last season's mix tapesin every story, there is a plot.
this is called “what happens.”
what happens is usually someone dies and someone rebuilds, someone buys a wedding ring and maybe she says yes.
what happens is we lose touch.
what happens is we stop at the laundromat, and i don’t know if i am inventing the men smoking cigars on the porch, or if it is really thursday. what happens is i am nine and you are a few years older and we are in the laundromat with three baskets full of clothes.
what happens is my parents are waiting in the car and we have quarters weighing down our pockets and we are grown up as we press coins into the slots on the washing machines. we giggle because we are the youngest occupants of the one large room lined with washers and dryers, and we giggle and we wait for the buzzers. we grow unsteady, confused, younger as we realise that we have been wrong. suddenly we are infants and we glance around the room and we feed more quarters into the
the one you think is too transparentyour eyes are a cavernthe one you think is too transparent4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
or a crevice or a gash in the belly
of the fox laid out
under the wheels of a car that always looks like the one you drove
over me, around me. we were best friends
or would have been & we wrestled
ourselves to sleep
& we cried alone in front of
mirrors & spread the stomach skin of foxes.
your eyes are an operating table. i had everything
taken out of me. your eyes are bubbles
in a jack & coke, the careful folding of your heart
around a corner.
your eyes are your mouth, scripted
over words you've had memorised since your first woman.
i am a paper dress & i interrupt your cheekbones with
your eyes are not coming to bed.
your eyes are
in the paper dress
of a fox dilated in the street & (it wasn't your car
but every car looks like yours &) when we crawled
into her caverns we found
a child & uprooted i
the lotus-eaters.do you know what i mean when i say i just want to fall,the lotus-eaters.4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
like the leaves and the sky and the numbers under my feet?
i have to let you know i'm not good enough
so i tattoo it in my freckles and write it on your walls.
my hands smell of sulphur and clay
and no amount of soap makes it fade.
it's like a tangible version of you,
soulless beast roaming my mind.
i find myself reaching for you
in my sleep, waking with a start
and revulsion in my arms.
i've carved birds into my wrist to keep me happy
because things like shopping and counting calories haven't.
every time you leave me,
every time i say i love you
and you leave me with silence,
i want to become this godless girl
with an empty heart and no love;
to bleed like it's what i was born for,
and not be the least bit sorry
for any of it.
i am eighteen and i garner pleasure out of very legal,
very counterintuitive things. i am a sick puppy
and i don't mind it but my mother does.
the unsettled look in her eyes like the
hunger of a lion, burni
what are tearsit is monday and i am tremblingwhat are tears4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
in sadness and hunger and reminiscence
the moon is not out and the air is too cold.
it is here the line between you and him is blurred.
every hour you spend silent is another word from my pen,
pressed onto paper and equally of the cancerous loss of my
heart, and the uncomfortable absence of its stitches.
this is when i feel the ground fall from beneath my feet.
this is when i forget if i am looking (you) up or down,
if i am in love or in hate.
this is when i need you most, a solid set of arms
to steady myself as i am wrapped inside,
a body with a hot heart burning behind soft skin.
it is now that i can't remember that it hurts
more to never know than to know and be damned;
to hold my breath for three weeks in hopes that the
breath of your butterfly will come to me again
instead of the written resignment of
his beautiful sorrow.
here is where i look at you and see his eyes.
here is where i see his lips and find your jaw.
here is where i need
the first poem i wrote since i told you i love youthe star-soaked stainsthe first poem i wrote since i told you i love you2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
that covered our nudity
gives way at last
to a tequila sunrise,
so low in the sky;
it's still bright enough
to sting my eyes,
and yet i can't bring myself
to hate it.
your body next to mine,
every effort is made
to move a heavy limb
because any space
is space i don't want.
i am sometimes humbled
by my feelings,
the way they swell
in my throat
just how the ocean
tastes the shore.
there is always something new
to find hidden in my heart,
summoned by my words,
or the salt of your skin
wearing like wind on shale
i don't think i can ever tell you
i love you enough.
if i could, i would never get dressed
so that you could never be sad-
a rewind every time
my clothes touch the floor,
never anything but nude, not naked
because with you i can be bare
i can let you see my entirety
and leave my arms uncrossed,
i can let you in
and not fear that you will break me,
or force my inner things out.
i can love you with open arms
and my lip
i don't believe in jesusno one celebrates losing virginity like they celebrate losing teeth.i don't believe in jesus2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
i don't get a dollar under my pillow for having sex with my boyfriend.
there are no doctors smiling at me when i tell them my cherry has been popped.
i am a whore for having premarital sex.
i am a tramp for loving someone enough to open my body to them.
no one celebrates losing virginity like they celebrate losing teeth -
but i slip mine under my pillow anyway, and in the morning when i wake,
there is a quarter and a tiny folded note:
"you are not a slut."
