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I wish you lifeYou, my Love, owe me nothing.
You are free, to stay or leave,
as you wish.
Dreams and memories descend unforeseen
but fantasy speaks of hope and happiness,
and that is worth the listen.
Shed tears, for sorrow can be good for the soul
but whisper no words of death.
And a heart, even when broken, still holds life and there is joy in that.
Silence is transient.
Embrace no guilt or obligation.
Be kind and forgiving to others, and also to yourself.
I wish for you, not sleep, but peace
(for in sleeping there is waking)
and understand that
I wish you light (to see)
I wish you love (given generously)
I wish you life (lived free)
You and I conjugate with instinctual easeYou and I conjugate with instinctual ease
so abundant that grammar grew green
as sin at our grasp of verbs, for we
are present tense doing and breaking rules as we please
so that fixed form at ‘speare point shakes
and melts liquid into more form-less and less
tradition and a, b, a, b, c, d, c, d, make
greater sense and the most beautiful mess.
Circumventing stutter-in-struct-ure, slip
slick quick electric free in defence of verse
‘til meaning and love run
on and out and meet halfway, crossing
every line together
so there is none… (none for there is no need)
just you and I, in a single breath -- we.
what I love most is her undressingI am weary of those tired phrases;
those too large T’s and tattered jeans worn-out too frequently and too freely for we all own a few,
close at hand, versatile and abused for it.
I find myself charmed by elegant verses;
a lavish flow of sleek, silk sophistication and understated accents,
class and perfection, for occasion.
I am wary of arousing images;
that sheer black lace racing down cleavage and spine, up inner thigh gartered high, bits of material
(for clothing is generous in its naming as lingerie is to revealing) seducing my sound judgment.
I am fond of those earnest words;
those woolly jerseys (or sweaters if you will) worn with nothing beneath, no airs just simple, soft, honest whispering,
beside a book, beneath a blanket, to tiny paw-prints of pattering rain.
But more than each outfit or phrase what I truly enjoy,
what I love most, more than any combination of clothing or wearing of words, is her
When undressed I can most appreciate, (take time to relish and
I look at him and snort derisivelyI look at him, that
hopelessly idealistic romantic, and snort derisively
at his doting over Love,
his love… a love… any love, if only he had
He can't know what love is, never having had
any serious applicant and avoiding
the topic and chance at experience
for embarrassment--the notion of faithfulness. For whom?
For himself, that it might be more precious, for her, he thinks,
because he is naïve, frustratingly so.
He isn't even sure, but hopes in quiet confidence.
I can't help
but sneer, as I interrogate,
his pathetically sincere excuses and explanations,
pressing against rose-tinted glass to shatter
his blinding vision.
on him, that hopelessly idealistic romantic, with disdain
because I am one too.
How are you really?"How are you?" she asks.
"Well, thank you,"
I reply a shrug.
(No screaming highs,
no crushing lows,
and no flat-line of course.
I smile politely.
"How are you really?" She looks fixed,
because I really am,
well, that is…
no anguished despair
nor joyous celebration
behind an expressive mask (or lack of).
Steady, constant content,
(not drifting, nor rooted, stuck,
just am) and hope she is content that I am,
Too much emotion and effort,
(though truly do I appreciate the love and concern)
and choose the awkward silence instead,
continue the conversation with
a change of topic,
"How are you really?" and silly smile,
and hope she laughs because humour
does us all some good.
And Now It Is YoursBreaking waves elapse against the shore
in a sea of late evening conversation.
Even amidst company there is distance between here
and now I look across the horizon and upwards to the light.
Pulsing orange, or copper perhaps
it is simply a plane, old and dotty
in the darkness?
So, I turn a shoulder back
to the conversation to find that when I return,
before I can ask, the flickering ember
(of a maybe star) has since faded and disappeared into
I will never know it, or if it was,
but if I will, it was, is, and will be,
mine at least.
And now… it is yours.
Words will ceaseOn days when words falter,
When there is no too much “I love you”
and kisses are wishes of constant us
thus never ‘part lips-words falter.
Eyes close; see invisible no-you-I
for closeness is more than intertwine
and heartbeat rest
be still and know we.
They say one day words will cease.
Still, we will know love
even this is beautifulMuted tones of chirpy songs and quiet replies,
punctuated by toilet breaks and
grunts of playful frigid hands;
return to kisses of bad breath and bitten lip.
And beautiful beginnings smile in the stillness after rain
gentle morning hues of bedroom warmth
to laughter and mischievous eyes close and kisses… kisses... kisses
that wish for always and forever and not end.
But loving tears were (nearly unseen) caught
and held between the soft breast of here and now–
tomorrow, “even this is beautiful” she said,
and Goodbye has never stopped heartbreak.
the trouble isi'd like life to be
quiet and lovely
like distant church-bells
chiming through snow,
muted by the smell of
an old book and the
feel of a fire warming
me into my chair, and
a mug of tea, steeping
the moment in hushed
gratitude, easily in reach.
