waking upand imagine my surprisewhen my insides bloomedinto so many dandelions,and in a single breathi becamehollow.
schizophreniahollow godswhisper heaving static--i dream of ghosts.
syracuseListen to the audio version for the full effect, pretty please.cloudshot sky like an oil painting and i am watching theseagulls. i--darling, i will swim for youand swallow every whitecap.i will pluck myself a coat of pelican wings,sew them up with salt and spray--become icarus for you.you are calling me across the waves, love--but you pull against the achein my bones, the hollow--the clawing out for unseen sunsets and unturned tides.i hear you, lovegive me time.i will always listen.
hallelujah .:commish:.Storm--and the desert inhales,inebriated on an atmosphere thickwith electricity and promise.Each tiny daylight isa new rapture.They tremble.
unchainedi have seen sunrisesbloody and feral.i have walkedinto thewind.
letter to a little me1. these are the anniversaries that will stay with you,for better or worse:september twelfthjanuary twenty-fifthaugust fourteenthdecember twentieththings go up in december, as if the coming of a new yeargives the old one a kick in the pants.look forward to decembers.time likes to tie weights to your collarbones with silk ribbons.right now i am two years into a subdued grief,five years into a wild regret. but don't be scared;just as many feathers balance out the iron.i am three years into something trulywonderful.2. you will get better. the words on the page will eventually come a bit closer to the pictures in your head.by the way, you think in pictures--you don't see that now,but look for it. use it to your advantage.stop with the heavy moralizing. you try too hard.you will abandon false modesty and snobbishness,as you will find out that they are not attractive qualities.you will, however, trade them in for navelgazingand perhaps a bit of haughtiness and pre
with thanks to frost Now with a reading.two roads diverged in a soulless dawnand you pull over,idling on the shoulder of route 50.it's a polaroid morning andthe world is as grainyand sleep-heavyas your eyes,and one million milesis not far enough.it plays back, filmstrip,blurred along the length ofoptic nerves,and here you are:facing a choice betweenonandout.and this?this loosejointed, hollowbodiedweightless ache--this is whatgonefeels like.
stockdesperately we cling to smoothstocked guns until they splinter in our palms, and we know the smell of steel, yes, and it is an old friend. between the split lips and the bruised hips somewhere we are defined, distilled like whiskey and rougher yet and beneath the hunter's moon we smile.
lucidityyou were all dead ends and flypaper,so when she had her tenthnightmarethat week, and woke upsweat-drenched and howlinglike a dying creature, you cursed down thoughtsof thirty-day notices,and you packed upand you left the front door wide openand you started driving.a state and a halflater, the sun rose,and she was loose and soft in the backseatand you could rest easy, makingtiny movements of the steering wheelto compensate for that littlemagnet twitchbehind your ribs,anchoring you north.the first time you stopped for gas,you had this impractical fantasy ofditching the little blue Fordand walking—but you looked at herand you smiled,and there would be time enough for thatlater,anyway.state linesare such feeble constructs.one night she leaned close into your side,her hand tracing patterns across the ridgesof your shoulder blades,and she whispered,"let’s go home,"but she held the wheel still when you tried toturn it."home."north.when the oc
dead from the neck upto the thousands of souls who havedied beneath my skin, picked pink,and those i would not be able tosleep without, for they are the staticvoices in my seashell ears - i amsorry, but not sorry enough to stop.should i scrape my illness frombeneath my nails, there would be noone to wrap my feeble body in theflesh of freckled stars and barkwarnings so softly. this is all i have.there are people who haven't seenthe war here at home, the bloodlapping the shores of our pride.and their eyes don't shine like mine,but their hands leave bruises againstmy temples, peeling the skin from myback like poorly held wallpaper.hope has fled and left me with anempty nest. god trembles when iwake to see another day. no onehopes that sometime i'll be able tolaugh with my heart on my tongue,and they sure as hell don't wipe thesadness that drips down my chinand hallowed neck.for now, my ribs are shut tight likevenetian blinds, my mind is heldtogether with safety pins, and mystomach
.grievingmother,a full moon;fit to burstwith silvermilk,weeping
flyover state, flyover heartthere's almost nothingleft of august, or me -just fat, humid yawns thatcling to the asphalt andvinyl sidings of housesprettier than any autumn day.chlorined kids rise from thetanned wake of public pools,clothed in school uniforms,counting the new frecklesthey've earned like war badges.the nights i can lay in myunderwear beneath spider webblankets while my wheezy fanoscillates and whispers dustystories are numbered.but i'll hold the moonas it crests over summer'sdying vigil, my arms higharound it's wondrous girth.i'll ride the heat into theashes of three months spentdreaming in fevered euphoria.i'll lead the impassionedthousands down margins tuckedinto a waning, wailing cry.and i won't rest, even afteraugust is buried between bluelined composition pages in acoffin of lead - a memory with noscent becoming one without a heartbeat.
