Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
2.3k · Feb 2016
A Meadow
AJ Feb 2016
Stepping through a green-lit desert,
A flowery meadow, that stretches beyond
My sight. I can no longer view the oasis
Behind me, which harbored clear water
And treats for life. The gleaming sunshine
Of this endless day is only lost by the green stalks
And vines that carry on, that fall slowly into the night
Beyond which there is something I know not of.

This meadow holds crimson rosebushes with prickly thorns
Whose roots creep along the soil like nascent trees
In bloom. The washed peonies sway like figures
Entranced by the sweet harmonies of distant sirens.
These songs lie beyond the horizon,  
Over the moon and stars where this meadow
Curls into darkness.

I’ve spent years wandering this moving wasteland,
Using the sparse rains as drink and plants as food.
I sometimes sat to smell the scent of the flowers
And grass, but the meadow’s call always beckoned me forth,
And I always had to listen, for I have known of little else
Than to walk.

I have sometimes cried, wondering why the meadow
Is so cruel, asking why it hasn’t revealed to me
Why I must traverse its soil to a dusk so far ahead.
I have often shouted, screamed when it remained silent
As I begged for an answer or sign which I hoped
Lay in the way the sun rose into the air
And cast its red glow upon the world, or in the way
The stars came out and twirled when the days burned
Out like matches. But the meadow has always
Been this way.

I’ve stepped through my thoughts for longer than memory
Can reel, before the meadow taught me how to crawl.
But sometimes the meadow has let me live in picturesque moments,
In ephemeral timeslots that can only be seen in dreams;
The sun and moon and stars fly high at once and shine
With an iridescent glow that draws out music from
The swaying roses. It’s in these moments that the journey
Has been lost to evanescence and has become married to hope,
To a love of visceral offerings that the meadow has afforded me.

The meadow has showed me in dreams where this journey ends,
Where the flowers and soil fall off and leave behind
Only their transient scents and silky touches, where everything
Becomes impossible to see. The meadow
Has not yet told me what lies beyond that point,
But it has promised me that nobody can know,
Because the dusk, the quiet that lies in front of it
Cannot be heard, and never will.

I’m somewhere stuck in a memory not yet made,
Tumbling along in old age. My skin has started to sag,
My hair has taken on a platinum hue, And my back
Hunches over in an arc, curved and bent like a flimsy twig.
The meadow has tried to comfort me by sprouting
Thicker grasses upon which I can close my eyes
And drift away, but sleep has become only a short respite
From a long life of trudging toward this promised finish.
I know not how many more steps I will take before
I arrive, but in the meantime, the flowers
Will keep me company while the march toward
The night that lies ahead continues on.
1.9k · Oct 2013
Praise be the Victor
AJ Oct 2013
Praise be the victor,
Praise be the name,
Praise be the feeling,
His slaughtering attains.

Praise be his face,
That he does not feign,
Praise be his ******,
Whose name is in vain.

Praise be the victor,
Who so humbly remains,
Leaves his opponent,
In the flash of a grenade.

Praise be his creed,
Praise his beliefs,
Shun the other’s ideals,
Don’t allow defeat.

Praise be his country,
Praise be his people,
Who so angrily shout,
Something oh-so evil.

Fight! Fight! Fight! Fight!
****! ****! ****! ****!

The television screen,
So brightly entrancing,
Cheer for your side,
The enemy’s advancing.

Fight! Fight! Fight! Fight!
****! ****! ****! ****!

They hide in little shelters,
Covered by the shields,
Of valiant terror,
That explode in the fields.

Fight! Fight! Fight! Fight!
****! ****! ****! ****!

The blood of the valiant,
Is no longer red
It is black and it is blue,
Of overwhelming regret.
1.8k · Jun 2016
I Wish You Well
AJ Jun 2016
I wish you well
My dear old friend
My green-backed flame
Set along the clouds.

You lie beyond the night
When the people have all
Fallen asleep in their cots
Doomed to awaken
To a gilded sky that brews
With unseen grace
Not invisible because eyes
Cannot track it
But invisible because gazes
Are melded with the grass.
1.5k · Aug 2013
AJ Aug 2013
That’s all that I’ve become
Someone who worries about the future of life
Plagued by fear and guided by misanthropes
That only care about the name and the value.

Without much choice I am led to believe
That my only purpose is to work and to stand
Atop a legacy that collapses on itself
Falling to the ground like a gauntlet of dripping black.

I’ve become branded by an iron rod
Entrenched deep inside the reaches of my mind
That stings like a gunshot but mends like a stitch
I’m guided by what everyone else wants.

Sometimes I just sit in my room and ponder tomorrow
What my life could be if I broke free of this madness
As if I’ve been reduced to some kind of foreign philosophy
That is commanded by shouting and not by words.

Is what I’ll continue to be
If money and power can’t restrain me
Falling off the deep end of a far off land
Hanging from a rope that cracks as I fall
I gamble with my life every second, every minute
What will I become?

The lacerations are too deep to be mended
They bleed profusely like tiny waterfalls dyed in scarlet
As each droplet falls is more pain for me
Yet I can’t hold it back because it is what I’ve done.

My body gives in to the haughty blackness
That drinks my joys like a cannibal does blood
My lifeless body is a puppet for everyone
Yet they are unhappy with the result.

What will I ever be?
Rich, maybe, but is worthiness defined
By the amount of trees one carries around in a wallet?
Apparently so; worthy people plague the streets.

It is hard to continue living
When all around me, people have said
That vocation is my purpose
I used to think it was not so, yet now
It’s all that I have come to know.

Work, work, work is all on our minds
We must make money to free our intentions
Yet important things are stomped on
Like gathering fires on fallen clothes
They are discouraged because they are dangerous.

Will I die with this thought?
My sole question, one that people fear is death.
But is it to fear? What’s the use in fearing something
That brings us all back to our beginnings?

The sun
So bright in the sky
So vivid in sight
Keeps me wishing, hoping, that one day
This madness will all just
1.4k · Jan 2017
AJ Jan 2017
I always felt guilty when my grandfather told me
That he believed in God
Because I never did.
I always believed miracles so improbable
Were never written in the dictionary of the plausible
Or the thesaurus of the believable.
In my case, I find that miracles lie in the rolling of dice or spinning of tops.

