Boats and Burns.I have forgotten or never knew
the pulse of a love that stretches across oceans.
or never knew
So long ago now,
though visions of that churning shore still leave tender bedrock exposed
beneath the pulsing folds of cardiovascular muscle --
as if in his wake the Earth spoke in tremors
instead of in turns taken through the void...
It isn't fear that stays the shaking hand,
not time that keeps the frenzied beating in check, no,
just the jagged gravel of memory left in ashy knees all those years ago
when we swore to bury what pain we knew,
what suffering we forewent
to undergo a change of heart.
I used to dig at the pieces when things got too quiet,
would try to expedite their natural expulsion from those raised, white, bulbous scars...
I waited years for the ache to subside, but even now
the rattling of
newly liberated rock fragments
against the walls
of the dryer
the laundry room.
So I have not forgotten the wide expanse of the Atlantic,
the bitter chill of th
Might As Well Be LyingBehind your best intentions,Might As Well Be Lying4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
behind the words dragged unwillingly out of your lips,
behind your "dearest" your "sweetie" and your "care,"
you're still cold.
And I'm still not sorry.
When a Man Leaves a WomanWhen a man leaves a womanWhen a Man Leaves a Woman2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
he takes all of his suitcases with him;
When you leave me
they will lie open on the bed
Triple AcheLove is a perverted thing that has no place in my daily routine.Triple Ache4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
You stab, you cut, you yell, you hurt,
and somehow we persist
and in some sick and twisted way the ones you fight against become the ones that support you
and the one thats supposed to support you calls you a slut and casts you down,
three years of cleanliness voided...
Just like it used to be:
not to prove a point,
but to make you sorry.
Sorry for something you'll never see.
Rim.I am hereRim.3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
because I do not know how not to be here.
I am a clock that never got wound up all the way.
A battery, always running low.
Something is definitely wrong.
Down, But Not OutFeel free to forgetDown, But Not Out2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
that which festers in places only reachable by trespass.
There is so little point to counting your blessings
when in dreaming you revel in things that have passed beyond resurrection
and into personal history.
And they have always loved "that story";
Even in a drunken stuper she remembers.
And in sleep...
beneath the turbid waters of a dark ocean the wounds are as fresh --
as tender and as bloodied --
as they were before the salt,
five years buried...
I wonder all the time if you remember it like I do.
Fondly, if with thorns.
But I miss that touch.
I miss the violence
of your selective intimacy.
You were so patient when I was constantly chewing bitter roots
that resolved themselves to contact that you only gently discouraged,
never a harsh word traded in the summer darkness.
It's been years since you've been home.
And you can't lie anymore, can't cover up what I know has been
the reason for your absence...
You were a different person here.
A boy with changing eyes a
Read and Recite.Poetry is notRead and Recite.2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
pushed from the mouth
like a race
is the sound of the mind
stripping its gears, measured
by the opening
of a cranial trap door.
a single drop
in an ocean of pomegranate juice
(the refined palette
tastes the salt) --
Who knew words
Something Borrowed...For months my mind's been painting wastelands.Something Borrowed...4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Before, I wasn't quite sure why I was experiencing this strange resurgence
of my twisted obsession with death and the end of all things.
But it seems, now, I've come to the end of myself:
to the precipice where behind lies what I knew
and below lies what i cannot fathom.
Somewhere, I've forgotten specifics by now, but somewhere I lost something.
I pace the ledge and toss my head like an animal waiting for the storm.
I cannot remember...I cannot begin to remember...
Or will not.
I look up
...in my eye
A Return To NumbnessThe dead do not feel pain.A Return To Numbness2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
the anesthetized youth,
stand rotting in the shelter of the houses we were born into;
among the dismantled shingles of our parents' roofs;
in the garage with half a dozen keyed cars,
a hundred thousand paper bills soaked in tears and gasoline.
If I could want,
I'd light a match.
But the rhythm --
The incessant pounding of fists against brick,
the clang of chains and steel against metal bars --
keeps even the heat
from changing my mind.
the dead --
do not choose the path their feet are set upon.
And I --
also dead? --
cannot be moved enough to tell them my alternate direction.
No -- cannot speak,
cannot even draw blood in the name of pain or fear,
And there again,
the call of the cage.
