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 May 2015 Annabel Lee
Here it is
the poem on survival, the one you've all been waiting for
where I learned to untie the noose from my smile,
my smile from the trigger warning.
Here's your trigger warning:

I shivered when you kissed me.
I had a hard time believing my heartbeat was a good thing; had a hard time
believing the front door was still an option.
I wake up some days and remember when I used to sing bruises onto my skin,
fill up large towels with my blood,
watch it go black,
watch everything go black.
Still remained smiling;
still stood with the scars; with the ink between my teeth baring
a warning sign for whoever comes next,
for whoever wants my body without wanting my mind.
here it is
here is how i survived:

I hurt myself

I still do it just doesn't show
the scarring.
here it is baby boy come inside its about to get ugly,
you're about to see me cry,
you're about to see me shake,
you're about to find out what im really made of,
I'm about to find out if you break.

are you scared yet
this is a challenge you never step down from,
you brave boy!
you with your sword and white horse;
shining at the darkness inside of me; shining at the stench inside me ; come here,
make me feel whole.
Dont say I didnt warn you.
 Dec 2014 Annabel Lee
Do not adore her because she will never believe you when you look into her eyes and say that she is beautiful.

Do not crave her because she will never trust you when you say that you feel forever in her touch.

Do not cherish her because the time you get to spend with her will never be enough.

But most of all, do not love her because she will never love you half as much as she hates herself.
 Dec 2014 Annabel Lee
 Dec 2014 Annabel Lee
He plays the the sound of a rainfall in Manhattan.
As he chases paper thin skin out of this sorry sob story
another fairy tale in his head.
I think you've had enough for today Alex
why don't you sing of pretty things?
Eyes like coals too dark to see,
do they stop your hands from strumming that guitar?
the tunes you play
the melodies
echo in the absence of your voice
and alex you taste so sweet
sweeter than the alcohol you use to get to sleep
I tell you one day the past will catch up with you;
but your smile looks like a well adjusted childhood.
Something were all surprised to see.
And yeah your fingers pour over the strings,
the only time they dont shake is when you play
so play for me
play play play
sing sing sing
dont stop
dont breathe
just play
A series of poems for the boys that have left a mark
 Dec 2014 Annabel Lee
Fuck up
 Dec 2014 Annabel Lee
I am awoken by a nagging in my head
its in my mothers voice
the urgency,
I don't know what for, its 5 am.
my submission doesn't speak.
I fill the air with the sound
of my nonsense, a rambling of dreams,
"dont burst the bubble, burst the bubble, burst the-"
a never ending melody.
Because there is nothing louder than this, I have wanted to crawl out of my skin long before I knew it was mine.
And theirs, not mine entirely, composed of DNA so imperfect
even the gods would've laughed.
If you ever want to **** something up to the point its unrecognizable,
give it to me, look what I did to my own potential.
Squander doesn't begin to cover it, almost out of spite.
and i must stop it before it reaches my eyes
it has a certain way of clouding them over
and I just dont want people to realize
that I am swallowing a lump
at the back of my throat
what seems like forever
trying not to get my eyes to burn or
dig my nails deep into someones throat
just to feel their artery and scream
Then place the sharp bits of my nails
against my skin, hard
and not feel
I struggle with self control
especially with ***
and drugs
and alcohol.

I yell too often, never loud enough to make them hear me.
I am afraid of my own voice
telling people to shut up
Jack knows its not a good thing if I whisper
last time I did I said
"I don't have a pulse, I cant find my pulse."
Before I freaked out and smashed that vase against the wall
and laughed at what a sad broken cliche I have become.
My anger came out in sputtering sobs

And he tried to hold me
because that's what people do in movies
cue the background music
but I didn't let him because I was never any good at acting,

and he never got mad when I hit him
I can hear that "Sshhhh" at the back of
my ear
and I could wince at my own humiliation if I gave a ****.
I wont lie it was awkward he sounded scared
"aww dont c-c-ry"
thought I saw a tear there too
Im trying
 Jun 2014 Annabel Lee
 Jun 2014 Annabel Lee
I tell him about the 90 year old that made a home in my body.
Say "I feel more than the nineteen years, I feel more than your nineteen years."
He takes it as evidence towards what he calls my "superiority complex"
makes a joke about thinking I'm so much wiser than everybody else as I stammer with arms crossed trying to find the words my nineteen year old vocabulary does not know.