I still feel guilty when he tells me that the Lord is watching him,
Unseen but always here, because if he didn’t believe,
He’d be like me, Godless, trapped in a cage
For the unworthy, of his own design,
Molded by thick bars of doubt and facts.

Sometimes I envy the miracles he holds dear
Because he never seems to let them slip through
The cracks in his fingers
Like heavy grains of sand.
Every day is a miracle, he declares, even the day you die,
Because nature is a miracle, too, and so is the soul.
In response, I think of the nothingness
I will experience when I have my final breath,
And the lack of anything that could be considered a miracle.
But he expects one anyway.
And even if that miracle is not there, he can count
The ones he has had for himself,
And that would be a miracle in itself.

My grandmother’s recovery from cancer was a miracle, he said,
And those tears wrote him a book of memories that recounted more miracles
Than he had seen in all the years he had witnessed the days turn,
The sun rise and set, the leaves fall and swell.  
But I saw her recovery as effective chemotherapy for corrupted tissue
And the skill of surgeons unable to tell a miracle from a prognosis.
But those people were miracles, too, he said,
Because they let him keep the miracle he could not love without.

He says his age is a miracle, that he should have already died,
But he has seen me grow, and that has been the only miracle
He could have ever asked for.
Maybe he will see a miracle in a decade, he says, when my college degree
Hangs from an office wall, or kids scamper through the hallways of my house,
When I fashion miracles of my very own.
Maybe with advances in medicine it will happen, I tell him.
Maybe all of that will happen by chance.
He says it would be a miracle if it did.

I find miracles to be sparse like the wind,
But to him, they’re as bountiful as trees in a forest.
Every moment alive is a miracle,
And everything he has done is a miracle,
From air force service to raising his children,
To bringing up his grandchildren, to eating hardboiled eggs he could not afford as a kid.

I wonder if it is purely by chance
That he fashions miracles with his calloused, liver-spotted hands.
He even finds these miracles buried beneath his feet,
Often in piles of discarded dreams, and he repaints them
And hands them back to whom they belong, and tells them
That these miracles are still alive, and always will be,
Because miracles cannot die like people can.

Whenever he leaves, whenever that may be,
I imagine he will compliment
The bouquets of flowers on his bed of leaves,
And say it is a miracle that they bloomed just for him.
And maybe, by then, I will be able to say it was a miracle
That he was here for long enough to tell me these things,
Even if it were by the chance that the sun rose and set
A certain way, on a single day, however many years ago,
Beyond the clouds, far away from all of this.
1.2k · Jul 2018
Hell is a Place Above Ground
AJ Jul 2018
Came and left
gone and dead
give me life
upon this hearth
I cry

Give me chance
give me death
I’m just a poor man
looking for my life
to save

All my days
I’ve tried
to validate
my own existence
so the pain would
steer away
into the ocean
so blue and everclear
don’t tell me I’m saved
save myself in the meantime

Free my head
free my heart
free my hand from this
bloodstream rolling and collating
down my sideburns so
hot hot hot
burn burn


Knocking behind my eyelids
like magma underground
but hell is a place above ground
1.1k · Nov 2015
AJ Nov 2015
He sits at the end
Of this long hallway
Strumming the strings
On his sun-kissed guitar,
Gliding his fingertips over
The neck and humming
Tunes only heard in
Dreams dreamt by angels.

He sits at the end
Of this long hallway,
Absorbing the words
He wails, letting the pangs
Of his impossible love
Fade away with each
Stroke of the chords
That reverberate off
The walls and crash
Like waves onto a shore
Of crimson-red sand.

He sits at the end
Of this long hallway,
Eyes shut over his thoughts,
Waiting for her to sit
Across from him and sing
Along, show him how to soar
With the clouds that line
The night sky spilling
In from the transparent walls
That surround his heart.

He sits at the end
Of this long hallway,
Cheeks glistening with
Unholy water that
Burns the cuts above his lips
And rappels from his chin
Onto his sliding fingers.

He sits at the end
Of this long hallway,
Becoming the vibrations
That lie within the sound,
That sleep within the hymns
He cries so that she
May hear, understand that
Music can't be made without
Something to bleed onto.

He sits at the end
Of this long hallway,
Head shaking over his
Guitar, hoping that the sound
Will spin her into his tired arms.

But the songs won't ring
Loud enough to tell him
Why dreams are forgotten
When the music fades away.
1.1k · May 2016
AJ May 2016
I dreamt about us the other day
In days of green down at the bay
I saw you
And I missed you

I dreamt of night looking at the stars
While hummingbirds wept away their scars
You smiled at me
And I whisked you

I dreamt about us the other day
In days of red above our heads
And the sky poured with silky rays
While you laughed along
To the silent songs
I whispered

I saw you
And I missed you
You smiled at me
And I whisked you
1.0k · Jul 2016
I Know Why God Is There
AJ Jul 2016
I know why God is there
When nights blow cool wind
Onto the stringy hair of paupers
And on streetlights along purple roads.

When eyes are dimly lit
By the moonlight’s grace
Under a sky full of magnetic tears,
There is God, and he’s there
To deal out soap bars
And washcloths
To ***** cheeks
So that, for once, dust can go
Back to dust
Without leaving behind bodies
For wolves to feed on.

I know why God is there
When the hungry lie down to die,
When the restless beg for sleep,
When murderers beg for forgiveness,
When beggars dip their hands
Into pools of holy water
On sidewalks of sleepless cities.

I know why God is there,
And the reason is at the end of a long rope
Hidden somewhere deep underground,
Dangling above the fountains of prayers.
1.0k · Sep 2015
Raise / Supermoon
AJ Sep 2015
Raise me up, atop the river of oceans,
And baptize me under the wings of the stars;
Soak me in the still waters
Of boundless transience,
And bathe me in the blood of the waning moon.

Raise me up, above this bed of earth
And make me drift above the pillow-like clouds
That trail the skies of black and blue,
And wait for them to fade,
Just as the darkness will,
When the day runs its course.

Raise me up, above the chains of time,
And drop me on the face of everlasting feeling,
Of infinite tides that crash upon the shores
Of fading memories, of translucent pasts,
And let me drink the water filled with
Certainty and guileless candor, pray
That I'll remain here forever,
That the beach I lay atop won't
Clump and fall and sway and tumble
Into the empty pits of
Forgotten promises and unsaid words.

