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Kitt Sep 2023
it's the most valuable resource, they say:
there's a time to be born and a time to die.
what you do in that in-between space
will your entire existence define.
so spend it wisely, lest you desist
with nothing of value left to exist.

so when you make time to read the rhymes,
when you leave notes between the lines
that means more than words softly spoken--
more than any tangible token--
to know that I am worth precious time.
For GR, who always makes time.
Kitt Sep 2023
Somewhere between eggshells and landmines
Were the creaking floors upon which I played
Carefully, for her wrath could be detonated
At a footfall, just a bit too heavy
From a word uttered under the breath
A mess left too long in the sink.

But her embrace was warm,
Wrapping around me like sheets from the dryer
And when she put on pause her own life
To tend to me at my sick-bed,
Her eyes showed only tender love.
“My baby goat,” she would say, affectionately,
And leave a kiss upon my feverish brow.

She is a living contradiction, my mother:
Churning disapproval shattering the gleam
That she put into the hopeful eyes of a child
Just a moment before.
I lived in perpetual uncertainty,
Never knowing which mother I might see next:
The raven or the hen.

And now she looks at me with disappointment,
Wondering aloud why her children fear her.
Her capriciousness eroded away any trust
And much of the fondness as well
Her hot-blooded adoration
And her ice-cold tantrums
Have mixed so long now
All that is left is
Lukewarm like the bathwater
Left over from when the
Baby was thrown out.
Kitt Sep 2023
When Charlotte Haze allowed into her home
A monster in unassuming white linen pajamas
Could she have known what he would do
To her daisy-fresh girl, lying among the lilies?

As she bathed in sunshine on the golden shores
Of Hourglass Lake, could she have known
Where his mind was, with the child sent away
Nuptial solitude invaded by his maddened obsession?

Before Mrs. Haze-Humbert left the world,
She found the confession he wrote on silk ribbons
Meant to tie around her neck and then the child’s hair--
Yet her first concern was of how she had been betrayed.

As Charlotte lay dying on the hot concrete
Did she wonder if she might have seen it coming--
Her demise, foretold by his fantasies
Of violence towards her, of brutality for the child?

Which her last thoughts cast towards:
The orphan she now left behind?
Or her own aching heart,
Torn with jealous rage between her love of the girl
And the infidelity of a husband gone astray?
Kitt Sep 2023
I turned my attention to the water, and I was suddenly struck by the immensity of everything.
“The world is so big,” I said aloud,
more to myself than to him.
He nodded, but I couldn’t shake
the feeling that he just didn’t get what I was saying.
I didn’t mean, “the world is big.”
I wasn’t talking about the vastness of the seas’ endless waters
or the sheer size of the globe we walked on.
I was talking about the infinite
nature of the world, how it was stuffed full
of corners and niches that I would never see.
I imagined all of the homes, filled with love, with shame, with something
in between.
A bee, circumnavigating the area around a wilting tulip.
The involuntary wringing of a grandmother’s hands during tense moments.
A boy practicing violin.
A wedding, a birth, another wedding, a death, a funeral, and the continuation
of life around the hole left by the dead
until the cycle continued so much that the hole was filled.
I imagined the ports where ships docked and ******* between voyages, the cobblestone streets of French towns and the mountainous landscapes of the past.
I pictured dogs, scratching on fences, and a girl
brushing her hair by an open window.
I saw the corners and pockets of life, shared with the world
or kept to oneself. The gaps behind stoves,
the crannies seen only by blind mice and frightened roaches,
the dark tunnels beneath the earth. I saw in a flash the water parks where children played,
the quiet moments of morning coffee reveled in by morning people
who rose before the sun.
I pictured the greasy back-alley of a fast food joint
and realized that, for better or for worse,
I would never see
even a fraction
of what the world had to offer.
Kitt Sep 2023
They ask you again and again,
What happened? Tell me the whole story
And you repeat yourself
Each time thinking it’s been received
But then a new ear, a new clipboard,
And they make you tell it again.

“What happened” becomes more important
Than “what’s happening now?”
Because they care about the mechanism
More than the injury

So what will they do when you go radio silent?
When your heart breaks do you need to rehash how he hurt you,
Again and again for each secondary witness?
At what point does the sordid story end
And the sequel begin?
Or will the pursuit of healing,
The treating of trauma,
Forever be defined by
the mechanism of injury?
Kitt Sep 2023
What is this?
A memory? A dream?
A memory of a dream?
Early morning passes in serenity,
birdcalls slowly replacing the patter of precipitation
as hazy sunbeams drift lazily past the curtain.

Exhale a steady sigh out the cracked window. your breath,
an ephemeral cloud for just a moment,
is highlighted against the garden
and your shoulders fall.
The balloon of breath swells again in your chest, filling the cavity with peaceful Sorrow.

When did She first look your way, blonde locks falling into Cerulean eyes?
When did he brush past you and send waves of butterflies swarming your insides?

Maybe this is better.
Maybe it's better to see the world clearly, without the pretty impediment
of rose-colored glasses.
Maybe it's better to never bite the apple, for what might you lose
if it has turned?
Better to never taste crisp, cool fruits if you can
save your milk-teeth from being lost in ice-chilled flesh.
1 March 2022 - “five question prompt”
Kitt Sep 2023
Teeth sink into cold flesh
Piercing thin skin
The crunch of triumph rings:
devour me whole
Leave nothing behind
but the rotting, browning, sugary core
and seeds with a tiny drop
of cyanide
(if ever, in case, the apple bites back).

Break me down to my barest pieces
and root shiftlessly through the rubble
clean house, so they say, and getting
ready for spring
Rid yourself of the taste of me.
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