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Apr 2016 · 447
enough
Ellie Stelter Apr 2016
and every time I looked
a stranger in the eyes
and saw the flickering
of what could be cannot
compare to the strange
wonder of no longer being
alone...what I have now
is a chair in a hospital room
and folded blankets
left on couches, the
greatest gifts I ever could
have received.
it is enough, now, that I
have loved you and have
been loved. it is enough
to allow for the rest of
my life, and enough to
convince me to live -
to give up that fear,
that argument, that
passionless sorrow. All
those books I read
that spoke of a love
that triumphed over
all fear, I thought I knew
what those words meant.
I have not scraped even the
beginnings of the atoms
that compose that
great love. What would it
take, to become some
one who truly believed?
It would take heart
ache, and it would take
fear, and it would take
holding your hand
through all of this, and
here I am, and finally,
I believe.
Sep 2015 · 429
joy
Ellie Stelter Sep 2015
joy
here i am now: here
i am, some kind
of almost-happy,
some kind of
no-longer-sad.
perhaps it will
come back, but
i don't care anymore.
i have beaten out
sadness before. i
have outlived
disbelief, doubt,
anger, fear: i can
fight them back
all over again,
now that i know
i'm not alone.
here i am now:
here is some kind
of restless joy,
here some kind
of peace.
Sep 2015 · 684
end-of-summer rain
Ellie Stelter Sep 2015
it’s been a night for the books
one of those times when i just
hit the ground running and forgot
how to know when to stop

now i’m riding out the edge of my last high,
working on some way to live forever tonight
at peace with where i’ve landed
proud of how i’ve handled it

driving home alone through the arboretum
rain-smell coming in through vents, and him
barely in my head anymore, shadows
of trees waving through the windows

i won’t let myself become a god
to some kid in a grown-up facade
i’m not perfect or powerful
i’m not here to be beautiful

there’s been girls and there’s been boys
and they’ve been real or they’ve been toys
but i’m letting them all go, murmuring
i won’t let myself fall in love with remembering

i want it to stick with me like those dreams
that threaten to burst the sky’s seams
hanging on my shoulders all day,
washing the real world away.

i want them to see the universes i hold in me,
i want them to need what i need,
i want to wade into the water waist-deep
and never come out, just float in the sea

as soon as we’re apart, their voices crescendo
like tidal waves from far away and long ago,
vibrations that I know are real,
but no longer care to feel.
Feb 2015 · 430
static
Ellie Stelter Feb 2015
when I get sad,
I told my therapist,
it's like static.
it drowns out
my thoughts. it numbs
my skin.
it makes the ocean seem
like a beautiful place
to spend eternity, it
makes blood want to rush
like music and my heart
wants to swell full
of chords and fervor
but it can't. that static
drowns it all out.
when I am happy there is
humming, there are symphonies,
in golden light
I dance with friends
and lovers,
but the static isn't switched off.
it's still there like an old TV
in the back corner
of a forgotten basement room
and when I get sad
I leave the sunlight leave
the party and go
and sit and I stare
at the static on that TV
and it fills my head
and my eyes and
my whole body up with
fear and longing and
a great big static-y void.
then
I wake one morning
in my own bed full
of static memories
still fuzzy
around the edges
but alive.
one day I will go
to that place far
beyond any sound
and the vibrations my heart beat out
will join the background
hum of the universe
disrupting radios
the energy that once was me
will be a single note
a little song,
a silent melody,
forever, and I will be
free from static.
Jan 2015 · 477
eve
Ellie Stelter Jan 2015
eve
i've got a new life coming
tomorrow will dawn bright
and i will awake with breath
in my lungs as i have never
breathed before. future's closer
than ever now, who i could be
is becoming me. but the heart
beats in my chest flood me
with blood too warm, pumps
me full of strange adrenaline
to fight monsters that are
only memories. the phrases
the words you write to me
now are so strange i read them
and glean no meaning, my stomach
leaping into my throat, my
hands maybe shaking, maybe
holding still, i can't even tell.
i don't want to go back, i want
more than anything to move on
and every time i see your photograph
your name, your words, i am
****** back into summer, all my
regret and my mistakes fill me
up with hot blood, make me
want to drown. hell is where
everyone is disappointed and my
tongue is nailed to the floor
when they expect me to speak.
i don't have any words for you now.
i don't have anything to say.
i don't think of you, but involuntarily,
momentarily, heart beats and it's gone.
Jan 2015 · 494
rain & dust
Ellie Stelter Jan 2015
there was fog
outside the window
yesterday that i meant
to photograph. here
in my parents' house, big
and empty and warm,
my mom tells my brothers
to swallow vitamin D
but she doesn't have to tell me.
most days, where i live now
the sun shines. most days
there is no fog, no forests,
no rain. i miss
the wilderness of this city:
the way the weeds
force their way through
the asphalt, the way everything
in spring is a cavalcade of green,
the way the clouds turn
the whole sky white
or shine gold, the way the hidden
mountains show themselves,
shining silver crowns
on the horizons, gifts
of a sunny day. where
i live now the mountains are
huge and stunning
and obvious: like big
dumb desert teeth, cacti bloom
and the trees they claim are tall
are ancient, there is
no height reached that is
not surmounted in my home,
there is no fear that is overcome.
here everyone is lying, i can
see it in their eyes, the sun
makes them feel safe
and invincible and detached.
where i am from the rain
wears you down, beats all
the summer strength out of you.
you must find something
to cling to, something real
to hold on to with all your might
when winter comes because
otherwise down falls the rain
and washes you away. in the desert
there is nothing to cling to.
there is dust. there are palms
that sway in a sun they weren't
born under, there are cities built
over deserts, but the deserts
are still there. where i am from
we know that this land was forest
and river and field: the rain washes
our illusions of civility down
the drain. in desert the dust that
sneaks in is a slower kind of
reclaiming: it will collect, it will
fill our lungs, but it does not
shout like the rain.
Jan 2015 · 475
maybe not today
Ellie Stelter Jan 2015
on New Year's Eve my nail polish
chipped and for brief moments I
suffered that familiar fear but
I broke into the new year screaming
at the top of my lungs all my friends
gathered close around me like a blanket
to keep out the restless wind and
it was not in that moment that I chose
to be strong but it was in that moment
I began to leave my fear behind.
maybe not today, and maybe not this year
but I'll get there someday and won't it be better
having been so low, really knowing that I tried
and I made it, I did it on my own
no one's hand to hold
won't it be wonderful
when I no longer feel alone
I know I can make it, and til then I can take it: all
the bitter self-doubt, all the cynicism that should
not accompany my youth, and yet it does
I can stand the lonely nights and anxious days
I can sleep with no one to share my space
knowing someday it won't be true
I've done it all my life.

