she dies,
he breathes in her reaping
and then the wind sweeps them up, down, and away.
NocturnalWrapped up tight by my own wings,Nocturnal3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I hang upside down
while the blood rushes to my head
inside my cobwebbed cocoon,
Ultraviolet rays flicker against my eyelids
in colors I have never seen,
yet maybe I have once before,
I saw them the first time your skin brushed mine,
a kaleidoscope of solar energy
making me blind enough to see the light,
Your voice now echoing in a frequency
only I can hear,
it ricochets through my thin bat bones,
lingering along my teeth
so I can taste the way you sound
along the backside of my cavity,
But now you've been bitten
because I have no control,
my incisors sinking in to your handsome heart
because you are ripened fruit
in the dead of Winter
and I am a parasite
in Summer's wake,
If only the day ever met the night
maybe we could meet again,
but for now this must be enough,
so I return to the shelter of my own wings
to protect myself from the sun
and your own astrological luminosity.
Getting OldI have messages in bottlesGetting Old3 years ago in Concrete Poetry More Like This
written in blood,
and words in my head
that cause tears to flood.
I have scarred knuckles
and shattered glass,
I have no reflection
or smiles that last.
I have no heart
which I'm willing to give.
I have no life,
which I'm willing to live.
What can I say,
to make you understand?
Don't grow up, dear,
nothing goes as planned.
You break and shatter,
and forget the starry night.
You cry and turn bitter,
turning away from the light.
You're so young right now,
and ask why I'm so cold.
Just remember, love,
this happens when you grow old.
SleepInstead of ripping the covers off,Sleep3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Shaking it violently,
And forcing cold breakfast down its throat,
I wish they would carefully wake a sleeping poem
And ask it gentle questions
Before its dreams are forgotten
And I will Always be the MoonWe have gotten so attached to these days and these months,And I will Always be the Moon3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
but a deer doesn't know a Tuesday from a Thursday
and a caribou can't comprehend that it was born on a September afternoon,
but they can understand this instant, this moment, this breath,
only now, no longer the past, and only the future when they get there,
there's a healthy lack of awareness in that,
escaping the fear of death but thriving off the instinct to live,
everything so primal and based off gut reactions,
I guess you could say ignorance is bliss,
but ignorance only actually applies when it comes to humanity,
oh I would like a life like that,
one that is organic, tangible, and ripe with bloody berries,
one where carnal creatures run rampant,
one where we rise from the dirt with muddy thighs
because we were bred into these earthly bodies
to hold seconds in our palms like newborn children,
and to throw our heads back and howl against the awareness that we are dying,
for oh this skin is only our host,
The boy who swallowed a tempestShe once loved a boy who swallowed a tempest.The boy who swallowed a tempest4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Her fingertips couldn't quell the storm,
He thrashed, hurricanelike,
In their sea of sheets.
When the Sabbath came,
And he couldn't choke out three words,
She ran home to her mother,
In her big wooden house.
She cut off all her hair,
Still safe high in her tower.
Her prince loved a king,
She locked the door and ate the key.
He lay in bed alone,
Kings don't keep bed with stable-boys,
And for the first time,
He missed her, but not like that.
Opening a window,
He lit a match, and blew smoke,
And rose to her threshold,
She said nothing.
No sorries were said,
But that night, they slept soundly.
lapsus calamiyou're smooth, you knowlapsus calami2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
all soft skin and and long fingers,
cupping my cranium and sliding through
the tendrils of my hair
everything about you screams dangerous,
the way your smile starts--
languid and lazy because
your lips speak in secrets
passed through dry presses of mouths and
the way your chin tips up
to show the expansion of your neck,
the littering of freckles that create
constellations and desire
i'd trace the lines of your body
with careful and practiced touches,
i'd turn you into poetry--
transform your lungs into lyrics
your ribs into rhymes,
your tongue into text and
your spine into something more
i'd fall in love with you and
you'd never die
you're smooth, you know
like the insides of thighs and
the slopes over hips
my heart is yours--
i'll give it to you, if you want it
you're just going to have to pay it back
I let the water take controlIt's been awhile since I've been underwater,I let the water take control3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
so I drew myself a bath
and let the water rush itself into the tub
like blood to the brain,
as it pooled into the fiberglass basin
I felt the tides start to rise
while the pond I created began to
encase every limb,
my lips brushed against the water
in a liquidated kiss
and my blonde locks melted into the sea
as if my name were Medusa and
my strands of hair were snakes,
but my body dissolved into what it used to be,
I became the water and the water became me.
