Life is like
a can opener;
only if you use it
to it's full extent
can you truly enjoy it.
If it's left on the shelf,
it's experience is minute.
However, in a world of
Campbell oceans and corn mountains,
the world needs explorers.
There is diversity in the world
of canned creatures.
But without a can opener,
the baby can breathe no air,
feel no warmth.
Without a can opener,
we have no life,
no blowin' leaves in the wind,
no gazing into a lover's eyes,
no moonlight to dance in your mind
the patterns of your skin are burnt
(into my mind)
the odd taste of yesterday
those glazed over eyes that shed like snake skin
my foreign fingers
sending the unbalanced words
to your ears
saliva and vanity
it’s a slow collapse from you
I knew the first time I felt the words nearly disintegrate in my mouth and fall back down my throat between a humming engine and black pavement in my driveway.
Everything feels lighter when the sky is darker. She left me lying in the damp grass outside my house. It could've been boring. It could've been easy. I could've closed my eyes. Could've slipped inside, instead I lay with my face to the moon, all pensive & strong & confused.
I started by counting the stars.
Then I painted the orbs that glowed around them with the tip of my finger.
I stayed calm even when my chest fell toward my shoulder blades and turned clean air to dust.
I felt twilight washing over me.
My mind raced as this twisted agony that rested quietly in the depths of my stomach lifted its head and slithered itself up my spine into my skull with the help of my heart strings.
I was consumed by this strange tiredness, that induced a definite dreamland before it lay me down to slumber.
All the clear thoughts in my head began to sink into this cluttered cloud beneath them, where they broke apart into a chaotic, uneasy mess.
When I finally shut my eyes, it was as though it was raining under my skin.
I could see it and I could hear it and I could smell it like an April night.
I knew when I turned twelve, I was not like the others.
I met Anxiety in the back of a washed out white classroom when I was fourteen.
It was a February morning.
Now I'm 18, it's a cool night in May
& she's here to stay.
She believes in happy things
Invisible beings with fairy wings
Fluttery butterflies make her dance
An endless game of happenstance
Eyes of wonder, transparent soul
The world is cruel but she don't know...
She greets me with smiles from ear to ear
To hold her heart I solemnly swear
Gental touch sooth the soul
In her presence I turn to gold
She holds my restless heart at bay
As she executes her innocent ways...
Her plans get lost in the making
A pouty face when shes faking
Empty cups of invisible tea
Cartoon bandages when she bleeds
Shelfs filled with eyes that stare
She loves her tattered teddy bear...
Crayon drawling of sunny skies
She draws me with big wide eyes
Read me a story, she hands me a book
It's past her bed time but she gives me that look
I tuck her in and read her asleep
And pray my love she'll always keep...
the little ones suffer the most when relationships fail...
You never think it could
happen to you,
then it does
a baby in your belly
your eyelids shutting quickly
mother crying softly
father the walking dead
your sisters move states
highschool always sucks
you don't have a baby in your belly,
but your eyes still shut.
I was there from the time you were born. I stood in
the delivery room, staring down at you before you
could even open your eyes to see me. Your
parents, relatives and doctors couldn’t see me
there, in the corner, watching you with cloudy eyes,
but I was there from the time you were born.
And I followed you home.
I was with you always, your constant companion.
You played with your toys alone while I stared from
all angles in nearby mirrors; my matted, clotted
hair with oily sweat that hung off my dented
forehead like glue. I was always your constant
companion, drifting behind your mother’s car on
your ride to preschool. You alone in the bathroom,
but I was on the other side of the door, wind
whistling through the bruised hole in my throat. My
arms twisted and hanging in their sockets as I
stood hunched on the other side of the shower
curtain. I wait and follow you. I follow and drift
I’m not seen. I’m almost not-there in light. You
never saw me that morning as I sat across from
you at the breakfast table, a shiny red clot hanging
from an empty tooth socket as I gaped grotesquely
at you. I wonder sometimes if you know I’m there. I
think you are aware, but you’ll never understand
just how close I am.
I spend hours of your day doing nothing more than
breathing in your ear.
Breathing – gagging, really.
I crave to be close to you, to always wrap my
crippled arms around your neck. I lie near you ever
single night, cloudy eyes staring at your ceiling,
underneath your bed, at your sleeping face in the
Yes. You caught me staring occasionally. Your
parents came running down to your room one
night when you screamed. You were just beginning
to talk, so you were only able to cry out “Man! Man
in my room!” You thought you’d never forget the
sight of me, with my collapsed jaw hanging to my
chest, swinging back and forth. I sank back into
your closet and your mother was unable to see me
though you pointed and pointed and pointed. You
thought you’d never forget when they left that
same night. You saw the closet door crack so
softly and me crawling across the floor to your bed
on all fours, shambling in jerking movements as I
pushed myself under your bed on disjointed limbs.
