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Look to the person on your left
And to the person on your right
And pull out your phone, and look at yourself through the reflection of your screen

Each one of you has been affected by toxic masculinity

If you looked and saw a woman,
You saw a victim, someone
Who's been tied down and told what to do
To stand in the kitchen and do the dishes
While the man stays in the other room with the TV
And has an affair with the sofa

I hear the two of them are happily married now,
In fact, the couch and the man are inseparable

The man becomes the couch, and the couch becomes the man
defiling that once holy entrance to that place you used to be able to call a home

When you were younger, you couldn't have known what the world would tell you you are
But now that you've grown up, you felt the pains and gained the scars
Now you know where the world wants you, and what role you play
On this stage, where the director's decrepit creaking hands come and defile you,
You holy sacred place.

He sits there and pays no attention to the hardwork going on adjacent to him
His thoughts are confined to whatever pretty colors and captivating sounds float across that screen
His eye lids shut only to keep from having a drought because he does not contemplate
He just sits there and waits for you to be done making his dinner for him

And what if he's working in the other room, and you can't see it, is there some sort of redemption for this man?
I cannot say, but he cannot expect to stand to the side of his life, pretending he has no emotions, teaching his sons that this is acceptable behavior,

Stop sinking into oblivion!

And when the woman speaks up and expresses these buried emotions, hurt ones, she is antagonized, like
Isn't this just another ***** with her crazy feelings?
Like shouldn't she be watching so that the chicken doesn't burn on the stove?
Like what happens if I let my guard down and let her in
And acknowledge that she is a human being?

The man says he can't do that
He can't lose his power in the situation
So he tells her those feelings she has are invalid
He makes her feel like the antagonist of the story of this man's life
And the only reason she stays with him is because she's developed Stockholm syndrome
And she doesn't want to be alone
And because if she's heterosexual, this version of a human being is the only one that's so readily available to her,
The kind that treats her like garbage, disposable, unable to have her damnable emotions redeemed

But a critique of something doesn't merit doubling down on that ideology you grew up with,
It merits its changing
So,

Men in the room, hear me now

You are victims too!

You are told to keep it in, keep the tears back
To stand up straight, to provide, to not show any weakness,
But you are most strong when you acknowledge those weaknesses openly
And possibly discover that some of them aren't even weaknesses
They're just a part of being human

And this trend is so hard to break, so hard to crack through stone that was laid 22,000 years ago
But here we are
The buck can stop with us

We can stop antagonizing
We can start acknowledging
We can stop treating people as subhuman when they express emotion
We can start skipping in the streets and holding each other's hands

Because there's nothing masculine
About treating other humans like ****

We can eventually reclaim that word, but first it has to be exposed for all the harm it's done

Look to your right
Now look to your left
And look at your phone again

Each of one you can be a part of the solution
Not a part of the propagation of bad myths
This is the script to another talk poem that I wrote but never published.
8.4k · Feb 2017
White Scarf
You've got a white scarf, but it's unreliably so
I could count on it to be white for many years
Until last year, when it didn't quite resemble snow
It changed colors, and brought up many fears
Like will you make it til tomorrow?
and will you still be here?

You used to wear it like it embodied majesty
Like you were a lion and it was your mane
Curling around your neck and screaming of divinity
I know that mane better than I know your name

(buddy)

The leaves will change and your scarf will too
Your head will bump mine, and I'll bump yours too

I'm running from my thoughts and the truth
This might be all for naught and tomorrow you
Will be here still, and I won't have to say goodbye
To your scarf, your mane, our collective life

Maybe your heart will still be kept in mine,
Released only when our heads collide

Your personality is truth
Your personality is you
I try to ask others to be like you but they can't
That plight is wrong and an ineffective chant

Your heart, your personality, your truth
Will be held in my heart regardless
of whether or not tomorrow I see you

And I do see you.
For a while there, you were hiding behind your disease
But now you're able to come out of your shell with ease
And now I can have another collection of moments with you
Your personality
Your truth

And you are truth.
For a year I thought you were gone and that the next
Moment I saw you, you'd be descending into a grave
You would be gone and only accessible through memories
Your truth
Your personality

And you are personality.
It pained me every time I saw you, thinking I wouldn't see
It and how you walked and how you cried for water when
You needed it. I'd trip over you, and trample you, but you
You are truth
You are personality

You're here today, eternally in my heart
You're here tomorrow, and when we are apart
A year down the road, and a plethora more
You'll be in my heart forevermore

The part of me that you bring out will never exist again on this earth
And your white scarf will never be seen by my brown eyes
But I can hold you here
Right here in my heart
And you can pur
And I can contemplate when you'll bump my head again
this one's about my deceased cat who had a ring of white fur around his neck (2/18/16)
985 · Jan 2017
O, Mosaic
O, mosaic of my oft marveled at Mosie
You fade away as swift as the windstorm enters
Mosaic, I've built you up in my mind's cubbies
And you permeate through my brain's centers

Every experience boiled itself into me
Constructing a picture of you that I could see
Which I could consult when I reached difficulty
Or whose answer I could envision in monotony

O, Mosaic, you quickly go, as hurt intrudes
The pain pervades all points of space
It destroys you and ceaselessly protrudes

Gone are the days when I'd see your face and caress it
Gone are the prayers we'd hold up our relationship and bless it
And now gone is your magnificent mosaic
Even though it pains me just to say it

O, Healing, come faster than your predecessor
May you permeate the place we made and become its successor
And, God, can You be real and continue to bless her?