This has nothing to do with being wise you sonofabitch, its about an exhaustion that paints the dark color around my eyes and the sigh that lives in my belly you ******.

He interrupts, laughing "What do you mean? Your bones ache or something? haha hahaha." Loud, obnoxious, not the first time,
not the last. I want to say yes

yes they ache ad they creak
and they burn and so do my eyes and so do my insides and so do the words I say and the way I say them and the way it scares others when I say some profound ****, I almost sound like Gandhi, like Bukowski, I just never learnt of a beautiful way to disguise my pain. Not enough so It could sell.

I was better off alone when the ice made a security blanket around my heart-better off with no pain.
He shines a mirror on all my missing parts, calls me ****** up.
Stand next to me just to lean over in his height, superiority complex runs high among privileged nineteen year old straight males.

The ice thawed but he came with no gloves
I found the bruising less tolerable than the cold this time around
Less bearable than the lonely beat my heart learned to sing.
Its the same story he just repeats himself as another boy who says the wrong things and makes me feel
exhausted for every having opened up my icebox full of secrets.
Every conversation is an emptying out and not the cathartic kind.
The kind that leaves the ninety year old in me shaking with nothing left inside her but rotting gums and eyes that have seen too much ****. Nobody is supposed to make you this unhappy. This is not what I asked when I asked for you to make me feel something.
Every time I say your name Matthew, it almost comes out Nathan, in my head. Nathan with his accent, and the same humor, same jokes. Nathan the boy I emptied myself out to just so he could leave bruises on the uncovered parts. It was so easy to to leave somebody I never gave a **** about.

Matthew, I only say your name so often so I remember it, so I say it right, so I remind myself you are not the same person. Matthew sounds allot like Nathan when your drunk or sad which I am most of the time these days, you sound allot like him with your laugh, sound like your gonna leave bruises on all the parts I lift up to show you. I know this.

This is a fact. Like I know I wont ever cry for you until I'm all thawed out.
Matthew, for  your painstaking insensitivity, for your lack of understanding
Matthew for you not understanding all the creaking in my bones is just screaming

Save me
Fix me

Give me one reason why you're good for me because I cannot think of any and
*I so desperately want to
*** we started tags in hellopoetry too now? ffs
 Jan 2014 Annabel Lee
Gabby O
Have you taken your meds today?
You're drinking your anxiety like an alcoholic swallows gin
And I can see the panic in your shaking hands
but the only healing is filled with anti-depressants and sleeping pills
and numbness makes you feel like a corpse

You've gotten a new scar
you show me with wet eyes
And I pretend I don't notice
Because I might just end up shouting
Because I hate that you can't stop
Because I hate that I can't understand
And you think that I didn't care

You look so alone
and I try to come closer
but you've torn a gap so wide between us
that my screams sound like echoes of yours
and I couldn't find a way to reach you
so I stopped trying

You called me heartless
not with your voice but you screamed it in your movement
I felt it in every corner of my mind when I stopped spinning
and all I could think about was you
and I couldn't hate you for your cruelty
because you don't understand what you've done to me

I felt you crashing
not right beside me but a million miles away
and you fought so hard
but couldn't keep up
you said you'd handle it
I should've known you were lying
and now I can't hug you like I used to
and you no longer show me your scars
Not quite towards any one person, nor about any one thing.
 Jan 2014 Annabel Lee
Her back like a sunset sitting crouched in a cold tub,
terrified and disillusioned. I watch her from the doorway,
unable to paint over her purples, yellows, and blues.
I watch her trembling deer legs tumble over the linoleum
and all I can think of is that last thing he said to her as
she slipped away.

"How could we have disappointed each other this much?"

I was there, watching her petals wilt, her body slipping into
a vase for him every night in the bar as he looked at a simpering
Los Angeles girl over his beer glass.

Sometimes love comes in like the roll of a fresh spring breeze
over a mountain, sometimes it's like a knife twisting in your
gut, but sometimes love can make you believe he's worth
tearing yourself up.