You learned a new word for me: boogeyman. Not
quite the monster you thought I was. I’m just
waiting and following you always, touching your
face with my knotted fingers as you sleep.
You’ll see me again soon. Any day now, I’m
coming, blunt and brutal. One day you’ll walk
across the road and – I believe I’ll plow into you
with loud roar and a screech.
You rolling on the pavement, rolling under wheels,
bluntforce metal fenders and my fingers touching
your face again and again.
As you stare up from the cold pavement with
cloudy eyes; your matted, clotted hair hanging in
your face and your jaw unhinged and swinging to
You’ll see me approaching.
No one else will see me. You will stare past them
into my eyes and I’ll leer down at you. For the first
time in our life, something like a smile will come
over my face. You’ll swear you’re looking into a
mirror as clotted red bubbles from our mouths.
I’ll lean down, past the doctors and the oogling
people and pick you up in my crooked arms.
Our faces will touch. My wings will unfurl. And then
you’ll have to follow me.
And I am always with you.
I am your guardian angel.
After morning matinee
and after dinner
of sausages and mash
and baked beans
you met Helen
by the post office
at the end
of Rockingham Street
she had on
the red flowered dress
and held Battered Betty
by an arm
her hair was held
by elastic bands
and her thick lens spectacles
were smeary where
she'd touched them
but not cleaned them
where are we going?
how about London Bridge
we can watch the trains
come and go
and watch the porters
rush about with luggage
she gazed at you
through her thick lens
shall I tell my mum
where we're going?
sure if you think
be best if she knows
don't want her to worry
where I've gone
and so you both
to her mother's house
and she told her mother
and her mother came out
and looked at you
ok so long
as you're with Benedict
and so you walked back
along Rockingham Street
and got a bus
to London Bridge
and sat on the seats
by the conductor
and this guy with glasses
and a thin moustache
gazed at Helen
from the seat opposite
his eyes moving over her
his gaze focusing
on her knees
where her dress ended
he licked his lips
his hands on his thighs
Helen looked away
pretending she didn't
see him looking
you stared at the man
watching his eyes
dark and deep
they say it's rude to stare
the man looked at you
kids should be seen
and you're seeing a lot
he muttered something
and got off
at the next stop
a hard stare
Helen said nothing
but seemed relieved
after a while you got off
the bus at the railway station
and went inside
there were crowds
and the smell of steam
and bodies washed
and the sound of trains
getting ready to leave
and voices and shouts
of porters and rushing
and going and coming
and you sat
on a seat
on the platform
she with Battered Betty
and you with your
six-shooter in your
inside pocket ready
to get any bad cowboys
who came your way
and Helen said
why was that man
staring at me
on the bus?
just a creep
wanting a peep
peep at what?
I'm not beautiful
yes you are
anyway it wasn't
he was looking at
and a loud blast of steam
and a voice called
and a whistle blew
and you all
and Battered Betty
I just scribbled for the sake of scribbling;
admittedly, a line of verse which bursts freely,
From a twisted, confused, depressed mind;
Lifeless leaves; decayed fruits; torn out paper;
Lay in the Rain; dawn to dusk; until all ruined;
You bleed away; wounds are still awaiting cure!
Lifeless blind eyes opens, doing nothing at all;
Nothing Left out in the intake pot to hope about.
(All poems in this series are, translations from Malayalam, originally written in author’s mother-tongue, “Malayalam’”, the language of Kerala, in South India.)
BY WILLIAMSJI MAVELI
With downcast eyes
They headed down,
a mother and her son.
Tears now seemed
in short supply,
both emotionally numb.
John looked back
At the vacant cross
where brother Jesus died.
Low grey clouds
obscured the sun
where He was crucified.
At times like this
it’s hard to hope.
And most forget to pray.
“It is finished.” Jesus said
Of this, our Passion Play.
Boom boom boom
I’m in the firing range
But how I love this doom!
She’s saying I’m blind
I’m deaf and mute
Her tantrums I don’t mind
I know her heart is cute!
Her words I don’t take
Pretty sure on my part
Her anger is a fake
She loves me from her heart.
She curse me day and night
Says can’t stand my sight
But I can vouch it true
Without me she can’t do.
Whatever she says
She isn’t parting ways
I know it she can’t disguise
Love for me in her eyes.