As your mosaic fades away
Dreams of tomorrow thus can't stay

As your mosaic breathes its last breath
Let us exhale that last sigh
The one we always talked about before our death

This time, drifting further and farther apart
This time, holding our aching and breaking hearts
888 · Feb 2017
three-legged stool
Who am I? What am I?
It's been a while since I cried
Am I a brain on top of a body?
Just processor performing code?
Well, who wrote the code?
Who wrote it?
It's been a while since I was I
I'm not a brain, I have one
I've got hardware put there by Someone else
Who am I?
I'm a computer running software I didn’t write
I'm a soul interacting with a body, a brain
Whose health I neglect on a reg

What am I?
I'm a decaying accumulation of skin
And blood and bone and neurons
I got neurons in my heart
And that's a good place to start
The heart is the mouthpiece of the soul
My identity gets ******* in the whole
Idea of my performance
And my influence
Like if I sing a song badly, my soul takes the hit
And if I lead my partner astray, the whole of me is ****
The whole of me is ****

There's holes in me
But who put them there?
I combust in small increments
My skin flies off in perfect circles
They're fragments
My heart, it's hiding behind these explosions
Hiding behind them because it causes them
Because my mouthpiece is expressing my hate
My lack of love for myself
Hate is just a word we put on the shelf
It's like darkness and coldness
Describing something through absence
Darkness; the absence of light
Coldness; the absence of heat
If hate is the absence of love I might
Just be the one who beats me
Who defeats me
Who carries my heart, my brain, the rest of me
Tied around my neck on a string that I pull through
Like my body is in captivity

I'm privileged to honor this body that I didn’t make
I'm greatly gifted a brain to maintain
My heart, my body, my brain
They shouldn't be strangling me
They shouldn't be dragged through the dirt
They should be a part of me

I am a soul
I have a mouthpiece
My heart is my mouthpiece
My brain is my hardware
That rusts and which I expend

God help me love me
And Who I am
And Who You are

God, make it so apparent to me in my falling out
That I am a part of the three-legged stool
To Love You before all else
To Love everyone else
And to Love myself
Help me see You accurately
God help me
God help this American switch culture
I am not a machine that functions at the flip
Of a switch
I am a soul, a CVT, a cable that climbs up and down
Depending on the speed of the wheels
And decelerating is okay
And (not but) accelerating is wonderful

I do not go 60MPH because I flipped a switch
I go 70MPH because I climb
I climb
God help me climb
And to falter well
And to suffer well
Humble me in my faltering suffering
originally written 4/19/16
819 · Aug 2018
Roman Writes
“People talk so recklessly when they talk about other people,”
Roman said,
talking about someone else.

He placed his coffee on the table
and continued his convoluted thought,
“There is a finite amount of space in our brains,
and I just think that we need to be more responsible
with what we fill it with.

We could be meditating on peace and love,
but instead we cease thinking
the second we start talking about other people.”

“Do you really think that’s true?”
his interlocutor challenged,
“I mean,
it’s not like I’m actively harming anyone
by opening my mouth.
Speech is only harmful to people
when they let it be harmful to them.”

“Are your nerves to blame, then,
for the pain you feel when I punch you in the arm?”
Roman responded,

"Is your skin left with any other option but to separate
when someone marries a blade to your stomach?

Words are weapons, Friend,
and until you understand that,
I’m not sure you know what love is.”

“Words as weapons makes for bullet holes in everyone.
How am I to speak at all if I am paralyzed,
scared of speaking?”

“Words are wonder, too, Friend.
And until you understand that,
I’m not sure you know what love is.”

“Words as wonder might make them complicit.
How am I to speak at all if I am to paralyze them,
lackadaisical and lazy?”

“Affirmation does not inspire apathy.
Wonder inspires movement.
Wonderful words are seeds in a garden in the first place.
Love grows from the water that is the act of listening.”

“Words as affirmation might make them think
they are loved the way they are,
needless to change."

“Exactly,"
said Roman
just an experiment with two people: a privileged guy named Roman and a nameless interlocutor
809 · Jul 2018
Oh, heart
I am skeptical of you
How do I trust an *****
That's been so wrong
In times past?

You devil,
Reaching out to hold the hand of a new lover
When you haven't let go of the past

It took a long, long time
But I learned how to turn you off
And now that you're on standby
I don't know if I can trust you

Heart,
Battered by baggage
Beaten to the bone,
Do your nerves still work?

Are you able to discern the inner workings
Of the paramour's heart?
Are we compatible?
Are we in love?

