skin peels from bones, submerged in crimson liquid:
and if you were to look inside me,
damn aesthetics, break my ribcage free and
delight my lungs with your tongue of venom,
your eyes would light with glee at the
with respect to my past self,all of my writings have led up to
y o u and m e
and i should have known before we even started,
i warned myself before i even knew the color of your eyes
i listen to too many 8tracksi've never told anybody this,
but i'm telling you now that someday
i'm going to swim into the ocean
and never come back.
i'm going to swim so far out
that not even the largest lighthouse
could find me. i'm going
to let the seawater soak
into my veins until i'm bursting,
salty with the bitterness
of all the times i never had,
like the nights you rubbed
circles on my back. i'm going
to fight against the current, knowing
that i'll be defeated before
i even begin. it doesn't matter
that someday my body will be found
by either man or animal, for this body
is mere transport; my soul
will be of the sea, of the tides
that wash onto the shore and cling
to the sand. and maybe,
if you look closely enough,
you'll find me riding the current
probably a few weeks agoyou’re seven cups of coffee in and it’s 1 a.m.
the waffle house countertop seems
expansive in the dim light.
for the first time this night,
you deny your waitress the right
to pour you another cup.
if coffee can’t keep you awake,
you lay a tip on the tabletop when she is
bent over her phone.
she might be your age,
rings etched under her eyes
from a procession of shifts spent
waiting for the sun to rise.
outside, you spark the lighter.
smoke slides down into your lungs
then shoots back out your nose,
curls in haloes above your head.
wade out into the adjacent field of barley
where the plants are hunched over
in their opulence; teeming with granules
that beg for the harvest.
cup the soft soil in your palms,
mix it with the scintillating light from the diner,
and realize you are only just beginning to understand
the complexity of things.
saccharineshe’s made of cotton candy:
spin, twirl, break, then dissolve.
sugar rushes through her veins,
viscous, arteries clogging
from the buildup. her eyes are filmy
and she leaves a sticky residue
wherever she touches. many
find her a delight but she rarely stays
for long, her presence disappears
as their lips forget her name,
their tongues forget her taste.
she starts everywhere and ends
nowhere. parents warn their children:
stay away, she’ll make your teeth rot.
yet they persistently return
with their nickels and dimes,
insisting on just one more taste.
seasonal reflectionsi. autumn arrived with a reckoning,
the pine cones held secrets and they’d whisper
to me in the night as their sweet wood hands fell
to the ground; i tasted maple honey
while sticky fingers scraped bark
that screamed sweetly to the sunset
ii. winter came slowly, timberland
freeze and peppermint icicle swirls
on frosted puddles as cold as Siberian igloos,
Eskimo girls in bear skin hats and leather gloves;
i was never one of them but i heard
they breathe out steam in glacial time
iii. spring bloomed and so did the bruises,
black and blue like Van Gogh’s starry
night, minus the stars; my teeth grew crooked
as wildflower veins and my hair sprouted
like meadow grass, i pretended i was a coppice
nymph and at dusk i sang with the cicadas
iv. summer sought the hidden gardens,
the scorched earth cultivated secrets in barren
soil, foolish, i dug for the answers but uprooted
only last year’s seeds, tore the foundation down
with broken nails; i danced with honey feet on
It’s been a year and I can still remember waking up, disoriented and alone. You were my compass, and you left. I don’t quite know how, but I’ve managed to make my own way without you. And it hurts. God, it hurts. Sometimes I wonder where you are and what you’re doing and who are you with? Are you with someone else? Are you with him? I know you won’t ever receive this letter, that the postal service will realize how hopeless these efforts of sending this are, but I can’t help myself. I can’t help that I still think about the way your lips fit perfectly with mine or how right it felt to be with you. I know that this message will end up as one of thousands of others in the dead letter office but maybe, just maybe, it will reach you.
Six months and four days: that’s how long it’s been since he has sent the letter. He lives in New York City, in an apartment that he still has yet to pay
Theological Semanticswe are on vacation in Florida
when she asks me, “what is God?”
and i correct her, “who is God?”
and she shakes her head, repeats
“what is God?”
the sea sounds fill the gap.
i can see a storm roll in
over the ocean expanse
and i take a breath and answer:
God is all of the things that can’t be explained
with recitations and verses.
God is the space that empties itself to tangibility
and the ghosts that scream in the wind.
God is the meaning between the breaths and last night’s
whiskey running through your veins.
God is the reflection in your eyes and the mist exhaled
into January nights that evaporates under the moon.
God is the sounds too high to hear, frequencies
not meant for humanity because we would misinterpret.
God is all of the pasts that never were and all of the
futures that will never come to be.
“does that answer your question?”
and the sea washes
away our footprints
The Eventual Give and TakeI can always tell when I’m pushing you over the edge, and I want to stop, I do. I want to close the wounds I’ve opened, to patch you up with dollar store bandages so you will no longer bleed sorrow. I want to make it okay. I want your eyes to shine like the stars you capture and your smile to reflect sincerely when you look in the mirror. I want to please you and I want to unburden the weight I put on your shoulders. I want you to be joyful, but not happy, because happiness can be washed away as quickly as sand is pulled back into the sea. I want to be your escape, not your prison. So give me the key, and I’ll lock it away with all of the other things that I want.