Raise me up, against my will,
Above the plains of grass and roses
Of black and red, steal me away
And tap my eyes with the lucid
Dreams of my seething impermanence,
And sting me with the daggers of
Regret and redemption, of
Begging to remain for just another moment.

Raise me up, and let me soar
Atop the summit of banished wishes,
And let me cast my body away, let it
Fumble down the rocks and pebbles and boulders
On the slopes of passing instants,
But let me, my unbreakable soul,
Stay right there, frozen in the midst of
Feeble remembrances and sprinting clocks,
And let me know, just this once,
That I haven't lived until I've been lost.
998 · Apr 2016
Upon the Hilltop
AJ Apr 2016
Upon the hilltop
Far over the golden horizon
Where the sun peeks out
From behind the blue crystals
Lining the cloudless sky,
There sit gray
Obelisks, towers of fractured stone
And gleaming silver flowers
That chant the distant melodies
Of those who lay below the grass.

The obelisks line in circles
And weep silently for what age
Has brought upon their faces;
Moss and cracks, dirt upon bouquets,
Names weathered down to pebbles
Vast plains of unturned soil.

At nightfall, winds break
Upon the hilltop's gates
And send forth siren calls
That plead for silent harmonies
Somewhere deep underground,
Below the grasses, below the tombstones
That rise and fall like waves
That sit silent, immobile,
As time strikes its silver chisel
Upon the forgotten markers of those
Who have been locked
Inside its ticking crypt.
961 · Oct 2015
Come What May
AJ Oct 2015
The wind may blow by,
And the years may cry,
And the sands of time
May trickle past us,
Leave us for dead,
But I'll stay here
With you, at the edge
Of the world,
For you to grab onto
When the flood of God
Razes the land, strikes
The swelling waters and
Washes away the
Ruins of our times.

The words may ebb on,
And the tears may flow,
And the grains of our souls
May tumble across
Uncharted seas,
Sink to the ocean floor,
But I'll be waiting
For you, across the
Parted sea of my woes,
With open arms,
Ready to greet the
Void of night that
Flows to the beat of my heart.

The cries may ring out
And the regrets
May roll along,
And the fires in our chests
May turn to smoldering ash,
Turn us to bitter dust,
But I'll be sitting silently
For the day you'll come to me,
For the hour you'll arrive
To pacify the rising tides
Of unfathomable weakness,
Of insatiable lust.

The days may trudge on,
And the sun may go down,
And the transient moments
May limp along like
Wounded stars in the night sky,
But come what may,
And come what will,
I'll be here, by your side,
Holding onto you
Until the end-times arrive.
942 · May 2016
AJ May 2016
We were forests
Rising above meadows
The air scrubbed clean
I remember the fire
Like it was yesterday
Because for you
We were only
Meant for someday
893 · Jun 2016
Purple Midnight
AJ Jun 2016
She kissed the star
Off my shore
And hid tidal waves
Under her arm, laid
Promises in store.

She grasped
The lips of the sun
And suckled the night
Until sleep crept over
The horizon, along the coast
Bathed in red day’s light.

She searched
Deep in my eyes,
Reaching for a star to mold
Only to find a waning light,
A candle-spun flame
Glowing fluorescent gold.

She saw
Her face in the flame,
Shrouded in purple midnight.
It spoke of love and wishes
Of dreams and hopes
That have long since faded out of sight.
892 · Feb 2017
AJ Feb 2017
The house was big,
Too big for a divorced family of four.
It had sickly, pale yellow siding
With cracking paint and a long archway
That led to a round, asphalt-covered

Most days the trees
That rolled out into the little valley
Alongside it were barren and spiny,
And you could see through them, all
The way to the quiet road that cut
Through the growing houses

If you were lucky, you would have seen
A few kids shooting airsoft guns,
Running through the fallen leaves,
Leaping atop all the muddy mounds of dirt
Next to the creek, but they
Have lost contact

If you were to climb up the little green hill
That rose just next to the mouth
Of the house’s driveway,
Cresting along the edge of the cul-de-sac,
You would see a greenhouse,
Brown, with splotches of dirt
On the windows.

If you opened its flimsy door,
Which was usually locked,
You would see all the uncut tomato plants,
All the sage and spices,
And you would probably wonder
Why they were not harvested

But the people who owned it
Usually bought their groceries
Rather than grew them.
783 · Oct 2015
AJ Oct 2015
Sliding atop ink-laden lights
That stretch like sound waves
Across the tides of my
Swollen thoughts, my bending eyes,
This matter breathes life
Into my chest, glides its
Silky hands across my face,
And turns my cheeks to solid gold;
But it weighs me down, ***** me
To the ground like
A vortex of infinite desire,
And it plays me like a pawn
To the madness of a game of dreams,
Governed by unwise wishes
Of pensive demands
And bountiful desolation.

Drifting like tumbleweed across
My thoughts, this matter speaks
Words of comfort at the expense
Of my good friend named insecurity,
And it slams his soul to the ground,
Stomps it with a verve ostracized by
Earthquakes and pulsating fissures,
Breaks it in two like a wishbone
Waiting for a plea,
And it dots me in green,
Locks me in a room filled with
The tyranny of silence,
Filled with the irony of a thousand
Evil, unpublished thoughts that
Sit dormant, terrified to peek
Into the light of eager desire.

Trudging like a broken soul,
This matter ages with rings
Like trees in an undying forest,
Becomes harder with the
Advancement of insatiable greed,
Flicks a switch and beckons me over
To sit on its lap, listen to its words,
Let its frozen breath tickle my ears
As it begs to eat me alive.

But am I alive?
My heart beats, but it doesn't sing,
My eyes can see, but they don't shine,
My mouth can speak, but I can't scream,
And a crown sits atop my head,
But it's made of flimsy plastic.

Yes, all the titles in the world
Are pinned to my tattered red skin,
But they won't matter once I
Strip for a good night's rest.
778 · Jun 2016
Wardens of Time
AJ Jun 2016
It’s too late to go back,
My love,
To when you said time
Would stand still,
When the sun sat behind
The trees at dawn,
When the leaves fell
For the autumn
And drank the dew
Off the sappy grass meadows
That rolled out beyond your toes.