now I refuse to be afraid
I refuse to believe that I'll always be alone
I have to be somebody to somebody, someday.
and one New Year's Day
I will look back and say:
look at where I am
look at where I've been
isn't the world such a beautiful place?
Dec 2014 · 473
ghost
Ellie Stelter Dec 2014
i go to bed
later and later
every night
memories
of people
with gorgeous
eyes haunt me
and fill my head.
i want to be them
to someone else
i want to
haunt them
the way they
are me, hang
around in
the back corners
of their minds
some beautiful
memory, some
kind of vision
that just won't
leave them alone.
i want to keep them up
later and later
every night
i want them to see me:
to see me as i am,
as i want to be.
i want them to see me
whole
and broken
and loving
and hating myself.
i want them to see me
like a schizophrenic
and their shadows,
like a wild hallucination,
like a beam of sunlight
falling fleetingly
perfectly, sad & lovely,
falling into their eyes,
waking them up
from the daydream,
letting them know
that they are alive.
if i am going
to be brief i want
to be brilliant, if
longevity is my destiny,
i will refuse redundancy.
i want more
than anything to be
unique. i want
to haunt them
in their sleep: i want
to live forever,
i want
to be able to sleep again at night.
Nov 2014 · 413
guided meditation
Ellie Stelter Nov 2014
you hover weightless toes brushing the grass
the Earth stretching toward you and you
stretching to touch the Sun above your
spine elongates your vertebrae loosen and one
by one relax your body is warm heavy
thick like honey and you are cosmically
beautiful:  your moles & freckles are
constellations your scars are pathways
runes telling you you are alive you have
survived your hair is oceans and forests
your wrinkles and folds are full of wisdom
your bones cry life  your arms
lengthen to enfold the Sun and all
around you is warm sky floating you
holding you up and you are
the most alive lovely part of it

you breathe your troubles out into
clouds and your anxiety out into
stardust and they bring rain
and light to people on the other side
of this luminous planet in this
glowing galaxy in which you are
a point of light a glorious speck
shining among the stars you
are brilliant and faceted
complex and tumescent
with so much to give