My dear, what you lack in understanding you make up for in insolence. You have never come close to pushing me over the edge. You have never made me bleed sorrow. I may appear to break and bend to the whims of your subconscious desires but remember: an ounce of advice makes for a wealth of p
The DregsThere are kids killing
themselves on concrete
beneath flickering street lamps
that watch over the city like
and T.J. Eckleburg would
shake his head,
lost in the urban sprawl
of the future eating the
past. They are
trying on tongues
under clouded moonlight,
for mother, madre, mére,
ahm, abatyse, äiti,
but stumbling over strange
vowels and unfamiliar
consonants because their
teeth are stained from
too-hot coffee and a
of fluoride. Caffeine
overload, synapse electric,
a metropolis made hectic
by layered skyscrapers
clawing at the sun, shadows
casted over the neighborhoods
no one speaks about
It's OkayIt's okay to be sad.
It's okay to be mad.
It's okay to cry,
To not have the strength to try.
Sometimes people just need to
Let it all out,
Scream and shout,
And that's okay.
Admitting something's wrong
Doesn't take your strength away.
Ask for help
If you need it.
Don't feel weak
Just because you
Enough to move mountains.
Crying is good.
If you didn't cry
Just bottle it up
Until you burst.
You don't even
Need a reason
Just have a good cry.
Take a long bath
And watch a movie
That makes you laugh.
Bake a cake
Just for the sake
Of making something.
Lay in bed
Until the bad thoughts
Leave your head.
Just sit back and relax.
Because it's okay
To not be okay,
And to take a day
Just for you.
You're a Literal MiracleNext time you’re unhappy.
Think about this.
Remember that you are a walking,
You are alive based on so many chances.
So many different thing could’ve happened.
You’re still here.
You are literally made of stardust.
Matter that has been around,
Since the beginning of time.
Dreams and hopes
Forged in the belly of distant stars.
You have cosmos in your veins.
And eyes that have stardust in them,
That have seen the dawn and ending to galaxies.
I know it’s easy to forget this,
But it’s true.
Everything about you
And me and everything else around you.
Is a miracle.
So many perfect things had to come into place,
For you to be standing here today.
So smile sweet heart.
Cause you are a beautiful phenomenon
That was created by miraculous chance.
Words Are Powerful ThingsYou’re so angry
You let words swarm up inside.
Screaming to get out.
They yell and shout.
They sit there,
Turning into horrid things that should never be even whispered,
In the softest tone.
You get so angry
Cause you’re so afraid.
Like so many other people
You let your fear burst into rage.
The monstrous words inside of you
Refuse to remain in their cages.
You let those words escape your lips,
All of the sudden you feel like your words have killed someone.
As you see their face.
Words are suddenly bullets.
They’ve pierced your victim’s heart.
Fragments of a once pretty, friendship scatter on the floor.
The pieces so broken, I doubt you could find all of the shards to make it whole again.
There’s a slamming of a door.
Whether that be real,
Or just a metaphor.
To say you’ve been locked out,
From this once dear friend of yours.
I hope one day.
You’ll find better words
To form a key.
So you can find your way back to them.
This is anxietyIt's the constant feeling of not quite right
and I don't know why I feel this way but it hurts
(but not in ways that others can understand)
and it's the tension in your chest, the rising water
the aching muscles and the clenching in your core
That never leaves
It's the headache that never quite fades,
just hurts sometimes more than others.
It's the constant need to move with your racing thoughts—
to bounce or twitch or
glance around the room every three seconds just to make sure you're not being watched, you're not being judged
It's two a.m. and you're lying
facedown on top of hot sheets, such an empty shell
you don't even have the energy to cry over how tired you are
wondering if there's any way to turn your mind off,
when you can't even remember what sleep feels like because it's been so long
since you really had a true rest.
It's wandering through your days almost
walking into that door and
not catching half of what your teacher says because your eyes hurt
untitledthere are a thousand
unwritten love letters in your eyes
now I keep thinking about
and the color green
all I know is that
my skull's been
warriors traversing well worn paths
boots leaving tracks across
chests and necks
and it's comfortable
it's not like drowning
more like slowly lowering
into hot bathwater
and we are just skin and cosmos
bodies and words
our tongues landlocked
we are adrift in
our own little sea
we've plucked our wings
and now we can't fly
tell me the truth
that the sky's overrated
I'd rather be with you
on the ground
or buried beneath it
skeletons entwined truthfully
I've always thought heaven was
a pretty sort of lie
but I've read a book or two
or people's idea of it
and I disagree with myself
popping thought balloons
on the idea that heaven
is in the way your eyes
fold origami swans when you smile
that shitty laugh
that hollow above your heart
like your chest's caving i
novelthere’s tea you still need to drink.
you left it on the counter again, because you’re
always forgetting where you put it.
it’s probably cold by now, but
it’s there for whenever you’re ready.
here’s a blanket to lose yourself in.
you don’t have to give it back.
here’s another book i think
will make you cry if i ever find the courage
to give it to you. i’ve underlined every
line that made me want to scream, that made me
want to rip out my hair and destroy everything
beautiful about myself, that made me want to
drive across a desert in the middle of the night,
that made me fall in love with everything wonderful
the universe has left to give me.
i can’t find the words to tell you what it’s about.
i guess it’s about growing up and finding love
but it’s also about figuring out how to exist comfortably
and it’s about people who are good and people who
are not always good and the things they do and the worlds t