4 Traits of a Damn Good Boyi. drivebuddy, you were a throwback. you had a lot of wolf in you,a feral soul.i hope heaven has eased the stiffness in your jointsand brushed the gray from your furand left you sleek and gorgeous,a solid pack of muscle with the kind of determinationthat can never be taught.i hope there are lizards for you to chase,doves for you to launch yourself afterand catch out of the air with a finesse that would make professionals weep.buddy, i hope someone's up there throwing a stick for you every now and then.i hope you give 'em hell when they want it back.ii. couragebuddy, it seemed like the world was a very scary place for you. i'm not sure why,and maybe i laughed at you a little--at the neurotic puppy inhabiting the commanding formof a hunter--and sometimes i got angry at youand your insistence that the world was out to get youand i'm sorry for that.it took me years to realize that something must have happenedto plant a deep and unshakeable fearin
waking upand imagine my surprisewhen my insides bloomedinto so many dandelions,and in a single breathi becamehollow.
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.
with thanks to salingerAudio version.it's on those cold morningswhen you are nothing but indrawn breathswirling and knitted up inside too-bigskin and weightless bones--when the horizon arches up againstthe half-thawed tendrils of sunriseand smileswith golden teeth,and smiling, begs--it's on those cold morningswhen leaving is easiest.the car will be cold, and you willshiver, and the engine,much too loud,will smack of blasphemybut you will find peace in the steady rollof tarmac and the yellowing lightspilling across it,with dust motes kicked up and carriedlike fish in the undertow.when you come to that firstcrossroads, it will shock you:the way the decision hangs theretrembling and desperate--but there are no right answers and you will nothesitate. and each successive choicewill be made of its own accord,and you will roll the windows down,and draw down the scent of ear
to my good boylife is too short for regrets, mostly,but just long enough to wish for one more day,one more labrador lean--ninety warm sleek poundspressed against my jeans and one paw, trusting, picked up. one more ruffleup through the long, thick shoulder fluffagainst the grain--one more i'm sorryand the goodbyei didn't get.
sun worshipand we, the broken-winged disciplesthrum closer, closer--seeking warmth on our dust-drenched backs,and reflections,and a landmark in the wide and opendark.we breathe,together(closer)--moths among the fireflies.
all that hasn't happenedPretty please listen to the audio. i want to rememberthe rumbling piano baritoneshigh notes like hailstones--your handsrunning soundless scales.i want the summer seasnovember tidesthe vineyard overlook, the olivetrees and sunwarmed coasts.rememberwe filled the empty pageswith whole notes and halftones,oceans and lovesongs.we lived, we liveinkstained and drowningthrough nights thick with wordsand days shot with sound.
inhale, inhalethe birds are singing in the deep haze of dawnand your bones are loose inside your skin.you learn gratitude from the trees.
cervinejealousy--let me shed my skeleton with the seasons,and each time grow a fresh backbonefor the weight of these relentless days.
The Poet's FollyI tried to write you in seven lineswith thirty six words,but I realized that wordsare largely inadequateand that poets are fools.I feel I am somehow lessfor thinking I could.
papertaleshow many nights have you devoured by halflight,a trickling of wordssupped like good linguinisnaking up below your blankets and ringing in your belly, your head is in a book, a book is in your headflickering inside you,stories and fable-yarns, sage sorrel vase-lipped facescast in the ivorybetween veins,and i can see it in your eyes,inhaling after that long time somewhere else, it's been raining for days and only now do you noticehow everything is tastingof silt and crustaceans
relapsethis, I think,is the way that empiresfall.there are sometimescatastrophesVesuvius, Alexandriabut I will not go outin such an explosive fashionthis time.my second deathis preceded by decline,slow and inglorious;erosion working itsweary charmupon my architecture.the difference is this:disaster is unprecedented.it is a noble sort of way to fall,at the hands of that whichyou could not control.but I am allowing myselfto crumble to dust.the forces of entropyhave not strengthened:I have simply stopped cobbling myselfback together.someday, archaeologistswill discover my ruinsand sigh.
A Pile of Exiled LeavesLook:under their father's roots,oven-baked by progressthey stare at the stars,ponder over their photosyn thesis'and wonder where they'll land next.Dry veins bringingdrought to the cuticle,the rivers sprawlinglike cobwebbed fingersscratching cellulose intoeczema of the upper epidermis,dirt-ink sketches bleeding softlyto the frayed edge ofmesophyllic parchment,where Death took his scissorsand cut oblong heartsfrom Life and intothe frigid air.Dead gold,curled up in amber wrinkles,a million Queens of Spadeswho played dead for too long.