It’s too late to go back
To when you said
Always is, always will,
And now it once was,
Red moons and black petals
In distant sight.

It’s nighttime now.
Although your face sits in the sky
Like the moon, twinkling gray
Somewhere beyond the stars,
The day is much too young
To wash away the dust
Or guard your eyes against
The lips of a dying love
Like a raw cut waiting
To scab, to mold over the memories
Lining the blood you tried to stanch.

But it’s too late now,
Too late to lie in the trees
Red with sweet clay
Sometime in the mourning light,
Too late to count minutes
As they’ve wrinkled past years,
Too late to tell yourself
That you can still stitch together
The broken seams below the patches
Of the skin you’ve shed.

Time bought you long ago,
My love,
And sold you
To the wardens
Of burgeoning eternity.
Their horns wail loud
And only you can hear their sound.
748 · Jun 2016
AJ Jun 2016
He's blind but he sees the roses
She has sight but she's blind to them

He gets calls from the sullen forest
She gets calls from the paper streets

He misses the beautiful people
She misses the dutiful sleep

Sweet words are all he's come to know
Rocky bridges plague her dreams

They live next to one another
But they can't speak in any way

While he lies in a cot made of broken branches
She sips tears out of metal glasses.

Oh woe
Why can't you see
That time will only dance for the trees?

Sunsets will only fade once the day
Has long since passed unnoticed
744 · Mar 2016
AJ Mar 2016
You tell me that love
Is for the hopeless,
That pounding hearts
Are for the loveless.
You tell me that pressing
Your cheek against mine
Would bring forth
A singularity
That would **** us both in,
Only to disassemble
With age what we felt
Lay under an everlasting day.
You say the moon
Is too frightening for your eyes
To see. But darling,
If only you would
Cherish night, you would
See that roses are just as beautiful
In darkness as in light.
723 · Feb 2015
The Meadow
AJ Feb 2015
Long green stalks
Uprooted from the soil
Wither into dust
And dissipate into the air
Above the meadow.

A seed bursts open
And its stem
Creeps out
Of the ground.

Time passes.
The stem now a stalk,
It sways in the wind,
Lonely and solemn.

Time passes.
Iridescent blue petals,
Closed, isolated bud,
Just shy of consciousness.

Time passes.
The bud is now a flower,
Grounded only by its roots,
Fragile and ephemeral
As it dances in the wind.

Time passes.
The petals shrivel,
The stalk bends,
Yet it clings on
To its fleeing vivacity.

Time passes.
Its petals now black,
It wilts to the ground,
Unbound by its constraints.

Long green stalks
Uprooted from the soil
Wither into dust
And dissipate into the air
Above the meadow.

A seed bursts open.
714 · Oct 2015
She Flew Away Today
AJ Oct 2015
She flew away today, blew across
The sun and darted through the
Sky, breathed life into the voluminous
Void of space, gave meaning to the unsaved,
Brought upon the Earth clouds and rains
And tears and unsaid words that
Never seem to make it out of swollen lips.

She flew away today, glided against
The winds, drew from them the memories
She cast away, ran adjacent to her
Fading worries, her unobtainable desires,
Spun herself a silk-laced dress that
Makes the world pray for death’s salvation,
Makes God stare at her with an eye on
The trail she’s left behind in smoke.

She flew away today, brought down
The light from the waning moon and
Kissed the sun’s head goodnight,
Shook away the pain of all that’s befallen
Her blood-locked, star-born children,
And brought with her the promise that
Once she arose into the kingdom of
Heaven, the Earth would shine once more.
676 · Oct 2015
Peut-être / Maybe
AJ Oct 2015
Le ciel me parle des mots doux
qui brillent comme des feux rouges
et brûlent dans la poitrine,
piquent sur les champs créés des espères
et des possibilités oubliés.

Peut-être que je suis perdu,
sorti de la maison des conséquences,
rendu malheureux par des phrases simples
et lavé par les eaux de ton étreinte ;
peut-être que je suis oublié,
pas connu par les gens qui se crient
pour l’amour ou la douleur
ou contaminé par le sang bleu
du jour qui reste dans l’air timide.

Peut-être que j’ai peur,
peur de ta regarde, peur d’être  
frappé par tes yeux sympathiques
et éclatants, peur d’être jugé par
le bon dieu de la tristesse,
embrassé par le cœur qui me fait pleurer.

Peut-être que je vis avec
l’incertitude de tes pensés éphémères,
avec l’obligation de ne rien se faire,
avec l’impression de doute sur ta bouche,
avec la sourire malhonnête
qui ne me respecte en plus.

Peut-être que je dois vivre sans toi,
car tu me rends fâché avec ton voix couché,
car tu me montres ton cœur mais
ne me laisse pas de le tenir,
car tu me dis que tu es sincère  
sans avoir assez de témoins,
car tu me fais faim
mais ne me laisse pas manger.

Peut-être que tu n'es pas pour moi ;
Peut-être que tu es vraiment pour toi.  


The sky speaks to me sweet words
that shine like red fires
and burn in the chest,
sting on the fields created by hopes
and forgotten possibilities.

Maybe I’m lost,
parted with the house of consequences,
made unhappy by simple phrases
and bathed by the waters of your embrace;
maybe I’m forgotten,
unknown by people who cry
for love or pain
or contaminated by the blue blood
of the day that sits in the timid air.

Maybe I’m afraid,
afraid of your gaze, afraid
of being struck by your lovely
and gleaming eyes, afraid to be judged
by the good God of sadness,
afraid to be kissed by the
heart that makes me weep.

Maybe I’m living with
the uncertainty of your fleeting thoughts,
with the obligation to do nothing,
with the impression of doubt on your mouth,
with the dishonest smile
that doesn’t respect me anymore.

Maybe I have to live without you,
because you enrage me with your cloaked voice,
because you show me your heart but
don’t let me hold it,
because you tell me that you’re sincere
without brandishing enough witnesses,
because you make me hungry
but don’t let me eat.

Maybe you're not for me;
Maybe you’re truly for you.
675 · Sep 2015
Le Printemps / The Spring
AJ Sep 2015
Tu es comme le printemps,
Comme le vent qui souffle
Par terre, qui me frappe
À cœur, qui me soulève
Et me jete au ciel,
Où les nuages me caressent le visage
Et me disent des mots
D'amour et gentillesse,
De force et de jeunesse.