Are we loving each other?
Are you able to be trusted
With our great future?
682 · Apr 2018
how to build a myth
talk about it, talk about it, talk about it
and when you're done talking about it
talk about it some more

"but what do you do with the ashes
from the myth you burnt down yesteryear?"

irrelevant. its scorch marks will eventually heal
in the meantime,

talk about it, talk about it, talk about it
and when you're done talking about it,
buy her flowers

and convince yourself
that the color of the flowers
will communicate the love you have for her

"but the love doesn't exist, in fact
love is a matter of pair-bonding
and consistent vicinity"

you are so right! but just because you know
how love works biologically
doesn't mean you have to live in solitude

which you have been for so long,
but let up, and refer to my first instructions,

talk about it, talk about it, talk about it
because language creates reality
just as much as it describes it

and when you're done talking about it,
buy her coffee in the starbucks
and talk to her about those real feelings

inside you, and maybe they're inside her too
but you don't, won't know unless you
talk about it, talk about it, talk about it

and once the myth is built, the greek prophecy
will prove true, believe you me:

you will feel again
you will love again
you will die again,
you will live again

and when you doubt again,
talk about it, talk about it, talk about it
with her friends, your friends, and your family

because feelings that are corroborated
are somehow more real than those
that are hidden
630 · May 2017
Enceladus (a sonnet)
Have you ever looked up and thought about
The life that could be beyond this surface?
Below the ice, our geysers spring and sprout
But that blue planet seems like the furthest

How many years span between our bodies?
When will our wandering finally wane?
Magnificence is what we embody
Our observers serve us by feeling pain

Pain associated with ignorance
Of what causes them to wonder, wander
'Tis this that makes them make an inference
Our meeting will be that which is fonder

Well, Friends, I don't know if the day will come
But my heart longs for them like thirst to ***
I'd love to just see the day that we actually know there's life outside of this blue planet
532 · Mar 2017
My Number Two (A Riddle)
Let me hold you and use you as a tool
With you by my side, I'll take you through school
But that's the least of your functions
Prepositions and conjunctions

You're an adapter that's making me change
The soul that was direct can now engage
As streams of alternating current
Making the seldom the recurrent
"what am i?"
512 · Jul 2017
Chester Dunford
Not a coward
But a cup overflowing
With the damning dark

Not a coward
But a human capable
Of emotion's full spectrum

Not a coward
But a father unable
To see through the deafening dark

Not a coward
But a man plagued
By plundering depression

Not a coward
But someone like me
Wading through a cell

Not a coward
But a person trying to breathe
Yet inhaling only that which drowns

His muses became his captors
His brain became his prison
His family became his mourners

But he was not a coward
He just wasn't a survivor
Soldiers slain under the hand of their enemies have not died because they cowered from their duties. They were overwhelmed, perhaps disadvantaged. We misunderstand depression as a society. We think it's a choice, something we can turn off and on. Like our phones, or the lights in our houses. But humans are not switches. Chester was not a coward.
He was a human.
Star that drifts farther and further apart

Where goes thou with my wanting, waning heart?

The many years light takes to get to me

Have worn me down, I can no longer see

The bright brilliance of your shining red light.

Where goes the space which lovers lofty make

When their separation comes swift in sight?

Does it disappear with the time it takes

To build the union that passed far away?

How it passes and how we go astray!

We hold our breaths in want to make it stay

But we must exhale as our lights red-shift

And our stellar bodies begin to drift

Lest we lose our light and our bright array
I actually wrote this for a class, but I like the sciencey parts of it too much to not share here too
At times what a man can own
Is a house, some land, a home
A woman, a wife, his daughters
But not his sons or his father

A man's voice is respected unless his pitch is too high
Because a woman's voice seems just way too shy
And a high voice sounds like a woman's: inferior
Because all we are judged by is our exterior

He does not typically write sweet refrains
He does not feel any monthly pains
His feelings are for the inside
He doesn't love, only shows pride

And how does he go on living thusly,
Showing love, but only roughly?
Where does he grow? Can he ever know
That his own son's heart groans when he goes
About spouting prideful privileged words?
They attack me like preying birds

And I am the fawn, to whom no one belongs
I am the heartbeat and the aching due to wrongs
I am the taken aback by art
I am the trembling of a heart

So then here I sit, so very distant from him
Yet still a mirror image of him.
With my chromosomes resembling his,
I observe roses while he throws words like fists

He possesses objects even if they're humans
He tells them what to do for his own amusement,
Locking his heart far away until it becomes
A fabled leviathan he keeps from his sons

Dear Patriarchy, how you've stolen my claim to normality!
How your disadvantaging of others is an intrinsic reality!
Keep your *****, dying hands away from me
Your grasp forms almost everything I can see

I didn't want you upon entering this earth
I haven't wanted you since the day of my birth
But my rebirth has found me dying from what you do
While you're slowly decimated, We all still die too
There were hills on hills on hills
And desire that nonstop spills
Runs down my legs to the floor
Once strong legs now sore

There was sweat that built
And beauty that me killed
Slays me on the bed
Pillow encroached by my head

There were mountains and more
Traversing was most pleasant chore
Whose peaks were red and base white
Which were held by me all the night

And the mountains met my body
And I couldn't stop my lauding
Words broke out from my mouth
Then I visited the country south

That sheath, that wonderful invisible
That head on top so visible
The member to meet her
The man-defeater

There was a statue on the day bed
More beautifully sculpted than the David
She was a moment, a wonder, a blessing
A memory awaiting caressing

A photo beyond my description
Light made its prescription
To love and to cherish the treasure
That exceeds all possible measure
439 · Jan 2017
where two oceans meet
Strands of gold and oceans for eyes
Your body is one thing I can't despise

You heart is encapsulated in fit and white
In your skin that's silk and bright

Your forehead is a freckled bed sheet
Where I rest, I love, and I weep

The flow of melted gold crashes
At your brows and your tasteful lashes

Then the two oceans, green and gold,
Meet, greet, and together grow old

It's a green ocean but it's pure and clean
Even though black can also be seen

I want to swim in them with my own eyes
To dive and go deeper until I
Can no longer see the sun
Only then will I be done
393 · Jan 2017
a day before she goes
I picture us falling down a bottomless pit
And we're nearing a section with a divergence in it