by now the bathroom tiles are stainedand i'm sitting hereslathered in water droplets anda bright light about tomeet my skull.the concreteground breaking intofourteen hundred hundred pieces.the rain isn't rain anymore becauseit’s stopping two inchesbefore ithits the groundand my ankles are dry butthe rest of me isn't because my momalways told me never to getmy feet wet so i don’t catcha cold.and i'm only fourteenepisodes in and myshoulders are too bony andmy fingers never touchthe broken bones scattered across thebathroom tiles. i let abroken machine controlmy life and every single goddamnday it disappoints me. numberscan’t be low enough butthey only go lower andlower. i’ve beensearching and waiting for the right wordsto be written on the pagebut all that comes out is scribbles.my life a lie and i’m the one telling it.
the tattoo artist.she finds gems hidden underneath my skin andrips them out with her teeth, the soresalong my arms swelling with pride and red; neverhas she wondered if the pain would make megrit my teeth into powder—no, she knowsi take it like a man takes steak:raw and tough and bloody, like my fingersafter picking scabs to let some fresh air in; herwords are etched on the point of a needle, and sheis a tattoo artist drilling ink into my body, her linesthick with moxie: "alive" splayed out acrossmy wrist, "awake" above my heart—she paintsa vision on my eyelids of an endless sky andtells me it doesn't belong to me, but that ican have it; perhaps foolishly,i believe her every word
You found loveSly shoulders withtiny bruises notmeant for lovers eyes,Teeth and wicked collarbones:You argued in the stairwell,Fingers flirting withthat pretty dress of greenas you felt yourself asphyxiate.Her lips, the antidoteto your wildest dreams.
confessions of a misguided poetcertain things in my mindwould be better left unsaid,such as:i. how I stared at a bottle of pillsfor an hour as if they would slide downmy throat on their own.ii. when I stepped out of the showerwith bloody knees and didn't botherto put a band aid over them. iii. why I can't keep a smile longenough for someone to takemy picture.iv. who I wanted to be when I wasa little girl and who I amright here and now. v. where I tried to jump off abridge and landed in waterdeep enough for me to swim in.vi. what I wanted to scream atyou that day but I just stayedsilent and hoped you would forget.no more pretty words andludicrous metaphorstoday; just life,the truth, and everythingthat I never want to tellanyone else.
for lack of a simile --every saturday,i scribble away at wordsthat have prettyyellowcolours, but mean nothing.because if i told you what was true about the both of us, it would be:we had something special,but now it's gone.that's all.because i don't have any clever similes aboutmagic and love and how fire falls into ash.there's just me, and the page, and the storiesi tell you about how we are fire, we are the oceanand we are the shore.
how it goesthis is how it goes; you meet a boy and you think he's cute and you hope that maybe someday you will kiss the nape of his neck. the ache grows inside of you like a tumour, you feel it pulsing every single day and there is a piece inside of you that hopes he likes you back.then you start to doubt it, you start to think you're ugly and your chubby and your clothes aren't pretty, but then you realize if you want him to like you, you have to like you as well. so you start to like yourself more, you're happier and you think he likes you back, which makes everything so much better.one day he walks you to the bus and you wonder how time managed to put you here, and you see his lips moving but all you hear is the sound of your heart hammering. you agree to go on a date with him, and you try hard not to maul him when you hug him goodbye. you sit on the bus smiling and miss your stop, but it's alright, because it's a breathtaking day.things are beautiful for a long time, trees look like they
burning clouds for the sake of silver liningscontrary to popular belief,i would've been fuckingamazing for you -licked the cold outof your tiredears, caressed your weight-riddenshoulders and knees,been the perfect answer toyour illiterate idea ofzodiac signs.but you cowered behind areflection, a "too" instead of"more";trust me, baby, i've heardtoo many liesbefore,to know for quite sure, howguilty you feltwhen the fire in your heartwasn't passion.you're trying all thewrong ways; keeping methe way you shouldn't,and it might just make mebetter at filtering.but that'sthe only silverwhitelilaclining;you'reonlymaking me wiser.