Tu es comme le printemps,
Comme les arbres qui grossissent
Pour que je puisse les admirer,
Pour que je puisse les toucher,
Et sentir la soie de ses
P'**** cheveux qui restent
Dans l'air timide mais éclatant,
En attendant le couche de soleil
Qui s'avance à l'horizon.

Tu es comme le printemps,
Comme les fleurs bleues et rouges
Qui balancent comme des
Spectateurs qui écoutent au musique,
Qui descendent d'espace et embrasse
La terre, et tu es comme le soleil
Qui brille sur les champs,
Qui réchauffe ma poitrine
Et me caresse les lèvres.

Tu es comme le printemps,
Comme l'air frais en descendant
Le soleil, comme l'orange du ciel
Qui se couvre le monde,
Comme l'odeur souple des pommes
Qui accrochent des branches,
Comme le tranquillité de ne rien se passer.

Tu es comme le printemps,
Comme la nuit qui s'approche
Les villes et les campagnes,
Comme les étoiles qui
Me font penser, espérer
Que je peux t'aimer,
Ou te comprendre,
Même si le printemps devient l'hiver.


You're like the spring,
Like the wind that blows
Across the earth,
That knocks on my heart,
That lifts me up
And shoots me to heaven,
Where the clouds caress my face
And tell me words
Of love and kindness,
Of strength and youth.

You are like the spring,
Like the trees that grow
So that I can admire them,
So that I can touch them,
And feel the silk of their
Little hairs that sit
In the timid yet lively air,
Waiting for the sunset
That advances on the horizon.

You are like the spring,
Like the blue and red flowers
That sway like audience members
Listening to music,
Who descend from space and kiss the soil,
And you are like the sun
That shines on the fields,
That heats my chest and kisses my lips.

You are like the spring,
Like the cool air that comes
When the sun goes down,
Like the orange of the sky that covers the world,
Like the supple scent of apples
That hang from branches,
Like the peace of nothing happening.

You are like the spring,
Like the night that approaches
The cities and country-sides,
Like the stars that make me think,
Even hope that I can love you,
Or understand you,
Even if the spring becomes winter.
643 · Feb 2017
AJ Feb 2017
I have tasted
the nectar of love
that spills out of wildflower stems
and creeps out of caves into

It sleeps in every vein
I can track on my arm

It is sweet
like aging wine

like summer sunrise

like my father's chuckle
like the crescent
always dangling
on my mother's lips

But for the life of me
I can never hold it
long enough
to remember what it feels like
640 · Mar 2016
Bright Lights
AJ Mar 2016
Bright lights and
Red suns
Sitting still
Cold night outside

Impossible to sleep
Unable to see
Think about nothing
That's something nonetheless
Laugh violently
Cry shamelessly
Miss and see again
Promise to escape this cage

Let me go
The windows say
Let the wind
Screech through the cracks
Fill your soul
Then leave
You alone

Hard to hear sound
When all that reigns
Is silence flowing in voices
That can’t fix
What's left
Of a broken soul.
638 · Oct 2013
The Future
AJ Oct 2013
The door up the stairs,
It eludes my conscience,
I'm ignorant of what is to wipe,
Across my thoughts.

Come here, they say,
Sit down, they say,
We have news, they say,
Stage 3 ovarian, they say.

How could it happen, I ask?
That so innocent a person,
With so much life and vigor,
Can fall into such a void of hopelessness?

She arrives in the door,
70 years young,
Sullen and tenuous,
Her tears fall caustically ,
Down her face.

The older man, hit so hard
Falls short in his strength;
His arms fall numb,
To the pain of occurring loss,
His tears fall caustically,
Down his face.

Hugs are thrown left and right,
As tears shed violently,
The shock kicks in,
Where will she be in the future?

I suddenly think, as quickly as i see,
Their willowing visages,
How long will she last?
And my mind drifts into the unknown.

I see her face covered in sun,
Illuminated by the vigor of health,
Her breaths cease to exist,
Yet she is more alive than ever.

She turns to me and says,
Isn't this wonderful?

My mind snaps back to reality,
The cold house chills my body,
The tears still feel caustic,
And the pain still feels unbearable.

But in all of this misery,
There is one thing,
We can look forward to.

The thing that we can't predict,
The place we can't imagine,
The experience we can't escape,

The Future.
632 · Jul 2016
AJ Jul 2016
Granite washed in gray day's light
From fresh yellow hills to shrouded night
The wings of an angel stretch far and high
Atop each, a bird has time to bide.

Greens of white and black and blue
Keep still in the winds which sing so true
Plump summer leaves fall out of air
And tumble onto a fox's silky hair.

A lute strikes hidden melodies
Like hummingbirds sing, mellow and free
In a castle made of washed gray stone
A king yearns for his long-lost home.

Fountains of youth spout looking glasses
Into which priests shout to the masses
Words of love and hypocrisy
That cage sick cherubs who've never once dreamed.

Pillars of stone and lush green patches
And cigarettes lit by inch-long matches
Time bends far and tastes so sweet
For those who plant enough trees to sleep.

A tall green tower climbs over mountains
A prince's curse it gladly renounces
Around it, houses broken and bent
By war-torn rebels who won't repent.

Gardens never seemed so small
When charlatans crowd their purple halls
And somewhere far, an ancient says,
This would never pass unnoticed were I not dead.

Cities of tombs and streets without light
Fall slowly into an unsavory night
Moss grows swiftly on age-old tombs
While sirens sing immortal tunes.
627 · Feb 2017
I Shrug
AJ Feb 2017
How can people
Love who I've become
When I don't yet know
612 · Oct 2013
AJ Oct 2013
In the cold weather,
In a cold hospital,
In a cold room,
In a cold bed,
The dying warmth of a young one,
Plagues the thoughts of her mother.

In her little arm,
A needle that pushes,
Into the dying body,
Struggles to do its job.

Beep, beep.
The monitor screeches,
Loud enough to deepen
The sorrows and the worries.

The little girl,
Once so lovely,
Now so pale and fleeting,
The clutches of the world lose their grasp on her.

The girl’s mother looks at her fading livelihood,
Dying countenance,
The fading fire in her wistful eyes,
As she looks outside,
At the rain and clouds.

