Sometimes I feel like the last abstract puzzle piece; set apart and waiting for the edges to be correctly aligned and the centre filled so that I can finally and inevitably be slotted into my right place.
Then I am drawn to the size of the puzzle and the way it seems to shift and shunt and change - and I know that one day I will realise with my whole soul that there are an infinity of pieces and I am not an end.
On another, more distant day I will no longer be afraid of this and will come to see it as beautiful.
But for tonight I will continue to feel incomparably small and foolish and alone. I will neglect my bed for a dusty throat and caffeine because the thought of being there and today passing away without me chokes my every action. I will endlessly run my tongue against the back of my jagged teeth until it cuts and swells. I will lay, paralysed, on the cold linoleum of the kitchen floor and hope something other than time will swallow me. I will continue to think of my friends far away and adventures we never, but could have, had.
For tonight it is okay.
There's pleasure in these small thoughts, like a slow waltz fading out, the last note hanging above my head; a blade that cuts apart the looming silence.
Lips crackling from the heat of campfire stories,
star shaped holes cut in upturned metal drums
beam out their silhouettes and mark your face
You have always been and will always be
Cross-legged you stare solemn at the contained blaze
and I wonder if you wonder
how it feels to be fire
and I wonder if you make those faces
or if sullen is your default expression
I think if you think
that a smile is an awkward thing,
and to align my face and show my teeth,
gnarled and blackening from the constant torrent
of smoke I pour over them,
gives too much away,
maybe I could be cosmic also
He uses those green super-slim filters
to roll his cigarettes
and I guess it saves him money
but I don't like the way I have to pull
with my lungs on them
to get a decent drag
still when he offers me one I accept
because I am out of tobacco.
They come in at 4am
back to their home where I look after their children
and still half-tripping after the show
she starts talking about her ex
in front of her boyfriend
and she has a point and I
smile and nod and I
what she's trying to say
but she can't stop talking once she starts
and the words clutter her red mouth.
He, from the couch starts
defending her ex
and her boyfriend, dressed in black
slinks into the kitchen to check the fridge and make tea
I guess he's heard it before
and doesn't care to hear it again.
She's scrambling now, she didn't mean
to dwell or talk for so long on it
but her point has been lost in the words
and she keeps spitting them out
trying to find it
and at 4.15 he offers me
a cigarette and I accept
because I am out of tobacco.
But those green filters
make me aware of how bad my lungs have got
great heaving clouds
and they leave me unfulfilled
and once I get home I'm digging
through my bin for butts I know I saved
regretting all the butts I flicked away
because now I am out of tobacco.
When I became this, I don't know.
They come home at 4am
slightly drunk, still half-tripping
and I've been looking after their children
all the while thinking
'If I kill myself slowly, maybe no one will notice
and hold it against me'
but someone will probably be offended
besides I'm out of tobacco.
Tender heart and a night not over
tinder-box cast off
once the fire was blazing
and I miss that love now
in the fragile moments
when my mind can find nothing to cling to
where once I could say
"let's call this day done
and curl together in our shared bed"
now I simply make another coffee
and cough through another cigarette
And I'm sad, I guess
but not so sad about it
write under porchlight; backed by The Dead.
you make my tongue want to do cartwheels in a mouth
who's already taken such a beating from your teeth, it’s almost unfair
(so cruel, so kind, to bruised lips)
(would you save a little loving for hungry hips)
that tongue can be so uptight, sometimes.
the only thing that can loosen her is liquor, love -
(sweet, sharp, a little too much - who does that remind you of?)
spills from a clumsy heart -
i imagine it soothing the flames of burning bridges
and leaving them to rest in ash.
Let the ghosts roam where they may -
leave it be, my lion
you have me