I'd never thought in terms of luck
Until what was given to my peer
Was taken hastily from me.
I prayed for its return,
Upon which, once more, I proved unworthy,
For something better did escape me once again.
I freely sin, perhaps I'm shameless;
Alone in my willing, human ways.
I wish for darkness, with which to sweeten
The taste of the bitterness I bleed instead of grace.
Redemption's the word, but it's a roller coaster,
So to echo words of chosen ghosts
When perfection eludes me and I must beg for something more,
With my prayers answered, but my fingertips still beneath the stars--
True, he struck the rock,
And water gushed out,
Streams flowed abundantly,
But can he also give us bread?
Psalm 78: "True, he struck the rock, and water gushed out, streams flowed abundantly, but can he also give us bread?"
What will happen here?
Do we know how to love
Or how to live?
FOR WITHOUT LOVE THERE IS NO LIFE
Love is NOT
It is NOT
It is an
It is not a game in which
As a means of
Easing your own pain
And sense of humiliation
You feel within a phony
That has captivated you culturally!
I know my poems are ----IN VAIN
But it's hard to sit here silently
Listening to you DIE
For you don't really express
Or true pain)
And you don't really
Try to help one another
But merely re-inforce
That the false culture is real
And that the suffering therefor is unavoidable!
Thanks for nothin!
I love you all
Hence the sense
That it is
A meaningless thing to do
In the hit of a personal edit where I bled a bit
put two slices of bread with it
and ate a cold memory
with a hot steaming cup full of misery
I sat down to tea.
Edits are necessary a suitable accessory
to the future we want to see
and if with ourselves we are cruel
and use the right kind of tool
we can dig out those bits
that would hide in the corners and throw fits at this unwanted intrusion
used as part of a twice weekly programme
to ram home the message that I am
a flawed human being
and this is just what I need to start freeing those things that are trapped on the inside where Krap seems to accumulate.
Mondays and Fridays are my days to clear out and scout out internals to rinse out the kernels and wash myself clean.
Like a scene from some film noir, one can only go so far 'til you hit a ground zero
become an edited hero.
I cheer when the cleansing is done and I'm clear again
able to peer again into what I would like and desire to hear again
in a page full of pain where the words hurt the same and the chapters make laughter at me
I am free to decide if the tide is against me or the winds blowing freely which very nearly would seal me into an epilogue
quite clearly the editors pen would be needed so I could be fed and reseeded with hope
and with the cogs of cognition would once again turn on the ignition
and fire up the engine
In the restroom,the best room where the bridegroom bites his fingernails and his top hat and tails have turned tail and have run
the song is sung of the forlorn those that wish they'd been never born and the rest is pro forma
a bit Norma Jean another film noir scene
and it's time for my tea.
She Looks Like a Tiger
See how she places her paws so lightly, so as not to be heard.
Silently, she moves through the crowd, head held high, today she doesn't want to hide.
Depicted in peach coloured stripes. No red, no brown, no blue, no black.
Today, is the first day she felt it was safe to show them.
Asking for the first time in her life, for the world to continue doing what it's always done
Lean on her, sing her our our sorrows so she could sing them back and pretend, that we could not see her scars.
She has always been the brick wall.
The concert hall
The shoulder to cry on.
The logic you would chase after with your pedestrian problems and she was the designated driver.
But when it looks like you're a casual on bridges over troubled waters, there 's no one talking you down from the ledge.
She would never have asked you to.
Hannah, your name sounds like a semi-permanent tattoo.
I hope that's what this poem feels like to everyone who hears it
So that every time they think they know broken,
they feel cold lines crisscrossing their body and can honestly wonder,
was this feeling your blueprint.
But I think you look like tiger.
And I know, I shouldn't give time to some little boys who refuse to use her real name because it fits her to well.
Callin' her some emo, weak hippie freak.
she's just looking for attention.
Because when you're the first person to make it through Hell and back alive, you're a liar.
A hitch hiker piggy backing on someone else's problems.
But her arms served as straightaways for razorblades for nine solid years,
and its no thanks to people like you she's still here.
You think, she should be ashamed of herself. As if scars are a chink in the armour.
Like she was peer pressured into self-destruction and couldn't say no.
No one asks you:
"Hey there, wanna cut? Wanna, self-mutilate?"
Just like I won't ask you not to hate the idea of someone being that low
That every beat of the heart feels a little like sexual assault, and cutting was the best way she could find to say no.
She looks like a tiger,
and she didn't earn her stripes. People rarely do.
But she has earned the right to wear them for what they are;
Memories of things she's long overcome.
Her head is held high again.
And I know, I shouldn't be wasting my time on people
Who refuse to use her real name,
but Hannah is still Hannah inside out, upside down,
Backwards, Hannah is still Hannah,
Even with her insides out,
Hannah is still Hannah.
She's still here.
