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Red-Handed Jill Apr 2019
a small house made by hand
like a dollhouse made by elves
that smells of gardenias
and Nana's shrubbery
plenty of perfectly curved sticks
to form bows
and arrows

an endless amount
that never break

where the length of the day is measured
not by sunlight
but by will

where pain is felt deeply
and chased by laughter
Red-Handed Jill Jun 2017
Do you mind if I
Move in a little closer
Encroach on your
Sleeping body
Get to know a little better
The space between
Your chin and your neck

The softest bit of you
Where I'd hang a jewel
Or drain you of blood

To be wounded by you
And you by me
Day in and day out
Like two scarecrows
Each with a
Lit match

The power
In a moment
To burn
One another
To the ground
Red-Handed Jill Jun 2017
The whole world
Smells like the inside
Of a bookstore

And the only songs that play
Are those to which you can sing along
Without ever having made an effort
To learn the words

My only memories
Are of the coolest nights
To end the hottest days

And I will keep reading
And keep singing
And so never die
Red-Handed Jill Feb 2017
Holding hands
Going for a walk
Past secret police
Tiny plaited-haired beauty
With her numbered days
My own sun already setting
She will not know
Until it is too late

Shall I tell you a tale
Of history repeating?

Weekly visits
Nightly searches
Talk of seas and crammed train cars
A woman in a black hold
Shoving her stillborn child
Through a hole and into the waves

Grayed hairs that once grew
On fair, tender heads
Prayers left unanswered
For generations
And wet cement poured
Over dry bones

A confiscated copy of
James Brown's "*** Machine"
Echoes in hell
And the Habsburg Dynasty

Tanks and 12-foot walls
Steam-opened letters between sisters
Read thrice over
Before reaching their destination

The earth wants yet more blood
Shall we prepare for the days
Of history repeating?
Red-Handed Jill Jan 2017
i spend my days
staving off tears

both the blood and the music
they get to me

not sure what i'm so afraid of
could just let them come

can't quite
Red-Handed Jill Jan 2017
There are the days
(Months, if we're being honest)
Where to look at you
Is to wish for the passage of time
Without our enduring it
Just to prove
That we can.

There are the months
(There were quite a few last year,
Of which I am not proud)
Where I look at you and I think
I could do this alone
Perhaps it would be easier
To go it alone.

And then there are the days
The months, the years
(2015 was a special one)
When I wake up in the morning
And I want to crush you in your sleep
Because I fear I may not survive
The day I must wake up
Without you there
And I had better get started
On the grieving now
While I'm young and malleable.

There are the days like today
And last night
(And many days before)
That you unconsciously
Stroke my hand with a single finger
While making a point
About a new video game
Or politics
Or something about which
You are so articulate and sharp
And I begin to laugh and weep
At the same time
Out of sheer delight
At the treasure of your touch.

There are the days that I think
One hundred years will never be enough
Ages, dynasties, millenniums
Will never be enough
You could fill up my eternity
And I would still miss you
At the end of time.
Red-Handed Jill Jan 2017
I think I might be up
For a quick spin now
Maybe one in
Your neck of the woods
The mountains you climbed
With your hobbit feet
And the river
Where you were baptized

And then one
In mine
My woods
Where I wrote a novel
In seventh grade
And the fields
Where I broke my hand

Because growing up
And becoming
Some kind of woman
And participating
In the race to some end
Is an illusion
Such a waste

And I think that you
And the way you look in the dark
And the things I dreamt
In my last life
And the ideas I have
With paint under my fingernails
Are all that is real
All that is worth
My time and space
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