She frowns at the droplets,
That fall from the sky,
So fast and out of sight,
They crash on the ground,
And end their lifespans.

The mother, regarding
The dying girl’s face, says,
Don’t look out there, sweetie,
It’ll make you sad.

The little girl frowns,
Because she knows she’s already been drained
Of all of her vigor and intensity.

Languidly she looks at her mother,
Opens her mouth and says,
Will it be sunny tomorrow, mommy?

The woman simply frowns
As tears rush down her face.
Wiping them off, her voice cracks.
She struggles to smile and says,
Yes, it’ll be sunny tomorrow, honey,
And you’ll get to see it.

With a struggling face,
The girl smiles.
How can you know, mommy?

Because mommy knows best, sweetie.

The next day, after a rainy night,
The sun peeks out of the darkened clouds,
And shines on the girl’s lifeless body.
611 · Oct 2015
I Often Dream
AJ Oct 2015
I often dream of you
In the mist of the
Dark-lit night,
When the trees rustle
Gently in the wind,
And the leaves flutter
Across the sky or
Float like balloons
Into the realm of
The moon that sparkles,
Glistens like my heart
Under the luminescence
Of your radiant care.

I often dream of
You and I,
Hands clutched at
Our sides, not because we
Are together, but
Because we understand
The touch, understand
The promises that jump
From the fountains
Of unsaid feeling,
Of timid concessions,
Of uncaged breaths
And pounding chests.

I often dream of
You and I,
Staring into each
Other's eyes, soaking up
The hues like whirlpools
Struck by amorous
Gravity, grounded by
Golden bands, softened
Like ineffable desire.

I often dream
That you rest your
Head on my shoulder,
Close your eyes and
Think, and that I rest
My cheek upon your hair,
Glide my fingers atop
Your skin, hope to
God that time won't
Split the world in two
Like a lumberjack's axe
Upon a thousand-year-old
Tree, whose bark is
Fashioned from
Sweet-tasting serenades
And undying wisdom.

I often dream that
You let me into your
Thoughts, bathe my
Wounds with your
Love-bound remedies,
Your sprightly giggle,
The look in your pupils
That runs chills down
My back and
Into my lungs.

I often dream of you,
Dream that you'll
Remember my figure
In coming years past,
That you'll remember
What my skin felt
Like upon yours,
That you'll remember
Why my heart fell
Upon you, and not
The lustful, dishonest gazes,
That you'll remember
Why I smiled for you,
Not for what I
Wanted you to be.

But then again,
I often dream.
611 · Sep 2014
I Rest My Consciousness
AJ Sep 2014
I rest my consciousness
On the proliferating meadows
That stretch toward the sun,
That sway in placid solitude
In the tacit winds
That flow across my body.

I rest my consciousness
In the stars of the night
That caress my jaded visage
And assure me that my wishes
Will manifest themselves
Within my beating heart.

I rest my consciousness
Atop mountains and peaks
That envision a world of harmony
By harboring the aspirations
Of those who stand atop them,
Awe-struck by the omnipresent calm.

I rest my consciousness
In the landscape of my thoughts
That, like the meadows,
Will stretch onward
Until I draw my last breath
And exhale dispassionately.

I rest my consciousness
In the world of make-believe,
In the world that accepts me
Not because I am normal,
But because I can only be content
When I channel my inner wordsmith.

I rest my consciousness
In a night filled with silence
And, as I close my eyes
And let the dark fall over me,
I grin, cognizant
That my dreams are boundless.
596 · Jan 2017
Come away
AJ Jan 2017
Toes are sheets of
the cold
creeps under

Hands have rolled
the dice
the night creeps onward

No dirt along this path
no rising

no skin in red light
over this
frozen hearth

Every way to pick apart
the skin atop
my head

I've bled within the dark
to sleep
on feather beds

come away with me

come closer

come away with me

come closer
592 · Jan 2014
Les étoiles / The stars
AJ Jan 2014
Quand je vois
Les étoiles
Dans le ciel
À nuit
Je pense
De tes yeux
J'atteins mes bras
Au ciel
Et je pleure.

When I see
The stars
In the sky
At night
I think
About your eyes
I reach out my arms
To the sky
And I cry.
570 · Jul 2016
The World's Belt
AJ Jul 2016
Ran the world's belt to step outside
And breathe crisp air so fine,
To mount the seas of emerald green
And kiss soils poured with wine.

Stepped upon a thousand grains of sand
Buried deep within the crystal snow,
To find some clarity in a looking glass
But where it lies I'll never know.

Treaded on rocks to touch the sun
And stroke the moon's white face,
To pray for time and not for sin
And bask in silence's grace.

Past the icy peaks and tumbling rocks
Where avalanches bring news today,
It's hard to keep spinning with the world
When there's no path to walk the way.

Too much has come and passed before,
Yet too little has been seen
On riverbeds and meadows of green
And mountaintops with lustrous sheen.

In canyon creeks I'll lay my head
To rest through this quiet night.
Though the wild is dark to open eyes,
The songs it sings will bathe me in light;

It whispers,
Carry me up these stairs
Hold me against your arms
Let me down on the ground made of clouds
In the way marked up above.
567 · Aug 2015
Coffee Shop, Portland
AJ Aug 2015
Friendly faces
Soft, silky voices
Unlike the punk music
That reverberates overhead,
In this tiny, unlikely coffee shop
That doesn't smell like coffee,
But of small, carefully baked pastries
That sit lonely on a windowsill,
Not likely to see the rabid blue sky
Or the tall, elegant façades
Of buildings constructed from the ground up.
And how lonely they must be,
Just like the people behind the counter,
Who long to feel the beating heat
Of the forthcoming sunlight
Or the sense of freedom earned
Just by walking these quiet city streets
Dominated only by a love for adventure
Or a love for all things immaterial.
560 · Jul 2017
Promised Land
AJ Jul 2017
Take your ship out to sea
and bring laurels blessed with holly
on this journey to unearth treasure troves 
hidden in the gossamer waves

Let your flag sail high in wind
and crane your neck high
among floods that rage
in endless sickness and fledgling health

Chests of gems and gilded bands
await at the edge
miles numbering thousands
unfettered to all but time