i don't know if you remember, but i doi don't know if you remember, but i do.i remember the way i felt when i went to go meet you for the first time - how i was the non chalant type of nervous but i went out with you any way, and you bought me ice cream and picked me a flower, and kissed me under the stars on the hood of my car infront of the most beautiful view of the city with the blanket that my grandmother knit me for graduation wrapped around our shoulders. i remember the way you shook hands with all of my friends and smiled and said hello. i remember the way you drove eighty miles over the speed limit all while holding my hand and asking me about my family. i remember how we saw that couple fooling around in their car and we laughed and pulled over and did the same. i remember the coy look i gave you when i pulled away from your lips to make fun at you for unhooking my bra. i remember the way i invited you to stay the night when my sister was out of town and we curled up in her queen size bed and started to watch a
if you want to stop hurting:i. i have swallowed down this 3am lovelike the ibuprofen i fed myself for myswollen ankle that time in spainwhen i pushed a little too hard andlet go for a little too long.i have swallowed you down so manytimes before, kept you like little embersin the crevices of my chest, burningholes through tissue and bone andeverything that i am - through everythingthat i swore i wasn't.ii. a few months ago,i learnt that it's easier to breathewith your throat open, to take itdown and let go gracefully,like opening your palms againstthe wind outside the car and inhalingthrough your nose.iii. if you want to stop hurting:listen to them speak but do not hear their words, hear only their voice,feel it reverberate against your spine and tell yourself -this isn't a bad thing.rebuild your body like jenga blocks. if somebody comes close,hold their hand and tell them -i trust you.let the air rush between your fingers,let the fire in your arteries sizzle aw
for hummingbird lullabies--he is not the kind of boy who chases golden afternoons or dreams of things like bright red ribbons and spiderweb silence and love. he doesn't like metaphors because they never say what they mean and he doesn't like himself because he doesn't know who that is.sometimes he draws pictures in the sky with clouds and feels like maybe they mean something. but mostly he forgets to look up.he likes things in neat, orderly rows. words that come in short sentences with two syllables and clear meanings, but really he doesn't like words at all. on his way home, he passes two shiny pennies, but he's not looking down so he doesn't think to pick them up.'look,' his mother said one night, pointing at the sky, 'that's the big dipper, and there! that's orion's belt, and that's andromeda!'but as hard as he tried, all he could see were stars, and so he stopped looking.he doesn't believe in the magic of finding a quarter in the bottom of his pocket and spending it on gleeful gumballs in celebration; i
let go, little bird--hope is the tired little bird at the bottom of your heart, the one whose tiny wings are broken and bleeding, the one that won't stop flapping uselessly at the sky, like it's going to take off, take off dammit, even when it's fading by the second and dying in a heap of feathers, and it breaks your heart to see the optimistic flame still sparkling in such innocent eyes.i'm writing this to tell you that i don't know what i need. i'm writing this because i can't pull any fancy metaphors from the back of my throat to save my pride this time. i'm writing this to see the look on your face when you wake up and wonder why i keep running away.hope is the thing with feathers, my broken baby bird. hope is the trust in those newborn eyes that makes you burst out sobbing although you never know why. it's the razor-sharp edge between happiness and pain, the line you try to fly on crippled wings, my little bird, just to save someone stronger from having to walk it for themselves.i'm writing
there is a song for thisthere is a poem on the skin of scratched graffiti.it is called "a collection of tuesdays" or"what are you willing to remember?"and i don't know if i could ever forgetthe area of her hips orthe way she always spellsthe word tomorrow wrong andi wonder if it's on purpose.there is a name for this.it is called "bicycles on the sidewalkwithout wheels" or"the song of collapsing telephones".who would you even call, andis there anything anyone fears more thana diseased bird?there is a will for this.it is called"boy digging through garbage atthree in the morning" or"metal stop sign rusting behindthe faceless naysayers oftorn chain-link fences".i see it gathering the nightand its edges say alone,because who but the alonewould stop to watch theerrors in manufacturing,the empty cathedrals beneath cities?there is a song for thisbut i don't remember what it wasgoing to be called,and the stoplights are bleeding.
you lied the night you kissed me.there is a thick exhaustion in the pit of my stomach, spreading to my shoulderstill they hang and to my knees until they buckle. and I will sleep for days on end,and when I wake up I didn't really.I hate you dear, I hate you so.because there is so much to do, I could travel to the other side of the country andpaint a portrait of a stranger and I could sit on top of someone's roof and look at thestars with a boy I don't want to know and I could fall asleep in his bed and listen tohim playing guitar without clothes and he'd take me out for diner and anywhere I'dwant to go and we'd have sex in his car and on the trampoline in my back yard andwe'd eat at my grandparents with Christmas and it would never be enough becausehe's everything you weren't.I think I lost myself, I think I fell out that time you ran away holding onto me and myskin tore. I looked for her in that empty hole in your chest cavity, but all I found waslost so long ago, and you wouldn't show me where it went b
boys who own birds/zero.she has always secretly been in love with the man on the moon. she's determined to see him one day. she makes 11.11 wishes, but she makes 11.12 and 11.13 wishes, too. she never wishes upon stars, though. she says their far too unpredictable and that she wants to see her wishes all day long.she always tells the walls what she wished for, though. /twoshe breaks mirrors and paintings in her spare time. she believes that if she falls asleep thinking about emeralds and oak trees she'll wake up with pretty eyes. they'll be the colour of walls covered in clibming ivy and they'll be the colour of grass left uncut for too long.but she's always had insomnia. /fourshe wants to start a conversation with a man wearing a black suit on the train to the city in the morning. she'll stare past his dark glasses and ask him questions like 'do you ever feel as though you're becoming redundant?' she'll explain to him that she's just on the
the breakers will always call us homedon't mind my voicein the twilight.i am without shoes,solitudebeneath my wings.i was the well that fed the lake--i [saw] your fingers touching the water.where did you sleep last night?things change,