At the East End Cafe
a Canadian folksinger
strums up a storm
on a guitar-
a bargain guitar-
he got $1000 off the price of it
We don’t know any of his songs
Locals tap their feet
to his rhythms
talk to people
they talk to every day
but louder tonight
fuelled by beer and wine
and a determined bonhomie
Ange and her girls
cook up a storm
behind the counter
serve us steaks
and real pizzas
and creme brulee
Late night kids
peer in - curious-
at the unaccustomed goings on
Beyond the plateglass windows
the inside lights
reflect in the darkness
like floating pumpkins
I know the river lies out there
just moving on down to the sea
God made me human
she was feeling capricious that day
actually I was meant to be a frog
green and certain, self contained
content to simply squat and watch
flick a sticky tongue at a passing bug
observer of two worlds
at home in both
able when need or impulse
dictates to skedaddle
with the nonchalance of a Buddha
a gleam of green and gold
glistening on a lily leaf
or kerplunking into deep cool water
Frog had I such toes such elegant legs
I too could scrutinise the mysteries
of pools, the undersides of lilypads
do you wonder Frog
whether there are other ponds
do you dream a dream of elsewhere
do you pause to peer skywards
harbour a secret wish for wings
ah, what may lie beyond your pool
but perhaps I ascribe
too much mystery to you Frog
you simply are
whilst I, I am stuck in wondering,
trying to connect two worlds two realities
damn damn the divine indifference
As I lay next to you
I smile constantly at what I see
You're laying on your back sleeping
Your brown hair is a mess
Your brown eyes are still at rest
My eyes start to peer down towards your chest
Your skin is bare
Your naked body is so wonderful
My fingers caress your skin
Those brown eyes make contact with mine
My hand touches your well defined jaw
The dimples on your cheeks leave me breathless when you smile
My lips fall in between yours
A perfect fit
That is only because you're my Chris
Roof-tops cannot see me
There are no windows there for curious eyes to peer through
And so I sit
With my dressing gown open
Slouching off each shoulder
Piled up in the crooks of my elbows
The street crawls into view
As I lean back to cool my skin on the wall
I hear a car approaching
But it approaches lazily
So I linger for a moment
Skin singing with the sudden chill tickling
Tiny yellow flowers
Across a driveway unknown to me
Call out to the sun
Confusing her for their mother
But the sun has gone now
Leaving pools of darkness under each needle in the pine trees
And sending shivers dancing across my bare back
Up my shoulders
Take her hand in yours
And feel the warmth of her soft flesh
Study her face like a book
Appreciate every freckle,
Tell her they're what makes her yours,
What makes her special
Smell her neck
Memorize that scent
Never forget it
Peer deeply into her eyes
But not too deeply
You might uncover things she's kept only for her mind
Ask questions and be excited by the answers
Listen to the senseless whining and confusing ramble of feelings
Read what she writes you
Trace the letters on the page
Appreciate and love every single aspect of her
Because you're going to lose her
It’s a pitiful hilarity.
An early Sunday evening, a frantic phone call to a voice whom I’ve only met once, I think. We were chastising a mutual friend like the voice and I were two old pals, but I don’t think she knows my middle name, just that I feign being a good person, or rather, that what she sees is a good person.
We were talking about Linnea. About how she took the final step off of the pedestal we had all placed her on for so long. I saw her tumble down like her teardrops. She was well aware of her fall from our graces.
I knew I should’ve seen her plummet. But I didn’t. I saw a graceful descent. I saw finesse. I saw beauty.
I saw her levitate somewhere between the pedestal and the ground, and on days where I was feeling particularly vengeful, I wanted so desperately to see her streak towards the ground like a doomed meteor. I wanted to see her burst into flames as she came crashing to the Earth where the rest of us mortals live, far from the spot among the heavens to which we all assigned her.
On those days, I knew I wanted vengeance, but for what, I did not know.
I think it was for loving her.
No, it was for caring about her.
No... Maybe it was for being in love with her.
We both had major roles in our school musical. On the evening of the second performance, she gave all of the seniors tiny little cards in matching envelopes, like the cards you put in bouquets of flowers, that teenage sweethearts attempt to fill with novels, and old married couples just sign their name and “Love you.”
I didn’t open mine.
I think I wanted the contents to be something a bit more concise than an adolescent love letter and a bit more detailed than a 40 year old force of habit.
I wanted the card to be her. Everything that I wanted her to be. Everything that I wanted her to want to say to me.
I wanted her to be filled with giddy and anticipation while writing my card as I do when I know I get to see her soon.
I keep the card in my wallet. Unopened, still in the envelope. I want to keep feeling that little twist in my stomach of anticipation every time I open it and I see the crinkled corners peeking out from behind the front pocket.
Writing about it now, I see how pathetic it is. How futile every time I take the envelope out of my wallet and mull it over with my fingers, as if I am going to open it.
My wallet is my peer, the envelope my green light across the bay, and my legs and my mind are getting tired from playing Gatsby, waiting, hoping for a redemption of an imagined past.
It’s pretty funny actually.
It’s a pitiful kind of hilarity. The kind that makes my chest cavity quake as I slowly begin to roll my chuckles into one another, until I can no longer tell if my shoulders are shaking from laughter or light sobbing.
The punchline comes when I debate between grabbing the letter opener or the matches, but I was never one for timing, and I always place it back, neatly in the front pocket.
Sondheim said it well; this joke could use some clowns. Don’t bother, Linnea.
He’s already here.