Rally your spirits and hang them by the sails 
so passing shipmen may see
the bones upon this watery hull
and chant for boundless Someday

Storms await and creep like snakes
through flumes of silver clouds
the tears they wring rocks the fleet
and dyes dry skin vermilion

Famine prays to fish for food 
while brine coats the shattered deck
parched crewmen beg to die in sandy oases 
surrounded by undrinkable water 

Promises and tears the only drinks
now pain tattooed to flesh
gold glows neither in caves
nor does it shimmer in light

However many years pass as eternities
brighter dreams mark crystal soils
and platinum trees plump with diamond fruit
float atop the promised land

Though the ship has weathered shattered frame
and dried blood lines your chest
the anchor dives through watery shore 
and cries through salt land ** 

Sands crunch loud underfoot
like God's soft muse skies hum 
no treasure lies here but an ashen tree
and the whispering wind begins to cry

my fortunate babe, you've arrived
I'd like to think this poem is about the struggles of aspirations. The floundering steps toward unreachable goals gilded by our flawed expectations. We are like shipmen, floating perpetually toward a distance that may never come, losing much along the way in pursuit of an ideal future. But often, reality is something else entirely. It is up to you to decide what this reality means, and whether or not it is worth the price.
555 · Dec 2013
AJ Dec 2013
I cannot
Without looking
At you
Glancing at your
Glowing face
Smiling when you’re
Not looking.

I cannot live
Without wanting to
Drown myself
In a sea of blue
Because your eyes
Show the same

I cannot live
Without admiring
Your smile
That carries itself
Across your face
With a paragon
Of harmony.

I cannot live
Knowing that
I’m better left
In solitude
Without the
Tender embrace
Of your
Welcoming arms.

I cannot live
Without knowing
That you
Love me back
Yet my heart
It’s all a dream
Made by my
And torn to
By reality.
551 · Sep 2016
AJ Sep 2016
God peers down from towering heights
at the lawless land covered in the soot
of an anarchy so fine

Where dirt and dust
replace oceans of skin

Where smoke and ash
scoff at crystal skies

Where corpses in sheets
line asphalt roads

And musical men strike weary chords
in alleys wet with voiceless bards

Will death be proud to call broken names
while hungry vandals raze bleeding hills

Fear not this time
for there’s proof enough
that you will stand agape at the smoky forests
of concrete trees
in this flustering night
529 · May 2016
Lives That Time Forgot
AJ May 2016
Reality on plump
Green summer leaves
Sits still while time
Rolls on
And the old blue sky
Breathes sudden trills
When enchantment
Is all but gone.

Remember the nights
As if the moon were a friend
Yet age forces
Its craters to part
Remember the skies
With a tear falling dry
Off the hanging cheeks
That were sterling
Works of art.

Hours are but seconds
And days are but moments
And years are all but slots
Of smiles in sunshine
And rain in a long line
Of lives that time forgot.
528 · Oct 2015
AJ Oct 2015
The hum of a wistful soul reverberates
Like a voice full of fading
Memories and forbidden times,
Set upon the backdrop of this
Familiar building that’s been
Reclaimed, stolen and scuffed
By the rage of change like a solemn
Plea from God that begs not to be

Leaves of orange atop its roof,
Spindles of spider’s silk scaling
Its dents and cracks that have
Been painted, glossed over to
Hide from the sky what I took
From it, to shield from
The world what it gave
To me, to block from view how
It's aged with me, to
Cast away how it stood by me
And my swollen red eyes, beside
My ****** shins and stinging wet
Tears, next to my little arms
And glistening pupils that now have
Broken the once-kept promise
That I’d stay with it forever.

I remember the sunny spring days,
Lying upon the bright green grass
Littered with transparent droplets
Of rain, the pitch-black nights lined with
Glistening stars above the roof littered
With mahogany-brown shingles, the
Peace-laden ecstasy of nothing
Happening, the sky weeping, the
Sweet scent of flowers and fresh
Leaves fluttering across the clear
Blue sky reflected in the white-washed
Windows, and the crimson rose buds
That, for some reason, wanted
To keep wilting.

The sun now reflects brightly off
The blood-red doorframe and illuminates
The lively yellow walls painted corpse
Gray, brightens the unwashed greenhouse
Filled with brown, forgotten plants I used
To water, makes incandescent the
Rusty bicycles that sit within the
Musty white garage that was once
Where I stored my water guns
And leather baseball mitts
And aspirations I swore I wouldn’t

Now the booming of metal hammers
Echoes toward the thick forest behind its
Ivy-green fence, and the bark soaks up
The sound like a love-deprived
Black hole yearning for purpose,
Begging to be filled by something
Other than the ever-present stains of
Pollen and neglect adorning the face
Of the ink-stained shutters.

I often wonder if time can be turned
Back, if grandfather clocks can swing
Their gleaming silver pendulums
Toward what’s gone, wonder if I can
See once again my mitten-clad hands
Gliding across the snow-kissed
Backyard, beside the pockmarked trees
That have since collapsed and
Crawled toward the ground and broken
Into the soil, and I often wonder if,
Just once more, I can see my tiny
Footprints atop the sun-drenched patio,
And that I’ll be able to say,

This home was, is, will be my resting place,
Shielded by the trees so high above . . .
527 · Mar 2016
AJ Mar 2016
We are
Behind the clouds
Somewhere along
The invisible stars
In a pool of void
For a siren
To call our dearest.

The darkness
That swallows all
That stretches ahead
Is silent
Taciturn like
Falling trees
Somewhere out
In the boundless
Of unreachable space.
510 · Sep 2015
Unsung Hero
AJ Sep 2015
I remember, however long ago,
My friend called me an unsung hero.
And he said it in a tone of voice
As if to comfort me,
To console me for not being played
In the ballads of far-gone legend
Or in the soft-spoken stories
Told solemnly around a fire,
Smoke billowing in the air
Like immolated lost dreams
And falling, wistful pride.

And I just looked at him,
Unsure of what to say.
In those moments,
It's rather common
To be gracious, to be humble,
But I didn't respond in any such way.
It's because I didn't feel like the title,
Didn't feel as if I'd earned
Something to be proud of, since
I'd just been me for as long
As time had coddled my existence.