We can hold each other as close as we want in the minutes we have left
But that does not change the reality that the divider will show up

And split us in two

Let us imitate intimacy
While we're still in each other's vicinity
And though I've inconsistently felt your proximity,
I know that, for now, you're here with me

A day before she goes, it feels like it could snow
It's so cold out

A day before she goes, I find myself below
Just crying out

Our hearts, heavy, worn, ignorant of what to do
They cling to each other and wish that the two
Could once again become one
And that this all would be done
376 · Oct 2018
me he encontrado
Que ingenuidad tenian mis ojos
Que brillaban con el propósito
Que fue tangible, abundoso
Como la fuga de un apósito

Hoy soy más de mí que ayer
Y incluso más que anteayer

He perdido partes de mí
Y con ellas he reedificado
Me he desarrolado aparte de tí
Y una base fluida he encontrado

Habia una vez en que yo era la mano que aplastaba
Y también era yo la larva que estuvo llevado
Pero ya no soy esa mariposa que se mataba
Ahora soy el florecido y el liberado

Me he soltado
Me he encontrado
tal vez publicaré la versión inglesa de esta poema
tal vez no
375 · Dec 2017
Mantra (three) [continued]
I am not the creator of my morality
I am its slave

Walls building buildings block my intention
From blossoming into action

Handed down from others, placed there by others
The walls almost crush me while they fall

And it is as if I had no choice in the matter
As if inside me there is a moral code
Copied and pasted from my father

From the Bible, from the Founding Fathers
From the Constitution, from a Glenn Beck book

As a wall breaks and crumbles, so does a piece
Of my identity

See, what are we if not our identities?
That blonde heartbreak of a person was always right about that
She was just wrong about the validity of the morals

If morality is subjective, there is nearly no hope for existence
And if morality is not crafted intentionally, therein lies more nihilism

If I am a construction wholly of other people's opinions
Who am I really?

I am not the creator of my morality.
Parts of my identity have been taken out
Replaced by other walls
Other edifices that I think are stronger

But I had no choice in the matter.
Neither my deconstruction nor my upbringing
Were voluntary actions
Yet they matter the most in determining my actions

Therefore,

I am not the creator of my morality
I am its obedient slave
The mantra series of poems are meant to be short, and to speak larger truths. I was thinking about Mantra (three) today, and I felt like I had more to say. So I said it. In a poem. This one, actually.
366 · Mar 2017
Captive Bone Bag (A Riddle)
It's a place where I lose myself
A palace, a chateau even
It's where my eyes ache
And I become a heathen

It's a leech, it suctions
To my leg in my left pocket
I defeat its functions
When I cease and lock it

It's a place where migraines spawn
Where I am a wandering fawn
Alone and heartbroken
Waiting for a word to be spoken

But there isn't a single one
Nothing uttered from my tongue
Just a device that becomes
My leader and my god

Its function is to reduce
Me and to produce
A captive bone bag
"what am i?"
364 · Dec 2016
observ(her)
to observe the observer
is to love and to serve her

as her bottom lip secedes from the top,
i still my thoughts til they stop

To belong to the observer
is to long observe her

It is to experience her analysis,
brushing her hair in wait for her synthesis

Covered in logic and reason
her critique or thought comes out
and though it can bring painful change in season
hearing it is the only righteous route

To listen to the observer
is to be challenged by her

to take her challenge is to listen with humble ears
to take her challenge is to gain wisdom for years

This is what it means to love and to hold her
to observe my beautiful, sweet observer
349 · Jul 2018
I'm a big Spanish mistake
I'm a big Spanish mistake
And sometimes I'm just a mistake
Sometimes I am so burdened with the imposition of others upon me
Sometimes I simply cannot see
Past all of my shortcomings

They break down a flimsy wall, built up by the absence of harm
And then when harm happens,
The walls come tumbling down, and you are left seeing a version of me
That I don't want anyone to see

Much less the entire world
Much less the eyes I look into at my job
Much less the students I try to help as if I'm not an idiot

I am my mistakes
We are inseparable
And once I lose them, and I learn how not to make them,
I can help others who used to make those mistakes
And use that grace I so sorely needed when I made them
Because you can't leave the world with the mess that you found it in
You have to make it better

You can't expect everyone to be a teacher
You can't expect everyone to be a good teacher
Even though everyone should have grace

Just keep telling yourself it'll eventually get better
And it will
Either by happenstance or supplication, it'll just happen.

It's easy to forget how far I've come
Sitting here in a place I've driven to,
In a car I've purchased,
With a license I've earned
With a job I've kept for 7 years,
Writing on a computer I've bought with my own money,
Writing in a language that I didn't learn when I was a child

I'm not just my mistakes,
I am my successes
And I'm how they are handled
And I'm How I handle them
And I am how I handle my failures as well. (as well as my successes)
And yet

I'm neither
I'm somehow expected to be this third, emergent thing:
Human

And perhaps that is what it is to be human

To be encompassed by one's failures,
So helplessly encompassed by them
So terribly encompassed by them,
As well as our successes

I am a collection of the two
Yet neither
i have a really hard time dealing with ******* up, maybe you can relate.
348 · Feb 2017
the day washed in blood
Here it comes, and it comes like a flood
The day we wash, we've washed with blood

It's covered in red, crimson, and scarlet
It's when I'm a *****, a *******, a harlot

Here it passes, coming ashes to ashes
Chocolates fill up our stashes and stashes

We give them in eros, love, and romance
Then we strut, sway, and dance

Around the questions and inquiries
Of will they be? Won't they be?