I pulled her up from the bathtub, crumpled and wilted and tired
and heartbroken. I brushed away the tears and smudged eyes,
and let California's sunshine shimmer on her skin, I opened
all the windows in the world for her,

just to let the right love in, to sweep up the insecurities,
and only leave strength in its place,

and as she tried to thank me, I put my hand on her
heart and said, "You've got two eyes, two legs, two arms,
but only one heart. And someone out there has the pair."
I held her hand to my heart, "But that pair will stop beating
then moment you let yours stop."

And I watched her wash her face, and heal the bruises,
her smile returned and wobbled, and finally I stopped
looking into mirrors to remember what pounded so steadily
and so strongly in my chest.
You leave me stranded like years made up of moments and vacuum hickeys and Asian milk toast mean nothing.

Train tracks remain on my timeline like a seam opening the spine of an old diary with nothing written over and over inside.

You say we will be playing scrabble on the floor of your living room someday when we are old, just as your mother does next to us with her friends listening to Adele as we plot out our lives together on a collage atop your dining room table.

You hurt me

We are dinosaurs
Strutting for the fist time in glory down seventh avenue as people wonder who we are and we think of fun to be had with friends to be met.
Park ***** spread out before us paved yellow with fly paper.

Holding my heart in your hands as it is broken for the first time, i cry but know you will be there to turn those tears to glue for our friendship until you are not.

Years made up of your boyfriends that come and go and come and go and I miss you. And I want to strut down seventh avenue with you by my side feeling powerful and new again.

I want to feel fresh running down a beach of asphalt and trash; the whole world ahead gilded with possibility, and eternity resting gently on the horizon of city smoke and traffic lights. And I feel old now. But I suppose we always did.

I miss you

I still remember **** bought from boys with blonde hair and loving blue eyes hidden in camera cases, and smoked under thick trees that kept us safe from the turning of the earth. Elevators lifting us up to the 35th floor ticking like time bombs on days occupied by truth or dare marked red upon truancy calendars our parents would never find.

Why did you get so old? mature. I remember once together we vowed to remain silly and young and do all we could to smother the sound of the ticking clock removing our innocence,  silencing our songs, and slowly turning us into those who we were made by.

My sister is grown. Where are you now?

Beautiful the world looked from a Brooklyn balcony at 16, the skyline smiles with the mirage of possibility and smirks with a wicked knowledge of things to come and years to pass. Would I go back to that balcony now, and stay there with you forever.

If I needed you would you come
 Dec 2013 Annabel Lee
Erik Ervin
When loved by an addict
you may run the risk of them finding another addiction in the softest touch of your skin
or the happiest gazes of your eyes
or the way your mouth curves into a smile

Maybe just your voice

When I think of my grandma, Bettie,
I want to know how she felt when the doctors plucked
one of her husband’s lungs from his chest like it was the petal of a flower
I wonder if she whispered
“he loves me not”
like we did as school children

When I think about the day he died
I imagine Bettie holding rib cutters over his body
cutting through his chest
pulling him open,
Plucking the right lung from his chest
saying “He loves me”

Before my grandfather’s death
I never saw Bettie smile the way she does now
I wonder if she walks with Marvin’s lung in her right pocket
“He loves me.”
“He loves me.”
“He loves me.”

To know you are loved by an addict,
You must see they have the ability to pull away from the substance they have come to love as much as the oxygen they need to survive-
But without asking them to.

I wonder if there will come a day
when I find a woman
that I would keep myself
on this planet longer for
try to save myself from the family tradition of dying due to substance abuse
Some nights
I drink shots of gin
1. “I’ll find her.”
2. “I won’t.”
3. “I’ll find her.”
4. “I won’t”
At noon,
I wake to an empty bottle,
But I don’t remember what phrase I ended on.

I am plucking away at these flowers
trying to find the petal that could draw me away:
It goes:
“Not this one.”
“Maybe it’s her.”
“Not this one.”
“Not this one.”
“Not this one.”

At dawn,
the flowers stand
with petals outstretched like they are getting ready to fly
every one of them is shining due to the glistening dew
I ask myself
staring out the window at this floral covered plain
what life was for my grandfather
wish I had taken the time to know how he knew
my tiny, brunette, curly haired grandmother
was the right woman for him
and how he found her petal
in this field
of flowers.
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