.i dug up thepast again, thosememories viciousand snarlingi set them looseinside the houseand now we haveto leave
interlopershow me god the way your motherknew him, show me the mark onyour body where he stoppedyou from suicide, where he changedyour winters to summers andback again.address me by my first name to showme that your respect for me hasn'tdied, letter by letter, buried betweenthe bow of your hips alongside ouronce-strong playground love.tell me the preacher was lying as hespoke of our comely desire falling tothe destructive hand of a deity no onehas ever seen, but feels as they speakin tongues that never matched the ones ispoke in to finally tell you thati felt for you.don't leave me in some drunken tantrumacross state lines, slurring words asyou try to tell me your love for someoneelse is vivid and living in you, even in theparts that have died away, breathing outalcohol as you use the word "never".curl into me with intimacy, touching the sadnessout of me, because i always wanted to bethe one you love, not the one you loved.
Hunger PainsIt begins with a bang.I forget to eat for a few months andI drown in cheap ideas with pretty names,the ones they fill books and barren wristsand stormy heads with, and soon,moonlight shines from insidemy ribs and I am a lighthouse.Thank you for the things you gave me,intrinsically, a knowledge ofhow to properly wearmyself. Thank youfor not fixing me.I used to write about the colorof your voice, always blue-- the skybefore I fell asleep and the morningdragging me back; I wonderthat you could’ve loved me betterif you explained who theSomething was that shared your bedat night, or why insincere wordswere your favorite.My poems still cling to my skineven when I sleep. even whenI wake, an anchor. even whenI boil myself alive and unfoldlike a pallid lily inside yourheavy hands;and after enough time,I forget to say goodbye.Today,I pick the scabs on my hips,kiss the sorry out of your smile,and breathe like this airisn’t already a million years old.
beauty is a state of mindforgiveness is thescent the violet leaveson the foot that stomped it;I am beautiful in remembrance:I am beautiful in a body two sizes too large, in eyes dilated with questions (eyesyou cannot name; gray like the ocean, blue like the heart, green like the fever dream I cannot wake from) I am the hair of a lion, a wild thing, ignition upon tempted glance. I am the skinyou cannot name, always fleeting; the chameleon you always see but never truly take in. and I know a boy carved of ivory silence, &
Mollusca1.Find whatever it is that is your treasure.Bury it alive.2.I wrestled the guardian angel for my birthstone,just a pearl like some full moon risen from a mollusk's growing pain.I counted the sheets of nacre like birthday candles,peeled away each one until I at last rememberedthat what I treasure is an infection.3.It was a gentle kind of wrestling,not Biblical, not even assertive,more like the way two sprite wolf cubs play,a light lunge, a jovial snarl,a fight over nothing in particular.The guardian angel renounced itselfas a guardian angel, saidI am a siren.I lie in the tunnels of nautilus shellsand sing until I collapse with the echoes.Then it hurts, like a shard of the wrong songembedded in my skin.4.It never healed the ache of adolescence,just buried it under a fall wound's nacre.Said one day, it'd show up in my smile.5.On the day of the dewinging:bury me alive.I want to see what I can agitate the earth into.
2013: The B-Sidesjanuary 1, 2013whalesongslet's talk about whales.there is a lot of poetry in a whale--its deep,looming calm.i like to thinkthat whales find peace in the depths,in the abyssal darkness that,to them,doesn't choke so much as itcradles.january 6, 2013dreaming of kerouaci want this to be delirious.i want to pull the words out from my spineslicksmooth like electrical wires--i want the vertigothe headrushthe clawing at the tileson the bathroom sink.becauseisn't this supposed to bemaddening--strung up and strungout,walking taut tightropesand hoping for some literarysalvation?january 7, 2013mexico songsound carries a long waythrough sleeping deserts.three miles off,truck-radio karaoke is tinged withcervezas and overexuberance.dogs bark,roosters protest,water trucks blare their sirens--ice cream vansfor the old and boring.our national language is yelling. locating callsare met with answering callsand somewhere a pack comes together,
following the colossussome days i forget my existence -lost and writhing and twisting my wrists in someepileptic search of the cosmos for lonely gods andtheir shadows hidden among the dying stars.with one finger one brushed my face and spoke to mein ancient languages of the tree lords and flying kingdomsbelow and told me of how he longed for the feeling offleeting time and of the stars that were birthed inside him.he sobbed and crouched and the earth moved and trembledwith swift movements in unheard-of dimensions and directionsand he whispered of winds and sandstorms filling his lungs,"i am disintegrating, i am disintegrating, i am disintegrating."and he told me the secrets of the galaxies and of the warsand peacetime shrouded in fallacy and lost loves whowithered away in his hands, blew away from thought, eyes,and fingers.yet in his tears he smiled and screamed and screeched thebooks of centuries and millennia, gnashing his teeth inrhythm with his heartbeat and sang death songs until hed
zeroi sworei would never number the poemsi wrote about myself because thatwould be like ticking off the daysuntil my breakdown;i was a moth, unapologetically throwing myselfat any gleam of hope; wasting my wingson industrial promisescolors always felt much moreappropriate for the purple boilingbeneath my heart and the pallidpurposelessness of my head,but i was born into a colorless world--no one sees me behind the metallic scarsof my skin and iron grating of my voice againstthe grain; no one sees me as more thangray regret or monochrome mistakes,no one sees me butall i ever wanted was for afallen god with feathered heelsto believe in me: to pray uponthe monuments i built forbroken dreams and to baptize mein his tainted tears,i just want him to be real. morethan anything, i want to be real, i wantto be more than an imaginary friendto various mental limitations; i wantto trade my liquid skin [evaporating]for a chance to bei am a moth and you are the lighthousei
On Love UnconditionalSow your wild oatsand roam;I'll leave the light on.