Actually, It SnowedIt was raining copper today.Actually, It Snowed3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
You were lying under piles of pennies,
shame like a dagger parked into flesh,
pious in prayer; you were streaming
hot music through your ear canals
as if you believed that happiness
could somehow be scalded
The fight scene was set in the kitchen.
Pots and pans skidded across the
kitchen, a rush of gleam; you
ran but her voice nailed
you to the linoleum floor.
Metals jangled rudely and,
my god, you were so sick of making your
way through life like a catfish with
the barbels sheared right off.
You wanted desperately to reside in
New Zealand, sending postcards and scraps
of love to your parents once every thirteen months.
You wanted to be a kite gone rogue, a fugitive
hiding among the island sheep, an unmanned
Lately behind your eyes there is always
the ideafriendly and facelessbeautiful as
choir bellsof immigrating into a new life.
Things I am scared to saylaying in bed with you is like: ready to die, I need nothing more iThings I am scared to say2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
need only to lay here and die, not alone like a dog but here with you, I
am a girl in love and I am weak as a kitten you could cut me open
stuff me with poison and i would still come back for kisses, tender
and open you make me but I'm not scared.
riding the train with you is like:
being hung like market meat I am swinging naked raw and free,
sprinkle me with kisses like salt and hold my hand a little tighter,
shift your body again when strange men walk by I am
yours yours yours and no one can touch me here with you;
no one can touch me I am infinite and I am you and you are me
and we are riding the train.
art with you is like: the paintings are crawling out of their frames,
coming out to hug you and talk to you, explain themselves like i have,
the stories are here for you; and I am lucky enough to watch, to see
your beautiful eyes study the paper and paint and gold leaf and chalk,
watch your handsome brain understand
nightlife.the heat rises and setsnightlife.4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
under the black elm silhouettes
it is you
and it is me
and we are painting ourselves
against the sky.
the days rain melts
itself from greyed rooftops
and drips like the songs
of summer and ice.
night is only so dark with
writhing demons in its
cyclic rise and fall
when the stars are afraid to
open their eyes, to
look down at the sadness
the world has become;
it is hot like infection as
the poems stutter against
sad and empty bones,
sad and empty homes,
the nests of mother robins
barren too early in
i promise you,
under the bowing bodies
of the elms,
in the way that i feel
small in your arms,
that i will be a perfect human.
you tell me with a
flutter of lips on my humid skin,
'there are too many ways
for a human to die.'
airskinny boy kissed meair4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
kis,ses l,ik,e c,ommas , ,
breaking the waves of my own selfish sadness
o god skinny boy (willow man)
if I am worth something let me know. reasons 1,,2,3, , (4,5,6)
fingers curling over the top knob of
My spine (your spine is tall and proud
skinny love blue-eyed boy godless heathen /while You have no god I find mine in my own blood wide grin kid who is
, ,,, , , , ,,,,,,,,, , , ,,,,, ,,,,,,,
wasting usi want you, okwasting us3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
i want you to be on your knees
all scraped and red and raw
like you're a child again
because that's all you ever
i want you to be aching
the way i've been aching
since the last rays of summer
said goodbye to us,
goodbye to us
and i want you to never forget
that just because
you don't remember my birthday,
that doesn't mean
forget the feel of my skin
for the first time
and that someday
this memory will stop hurting.
it never will,
and i promise you this:
every time it crosses your mind-
while you wait at the bus stop,
during a chemistry exam,
the next time a girl touches you
with her heart and not just her fingers-
every time it crosses your mind,
you're going to remember me
in extraordinary detail
and see me
like the extraordinary person
that i am,
PRETTY IN CASTSmaybe she'll snap her wristsPRETTY IN CASTS5 years ago in Urban & Spoken Word More Like This
or her ankle
dancing drunken at some rave
maybe she'll go through a windshield
and have twinkling bits of glass
stuck in her face
she's so pretty in her casts
damaged so perfectly
the prettiest thing I've ever seen
I only get to hold her when she's injured
I only get to kiss her where she's sore
cut me offpeter crying on the phonecut me off3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
still a little drunk
"i fucked up so bad. i'm so sorry"
yes darling you did sweet sweet peter with the blue eyes
like little doves.
i just wanted you to love me, i wanted you to touch me.
the tiny prayers of your fingertips across my body that would somehow make me better
or at least that is what i told myself.
peter kissing me in the staircase
tasting like coke and freedom. the bruise coloured
feeling of wanting you.
peter tapping on my knee
peter crying in my arms
peter yelling at me
peter without me