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Sarah Michelle Apr 2019
She is organized in a way that is unfathomable,
An alluring contradiction with the eyes of a madwoman
On the body of a laid-back cat.
You try to ****** her but she is everywhere above you
And every night when you meet her
She already has you trapped inside with everyone else
who is propelled by her many solar systems.

You watch her when she appears dormant.
You can try to calculate her patterns,
But since you met her she has worn nine different faces,
And she dresses as too many species to name
Yet you may think she is tame.
This is true, she does less damage than she is capable of,
So test her limits but remember that
The universe has no edge.

She is curved and always expanding.
You can’t decide if she is too fat or just the right size
Because she is shapeless and swimming before your eyes.
Her stars are many but her constellations are uneventful.
She bursts her stars like whiteheads
And swallows herself up in the muddy, black potholes left behind.

Her galaxies overlap too much to be teased apart.
Each sun has its own ideas about gravity
And claims each others’ planets as their own.
This is not a harem though for she is not polyamorous.
Worse, they are tessellating love triangles.

Love for her is like politics only there is only one wing, one branch
And all parts are just a sum of her.
She couldn’t love you even if she wanted to.
There is already too much for her to maintain,
Too much to spread evenly across your small body
And too much for even God to see.

You’re not an astronomer, a telescope is a peep show to you
You lie in your hammock seeking instant gratification, all of her all at once.
Even if she were simply one of those stars
She wouldn’t travel light-years for you.

You think you know her, the brightest star above you,
The one you stare at thinking she is staring at you,
The one who flips her hair like the other girls you like,
Who all share the burden of giving you
The satisfaction of having something to flirt at,
Something glorious to form into feeble prey
With your small, shallow eyes, and which you use to glorify
Your own simple machine of a body.
Rewrite of "an earlier poem called "Somebody Else."
Sarah Michelle Apr 2019
You deserve that new leopard print dress
you bought to straighten your figure.
You’re tired of A-line dresses that hide your broad hips.
Your new dress has no form, but it clings to you
Like an ex-boyfriend whom you deserve better than.
Your new life is doesn’t replace the old one; they are co-dominant traits.
The fact that it feels new has nothing to do with
The new threads hanging on your shoulders, weightless but slightly burdensome.
Your face is older but it looks better to you.
You sweat less in these drafty spaghetti straps, and when you do
The beads don’t reach the edge of the armholes;
They just keep sliding down to your hips.
This is natural for you and if you would just let your hips dance
You would find the sweat cools their pink-hot heat.
You may be sore afterward, but your mind is usually sore anyway
From recalculating and budgeting your love.
Sarah Michelle Apr 2019
You are steam, a romantic thing--
Silent, hot, always moving,
Ever-present where there is heat,
Life-giving substance and abundance,
Where there is tension and congestion.

But you are the kind of steam
That comes out of a humidifier
Your healing powers come from
A store-bought jug,
Worth less than a dollar.

Distilled--lacking in others’
Emotional impurities,
The little minerals that give the rest
Of us compassion and soul

Children try to play with you--
They engulf your furls in their mouths
Then open them and let you go, like dragons.
You linger in the air for winter.

I don’t know about her,
But I’m not sick anymore
Thank you for clearing this mucus
From my lungs.
Sarah Michelle Apr 2019
The wind tries to control our ribbons.
They blow across the dirt,
Not quite light enough to be lifted,
And they crawl at our feet,
Whispering of our potential
Trying to break our defenses
With their mouthless words.
The ribbons want to tie us together
In a pretty bow, on top of a big,
Materialistic present,
But we are only as vulnerable
As the expensive electronic inside.

Sometimes they don’t make a bow,
But weave around our ankles
And up our thighs,
Pressing our hips together,
A group hug of sorts.
We no longer know how to fight,
But we do the closer we get,
And we can’t decide whose
Fault this is.

We can blame metaphors or love,
But either way, we are just too
Knotted together,

Our only weapons blunt scissors.
We try to tear ourselves away
Whilst making out.
How many of us are there?
It’s hard for me to tell--
I push one away and begin kissing another,
But they are all just friends--
Or friendly acquaintances?

Maybe it’s just me the ribbons have *******
And everyone else just happened to be there
When they did.
Sarah Michelle Apr 2019
Do I know myself?
This girl with her doe eyes
And blonde hair;
She might have a lot going on.
Otherwise, she might be a liar--
After all this time,
Still convinced she’s never committed
A crime against another person’s heart.
Who really knows
What damage a girl has done?
She doesn’t even remember.
She takes everyone’s word for it,
And the whole world says
There’s nothing wrong.

Those eyes,
They are baby blues
That sing the blues.
Boy, does she look sad.
Not a week goes by
That she doesn’t waste by counting
The number of eyelashes
That fall out of her little head--
Two at a time
Yet as gradually as running out of time.
At night she pleads for excitement
That doesn’t entail
That deer-in-the-headlights feeling.

