You never knew the garden
I grew from within
or the ripe honeysuckles
intertwined with my ribs
you never pressed your mouth
to my pink primrose lips
or felt your hands laced
between my fern fingertips
you never saw the buttercups
brim behind my eyes
or the soft blue forget-me-nots
speckling my thighs
you never heard my voice
not a laugh, not a word
so don’t tell me I’m missing
what you found in her.
another reworked poem
“i. the tall, brown-eyed
philosopher with tousled hair and
endless supply of sarcastic comments;
stolen sweaters and car rides and
cartoons. sipping hot cocoa
out of Star Wars mugs, study dates,
playing hide and seek
in Walmart, hugs that
made me feel whole
******* in his passenger seat because
he "needed it”;
a lonely winter learning
he did not love me and
a season spent intertwined
with a boy who could not
fill the void in my chest.
ii. golden hair, ocean eyes,
sunkissed skin and downtown flea markets.
threading my fingers between his
sharing poems over skype
iced coffee and patched denim and
fresh yellow flowers stashed in my locker.
hugging in the hallway,
silly love notes and soft smiles and
laughing so hard my ribs hurt.
a sensation of warmth that could rival
a subtle disconnection
i held his heart in my palm and
let it slip
i still carry the guilt in my fingertips
shoulder-length hair, i
fell in love with the way he said my name
strange, unrecognizable on his lips, ringing
each syllable like a pink-petal
a thrift store parking lot, draped
across his lap, one hand in my hair,
the other around my heart;
stolen kisses at stoplights. shivering and
holding each other so closely
we might never unravel
disintegrating. his anger withering away
my heartstrings; familiar pain and
longing to be held
bitter tears and night air
stroking my hair
in place of the way
his hands made me
old poem reworked
I elbowed the universe
when I saw it flirting
with you as if I wasn’t
also capable of
sunrises and waterfalls.
These shifting continents
tried to pull you away
so with these hands of purpose
I began shifting the stars
to draft love letters
left above for all to see that
I can outworld this earth,
our sun and
the relentless seas
all asking to touch your skin
just as much as
Who taught us to be so
reckless? I never kiss and tell
but we’re exhaling secrets like stars
into the night air. He’s laughing at my stories and
I’m taking in the sight: sun-kissed skin and
messy brown hair, peach chapstick lips parting slightly
when I press them to mine. Spontaneous Bravery. I‘m
catching him blush then falling face-first for a
stranger, the silly boy from the bagel shop but
Does he really see me?
the bruises and lonely eyes, hands
grasping at his t-shirt when he says goodnight.
a desperate creature. He’s standing so close but
I’m begging to be closer, please
I don’t want to be alone.
i don’t want to fall in love
i want to step into it, slowly
like a shower on a monday
morning. warm, easy-on-the
the bones. softness, two hands
to hold and a mouth to tell me
stories. someone to whisper
“what-ifs” across the wire and
fill the kitchen with kisses
and strawberry cake
i don’t want to fall in love,
i want to make it.
Lock the doors,
**** the engine.
There’s a storm coming.
Heavy scent of hunger and humidity,
rain against the roof, the rhythm we fall into
slowly, a little stronger with each breath.
You come closer, whispering like thunder
in my ear so soft,
I have always been weak in the face
of cruel fingers and gentle mouths,
but you are undoing me
and I cannot resist
keep your distance.
i'm not sure i could survive you
a second time.