The Last DetentionI've spent too many years sittingThe Last Detention3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
in the back of a classroom.
We see thousands of chalkboard faces
in the evening haze of rush hour traffic.
The nicest days of the year always happen
when our Teachers give us detention.
We can't be trusted to punish ourselves.
Grab a stick of chalk and begin.
100 times- I will not cheat on my husband.
100 times- I will not miss my nephew's soccer game so I can drink alone.
100 times- I will not leave smaller tips for the older, less attractive waitresses.
100 times- I will finally get the courage to kiss her tonight.
100 times- I will tell him it is over if he hits me again.
100 times- I will not be weak.
100 times- I will notice the sky today.
100 times- I will invite the widow in 5A to Christmas Dinner.
100 times- I will call my sister.
100 times- I will learn the difference between what is worth fighting for and what isn't.
100 times- I will ask my co worker how he is doing and actually care.
100 times- I will do more than just get by.
What if there
ForeclosureWhere are they now?Foreclosure3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
emerald city slums,
dirt in the sky.
The child fell off his bike and
skinned his knee. He cried when
I tried to help him up. Ants carried
his blood away. We don't need
that kind of pride.
A woman in Pasadena sold a slice
of toast with F.D.R.'s face on it.
I thought it looked more like you
standing in the rain.
We were asked to recreate the Gospels and
you suggested Michael Bay.
Some things never change.
Columbus found America,
the same way Descartes found existence,
the same way my brother found bourbon
the same way a horse finds religion.
It was always there so
just be careful with it.
We're all afraid of snakes.
You Only Glow When its DarkAs we drift through tunnels surrounded in a sleazy red light,You Only Glow When its Dark2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I smell the vodka on your breath, I feel its false warmth as your
Tongue traces circles around my mouth, your lipstick is a heavy pink.
Your lips, they feel alive with secrets whispered over pillows marred with tears,
Hot breathy tales of passion long forgotten, breathed into waiting ears.
Hair like silk, it could be any colour, but at night
It’s the deepest, darkest of black. It falls part way down your back,
Cascading like a waterfall. I feel guilty for touching it,
Ruining it with my sweaty fingertips. My attention is always
Grabbed by your staccato breathing pattern, a symphony
Of the dark, its rhythm never fails to linger in my mind for days.
Your skin is luminous, a ghostly outline shimmering white.
You are the Venus de Milo, carved out of marble,
Showing not an imperfection, not a single crack.
It feels heavy almost, or would do if your touch was not so light,
You leave my skin feeling haunted as y
Will You Marry MeYour face is smoothWill You Marry Me3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
like the edge of a freshly wiped blade
Your skin is warm
like teardrops in a steel morgue
Your hands are soft
like linen sheets over pale, cool remains
Your hair falls to your shoulders
with the accuracy of a weighty noose
Your stride is as confident
as a blood-spattered Gladiator
Your legs send my heart
into a state of hysteria with an assassin's efficiency
Never have I wanted so badly
something so fearsome
Now tell me, my darling,
scraps and sacramentsyou,scraps and sacraments2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
beautiful siren girl with melodies
entangled in her hair: you are
shell-shocked and sea-struck
even though you cannot stand
the sensation of sand beneath
you have fingers for prying, picking,
pulling at your skin and nesting
in that hollow space between
your bones. and if anyone asks,
you will swear there are monsters
sleeping in the concaves of your ribs;
there are ghosts beneath your tongue,
embittered, and you are not the words
they say there is an answer, little girl
(sometimes you begin to believe you are
a scarecrow on the border of reality
begging people to turn the other way;
and the mirror will agree)
how far have you gone? a feather in
the breeze who won’t promise to return
again; there is a wandering warmth in
the hesitation of your harbored fear.
where will you be in six months when
the future has become itself and you
are still astray? little one, no one is like you
in the way you sway to the cadence of a
dissonant night. no one knows your
AutonomousShe asks me to tell her a story,Autonomous2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
a quiet ignorance of the self,
the unaffected scratches
on her freshwater skin and
years she spent
searching for the dreams orbiting
her like forlorn moons;
love happens on the sharp
nights unbalanced with
a little too much of the things
you don’t understand. She never
liked her eyes, full and honest and an
unignorable admittance she was real.