In the end it equals zero and naught
Leaves us in pain, disdain, distraught

One day we'll recover, unite, and heal
When the pain isn't hidden and concealed

Come down, calm down, and finally descend
Your high horse is at its exit, its death, its end
check out those synonyms doe
lover of love's long lost history
you are so intrinsically dear to me
and i know you can hear the beat
when our hands go blistering

i love the neapolitan but not naples
listen to how the city sings like the others
but she buys time and barely bothers
to remove her appropriating staples

she is a reflection
of a reflection
of a reflection
of a reflection

but you, my dear neapolitans,

how holistically human you happen to be
and what a human thing to do
to braid oneself with a few
ventricles of other hearts unseen

you are not special insofar as you are human
and the home you make mistakes you
for a permanent resident, assumes you
are a planted person whose sole purpose is bloomin

but you are dynamic, not static
you do not live in someone's attic
you move around, the ground beneath you
isn't bequeathed to staying beneath you,

you

keep moving and loving and all of the aboving
because our love isn't something
that can be taken away by a location change
or how 21,000 hearts are arranged
this is just a love letter to the people in my hometown. i hope you enjoy
344 · Apr 2017
PR (Explicit)
It's been more than a hundred years now
Since I started coming home and ****** you

When I first started, you used to look like yourself
Now you're a mix of me and you

Do you even resemble yourself anymore?
Do you still look in the mirror anymore?
Do you see yourself in you still?

I, the ******* man in this relationship
Won you as a prize. You're a token.
I've put you through all this ****
And as a result, you're just broken

You're not ******* on the **** like a child
You were given to me when you were weak and wild

Weak and mild, you never got a chance to thrive by yourself
See, I wasn't the first man to ******* over

Look at that history, baby
Look at that long line of Spaniard influence

I've felt you up,
Walked your mountains,
Seen your castles,
Traversed your beaches,
Been shown your Capitol,

And I don't weep for those Tainos
I saw pictures of them on your walls;
What's that about? Do you still love them?
You better not show your love to anyone else, you hear?
Are you here? Are you listening? Well, listen up.
I said: You shall have no lovers before me, you hear?

See, I'm a jealous god. I rule you, you understand?
Or should I say, tu entiendes? Is that better?
You get me now? You feel me now?

Well I haven't stopped feeling you.
In fact, I'm sending over my colleagues
To feel you too

Here,
Have my big pharma
Have my baggage
Have my tourists
Have my people
Have my taxes
Have no representation
Have none of the benefits
Ten decepcion

Ay, si, que decepcion

Look at yourself. Do you even speak Spanish anymore?
Do you still remember how to?

Come on, just forget about that.
I can't speak it, and you know it's disrespectful
To speak it in front of people who can't
So just don't

Matter fact, all I'ma allow you to do is sit there

And take it

Take it like the ***** I made you into
Take it like I've conditioned you to
Take it and don't argue with me
Take it, or I'll toss you to the sea

You don't wanna drift off, now, do you?
You see, come June, you'll have to choose
Now what exactly are you gonna do?
I never stop pondering it, too

Like what will happen when you tell me you want to break up?
You think I'm gonna take it? You've got it backwards:
You take it in this relationship--not me

And what happens if you wanna be respected?
Do you really expect it
To force me to give you back everything I stole from you?

Well, I cannot say I know what will happen either
But be realistic: don't expect me to stop hurting you
It's what I do
I visited Puerto Rico once to figure out how the people there wanted things to be and whether or not they were satisfied with how things were right now. I got a lot of mixed answers, but this poem is basically my synthesis of those findings and my observations on that trip.

note: the narrator is America. This metaphor of husband and wife, abuser and abused, is borrowed from a poet called Propaganda, who used it to describe the relationship between America and black people.
336 · Jul 2018
It's easy
To conflate
being in love
With
being happy

The latter so
Often eludes me
But I fall in love
Almost every week

Which is greater?
The love
Or
The joy?

Contentness?
Or
Companionship?

Normally
The two muses
Make residence
At the same time

And they leave me
In the same way

I'm either happy
And in love
Or depressed
And lonely

So, yes, it's easy
To conflate the two, yet
I fall in love with you
All the more
Written 6/21/18
Just moments after the eye stops staring insatiably at us
You can hear the flicking on of all those machines
As you walk down the flooded streets so slow
The violinists pull the strings, and on they go
One to the left of us, three to the right
Two in front of us, and none to the behind

The conductors swing their arms
The symphony clangs, alarms
Lighting up the homes and the tv screens
Chilling the musicians, and the shaky beams
Walk around some more, you'll hear one hit a low C
While you slosh through the street's home sea
if anyone cares, I haven't been posting here because I haven't been writing. I've only been experiencing.
Specifically, I've been experiencing Hurricane Irma and the aftermath thereof. This is a poem about that aftermath. I hope you enjoy it.
308 · Dec 2017
Mythos Perasmenos
Nothing is real like it used to
Be, no myth exists that
Projects a profound
Truth
A myth or a story gone by
301 · Apr 2017
a love letter to Creativity
I'll wait for you right here
So when you come near
I'll be ready to hear what you have to say

Okay, I'm ready now
Go 'head, do your bow
Get on with what you have to say

I'm listening intently
Just speak earnestly
So I can finally hear what you have to say

Well, go on, speak up, friend!
Are you afraid of becoming a trend?
Do you not want me to hear what you have to say?