The strain of chains,
the pervasive heat of that parasitic promise of rest
and a life that isn't mine:
a life of white;
of endless, artless space.
Or black oblivion.
to end my silence.
I fill for a moment,
feeling the edges
Karma.The truth isKarma.2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I have hoarded your words.
Made haphazard stacks on on the stairs,
on the grand piano
so I would not forget as well
or as thoroughly
as you have.
For now, new beds play host to the faded pages
of a notebook, the one I used to write letters to you
that I never sent, that spent so many years under the pillows.
Washed in the laundry, the ink leaves black stains on white sheets,
determined to exist,
There are ghosts beyond the shadow of the fabric.
In that place where poetry comes from,
they're counting the threads of our histories.
They intersected, I know they did:
You read it.
I wrote it down.
Flames lick the edges of the bound volume.
than leather --
But you knew that.
It burns faster.
I suppose you knew that too.
The Man That I Love.For the first time his handsThe Man That I Love.2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
are wider than my hands.
The pads of his fingers tell stories across my wrists,
deeper lines than I've ever seen trap glittering minerals.
And despite his outward roughness,
he is softer still than the bunched fists that held me fast,
kept me for years in a harder bed than his.
He tends a wider history,
kneels among the rows and breathes life into the tired soil.
In the absence of rain, he draws from a deeper narrative:
I borrow the ladle and drink.
If I could, I'd bring him the world while he sleeps,
the fondest victim of his midnight whisper --
dreams we know,
years spent harvesting the fruit of the seed we sowed
when I was a child, when he was just a boy...
I wend myself around the stock and wait to put down roots.
We will grow beneath the same sun.
The garden gate is shut.
The Orchard.All we know about ourselves is that we'll never know enough.The Orchard.3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Words ripen and fall into our open hands but stay within clenched fists,
too frightening to be released.
What distance doesn't kill, time can't help explain.
Why chase a wraith across the desert to happiness?
I've grown tired of these pervasive winters,
seasons spent without harvest or in careful attention, only to pluck anguish from the branches.
So i've decided to do away with irrigation, with condensed dreams and tunnel vision:
Realism to replace ignorance, ignorance to feed hope,I think...
I think I love you.
Make The Bed.Beds get bigger in the absence of words.Make The Bed.2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Things we thought we understood become jumbled.
Suddenly, the world is out of focus.
Remove the padding.
Deconstruct on a chemical level.
Love is --
Far above the highway,
gunpowder combusts and rains down on familiar ground.
I try to forget what we left tucked between the hills,
what we buried in the pine needles behind his house.
You blend together:
innumerable saturdays wrapped in the heat and the dark
where breath escaped between rupturing larynges;
an unfinished, unplanned, uncertain six hour road trip to rapture that lies dormant,
somewhere north of here in hay bales,
or hidden in the mountains.
Silence defines nothing.
and fill the mattress.
and let me forget.
Transatlantic.I knowTransatlantic.2 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
there is no shame
in counting crows on bedposts.
Maybe if I had laughed you would
drum on windows
like rain across shutters:
somebody knew, and nobody
man is a lake
and woman a river:
I knew the salt. The ocean froze
we told ourselves
was nothing to the distance.
It crushes dreams like so many
God knows we tried.
But when that morning comes
there will be no brackish streams. No;
Forgetfulness.It's been so long that soon we will forget the taste and the sensation.Forgetfulness.4 years ago in Haiku & Eastern More Like This
They will tell is this is for the best, because every time will feel like the first time.
Hardly becomes never faster than you think.
Quitter.While I was awayQuitter.3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
you packed the house with C-4
and ran away with ears covered.
with the accidental drop of a match
("should I ask to remain friends or no :/")
I'm watching it burn up
I Had To Put The Book DownYou tell yourself a story that you've sleepwalked a thousand times, and somehow the words never come out the way you dreamt them. The words "I love you" turn sour in the mouth of a man with the wrong face. For some reason you can never hear "you're so beautiful" enough. But even in the throes of your delivery you know you're a liar: things get in the way, like significant others and your own body image. And you realize through the course of your narration that you are a sick child, slow and languid of action,because if you weren't you wouldn't be telling yourself this story, you'd be showing others the scrapbook...I Had To Put The Book Down3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
But why should I tell you
something you already know?
