Nothing Lives Foreveri.
When you were a child, we would sit on the porch to talk about your day. And sometimes, we would find a dead bird, or a frog on there. And you would ask me about death and why it happens, looking at the poor creature in my hands, its life cut short and touch it tenderly. I would always say the same thing.
Nothing is meant to live forever, my dear.
The school called me in on your twelfth birthday and asked if I had known how clever you were, that your test scores were the best in the state. They asked me if I knew I had a genius child on my hands who grew bored easily in class and tended to distract others in his classroom, sometimes causing arguments, fistfights and could manipulate his classmates into doing anything.
We don't think this is the school for him. He needs to be challenged appropriately.
You fell in love at seventeen and she was lovely. Kind, caring and beautiful, I couldn't ask for a better girl for you. She was our neighbour
A LITTLE ABOUT THE MAGAZINE
Autumn was my first love.October, I follow you -
from the magic lights of New York
to moonshines in Georgia,
until the colors dissolve.
The anxious poetry of autumn
made a memory of me.
Here’s to things I take for granted:
country road thunderstorms.
Unspoken words, unwritten ideas.
October, I follow you;
I thought I saw you on the shore
where the river runs through gold
on the last boat leaving the city of a hundred spires -
or perhaps Pittsburgh
(it was the lights I guess).
Here’s to the things we leave behind:
sunbeams in November,
letters addressed to no one,
poems, wounds, dead birds.
I’ve got that summertime sadness.
Maybe you’re gonna come back;
we’re changing our ways, taking different roads
and loneliness knows me by name
but October, I follow you;
without you I’m a winter heart,
a love story you don’t want,
a November shade of grey hunting ghosts
in cities that sleep inside our heads.
You told me you lied the night you kiss
His queen, my muse.Pomegranate seeds
have the most
bitter of tastes.
She is more
than a myth,
There are more
flames beneath her
skin than in all of
Hades. With every
breath she takes,
winter cries out
She is magenta.
A maiden of
jasper and agate;
lily eyelashes and
locks of supple ivy.
a hyacinth among
weeds and sweet
she can't keep secrets, i can't keep friendsthe first time I see her in months,
she still hugs me like i’m the only thing
keeping her world up.
i remember a time when this was true.
we do not talk about anything we used to—
those things have become taboo,
almost while our heads were turned away.
subjects are now landmines, with us tiptoeing around them,
me in my beat up converse and her in her sky-high stilettos.
we do not talk about how she did not say goodbye.
we do not talk about her old-new-old-old-gone boyfriend.
we don’t mention any new holes in my heart
or any new episodes of a now cancelled television show.
we do not talk about the new kid who looks like her
and we don’t talk about the school of new kids she looks at every morning.
i do not tell her that i have written seventeen poems about her
because she does not understand my way of letting go.
i do not tell her that it is close to October
and i have stopped marking off days on my calendar
and today i haven’t eaten any food
but i doubt sh
things I learned at 11 am while I was half-asleepi
I’m spending most of my time
not crying, and I’m sorry,
but I don’t think I’ll ever love anyone
as much as aspirin, or lullabies,
or the cheap wine sold for two dollars a bottle,
or overly-apologetic letters bending over backwards
to make a point of themselves, or the pink petals
blooming on my wrists like flesh and blood miracles,
or the songs named after women
things may not change,
but you will have to.
I am most alone
surrounded by people
and the buzzing in my head of words
that should have lost their meaning
back when I discovered
they never meant anything
Dedications are only relevant
to people who appreciate shitty poetry,
or you. Insanity is writing the same thing
over and over and expecting it not
to sound clichéd.
and as much as anyone will swear otherwise,
I am a statistic. A number, an example,
a case study in the manipulation of
narcissism and moving on
slowly, and then all at onceand for once, he slips on his wedding ring, to cure the monotony. it slides over his knuckle, a perfect fit, and in the morning release of sunlight the silver gleams at him. it glares, calling him a liar: she is not a whorehouse and you are too broke to own her, you harlot, you. he buttons up, tucks in his shirt tail, and buckles his belt. the clinking of metal parts is the only sound in the room besides the dusting of her breathing beside him. and when he's gone, the only thing he leaves behind are the bruises on her collarbone.
