six steps to fixing youstep oneMore Like This
cry. scream. bang your fists against the walls
that keep you locked inside.
kick your feet in the air. tell your sister she's stupid
and wrong and that you've never loved her.
cry. scream. apologize via him to you.
let your tears catch on your lashes
until you can no longer see anything but your own
demise. taste the bitterness left in
your mouth from your own bitching and rot in it.
break a mug. break two. kick
the pieces around the kitchen floor and cry some more.
break a plate. break a cup. break a bowl.
break a finger because nothing can take away this
sort of pain. you are empty and yet
you are filled with so much anger.
break a razor and paint pictures across your skin.
you are okay, you tell them.
you break three days later and you lie
in bed, unable to move.
start picking up the pieces. clean up the mess
you've made and he's left.
use windex to polish off the dirt and
forgive me.forgive me for being pretty,More Like This
because i'm always going to be a slut.
forgive me for being ugly,
well, no matter how little i wear,
i'll never be beautiful enough.
forgive me for being skinny,
because i'm fragile and weak.
forgive me for being fat,
well, no matter what i've been through
i'll never be able to speak.
forgive me for being strong,
because no one will even let me fight.
forgive me for being weak,
well, no matter how much you yell at me,
i'll never be right.
forgive me for loving a man,
because i'll never be under attack.
forgive me for loving a woman,
well, no matter what i love,
i'll never be loved back.
forgive me for being educated,
because i can't have power.
forgive me for being ignorant,
because i was giving birth during school hours.
forgive me for being a feminist,
because i have no right to speak.
forgive me for fighting for equality,
because my voice is dainty and weak.
forgive me for being a daughter,
because i don't deserve an education.
forgive me for being
june fifteenthtoday isMore Like This
and your fingers between mine,
warm and damp in the heat.
my legs stick to
plastic lawn chairs,
my body sticks to yours
like bubblegum-fresh paste,
melting into you
and liking what it becomes.
black asphalt boy,
you are sizzling leather
and suffocating air
in an overheated car.
we walk across the shore
and the soles of my feet
yearn for the cool damp sand
struggling for breath
between the waves.
"I don't want to
forget this," I say,
and you smile and
close your eyes
like the sun setting,
slowly, streaking down
the sky of your face.
the sun is so far but
you're right here
and I think I might
be in love with you.
I'll move on to autumn
but you'll still be
in summer, forever,
living and living
until the day you die.
you have seven days to live.1.the news doesn't hurt:More Like This
it's his eyes that hurt you,
the glimmer of his past
creeping in just like
his father used to creep in
at three a.m.
with a sin on his mind
and rage on his hands.
he waits for you to react,
but you don't
because he's suddenly seven again,
while mommy cries
in a ball on the couch.
2.you think time
is a funny thing.
people talk about it
like it is an object:
"I need more time," they say,
like they will go to the store later
and buy more.
but you know that time
is more like an ocean wave,
with an endless
pounding that continues
long after we greet the dirt,
and we want more time,
but time doesn't want us.
3.he tries to force you
into his wrists,
his ankles, his collarbone.
he thinks that if he
loves you enough,
he can save you.
you know that he can't,
so you cut through him
night after night,
searching for an exit.
4.sometimes death scares you.
you remind yourself that
no matter how much you want
every chance i didn't take IIYou tell him about your cancer on a Sunday,More Like This
in the shower of all places, in between brunch plans
and speculations about whether or not the weather
will ever get any colder - hasn't it been the strangest November?
Just the strangest.
You casually mention that somewhere
deep in the secret space between your hips
your own cells are proliferating uncontrollably,
whispering treason and passing down forgeries,
teaching each other the steps of mitosis with alarming intent.
You don't miss a beat as you drop survival percentages
mixed in with tomorrow's rain forecast
and predictions about the game later that afternoon -
easy as breathing, even as counterfeit armies
shred through the soft tissue just below
his favorite place on your spine.
And as you stand there
calmly making conversation
and sharing the last of the soap,
he watches the water
run quiet rivers
through your hair.