I write - and so do you. We'll get along just fine then, my friend.
to henry, love elana:
i miss you because i know the most action you’re getting these days is slipping an extra big tip into the delivery girl(who forgot the napkins again)’s hands, and i know her hands feel nothing like mine. so i’m sorry because we always had eggplant pizza together which everyone else thought was strange, because i miss you, because sometimes – i hint at you to our delivery girl so she’ll tell me how you’re doing (i hear you have the flu, drink some fluids other than dr. pepper, okay?).
To Elana, Love Henry:
I feel guilty for the time I asked our delivery girl if you were still ordering from our place. I miss you because I give her a bigger tip than usual now and sometimes I get pizza even if I’m not in the mood, just to hear from her that you had bags under your eyes tonight or your cousin got her acceptance letter from Barnard (Congratulations to her, by the way). The eggplant isn’t as satisfying as it used to be, so I turn the TV on. It helps drown out the quiet.
december rain is nothing if not sad.
it leaves tracks in the snow everywhere,
blanket gray sky and
little gray footsteps
I remember summers ago with a boy, who wasn’t so sweet but could read aloud like a gypsy and read your hand lines like a priest. I’d kick off my shoes and we’d spread a huge blue sun-bleached towel on the sand and prop up a chair. The metal grew hot in the sun. I remember a cooler full of Coke cans and plastic cartons of strawberries; we lived off those for days at a time (along with the occasional Hot Pocket) because we were too lazy to bike out to town, and it was too hot to leave the wooden floorboards and ice towels of our house. The windows let in the evening lights from a few miles away and the distant sounds of Spanish street guitarists. Sometimes we clambered up on the roof to hear them better, and you memorized one of the songs they’d play every night, spinning out a rough version on your guitar. But you couldn’t pronounce the words as well.
When we went out on the beach, you hated the waves so you stayed high from shore while I waded out until the water reached my belly, feeling the coolness seep through my shirt and the sand riffle between my toes. I’d always wanted you to join me. I wish you didn’t hate the waves, but you did so I just stood there alone, taking in salt from the breeze and the laughter of two sisters dragging buckets of water they could barely carry from the ocean to their sand castle. Again and again they came and went so that they could fill up the moat, because you couldn't have invaders from the next kingdom over to be able to kidnap the princess so easily.
you asked what I thought of you
Bewildered, I examined the cross-shaped birthmark on your arm (you were agnostic)
scuffed sneakers and your eyes
the new old ones I liked: you had gotten rid of the blue contacts two months ago,
a week after we met.
mouth open, I searched for a word and couldn’t believe how hard it was
smiling and I closed my lips, you seemed confused, did that little
I took your hand as the subway doors opened onto 66th St and dragged you into the city.
we ran up the stairs, his hand was warm like the cigarette night air
I’ll show him what I think of him
we ate burgers from Sonic on the lit-up street corner;
he spilled mayo down his shirt and we threw lettuce and laughter at each other.
revised version of "Throwing Lettuce." it's a lot different so I thought I'd post it again. hope you enjoy :)
She used to read me poems she’d made out of glass and soft wool, and I’d always fall asleep to her lilting words. A ring sat on the 3rd finger of her left hand, a pair of kissing silver fish. She twisted it when she was nervous, and when I looked at her for too long.
Although I am sure she often looked at me for longer.
Some days I almost forget her name, and it makes me sad. So I wrote it down on a slip of paper and now keep it in my pocket, for that insane fear of letting her go entirely. Clementine; she was beautiful. One detail I remember clearest was she only had one freckle in her entire life. It sat just underneath her left cheekbone, and she liked it because I did.
I am trying to make you happy because I love you
and I don’t have fudge bars, your favorite
and I killed your fish because I forgot to change its water;
it was almost dead when you gave him to me anyway
but it was an accident
I’m sorry your stupid guppy died, it was his own fault.
your cheeks rough
from the cold when i brushed them
snow on Monday afternoons, and our numb fingers trying to
feel each other.
we went to the supermarket,
took our cameras to photograph
homogenized colors like the milk
in between poses, we played catch with the packets of fish balls,
drew smiles on the condensation in the freezer aisle
chased around the boy (code name platypus) with the Rolex.
so we balanced:
primary-colored bell peppers –
on our heads
and waited for the flash.
based on a real trip to the grocery store with Emily.
Waiting for the subway and talking on the phone with her, he asked: pepperoni or cheese? You choose. “Pepperoni would be good,” she said and he hung up. The 7 train arrived, blowing back his hair. The doors opened with a dull beep and he stepped through into the air conditioning.
He sat down in the plastic orange seat, putting his backpack on the floor in between his calves. When he stopped by at their favorite, Franco’s, “Pepperoni or cheese? You choose.” Pe – Cheese would be good, he found himself saying. In a strange act of deviousness, he decided it would be a brilliant joke.