But she never was a cheater,
she claims, no one
put a price on her; the things she gave
away cost too much like
doctored up, re-polished
silence. Sounds familiar.
Imagine a place where
no one has a nightmare. No one
has a voice, their lives are
in their hands: calloused and
beautiful. They wake unweathered
and they are not blind and
she is the sun, unaware she
could never catch her
dreams. Even now, she
wants to be a bird when she
grows up (the endless cliché
when you’ve already sold all your
time in exchange for a pleasant
absence of memories)
with wind gliding down her back
CruxI’m only sure of two things:Crux2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I still carry pieces of your cross on my back and
lilies were your favorite flower
Those last three months-
A silent drive home from the mall
purse full of stolen makeup
Dinners with my family where no one
bothered to make the conversion
Endless hours spent looking at paint samples
and I was smart to not buy the brushes
The line at the liquor store blended
with the lines on the road
At the same time with you
Then it was summer and you talked me into a country drive. We stopped on the side of the road to watch a cow giving birth in the center of a pasture. But, the calf never rose to its wobbly legs or felt the heat of the Indian summer….it never tasted dandelions.
The mother stood by the calf’s body
long past nightfall
and I stood by yours
long after that
Was this what we meant when we said forever?
a letter for someone who hates thinkingin the beginning i wrote poemsa letter for someone who hates thinking2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
about death and darkness and
the complex metaphysical arithmetic in which
that would equate to the love i carried for you,
beneath the headaches brewing like bruises
between my eyes, my ocean eyes;
even after convincing me the planets
were dead gods, powerful skeletons with
internal expiration dates and the stars
were their lingering parables, their stories
blinking out years before we were born, i knew
you were a nuclear angel, atom bomb
savior sent to save me from
there is no more mystery
in the world. i sent you
five letters to the PO box you told me
about in florida, the first
was a catalogue of every
angsty song lyric or campy postcard
or description of a flower
crooked in just the right way
that reminded me of you,
the second was a retelling
of every dream i woke from
forgetting who i was, the third
was an apology-- i'm sorry
for who i'm not and who you
need and that your dad always
reeked of bacardi, i'm sorry
for my bukowski-wannabe complex a
on how I need youtoday is a six-word story:on how I need you2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I’m tired of waking up
I will peel back your
every insecurity and anxiety
and watch them fall to the floor
like vodka petals, regurgitated mosaics,
I will see you naked and
reborn and you will break apart
into passive aggressive poetic
dedications and unsent letters and
I will hate and love you
for the very same reasons and
I will move on.
Storybook AddictionsI want you to love me as much as you doStorybook Addictions2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
the thorns in your side; seeds planted and
forgotten and bleeding cyclically.
when the swallowed night drowns and
drains darkness like a trickled lullaby, I want
to be the last thing in your dreams.
I want to be your mistake East of Eden, your lack
of redemption; when they tear apart your paper
flesh with metal claws, I want to be the one you
come crawling back to with bloodied knees.
[right now I am an empty vessel, unfulfilled
and metaphorically obsolete. I want to clear
my throat for once, without seeing the ashes
of my disease.]
I want to love you like a swansong;
breezes make your bones ache and
I am always cold-- no one wants the
wind: it bites and they identify my
prickled flesh as its invitation.
[I wish I weren’t the pendulum
around your neck, counting the days
until you’d finally leave]
I only ever wanted you to love me.
Dear GodDear God,Dear God4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Let me just start out by saying that
I know I don't believe in you
- I don't think I ever did.
I know church was just an obligation to me,
Filled with psalms and flickering candles.
I know I've "sinned",
And I'm sorry
- that's what you say
When you're in confession,
Right? I'm sorry?
(more than I've told the truth),
I've committed blasphemy
Godhow I've used your name in vain).
You could even say that
I'm not happy with what I have
(is this body really something to be proud of?).
But worst of all those sins,
I've committed murder.
I've killed the person
You used to know.
That innocent little girl
Who used to balance your book
In her tiny hands
And caress its weight to her chest;
Those papyrus-thin words
Rustling as they impacted
Her still developing morals.
