Teachers to the DeadWhile we slept,
you strapped your arm around
my chest like armor and possession,
like this one belongs to me. Together, we are
teaching the things that haunt us
to lie down in their graves.
Here, like this
your demons say to mine as
they demonstrate the art of behaving.
Together, we secure their
broken bodies and set them into six feet of
(but we do not follow
we cannot go in their stead)
They do not know theyre dead. Its
always a blow when we break the news.
They find themselves jealous of our
human skin and our inhaling
(we are too kind
to show that we are more alive without them
that losing them
2669-B2669-B9 years ago in Philosophy & Perspectives More Like This
In the early hours, when he is still asleep, she begins counting the tiny black and white tiles plastered to the ceiling of their flat. Some are chipped, some are covered by a layer of dust, and some are not tiles at all, but cockroaches in disguise. By 143 he has stretched his arms and kissed her neck, by 206 he has tied his shoes and lit a cigarette, and by 262 he's always gone. She knows that the smell of coffee will dissipate by 329 and that if she can bother getting out of bed to call her worried mom for once, or even just go to the damn bathroom, he will be back by 2338.
If she counts slowly.
Sometimes, late at night, when she has named all of the constellations she knows without the familiar sound of his second-hand car pulling into their garage, she likes to sit and ponder, with a bottle of Jack Daniels, where she went wrong. She wonders if by living here with him she's wasting away the best years of her life, years she could have spent at college in order to get a job and b
the conversationalistthe conversationalist11 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
slit-eye winter sun-
rise buried to the hilt
as if you
'd answered my every fucking
question speaking french-
it's October again, my darling
for pity, oh. for pity's sake, this
talking in morse or
semaphore is getting
by the day.
these icy fingers
are not persuaded by my plea of self
defence, the jury's
out, the cock has crowed,
the books are
falling from the shelves
like dodgy tape recordings of
conversations overheard in dreams,
what I want to know is why,
I had my mouth ajar as if to speak,
as though the distance between my
tongue and lip
was suddenly too far.
Ear DropsHe has my lipsEar Drops8 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
and my ears
so it is
all I can do
to hold fast
to this chaotic
afterthoughts are people tooimagine thatafterthoughts are people too7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
and having the strength
to do something about it
Surviving HerShes trying to drive me crazy. I know she is. There is no possible way that this is incidental. She stands there, pushing her hair gently behind her ear, taking drags off those nasty cigarettes of hers, and she looks so bored with everything. And then she smiles at me. That would be the beginning of the end.Surviving Her8 years ago in Philosophy & Perspectives More Like This
She climbs into the car with me and sings off-key to every fucking song I used to love. Then we get home and thats when the real wild times begin. I cant watch movies without wanting to fuck the lead actress. Listening to music with female singers is a death wish for my afternoon.
Since she moved in five months ago Ive learned so much. Ive learned that the sky in fact is not blue. Nor is it really up. Ive learned that its not necessarily obvious that Arnold Schwarzeneggers face in Commando HAD to be pai
CrowCrow8 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
through six inches
of window, as the last
autumn leaf stretched, spun, and drifted
swung wide open,
wet drunk on its hinges,
and you swept in bringing winter
always been my
plague; a black nest of storm,
dragging a throng of reluctant
in the half-light
that I felt a tremor,
(though your touch was as light as a
howled tooth and bone
around your peaked shoulders
through biting hail, I watched the door
were numb, and I
dropped my glass. Somehow, I
knew, your breathless season turned it
like a white hound
to the bar; when you poured
one on the rocks, I couldnt stop
(on the moonlight)
that I felt a tremor;
but your touch was as light as the
Swish-CthunkSwish-Cthunk8 years ago in Philosophy & Perspectives More Like This
Today I went down to the Bureau of Words to trade in my autumn onomatopoeia. Usually I put it off until at least the end of November, but this year the squelch-thud of my boots in the mounds of soggy leaves brought me up sharp. I went home, gathered my dry snaps, crackles and swooshes, as well as the cheerful spthooshk of a water balloon left over from August and headed down to the department. The rain hurried down to meet my umbrella, an excellent winter sound for which I had no words. But that would soon change.