At home, she was disappointed when she saw and went to heat up spinach leftovers. As she opened the microwave door and put in the white ceramic bowl, a great sadness came over him, and he only managed to swallow down a few bites before dropping the profane slice back onto his plate.
a question: leave the word "profane" or get rid of it? Thanks, friends. (:
fall through my fingers like rain.
mixed with the residue of some delusional things that we can’t help but
because inside we’re just children, really excited about going to the
movies downtown (on cheap Tuesday!), 7-dollar tickets clutched in our fingers,
like your fingers clutched in mine.
I lean against you, you lean against me, and it’s just the way that we lean,
the angles are complementary. or was it supplementary?
I don’t think this is love.
but it sure feels like Splenda instead of real sugar.
he only sees the beauty in things he already knows. although I’ve never heard him say that word. he gets Pink Floyd and he gets Bruch, but he read the first 2 pages of Gone With the Wind when I put it in his hands one day, and told me it was crap.
I swear he only feels nostalgia when it’s familiar and I swear he can’t wrap his brain around what lovely harshed pale things are.
he’s very judgmental, and he’s curly-haired and he smells like whatever the opposite-of-miserable is,
and he’s got something that’ll make your eyes twitch. It’ll make you seethe and know.
something you can’t bear to hold for too long but you want to.
he likes fried foods and shrimp, he wishes I knew how to cook and he knows that I can’t for my life. he knows the difference between fine and clumsy,
he wears a watch. It’s black and boxy, and his socks are always funny-looking. He has this one pair, it is dark with green stripes, and he has this other pair they are hot orange and spotted with small horses, that are reared backwards like they can’t bear it anymore.
his mom is crazy and he’s the strangest person you will ever meet and he’ll make you laugh at the first few things he says to you.
his couch has got bunches of quarters and nickels wedged underneath the cushions and his recycling bin is sticky, filled with empty Coke cans, and he plays the violin; he’s got sheet music all over his room printed from illegal websites, probably.
his windows are always open because he likes being outside in the cold and hot, and he wakes up in the dead of 3 am to close them because he always forgets and it’s just so cold and he’s only wearing a t-shirt and boxers.
he says secrets because he doesn’t think they’re secrets. he says fuck and he says
hello, how are you doing? and he speaks in a way that is refined, almost like a lecture,
and the first time you meet him you wonder for a minute if he’s British. and if he lives with his family in an apartment somewhere deep in the dark artsy part of Staffordshire where he sleeps and drinks coffee and gets bags under his eyes and plays computer games and sits under the sun wearing pajama pants and is intelligent and hates studying Latin.
but then you realize he is very homeless-looking at heart, and it’s just the way his voice forms words and the way he talks. and he has a high laugh
that you like.
she was a bird, kind of. The kind that was easy to free, you know those ones you hear outside your window on a late spring afternoon, when the sky isn’t quite yet pink but you know it will be soon, and it’s kind of a sad time.
She’s that kind of bird – the little plain brown ones that wait on the trees and suddenly you look out and it’s staring at you, giving you this sort of look that goes, “I know what you are doing and I can see you, deep inside you.” It’s sort of chilling,
but it gives you a warm feeling too, until the tips of your toenails, and you feel very stuffy.
She was that kind of bird. She would often just sit there next to you while you were drawing something, with her hand under her chin, legs crossed, leaning forward. And you would lose all focus of what you were drawing and realize that whatever it was, she would be twenty times more interesting to draw.
So you would casually flick your notebook to a new page and contemplate a few sketch marks, outlining her jaw – and what a jaw. And you would just stare at that jaw and the curve you drew on your paper, and they would look nothing alike. But you hate erasing, but you hate what’s on the paper, and you just can’t take it and you get all frustrated and all the while she’s just sitting there with her hand under her chin, legs crossed, leaning forward, and you mean to jump a little and stand up and stare at her directly in the face,
but you realize that wouldn’t be so nice. And you realize you’re acting slightly stupid, so you keep your poise and take off your shoes and socks, and it’s so nice by the fountain so you dip your toes in a little bit.
Then she turns her head a little too quickly toward you when she notices your toes in the water, and you turn toward her, surprised. She searches your face, your eyelashes, your hands, sighs and leans backward and lies down on the cement, her shirt stretching up a centimeter or two above the waistband of her pants, exposing a white thin cookie piece of her belly.
And then you want to draw her belly, except you can’t see her bellybutton which is the main part, and you get more frustrated, and all the while she’s just lying there staring up at the sky, with her legs uncrossed and her arms splayed out to either side of her, and all the while her blue and brown jacket is – oh no, she’s taking it off, oh no, and now you want to draw her arms except you can’t because you’ve pretty much just proven to yourself within the last few minutes that you can’t draw her at all. It’s so impossible, so you just don’t even open your mouth, and the water is making the bottoms of your toes wrinkly and it’s actually a little cold, so you look at her hair.