But when he said that,
I felt the world cave in like a tunnel,
Felt my ego dissolve as if it were
Being bathed in acid, and I realized,
Maybe too, late, that being a hero
Doesn't entail boundless wisdom,
Doesn't entail haughty accomplishments,
Doesn't entail inordinate hubris,
Doesn't entail selfishness like he believed.
Being a hero, an intricate warrior
Is being a dragonfly soaring
Across a meadow of lava,
Is staying silent but
Loud enough for all to hear,
Is defending the passions
That bind your soul,
Is standing on two feet
When one's been broken,
Is guarding your heart
With a well-oiled pen,
Is fending off harpies
With an eager chuckle.

And I won't ever pretend
That I'm an "unsung hero",
For that would mean my path is destined
For a hero's end, a conceited flaw,
A predetermined death governed by
What I'd been trying to hide from all along.
And if I have to sail across glacial tundra,
Trek across scathing plains,
Dig my feet into caustic quicksand
Or walk along the surface of the sun
Just to prove I'm not the hero you perceive,
Then so be it,
I'll pack my boots and papers
And meet you at dawn,
Atop heaven's summit, somewhere
Far out in the distance, beyond
The twinkling stars and mystifying blackness
That swallows everything whole,
That makes heroes tremble in fear.

But I will not shudder, not falter,
For I am no hero,
But a well-heard whisper.
AJ Nov 2015
Along the cracks lining
The spaces in between
The bark of this tree
Sits two carved halves
That break along their seams
And curl into the shape of a

I wonder when
The knife was plunged
Into the tree-trunk’s chest,
When the blade carved
Out words unspoken but
Seen in an image from
Has time aged it so
Quickly, or has death
Taken over the supple, clenched
Hands of the
It stitched together?

Have these moments been
Along the years that
Wear into the gray bark
Like ebbing tides
Along sand-dotted shores?
Have these remembrances been
With the swaying serenades
Of the plump green leaves
That hang like a canopy over
The shadows cast across
The dust-kicked soil?

Where has the time gone?
I can almost hear
The black heart wail,
Where, oh where,
Has the time gone?
Has it been washed
Like the rain glistening
In the the sky that
Has cradled the branches
As if they were sleeping
Has it wept like the
Glossy roots
That have upheld the trunk as
The days have worn away
The etched heart entrenched
Deep within its core?

Where, oh where,
I can hear the leaves whisper,
Where have the moments gone?
This poem is based on a photo of a tree with a heart and initials etched onto its bark. This is my take on it.
500 · Feb 2017
AJ Feb 2017
Opulence is a whisper
In a forest full
Of clouds
Subtlety is a shout
In this city
Of waning light
478 · Jan 2017
AJ Jan 2017
The sunshine beats down
******* your
Rough skin
You told yourself
To give up
Blood and sin

Down you said
You'd try to ****
The pain
After all the times you said
You'd find
Your way

Times like these
They never seem
To stick
Wash off all the tears
You tried so hard
To flick

You never thought
You'd ever be
This sick
What'll you say now
When the strings are cut
Too quick

After all there's
Nothing else left
To be said
Let the water rush
Over your sunken
AJ Mar 2014
Dans l’avenir,
Est-ce que tu m’aimeras
quand je pleure,
puisque tu ne seras pas ici?
quand tu me regardes du ciel?
seras-tu avec moi,
quand je suis ici,
et tu es là?
M’aimeras-tu quand je pleure,
pendant la nuit,
quand tu n’es pas avec moi?
Quand tu n’es pas au monde?
Quand tu es morte?
M’aimeras-tu quand ton cœur
Ne se bat plus?
Dis-moi, grand-mère,
Si le cancer ne s’en va pas,
M’aimeras-tu pour toujours?
In the future,
Will you love me?
Will you love me
When i cry
Since you won't be here?
Will you love me
When you look at me from heaven?
Will you be with me
When i am here,
And you are there?
Will you love me when i cry
At night
When you're not with me?
When you're not in the world?
When you're dead?
Will you love me when your heart
Doesn't beat anymore?
Tell me, grandmother,
If the cancer doesn't go away,
Will you love me forever?
My grandmother was diagnosed with stage III Ovarian cancer. This is about her.
476 · May 2016
AJ May 2016
Momma says you can't be old
When your days are much too young
And old is far too often
Too much to be enough.

I keep replaying songs
Etched into the bible of chords
That older days recalled
When time fell ill in sickly wards.

Keep your hands in mine, we'll run
To the sky way up above
And we'll sing along forever more
While time just rolls along.

Hold them back, the sun creeps out
And the days pass right along
You close your eyes just once or twice
And the light is too far gone.
AJ Feb 2014
You cut my chest
With a scalpel
And remove my heart.

I let the blood cover
Your sober hands
That never touch
Such impurities.

I let you watch
As I slowly drift
Into a loveless death.

And as I watch
Your uncaring glance
Turn into a frown
Of sorrow
I still believe
There's hope in the world.
454 · Jun 2016
Right Now
AJ Jun 2016
I can't write a poem
Right now
It's killing me inside
I can't write you a song
Once more
Forgive me, it'll be alright

I can't sing a tune
My voice is all but gone
I can't paint a picture
My fingers are stiff and wrong

If I could see your face
Once more
I swear I'd strum a chord
I'd dance around and click my shoes
And slide across the floor

But now you're gone
And I'm still here
I guess they call it fate
I eat alone in this empty house
Surrounded by ghosts and crates

But if the stars align
And I keep shining
Maybe the world will give
Another glance, another dance
And a chance for me to live.
452 · Oct 2016
Welcome to the Club
AJ Oct 2016
Is there a God? Will I have a happy life? How old
is old? How is paper made? Will I die if I drink
ink? How will I die? What will I think
about when I am sixty? Why am I nervous
to speak in public? Why doesn’t everyone
love each other? What is the solution
and how can we monetize it? Why do apples
grow on trees? Why do I need to pay
for water? Why doesn’t the sun
set the world on fire? Why doesn’t God
do it for the sun? Why does God keep coming
up? Why do I need to calm down? Is everyone
around me calm? Why does grass turn
brown? Why do leaves tumble from trees
when it gets cold? Why does it get cold?
What is light? What is dark? What is
love? What are lists? Why do I feel the need
to write questions down when I can’t
answer them myself? Why am I here,
and why do you care?
Next page