Apologies to LaoEach day is its own microstep--
since I woke from my mother's womb,
I longed to mimic new words, trammel
the sound until it blossomed
like a newborn, and oh how I birthed
stories--told them how I wanted
the author's sacrosanct title
once I've grown. But growing meant
learning the practice of citizens
and their due contribution: beast-slaying
nature of please, thank you,
an apology: sincere
or not. Then there is time--the first
breath of nine, exhalation
of five, the suffocating mandate
of overtime. You grow used to it:
the cyclical disappearance of parents,
pervasive need of sleep, a home-
cooked meal's gradual transmogrification
to a microwave's impatient beeps,
the drive-thru's static, monotoned voice
by a man who has already learned
what I am learning: to cherish
the alarm's morning hymn over my mother's--
now I'm rarely late for work--can navigate
those can-lined aisles, the cold-grey
of the warehouse with deep strides
until I lose track of every step within
my eight hours--my mind
"are you sleepy today?"
"but you were sleepy yesterday."
she stirs her pomegranate green-tea until it turns from clear to purple
setting it on her bedside table and climbing back into bed again.
her fingers follow the bluer-than-usual constellation veins on her wrists and down
to the freckle on her forearm and then the scar on the inside of her elbow
crossing the tendon as if it were crux.
and then she remembered that God hasn't been with her lately.
today is long and sunny but when she steps outside the humidity creaks her bones
and her skin starts to inflame.
she assumes that if getting the mail is a struggle, having a child would be too.
often times when she sets her tea down she remembers that her Bible is in the drawer beneath
along with the crucifix necklace that her mother made her.
her husband comes home late nowadays and she never questions why that may be
because she knows.
she would do the same too if she had a wife who took four different
shhhwe are lurking too close to jesus,
on the empty edge of a lightless stage,
curved nails digging into the skin of our pale palms.
he asks as an afterthought
do you believe in something holy? and i think yes,
i think this is what i believe in.
crystallophonethere is a punchcard sin
like a queen of spades smoldering in an alley.
you hear how the gears churn,
singing faster than we did before
back when black magic dropped like a
pair of socks from the sky with supplies
taped to a note that said
(oh, look at you now)
such a beautiful brain:
runs on gasoline?
have a gallon
or we can call it a balloon,
and a new pair of glasses
for your tapered eyes
(you peel the bark back on the logs,
but you're not sure what you see),
and life says,
either nail jello to a tree,
or keep your
icicles hanging from the eaves,
caterpillars frolicking in the ashes,
your 'Sam, I still don't have your number,'
and your totaled passion:
someone to hang inside out with,
string you up like a steak with.
what the hunger
is trying to tell me
my brain churns like butter,
my insides aflare, my chakras combusting,
Liquid Cityhere, at the bottom - lovers.
there are lovers disassembling
themselveslost in and to the
desperate ryhtmn in
of - waves.
- did you think the continents
moved themselves? see them slip,
in an open sleep. less go, come.
come and, and - again. trembling
here, at the bottom - their eyes
are lightless. hollow bodies left
the sea does not sleep.
The Best is Yet to Comeif we grow old
there will be a sigh
an attention to the change
as your muscles slacken underneath
your faded, favorite shirt
the one that's threadbare, "holy"
in a sense less than divine
I'll have washed it for
the thousandth time
our eyes will crinkle, wrinkle
in ways that start to match
and we'll hold hands and ask:
when did the nerves and veins
begin to let our hands get cold?
-if we grow old
6.12There are days when I recall the litany of your kisses over my shoulders and I wonder, numbly disconsolate, how I ever maintained my disbelief in god, when your movements over me were so profoundly biblical, when my name filtering between the fog of our joined breaths was so much like a prayer - when I would think, for those minutes or hours or days we spent locked in the grip of fever, unaware of the movement of those heavenly bodies outside the reach of our bed, that there was hope for me after all. That I could be saved.
I remember so clearly the feeling of loving you and I wonder at what point, when it was, the exact moment, when that love became terror, when the realization dawned that I was wrong, all along, that, with or without each other, or our sighs that scraped like sandpaper while our bodies bruised at hips and ribs and our lips bled from the force of our desperate kissing - with or without the iliad of our romance, we were doomed.
I have always poisoned beautiful things.
Survival of the IllestAre those hints of lemon I detect?
Look, I'm just here to get wasted, don't try
to make it more than that.
I'd drink motor oil if I thought
it could get me high; chase it with a shot
you can keep your survival instincts,
in that pretty velvet box (along with all
those other things
you thought you could convince yourself
you lived for). Instincts are the bare
bones of the impossibilities we wanted
to believe in,
those times you tried to tell me that
adrenaline was God's way
we were His chosen ones, we were
special, we were free.
I tried to tell you that instincts and God
can't exist side by side, but I was already
far gone, cornea constellations
spiraling and you looked at me with such pitiful
I just gave up the fight.
I told you once that my goal in life
is to kill myself slowly, immerse my organs
of whiskey and scotch
over a fifty-years-or-so period. "Just think,"
"it will be like an ocean, w
A Bloody, Stupid Miracle The day we’d cured the human condition was the day I put a bullet through my head and didn’t die. It was also the day I realized how scared I actually was of death, and after hours of muscle ache from holding that gauze against my open skull, after the wound closed and everything went back to normal, I had myself a good old-fashioned brainstorm. How ironic.
But when summer came, everything had fallen to shit. The air scorched my skin and parched my tongue every time I took a breath. The sun glared down on a rapidly-collapsing world, full of the undying bastard children of cruelty and misfortune. What was one to do when their cells regenerated faster than they decomposed?
My feet hit the pavement, now littered with jagged bits of glass to snap at my toes, thoroughly baked by the blazing ball of bitter disdain high overhead. Today was worse than yesterday. Though I’d often wondered the purpose of it anymore, I
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