The little girl
Who created ripples in
Your bowl of holy water
- watching as they rebounded
And slowly stilled into
DriveIt was going to be last night.Drive3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Instead, I drove until sunrise and
had breakfast at a truck stop diner.
I spent the day, lost in a nature reserve
on the frayed edges of a small town.
I made myself forget its name and,
somehow, I found my way back home.
I once told you that the world
would become a better place.
I intend to keep that promise.
BeautyShe baked cookies every Saturday morning. The doorbell would ring, without fail, and always interrupt my favorite cartoon show. I dragged my young body down the stairs and opened the front door. The elderly woman, our neighbor, beamed at me. She held a large tray of freshly baked treats in her fragile arms. Always filling my head with rustic banter, I listened to her speak, nodding with false interest. Typically we chatted for half an hour, then, with an enormous smile, she turned away and shuffled back home. Welcoming her departure, I stuffed my mouth with a pecan sandy and raced back upstairs.Beauty3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Her husband passed away in his sleep one Friday night. She called my mother the next afternoon to let her know of the man's death and also to apologize for missing our Saturday morning ritual. Sunday evening, I heard a gentle tapping on the door. I peeked out the window and saw her standing
Staying for the Seasonyou were bornStaying for the Season3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
of a broken cradle
where no one taught you
how to breathe
you need the stars
like nourishment, but
they just don't feel
you live like a heart attack,
an insufferable shuddering,
a socially aware illness without
the will to pull through
it's a sad truth when we
look up in the mirror, and
only see ourselves-
but it's okay.
write it on the walls, it's
okay, you just need a
little more sleep.
(wake up. it's nearly
December and you're
Poets Always Lieambrosial fabrications arePoets Always Lie3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
easier to swallow down when
incandescence is a blessing bestowed
only upon those with silky tongues.
deceptions are beautiful
in the right words
because they are salvation, like a
rapture, they save the sickly,
self-indulgent souls from those
tragedies they used to write on the insides
of childhood notebooks about who
they could never be [themselves]
they rescue them from tremulous
corners and closets, hideaways
where they've grown too akin to
the demons they nurse; and drag
them into a land beautiful enough
to wear light as a second skin
(where lies are never discussed
but always shared)
are so much more comforting
than the absoluteness of reality
because self-resentment is as
natural as a heartbeat to those
who were born breathing and
abhorring and denying all from one
steady gasp of what the existent world
had to offer to them
back then their eyes opened, and
their fingers fumbled, born, they realized
the world wasn't as pretty as promi
RestlessI’ve been living in the same breathy dreamRestless2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
for too many days now; I’m bed-ridden and
stale and I reek of those moments that come
full throttle like a car crash on a winter night
this is evolution where weak hearts
are afraid of the shadows and where
an apologetic wind births no remorse;
he will move on—anchored ship
set sail, I am the sunken wreckage
that never learned how to swim.
he will move on, Darwin says
I never had a chance
I wish I were the textbook sadness,
symptom and solution and endurance
but I’ve spent too long sleeping on the
thoughts of shooting stars and gravity
and reasons, scientific calculations with
thrice-checked proofs for the skeptics
that don’t believe in the sleight of hand magic
reality wants to imply
I am not the insomniac writer with
better things to do than sleep; I am
the heavy bones afraid of what
lies in the darkness beneath
the skeletons of childhood monsters
The Intelligent Are So SadA cascade of words parade around,The Intelligent Are So Sad3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
with thoughts of atoms and connotation.
She is brilliant, they say,
but she knows she is lost.
Numbers are her companion,
she understands their mean, average.
Words can twist her brain,
she loves the wonder they bring.
She is intelligent, they say,
she doesn't feel clever enough.
Sometimes she feels clever too much.
Excusez-moi, in perfect French,
but nothing is gained by perfect word tense.
She is clever, they say.
But she is not clever the way they know.
She sees things as they are,
and she prefers her thoughts to the world.
She knows she loves them more than they in return,
and her friends will be there until they wont.
Friends reassure her, you'll be okay,
she puts a smile on her face.
She loves them as much as any,
even though there aren't many.
They bring out the best in her,
the happy girl,
not swamped by words.
The one who isn't drowning in formula.
Test scores and numbers don't mark you smart,
she knows this now,
engraved in her