Things I Know.IThings I Know.1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
You will leave me when the leaves change.
I try not to be afraid of the future
Whose rusty bear trap
Threatens to leave more scars across my past-tattered ankles...
Maybe this time ill mean it,
Liberate blood with vicious, not vanishing purpose when you go
Like she told me
I'd like to think battles hard fought leave more than battle
scars, and weathering bronze plaques.
Women who don't have fathers lose their minds and I'm afraid I've lost you --
I guess every veteran knows
The echo of an amputation.
Eventually, patience wears to translucent leaves on the grave marker --
With a weeping shovel you will bury me
under fives years' worth of soil I could never account for.
Killing Fields-For HumanityKilling Fields3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
It's after the fact.
White tail deer-
Winter fields that
stretch an inch more
than tomorrow's pain.
And there's no way to know
just how far that really is.
(Thank you for that)
I've tried to walk across
the hard emptiness.
In the middle, there is a
column. It holds up the sky.
This is where the line is drawn.
I always stop there. Maybe it's
only a tree but I find myself
further troubled with every sunset.
Today I found a book filled with pictures and interviews of Cambodian land mine victims.
Men. Women. Children. People. Children.
The most beautiful woman I have ever seen only had half of her face.
A seven year old boy with no legs still tried to play soccer with the other kids.
I'm going to that field tonight.
I'm going to carve their names in that tree.
I'm going to keep walking until I'm not afraid.
You're Welcome, Pig.There's no shame in exposingYou're Welcome, Pig.2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
what little there is left to be proud of.
Slip hands beneath cotton and synthetic fabrics,
expose epidermis to empty rooms on the other side of state lines.
Nothing matters if you can save him.
Nothing matters, if you can keep him around.
Regret isn't the right word.
No, sorry isn't what I'm looking for.
More...the sound a lobster makes when it hits boiling water.
A feeling like the staunch white of heated metal before the forge.
Something akin to skinning a man alive,
stench of iron and anger.
I'm never one to ask but...
You respect the one that hurt you
more than the one who's there for you.
Don't give me the standard answer:
better than anyone.
But last night we became a new kind of close,
innocent or not,
committed or un,
and you can't pretend it didn't happen, no,
can't write over it because you told me what you wanted
and I gave it to you like the fool I am...
You've just becom
''There's Nothing Going On.''I've never seen my father''There's Nothing Going On.''2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
get ready in the morning
and leave his tie across his front seat.
Defiant.I can't write it hereDefiant.4 years ago in Haiku & Eastern More Like This
for fear of being chastised
but it still exists.
Her Notes I look now at words scribbled in old-fashioned number two pencil in the margins of the only physical thing of hers that I will ever have. I know it wasn't mechanical because of the way the edge of the lines blur and smudge, and her cursive isn't razor thin, never was. The curves arch gently together and stop. And then I wonder how long ago it was that she studied this same thing, this thing that I will probably never finish.Her Notes4 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
Her notes these are the things I am left with. The only piece of her that I can touch and taste and see. I have little pocket-sized notebooks half full of them, (We always seemed to lose them before we could finish one, but they all turned up again, somehow) always in a different color, and always in a different pen. Minor scales, arpeggio in the key of A. I remember that year I played Malegueña for the recital and couldn't remember t
The Hottest 30 DaysThe traffic never bothered him until he had nowhere to go.The Hottest 30 Days2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
It took two hours to get across town and he forgot the applications.
There wasn't snow on the ground, so he pulled over
and parked in a tow away zone. He walked around
the center of that city and thought about his father standing in line
with him at the Hartford shopping mall twenty seven years earlier
in the town where he grew up.
It's Christmas time and all of the other children are
pissing themselves with anticipation.
Over the scent of plastic evergreens and candy canes,
his father still smells like motor oil and top shelf bourbon.
The closer he gets to the obese man in the red coat,
the more he shakes with fear. Tears well up in his eyes.
Right before it's his turn, his dad pulls him out of line and
they walk quietly back to the car.
His dad doesn't turn the heat on or bother looking in the rearview mirror;
"Don't make me leave w
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?