Has a funny way of creeping up.
It’s like there are two magnets,
And she is both.
The “wrong” side of one magnet
Yearns for the “wrong” side
Of the other magnet,
Yet they push each other away.
Likewise, she pushes herself apart.

She’s also learned that
Stuff you’re afraid to do
Happens anyway,
Like the “right” side of the magnet
Sticking to the aforementioned “wrong” side
Of the other magnet.
Things come together
When you do as you please--
It feels so wrong to let opposites attract,
But it is oh-so-right.
She needs to realize
she is not Jekyll and Hyde.

Wrongness is relative anyway--
Those eyes may seem too dark
Or too green
Or too gray
To a different person--
As for me, how I love them so.

When she bats her lashes
I can only imagine
They sound like a bat’s wings;
A rush of air beneath
Every rise and fall,
Heard only by the keenest ears.
But this memory doesn’t have
the same power as an act of self-loathing
Nor that deer-in-the-headlights feeling.
In my reflection,
She bats her lashes
but I still drown in hatred
For those stupid, doe eyes.

My heart has built a factory
Whose main exports are
Fallacies that have a dreadful way
Of creeping up
Behind my every thought and word,
Their paws locked in the snow,
Poised for a one-on-one battle
With Sanity.

I look in the mirror and think,
Boy, does she look angry.
Not a year goes by
Without some sort of inner vandalism.
She joins a stampede,
Runs without stopping
By the river to drink.
It tramples every blade of love left in her.
It crashes every flower she grows
So that she will never see
The beauty she bestows upon the world.
When she finally does stop by the river to drink,
And the bucks continue to run through it,
Her reflection is distorted.
The doe doesn’t wait for the water to
Become still again.

I call her Jane Doe
Because she doesn’t remember who she is,
And because her doe eyes
Are the only thing about her
That isn’t like a blank canvas.
Sometimes when she looks at me
I can only see my reflection;
We become one as we are meant to be.
I paint my body with compliments.
I can see myself
Draw lines across my skin.
There was a time when I pressed too hard
And the lines scabbed over.

But I am forgiven,
Because wrongness is relative
And when I envision myself,
This is what I wish I could see:
A mix of positive and negative,
Both sides of the magnet--
Never repelling each other,
Attracting one another--
A field of anger, of blues
Of lashes and bats’ wings
Of one-on-one battles
Of scabs, of humor,
Of crime against the heart,
Of no more time left to restart
Of irregular rhyme-schemes
And unfamiliarity

I don’t know myself,
This girl with her doe eyes--
This girl with her green eyes--
Or are they blue?
Or gray?
Or black?
Or brown?
I bat my lashes and I drown.
Sarah Michelle Apr 2019
She says she has an opening
At 9:15 a.m. Thursday morning.
Whose permission do I need
To respond to what is essentially
My own request, my own persistence,
My own action. Do I regret it
Or don’t I?
Do I dare to eat this peach?
Do I dare to bring this moment--
At 9:15 Thursday morning--
To its crisis?
Will the mermaids still not sing to me
When I become less willing to drown,
Or will they sing louder than for
Anyone else, for want of that
Which they cannot have?
I will arrive at 9:15 a.m.
On Thursday morning
With the bottoms of my trousers rolled,
Not to dip my feet into the
Misleadingly temperate waters,
But to show a counselor
The over-worn, many-colored
And many-patterned
Socks that I wear
Much too often,
And she will tell me
It’s warm enough outside
To just wear sandals.
Sarah Michelle Oct 2018
I will do the things
I'm afraid to do

I will drive a car without thinking of
Hydroplaning and rear-endings
I will carve my name into walls
Without thinking about vandalism
I will write this poem on my phone in the bath
Without thinking about electrocution
I will talk to the tall looming figure,
Whoever they may be,
Without looking down on myself
I will read you this poem
Without thinking its even true
I will tell my friends I love them
Without needing them to need me
To love them
 I will tell everyone I'm scared
Without thinking about it being true
I will leave home
Without thinking about comfort
I will get a job
That isn't always comfortable
I will make things that don't have power
Without thinking they need to have power
I will flirt and fall into some arms
Without thinking about the falling part
Or whose arms they are
And I will make love
And I will push away my love
And I will make love with someone else
Without making myself think about
The others I've made love to

But I will think about the others
I've made love to
Because they may not always seem worth
The fear I had to drown in
In order to gasp for air
And I will quit my uncomfortable job
Because I will think I have the right
To never be sweaty under the eyes and arms
And I will delete my friends
Because I stopped talking to them
A year ago when I made love the last time
and quit my job
And I will move back home
And I will stop driving myself elsewhere
And I will stop letting the world know
I have a name
And I will stop writing poems in the bath
And I will stop taking baths,
And I will stop writing poems

And I will try to do these things
I'm afraid to do.
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