Well, that's not fair to me
Do you not live to serve me?
Just speak, now, I’m dying to hear what you have to say

What is this? Are you crying?
Will you just sit there, denying
That your duty is to tell me what you have to say?

Well, it is your job to do just that
Stop being so modest and flat
Speak up! I can't hear what you have to say!

You're good and true
I know this about you
I just want to know what you have to say

It sounds like I'm bargaining
When I should just be demanding
You to (sometime soon) tell me what you have to say

I've sat down without your insight
Trying to think of a song I could write
But I couldn't hear what you had to say

Where were you in those times?
Why'd I make those ****** rhymes?
You know why? 'Cause I couldn't hear what you had to say

Creativity, stop being shy, and come
Give me something with which I can run
Just give me anything! I'm starved for what you have to say

Don't you recognize your lack of choice?
I speak for you, you have no voice
But I need to hear you first, to hear what you have to say

Go ahead, I’m waiting
Stop your ceaseless debating
kind of abstract but i imagine still easy to understand. this is about the way you feel after creating something and misunderstanding the fact that you need to wait and listen before you create another thing. make note of the fact that I use the word "hear" a lot. this represents the bastardization of what I should actually be doing: listening (not just hearing what creativity has to say)
295 · May 2017
relentless
The relentless passage of time will one day ****** me
But until then it murders me still

You and I once passed each other on this sidewalk,
Walking in the same direction
We created love between us and we watched it grow
We kindled it like it was our mission to see the flame
Become bigger than something either of us could ever make
individually

Yet I stand here, alone, on my side of the road
Watching you walk by and continue living

You've taken the pieces of me I entrusted with you
And I watched this fire extinguish
It feels like I'm standing still while
all the world keeps revolving
And you along with it

I feel like a third observer, untouched by space and time,
Taking the relative aspect of experience out of Einstein's equations

And I can see the passage of time
And I can see myself and you and us and the flame that you blew out
And there, I see you walk past me,
Murdering us

The whole world remains while I wait for my recovery
Why can't it stop with me while I wait?
Why couldn't we have grown together?
Where does the space which lovers lofty make
Dissipate?

I travel back into my body, and recognize my objective view
As an intrinsically subjective one of you
And I have to keep walking
Just as relentlessly as time and you pass
290 · Mar 2017
muse behind the counter
You're petite while you get your chores done
You've got a palindrome for a name and a smile that knocks me out
You're the subject of my quick fantasies
Where do you go, muse behind the counter?
When you're not making coffee for customers
Do you harbor refugees and protect them?
Do you vote for fascists in Novembers?
Does your heart break like mine does for American colonies?
Do you ever dream of the people behind other coffee counters?
This account of the muse behind the counter is best left untouched
Untainted
While you're those thousands of centimeters away from me, that's where you'll stay, in dreamland.
I notice your beauty involuntarily
It clamors at me
You spread one message about yourself throughout the world

"I am beautiful"

"I am human"

I hope you believe it too

I have no other option but to agree with your smile
Which demands my surrender and I succumb

Muse behind the counter, do you love yourself?
Do you admire the beauty which is so evident to me right now?
Do you hold up high hopes of the future,
And pray for justice to come?

But the truth is, I do not see you in my fantasies
I see reflections of my desires
I see expressions of expectations
And they happen as involuntarily as my admiration of your beautiful bun
How it reaches taller than you ever could!
How you don't know I'm writing about you right now, as you put another pastry in the oven.
one time i saw a pretty girl with a nice smile at a Starbucks
277 · Jul 2017
Little Masons
Little masons building, little masons killing
Little masons yielding, little masons wielding
Their swords, tools, and daggers to construct
A wall between trees, as one deconstructs

Little masons like little demons, propelling
Little masons like little ******, love-quelling
An oceanic romance between weathered trees
Leaving broken branches, making debris

Little masons performing their duties
Little masons collecting their rubies
For the hard-work they did today
Leaving two tongue-tied trees slain

Little masons dividing throbbing hearts
Little masons throwing away broken parts
Little masons complete with rapture
Little masons impede love's capture

Little masons like homogenous poles
Little masons making holes in two wholes
272 · Dec 2016
O, Great Reunion
Hurry up, and run if you can!
Make sure to make your way to the white van
It's your hope to get to her, it's the love to give to her
It's the heart that's throbbing, and these moments robbing

Down those roads you go
And onto the last
'Round those turns so slow
And to her arms alas

Those thin fair arms give life
They throne you, reduce strife
Your heart beats, and hers as well
The love sounds like a ringing bell

O, great reunion, that of lovers
To reward, renew, and finally recover
From the loss of time we spent apart
To join each other by hand and finally by heart
268 · Nov 2018
she dreams about me
She dreams about me
Even when the reality
Stands in front of her
(and I go) blunting her

Brain full of large doses of toxins
Namely serotonin is boxed in
Her skull, leaking through eyes
She will always theorize