The stooped man at the front desk greeted me with a finger to his lips. "We're running the barnyard tests, so we've got to be very quiet. Get me?"
I nodded. Fortunately, the entire antechamber of the Bureau is soundproofed, so my rubber soled boots made no sound on the white carpeted floor despite leaving a great deal of mud.
"What do you have in mind for me today? I'm here for the seasonal trade-in deal."
"Well, we've got snow falling on cedars, rain dripping into a puddle o
Maurice Eugene DobsonMaurice Eugene Dobson, aged forty-three years and two months, is standing in the middle of a car of the A train, on his way home. He is not holding onto the pole: he stands off to its side, swaying slightly with the movements of the train, but balanced perfectly and seemingly without effort. He never holds onto the poles. He takes pride in being able to maintain his balance like this, although he knows its not the sort of quality anyone else will appreciate, and its not really something you can put on your résumé. Too bad.Maurice Eugene Dobson7 years ago in General Fiction More Like This
He is a small man, though he prefers the word diminutive. He is five feet, four and a half inches tall in his stocking feet, and slightly built: his clothes hang on him as though bewildered to have such an insufficient resident. He wears pressed khaki pants, their sharp creases billowing several inches forward of his knees; he wears a stiff checkered shirt and a navy blue suit jacket with a single gold button that is somehow incongruous.
To Go FarTo Go Far8 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Woman, you said you wouldn't
leave the world behind. All the pieces,
you had all the pieces in a line and you were measuring
and drawing routes, bus trips back to where
you think things start. This suitcase
on the stoop, then, mustn't be yours.
Woman, you said you'd got a ticket out
and a ticket out for me, that we'd both be
over the moon by now. But you live limpid
in the city lights and I live the same nights
and between us, we can't weave enough of a day.
There is no fading, love, and no saving.
This white-on-white hospital light
you've brought outside with you
is all of your strength. You show up against
grey skies, you ghost in lamplight,
you love your children unborn. They are
dreams, as you're a dream, as is the hand
warming your palm. There is no hand, woman,
warming your palm, you've left it behind, named
for a dream dissolve. So no one is saviour, or victor, or love.
There is just us alone. Why remove us
from the road? Why remove us to jasmine
and this melancholy star? Woman,
FramesMy bike is a vintage 1973 Raleigh handed down to me by my father. The steel frame I use to bike those forty miles to and from class every day is the same one he used on his campus, way back in the Bronze Age. Sure, I've replaced the brakes, the shifters, the chain, the pedals, the wheels, and about half the rider, but the core of the thing is unchanged.Frames7 years ago in Biography & Memoir More Like This
It's only natural, then, that I was replacing the brake cable when I discovered them. I'd been inserting a Dremel bit to cut some sheathe when I thought to wear eye protection, and what should I find when rifling through the mess called my father's garage but a pair of glasses that could have been older than the bike I was repairing. Safety wear, to be sure; the glasses were un-lensed, but the thick black frames were standard eye-wear right about the time NASA was sending Armstrong to the moon. Instantly recognizable. I used them to finish cutting the sheathe and pocketed
FallenFallen11 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
I am now dry
no emotion to show
tired of this life
and taking every blow
it's taken my all
to get where I am today
and yet that's all it needd
to change my world gray
I've run out
of needle and thread
I can no longer stitch
the wounds that have bled
My heart's so complex
not JUST worries and cares
if you can't find the door
'climb in through the tears
it's taken a toll
as the years have gone by
I'm a wondering soul
who doesn't know how to fly
So will you take the challenge
to stitch up these things
will you be my Angel
and help me, be my wings
Smoke and Mirrors.Possibilities and eyelidsSmoke and Mirrors.8 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
of love or something similar
Effortless and seamless
of something similar
while pseudo lighting glistens
on the rain outside.
trapped in cages of
wearing bruises and screaming
"I hope I die on this, this day
release me, the Saint
they called Valentine."