So you look at her hair rolled out clumsily on the cement and it’s beautiful, and it’s so unfair what she is, and you don’t even know what to do with yourself.
more of a short story that I ranted out the other day.
title suggestions? thanks :)
he has hands like roses and tigers, and I can’t think of anything that could be better.
I don’t let a thing control me except for what I’m feeling, and sometimes it seems like there are pretty wings pricking in my stomach, but I think that’s only because of him.
stripping off black duct tape in a room full of once-empty walls, I lose my focus. something tells me that this is real,
this is more than I could have known before.
but he doesn’t know that I’d read him stories out of old picture books until he fell asleep,
that I’m horrible at chemistry and braiding hair,
that I would love to just once, share a box of Nerds or m&m’s or sour straws, and laugh about how colorful our skin gets.
I'm not sure if this is worth putting up. Better than anything else I've written in a couple weeks though, and I haven't written something relatively good in a while... hope you enjoy, at least. :)
I could sit here all night with you, you know.
Eating cold noodles from the little Chinese place off 9th and… that street that starts with an A that I keep forgetting.
Blinking at the red neon that says Open, and laughing at the sign on the door that’s translated really,
You point to it every time, but it’s getting old. just by the way.
And you insist on taking a pair of chopsticks, even though you can’t use them for crap,
just like you suck at pool. the table is not slanted, you’re just sad you’re not good at everything.
Damn it, you are.
I could sit here all night with you, making up constellations with the few stars we can see,
ones we’ll call inappropriate names just to hear you snort.
and pretend we can walk through moving cars and not die like humans,
the disgusting things.
I’ll hold your fingers but not your hands because they’re covered with soy sauce,
and we’ll ignore the 5’ 1’’ noodle shop lady yelling at us because we’re being too loud
and scaring away customers.
Who comes to eat lo mein at 3 in the morning anyway?
I'll stay if you do.
It's nothing too big, but it's been bothering me: Should I leave the very last line italicized, or regular? thanks, guys. :)
it was right in front of me, the entire time.
it’s the end of the world now. at least before, I didn’t have you.
get ready for the bricks to rain down, we’ll run down the streets
and dodge the falling plaster with shredded eyes.
Some damn weird weather we get around here.
Could I have known you would have been perfect?
I didn’t fucking know.
And now, I’m trapped in your arms,
under this heavy sky.
it’s a sad thing really, that you think my name is pretty,
that you think it’s cute that I hate Scooby-doo,
that you care when I cry about spilling soda on the carpet because life is just too hard.
that you like my refrigerator magnets so much.
I can’t do anything anymore, you’ve found my weakness for
sour gummies and tater tots, you ass.
I can’t do anything anymore, except give in.
Haven't written anything I particularly liked in a while. But, here we go, finally. I suppose it's fit for showing. reactions encouraged. :)
He tells me he likes nachos while we sit in front of his living room TV,
lights dimmed. his dog has shed relentlessly on this couch.
I’m feeling dizzy, because I’m pretty sure that cheese was growing mold and I remind myself that
this is the 4th boy this summer (it’s only July), and he’s holding my hand.
it’s not so comfortable. in fact I realize I really don’t want to watch this movie about chemotherapy and space aliens (willing to bet he’s run the same one for every girl) at all. for a moment I forget where I am,
and I ask him if his name is Mitchell.
It’s Rafe, he says, ¼ laughing, ¼ wondering why he invited me over, half imagining what he could do to me.
what a sleazy name, I think to myself, and I throw the scratchy blanket off me in his too air-conditioned apartment,
much more breathable.
I open the door. sorry Mitch, my mom told me to be home by... (squint at my watch in the darkness)
he stands up and knocks over my untouched Pepsi, probably spiked, saying it’s pretty early, are you sure? and the name’s –
(door shuts). bye, Mitch.
again, not sure if it's finished. I'm wondering if I should or how I can incorporate some more poetic elements into the ending part, when she leaves. reactions enjoyed!
when you leaned in to kiss me, I could’ve counted your eyelashes if I wanted,
and I started to.
but I was terrified.
so I scrambled backward and splashed the cup of pink lemonade I was holding in your face
and ran home tripping over my own bones,
slid all the books you recommended to me off the kitchen table
and made some instant noodles, burning myself on the stove and spilling cold water all over my toes.
I couldn’t find a fork, and almost cried and burst out laughing when I realized I hadn’t washed the dishes,
I’m sorry, love is the scariest thing.
but I couldn’t help but wish you were there to wipe off the soup from my face.
not sure if this is done yet. comments/suggestions, anyone? especially for a title? :)
inspired by Camille Frick.
don’t ever tell me that
you love me,
I am afraid I will run away like
the donkey you said your papa had when he was a boy
on the farm he lived on somewhere in
when he was 17 like you.
it was his pride and beauty.
hmm, this reminds me of Marsha.
she lit her
on fire because her lips were stained
with cheap cheat and
and her mouth burned
The poor fool.
Experimenting... how is it? Comments, suggestions? :)