Romanticizing the next moment
What could it possibly be made of?
Doesn't see the chances are so thin,
Why I give her such a lame hug

My heart, stolen by Hebraic Italy
Hers, raptured; a martyr for me
Mine, 700 miles away
Hers, wishing I would stay

And positive pulls negative
Pulls positive pulls negative
And I am slain to go to Tally
And not give heed to her rally
RSW
CLT
CAE
Roof
Sun
Moon
Corona
Moon
Sun
Roof
CAE
CLT
RSW
This is my first palindromic poem. It's about my trip from Southwest Florida to Columbia, South Carolina to be in the line of totality for the solar eclipse of 2017.
250 · Mar 2018
'Tis now or never
Sing, poet Presley! for you are right
'Tis now or never to hold them tight

'Tis now that the heart acts like a wild animal
Trying to break out of its tired cage

'Tis now or never to seize and kiss
Or let ferment and age

'Tis this fleeting moment, passing so swift
That yet paralyzes and perilyzes me

'Tis this, to be enamored with you
And to hold you at a distance

'Tis for distance sake, as we are both
Fur and far apart

But quell your aching heart
For now is not opportune

Neither philosophy nor location
Are terribly in tune

And whether congruency is even possible
For someone like me

Is largely irrelevant for us.
For my lips beg for your lips' touch

So, poet Presley; first name Elvis,
Have we passed into the future,

making now the past?
Do we live in the never?

Why negate when such a strong feeling
Wells within me?

When it could just as easily
Be stored for them later.

Are not things worth waiting for
Worth waiting for?
who has two thumbs and remembers how to write romantic poetry


(this guy)
247 · Feb 2018
An Inescapable Right Now
He turned to me and said, "It just creeps up on you, the way it creeps up on you."
12 hours into your day, you feel inadequate and less than death
And I understood this, so I nodded my head in his direction

"I built up my entire identity"
On many singular things

And it's just so hard right now
"To identify who I am"

Under all this skin "and bone
And a too-caffeinated" heart

Pumping blood so loudly
I'm unable to hear myself

             "think"

And the gray "floods over me"
And I forget what it is to have color

What these cones in my eyes
Were really meant to perceive

And as if there is something able to be discerned by human minds
I turned to him and said, "I know so little about this world
And how it works, but I do know the meant to be"

And "you are not" that grayness
Penetrating your skin, bleeding through your clothes

"And" those eyes that used to shine hazel
Because it's "not what" you're meant to be

It's not who you are "forever"
It is an inescapable "right now"

And those words are too silly and cliché
For me to employ in a real way

So I use them ironically
Knowing that a cliché is a cliché

Because it was able to communicate
At its core some sort of truth

So people repeated it, as if
Repeating by itself creates truth

And at that moment we both realized that each other's eyes
Were brown and blinking in tandem and I could see it  
In both of our eyes a burning question

"Why do we let people affect us this way?"

As if we have a choice
246 · Apr 2018
verano terminado
Extraño los olores del verano
Antes de su fin temprano

El champú impregnando mi carro
Camino a la iglesia, vamos,

No sonrías todo el rato
No será muy largo

Veo asomar tu sonrisa
Sí, tienes razón, chiquita

Si, hay algo,
O, ¿me habré equivocado?

Pero se detuvo, sin embargo
(Como nosotros), el verano
this is a translation of my poem "summer smells"
226 · Jun 2017
the god of a tribe
Great enough to whisper in the ears of extremists?
So great he told you to leave me?
How great is the god who does not belong to me?
All you whom this god belongs to, sing with the singer
How great is this god?

How great is this god that he would lay silent
While millions are disenfranchised?
In whom is he whispering now?
To the abolitionists or the traders?
How great is this god?

When those who picket funerals
picket weddings too
Is this god ever so present with them?
Is this god in you when you keep me up at night
And tell me the last two years have been for nothing?

Name above all nomenclature
Worthy of the praise of those whom this god belongs to
Apparently, even I will sing how great
Is this god

And how about that time when we were close to each other
And we started talking about people of the same *** loving one another
Did you notice the miles that immediately spawned between us
As soon as you placed the dividing wall between us
We shot away from each other like we had no other choice
Like positive magnet to positive pole

And now, apparently, we are to listen to this voice
Of a god who's apparently worthy of the praise of those
Whom this god belongs to
And apparently even I will sing how great
Is this god

All you whom this god belongs to, sing with the singer
About how great is this god
And ask this rhetorical question
Without ever actually having to do
Any thinking

Name above all nomenclature
Apparently is too great for words
Obviously goes beyond cultural conceptions
Intrinsically dies at the wrong hills
Clearly lies through his teeth

And apparently I will even sing
How great is this god
When I am dead and in an afterlife
I will notice how wrong I was
In saying this god couldn't be

Apparently I will even sing
With the singer
And we will reminisce about
How I was a fundamentalist
When I got things "right"

There is power in finding worth
By subtracting it from others
And when my name is separate
From the Divine, I
Fail to be great

Anthony, so far from god's name,
Nomenclature poised to be lesser
Belongs to a being whose divinity is lesser
And wholly separate
From this god

Name above all nomenclature
Worthy of the praise of those whom this god belongs to
The singer's heart goes out to you,
Grows a mouth and sings, "how great
Is this god?"

I fear a better question would be where
Is this god?
And is this god loving?
Can he and I be loving together
Can I be loved?