Charcoal streaks and trickling down rivets
in faces and the lonely
hearts tonight will be worse.
Ugly beauty queens will dine
with a wolf
and the fiends tonight.
gently sketching music notes and whispers.
Old GhostsOld Ghosts7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Only here can I find you
on mute mornings of poetry,
where words unsaid
suspend, up end,
their breathy presence the wind
across the hills, plains, lakes,
sneaking through the shudder of grass;
the ocean in a shell.
You are in each inhalation
even though April's love
is lost and drowned,
Only here can I find you
blowing the world my way.
It won't be long before
I decode the wind.
The world has never been so loud
ClaustrophobicClaustrophobic7 years ago in Horror More Like This
My hands are unable to remain silent for long. Through tortured blinks, their control slackens, and they start to screech against the surrounding walls. My brain follows their example – crying aloud for help, shouting at my body to stop running away.
My legs are twisting and turning, my eyes melting until all I can see is blackness; all I can feel are the sickening revulsions and unshakeable impulses that my body is enduring. The air gets tighter with every second that passes, compacting as the walls close in upon me like some sick gang with no motive but to quench their throats with my fear. Always, my legs and arms flail; jumping into the walls, the ceiling, the bed below me – leaping into the darkness in the hope that they’ll escape it.
The room smells of decay – a shiver-inducing scent akin to that of burning sulphur. My brain is still howling, a wolf begging for its companions – longing to be somewhere, anywhere that is safe.
pencils and knivesOur getting together was a roll of the tongue, a curve in my nerves.pencils and knives8 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
We played clever and intelligent and poetry-slam line break, smiled at our own pretentious predigested words, coffee and donuts and hardly a table between us. Your eyes flashed white and my smile flashed red and I pretended to be without makeup, and you, without frowns.
We discussed Small Things, work and play, and we discussed Big Things, God and philosophy. We faked thoughts and I made petty arguing comments just to sound like a brain was in my head.
It was perfect.
You said you believed God was a woman, for people are so wonderfully flawed and couldnt only a girl create such emotions and make things so delicate? Our trivial emotions like jealousy and rage, curiosity and adrenaline, they all had such a feminine edge, you said.
You threw in a compliment about me somewhere in there and I nodded and bit my bottom lip because God suddenly seemed very, very real.
You asked me something vaguely romantic and it hit m
Counting for NothingFourteen hundred paces wastedCounting for Nothing8 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
walking to your door,
and every time a pointless pounding
headache - sore, resounding, raw;
what follows next? as you'd expect
a shocking exhibition of
that bloody mix of tears
and spit and semen spilled
across this gritty floor.
and from the day that we last spoke
I've counted twenty-four.
How come I'm your ignored -
you must have grown so bored of me
and now my fingers, gnawed and nails all bitten
paw through scores
of letters better left unwritten -
never sent, now torn and scattered, littered
with my bitter thoughts unuttered,
so utterly distraught I am, I poured a litany of scorn
and longing deep in each and every one of them.
(…oh, no - we didn't speak, we swore).
Now after thirty calls left ringing,
no-one there to care a cringing jilted love's
prepared to fling himself upon his knees
and plead his throbbing need for you
my eyes are stinging full of tears for you,
I'm breathless, sobbing out this creed to you, and
limply clinging to a faint receding
I'mlosingmytouchtouchmeso I caved inI'mlosingmytouchtouchme7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
resplendent in rubble
but it's the silence
I dreamt a parasite
dissolved in salt water
I splayed myself on concrete
concerned 'bout explanations
these are the same shakes
these are the same shakes
you should be ashamed
I'm tired of shed skin
in lover's clothing
22-23-2222-23-229 years ago in General Non-Fiction More Like This
A loud rumble pushes its way in among my turned up radio. It doesn't complement the music well, so I pull off the side of the road. Sure enough, my right rear tire is shredded; a mile and a half from the school board meeting I need to cover, too. And my cell phone? Taking the day off at home, because it knew today would be the one day it'd be needed.