you find him because you're lonely, (well, it's actually the opposite.) he finds you because his wardrobe is black and his shoes are scuffed and he asks you where your castle is. you're the only princess he sees 'round here. the rain soaks into his shirt and he curses it, grinning. and damn girl, you follow him, because you think you see some kinda warmth in his ice blue eyes.
it takes you days t
removedi feel separate
to time and place
from others -
i am not lost
i always know where i am, i am
painfully aware of that
fidelic whore-- this is appropriation
my sweet synchronicity ,
i have downed your appetite
in a bed of front teeth
(it is morning in perth
midnight in dublin, and the noon
sun has been lost behind
a dress of mothy curtains)
do i taste of
of love making;
do i reek of
the weeds that
the posture of your spine?
you bend over
my lap a curve of guilt
and weep all night.
i collect each knob of your body
like a gift. press it to my mouth.
.all we are is cheap
goldfish drowning in
the ocean, birds that forget how to
flap their wings, mid-flight
I filled the sea with dirtselfish & humble
waiting for sin
as the best years of my life
crawl into the sea
[the wings left no room for ribs]
Art TherapyI'll fill the hole you left
with vibrant colour
familiar ochre, painting
the words I failed to write,
because those words now
have another task,
a grander task,
to fill the gaps on this
white blank page.
This hole you left is cold,
dull, lifeless, silent,
so I'll brighten it, cover it,
shout into it, play the notes
you taught me to liven it,
sneak into it in the dead of night,
with a stencil and a spray can
to leave a permanent mark
this permanent art
on every moment we're apart.
CompressWhen I was young, my mother
taught me how to draw the curves
of a profile.
Strange to think, of course, that
the side of a head is easier to face
when I, as a child, rarely saw more
than the pointed chin of an adult
looking down their nose. How I
wished, so innocently, for her approval;
to know that she would love
the fruit of my juvenile efforts
so that I would always feel
her arms wrapped around the
angles of those brittle tooth-pick
boxes I kept for shoulders.
My father, she drew him once –
the silver gel-ink sketch still sticks to the
fridge door. Perhaps she feared
that I would forget him.
Maybe I would have.
Maybe I have.
And sometimes I think that nothing
has changed, that I’m still a child
with a hole for a memory, because
I’m still facing life side on, and
vying for my mother’s approval so
that she’ll never leave.
The Koi PondHer father had had koi fish for as long as she could remember.
Ever since she was a little girl, she had been hunched by the small pond in the garden with her father, looking at the beautiful fish and feeding them with bits of fish food.
He used to tell her that the koi fish could grant wishes if you wished hard enough.
She was a grown woman now, staring at the small pond with memories flashing before her eyes. She remembered how her father had been sitting on his knees, carefully picking fallen leaves from the water so they wouldn't clutter the small pond. The loving care he had put into arranging the white chalked stones around it and planting Forget-me-nots between them.
Her mother's favourite flowers.
It saddened her to see how the white paint was flaking from the stones, and how weed had crept in between the cracks to strangle the delicate flowers. As she watched, a crimson leaf tore free from the half naked branch of the old tree close to the pond, floating gently through the
dragonfly wingsi. There is an entire generation of humans who grew up learning how to be murderers,
learning how to wound creatures for an audience and a laugh, and oh
how they love to laugh, pigtailed executioners
and torturers of all that frail life
that could be contained in a quiet garden.
ii. They take spiders by their bellies and put them one each on two ends of a stick,
and they poke and prod and push until one decides to eat the other,
for there must be a duel, there must be a death, or there is no fun,
and the children will race off to find new things to hurt.
They take dragonflies by the wings and stick their jewel tails into electric sockets,
playing god in their pajamas, leaving peanut butter fingerprints
on the little pockets of heaven they find and fight over,
keeping the pretty pieces for their scrapbooks, like you could trap life
beneath scotch tape and label it between lines red-blue-red.
iii. Well maybe they know better, if you want to believe there's a muted brilliance
I am a Poeti am a poet
i can not speak
(not with my mouth)
the ink on that page:
shouts the passion of my soul &
cries with vengeance
i am a poet
strings together my thoughts,
and knits a golden fleece
to revive my tired bones
i am a poet
the world is not a happy place
my writing unveils that,
strips it bare
and leaves it hanging
off of four lined stanzas
I am a poet
and I will be heard