What is arbitrary greatness but the same exclusive club
You ascribe to when you posit that it is not my god
Nor your god
Not the god of every human being
But the god of a tribe

"our god"
this poem is a reflection on the last six months of my life through a subtle satire of the song "How Great Is Our God?"
225 · Dec 2016
monster
There's a monster inhabiting my home
Where he came from, I don't know
Just a few weeks ago
He appeared

I heard him grumbling in the basement
While I lie awake in my bed
Above him, listening for him to stop

I wonder if he'll go as mysteriously as he came
I wonder if he's lived with me all along.
I almost want to go back to the days of old
When I didn't know
A monster slept down wind of me

I'm afraid of that crooked building
Dear Circumstance, don't make me go back there
It's hard enough existing away from that house

The monster is desperate for his opinion
To be right
He will either swallow that home whole
Or humble himself

I pray humility breaks apart his feelings of territory
Ownership of land and body

Lest that creature dissipates,
I am afraid of my home
224 · Apr 2018
mantra six
feelings that are corroborated
are somehow more real
than those that are hidden
224 · Nov 2017
No God Inside Nor Without
"If we meet no gods it is because we harbor none"
And I thought by now I would have garnered one

And how convenient it is to have a god
So in my groups I wouldn't be so odd

An atheist among theists is just as alone
As a peasant being given a throne

Ostracized by the nobles, yet above them
Given the duty to rule and to love them

Once I am done giving egregious groans
I can start standing straight these stones

If my heart cracked open and spilled around
It would drown a town in coffee grounds

And once we rummage through its rubble
No gods would burst from my bubble

No god inside nor without
Only solitude and doubt
222 · May 2018
Another mantra continued
Do you remember when this town belonged to you?
I do

But things aren't what they were

And what's the point of droning about this point?

What have you got to mourn?

The idea in your head
Of the people you left
When you went two hours away
And where they had to stay

You just don't know what to do with yourself
And your feelings,
But that's not new

Rest easy
Be still
And know
Things are gonna be okay

Even if the job *****
Even if the average age of the town you live in is 67
Even if it takes a while to get back into the flow
Even if the flow isn't what you want in life

It's where you are
And it's your job to affirm that position

Because it's all poetry
And it all belongs
If memory serves me well, and it normally doesn't, this is an iteration of my earlier poem "Mantra (one)", written about a year ago today.
am i the
tree in the wood
that goes unnoticed
whose purpose
is mis
under
stood
214 · Nov 2018
I have found myself
Oh the naivete in my own eyes
Bursting with purpose
It's tangible, palpable
Like the jelly in a too-full sandwich

I am more me than yesterday
And the day before

I have lost parts
And rebuilt with the remainder
I have developed
And found fluid foundation

I was once both the crushing hand
And the cocoon within it
Now I am the blossomed
And the released

I've let go
And I have found myself
the original draft in English of my last poem
213 · Jul 2017
The Eternal Struggle
In a meadow stands a flower
Over whom most things atower
And he is subject to the wily wind,
A devilish thing which rescinds
Then blows again like fans,
Oscillating their hands

The flower crumbles under Emotive oppression,
The wind pressing on him to go north
He obeys the force which forces him
And he flings back

In a trough or in a peak
Rendered meek or weak
The flower subject to whim
Is put to death by the wind

Yet on another day still
The wind falls through a hill
Reaches the flower and
Uplifts him with its farther hand

And in either case the flower,
Broken down by the wind
Or built up by it,
Is nothing but a product thereof

Perhaps he could've grown stronger
Maybe a good day would go on longer
Perchance his dance with his oppressor
Could resemble fixedness lesser

The wind possesses him yet blesses him
It transfers its goodness and its malice
His petals will be gifted with oxygen
Or fly off, like ridden callous
an underdeveloped metaphor for feeling controlled by your emotions instead of the other way around
213 · Dec 2017
You,
Have inflicted wounds and left me to suture
And labor to create my own future
An excerpt of something bigger, and less popular
209 · Jul 2017
You Are
The unspoken lifeblood that flows through
The unknowable area of the heart responsible for love

The unimpeachable heat that melts down
The bitterest moments which compose a hardened heart

The spark of a myth which propels
The deepest desires toward a path of prolonged partnership
when ur a sad individual but sometimes you write love poetry
209 · Feb 2018
Depression in '18
Indistinguishable from the bed on which I lay
Or is it lie?
I

Am opening my eyes to see the light of day
But only after night
-time

And the mucus seals my eyelids shut
And I have to ask
Crass

Did I ever wake up in the first place?
As a drone droning (, I)
Sing

In a cubic room with plenty of nothing
In an unknown town (, I)
Drown

And forget the glorious hustle
For which I groan
Alone

Eyes shut and bleeding from a screen
The Netflix streaming (, I'm)
Dreaming

Of being elsewhere, like a home, or the like
Having passion so closely
To me

But I'm acquainted with neither the past
Nor the present night,
I

Exist somewhere in between
204 · Mar 2018
To insist instead of exist
Close enough to kiss
Well enough to love

Let that thought insist
And float right above

Two could be lovers
Two would be lovers

Still left with that feeling
That repeating fleeting

Goes seeping through
My eyes to you

Who speaks first?
Who delves last?

Who digs up
Decrepit past?

Who lays these
Boundaries?

You

Or

Me?
Shout out to Peter Rollins and pyrotheology
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