I limp the car to a nearby house, where thankfully the woman there knows me. As she goes to find me her phone, two little girls--I'm assuming granddaughters--run straight up to me. Haven't they learned not to trust strange men in slacks?
"What are you doing here?" one asks straight-out, surely a future journalist in the making.
"One of my tires blew. I need to use the phone to call for help."
"My name's Kaylie and I'm 6!" the other says.
"My name's Alison and I'm 8!" the first says, not to be left out.
"My name's Tim and I'm 22."
Both jaws drop. "Whooooa..."
I laugh. "Yeah. That's
During Murder in the DarkDuring Murder in the Dark8 years ago in Philosophy & Perspectives More Like This
During Murder in the Dark, we played our own games.
We had a nook in the corner where nobody ever came and wed meet in there for a few moments at the beginning of every round, snatching intimate memories under the cover of darkness. It started when we were children, and was therefore childishly innocent; wed tap out messages on each others arms, using a mixture of Morse code and our own kind of shorthand that made things go faster. We were thirteen when he tapped out, Can I kiss you? I tapped back Yes, and we had a new game.
It always was a game. It never failed to send shivers down my spine when, as we prepared to part, he whispered in my ear By the way, youve just been murdered. And I know it was the same for him.
Things progressed quickly and within a year I had my hand down his pants as we were making o
TributeGail was born on the first of August 1942, the elder of two. She grew up in New York City, marrying by age 22 and producing three children of her own.Tribute8 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
She'd tried her first cigarette when she was eleven. That shouldn't surprise you; in those days there wasn't a Surgeon General's warning or for that matter, any other public service messages.
While she enjoyed motherhood well enough, Gail also had a restless spirit; she was happiest when she was working, helping others, or driving her car. Accordingly, just before her 53rd birthday (and with her children grown and flown) she lost forty pounds and fulfilled a lifelong dream: qualifying as first an ambulance driver, then an EMT, for the local fire department.
She threw herself into her responsibilities with newfound purpose, losing even more weight and finally finding the strength to quit smoking. One young woman credited Gail with saving her life when she'd had a seizure at work. And she once made the local papers as one of several
OriginalsOriginalsOriginals9 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
The conch's twist holds
an old world. Just beyond the glossy rim
where the shell curves out of sight
a half-full bottle plunges
into the sea. The green glass
has no end, its sides spreading
light like a coloured lens. But this ocean
is a dark edge, as if eyes had never lifted
its hard dermis. A wave curls
and becomes icecream in a turqouise bowl. You
are here, looking through spirals at someone else
who is you. The bowl empties
and a cold signifier stings the skull.
This time it is no echo
of the sea's thousandfoot rush, or the tang
of stale salt inhaled from a pinkwhite lip. This time
you are there. The icecream is just as cold, the glass
of beer bottles still shedding jade. But this could be
any beach. And now it matters
that you cannot swim.
Happiness' AllureClose your eyes, turtledove.Happiness' Allure7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Skip into your deepest memories
as swirling hues strip
the baby blue from the sky.
Trust my weathered hands
like when I pushed your swing
in your rosy-red dress and
usual cherub smile.
Cover your ears and rest easy
in my arms as the house yawns;
stretching and cracking floorboards
in attempt to remove
the glassy-crust from its eyes.
Tears plop along my ragged shirt,
and I drift to when we danced
with the melody of raindrops
on pots and pans during storms.
Screams and uprooted trees
blend like the moist soil
on our fingertips when
we prepared our garden
with just enough to survive.
My ears pop into deafness.
I kiss your forehead and with
trembling hands, shield your
dreaming form as the blast
steals us into eternal night.
long living the new fleshlong living the new flesh7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
she walked away
from all the best
parts of me
how I long
let her bless
and my memory