.I don't need ghosts, I'm already haunted enough by the living.
forgetting how to sleeptake two.a week past the end of the world,and there’s something therapeuticabout not caring. I must’vereally messed up in another life. Iwake up shaking and forget to sleepshaking and hold your hand, shaking,remembering the moment I becamepoison. I feel crazier than ever; cementhead’sgood and gone with his plastic wristsand missing soul. the boy who entertainshis unfriendliest nightmares couldn’tmuster up enough innocenceto make it right. (today, he writesa letter; dear Sophia, he tells meit doesn’t get better. I’mlocked up for a crime Ididn’t commit. you did it,Sophia. you built mewrong.) but you know me,I fell in love with a problem Icouldn’t fix, a boy blindedwho’s never seen the light.He was a stormy violet but Iam cyan graying with age--I spent most of my life dying,and the rest of it wishing Iwas someone else. they tell usonly god will see your ugly;and the girl who swallowedrazorblades can&
I am the wayward childI wish I had something more to offerwhen your joints ached and your bones creakedand you wept dust; (the cobwebs aroundyour tongue were a comfort once)but I am three times screwedover backwards and turned right around,breathing in gravel and praying onthe only consistencies I know likeon Sun-day we are in the house of Godand it won’t rain and dad won’t speakand mom will sit with pursed lips countingall the times we didn’t kiss her goodbyeand everyone will call it normal,everyone will look at the way I write wordson cracked pavement and get glassy-eyedwhen they speak softly and forget the soundof my own voice when I’m afraid; all those times Itripped over my own feet and walked awaywith wounded knees, and they will call me normal.I’m at it again, building barricadesfrom ashes and calling them friends(this here is fear, he visits me nightly;and that stale stain in the corneris actually anxiety, recuperatingfrom the moment it caught a
denial and uglier aftermathi drink to you, raising my glass andchoking down the things you left,ignoring my gag reflex and waitingon the buzzing in my head, white cottonlullabies for the weak of heart.it kills me that we are just acollection of vignettes, that sooni might see your blossom fingersand bleeding sunset smile butonly as a memory gone static with neglect;this summer, i became a rebel. amartyr in a child’s game, a vagrantwith boxes of dead poetry to calla home, and when i asked you to want me,it’s only so you’d take the sanity and consciousnesswith you when you left. i missthe days when personality disorderswere not graceful.do you even remember taking me to the moon?you were so fucking tripped out on acidand weed and love and other drugsthat you thought we were a portrait.midnight blues and sober graysbreaking even for a story,but every planet we landed onwas already dead.and trust me, i know you wish life wasa one night stand, because youcan’t keep
A Grave Digger's KissesI fell in love with a gravedigger. His hands were rough and calloused; no matter how many times he cleaned them, grains of soil remained rattling in his palm. It should have been a warning – dirt nestled in his love-line, but something about the way he held me, how he always seemed surprised that I was warm, that I was alive, was endearing. He once said that in winter, when his fingers were like ice, he couldn’t feel the difference between the coffin and the bed. But he refused gloves, scoffed at them; said feeling the earth part under his feet was the only way he knew up from down.And his eyes were like shovels, constantly burrowing through me, dragging up fossils, the skeletons dancing in my closet. He lived with the dead, only understood the chattering of skulls, would unearth forgotten secrets, examine them as if he were a mortician, a pathologist. Then those eyes would silently begin again, reburying them in perfectly square holes, in perfectly straight lines. H
.it's the kind of winter nightwhere the cold stays in my bones, no matter how highi crank the heat
empty, fullthere are stars at the bottomof this bottle.in your head,there are other bodies--breathing.