you let go of the fiery Sun
and fall back in the
grass and the Earth is
holding you and
your weight is
returning the
embrace.
Nov 2014 · 456
nothing now to say
Ellie Stelter Nov 2014
there are postcards you wrote me that will hang on my wall
and i will keep for centuries, pretty pictures
and smeared handwriting, places where the rain ate away.
you left, and we sat there like nothing was wrong.
go on with life, move on from love,
nothing now to say. you leave and we all sit,
paper-blank faces hiding crying eyes, still bodies
hugging shivering hearts. clouds pass,
the wind rustles through the air, the sun bears down
on the high desert. no one says anything
worth saying. no one does anything
worth doing. dry flowers bloom but no one is looking.
cacti wave and stretch and poke at no one.
those mountains to the north loom and dare
and nobody cares. we all sit there, desert spirits,
paper-blank, hot bodies wrapped
like so much tissue paper around our trembling souls,
say nothing, and pretend
that God has not ripped from us
something as wild and as lovely as the summer rain.
Nov 2014 · 436
Autumn Night
Ellie Stelter Nov 2014
Meditation broken even
In the tide of autumn leaves
Wanting just to be alone
Homeless, empty thoughts seethe
But the silence gathered round me
And the fabric of my dreams
Surges in and takes me over
I have lost all my control
And it's not a good or bad thing
(Though it's not what I would hope)
Oceanic hills and valleys
Stretch the confines of my soul
In this dusky numbered twilight
Fumbles daytime turning night
In these streets there walks a shadow
Of a being without form,
Listless, heavy, and deceiving
Are the stormless clouds that swirl
All around me in this heaving
Chilling tide of falling light.
Where I go and what I dream of
Who I'll be, by what I swear
All is tumbling, crashing downward
Future lost and present bare
To the sea I wander ever
Hoping it will swallow me,
To the sky look on and upward
Maybe one day it will free
Release from us this silent desert
Already I am walking floating
Drifting high above the earth
There is somewhere I am knowing,
There is some place I am going.
Oct 2014 · 455
October
Ellie Stelter Oct 2014
this cinnamon realization
rolls around in my chest:
honeyed sunlight
apple-crisp mornings
laughter and fear in the name of fun
quiet anarchy
gardens, beaches, friends -
I am happy, or close enough.
what more could I ask for?
what more could I dream for?
to be home, to be with you: but
here is becoming home, October
has replaced July with orange glory;
clouds and mountains and salt water
all the same, absent sunsets,
huge-moon nights, hot sunrises,
stars and soul mates and folk music.
O that I could dance
forever in the evenings of October,
skeleton ghost and graveyard
pumpkin spice and falling leaves,
the endings that give us new life
all are here, *****-heavy
fear-free, future hallows blissfully
unknown, pasts blissfully
undreamed-of.
Oct 2014 · 487
Summertime in Fremont
Ellie Stelter Oct 2014
Years later what you will remember most is the sunshine
And the way it pooled in the streets in the summertime
Pulling colors off of buildings like taking washing off the line
Painted bodies everywhere, laughing as they waltz through the city
There is no difference between red yellow black white or grey
It’s all just more color, people splattered with diversity
Climbing the trees to decorate with rainbow streamers
In their doorways stand hesitant half-believers
Pass me the pipe and count me with the dreamers

And the rest of the world, they call us freaks
We might as well be hipsters hippies jocks nerds geeks
Here definition is something no one seeks
Children at play is all we have ever been
Hoping our mothers won’t catch us fighting again
Let your hate go, let your mind heart and eyes open

Love is what ties us together, what makes us strong
You don’t have to prove that you’re right or I’m wrong
Just raise your voice and join in the throng
We’ll climb through your windows and through your walls
Claiming plaster back to nature, painting flowers down your halls
Planting trees in the classrooms and the public toilet stalls
We won’t rest, no we won’t wait until every stretch
Of old stone house and weathered park bench
Of city block and building’s been covered in some colorful sketch

Say what you will, we are who we are
It's our hopes for the future that have led us this far
We're not afraid, not alone, though the lines may blur
We stand for a future with no hate at all
We stand for human rights and we will not fall
We're the people of Fremont and we stand tall
a short look back on my life in the neighborhood of Fremont, Seattle
Ellie Stelter Sep 2014
there are
places in this world
sinking
and abandoned
by humankind
full of life
and raw
with the beauty of
rebirth; i want
to wander
through those
great cracked halls
seeping out
daises and ivy
with you,
and breathe
the air thick
with grass
and dirt, thick
with springtime
buds of life,
and breathe
the air, swollen
with dew, back
into your lungs.
Sep 2014 · 402
Death and Facebook
Ellie Stelter Sep 2014
One of the eeriest things in my life right now
is that she died almost three years ago
but her Facebook account is still running.
I get little notifications on her birthday
and those weird "you haven't talked to this person in a while!
Reconnect!" blurbs every so often, still.
I could send her endless messages
but no one would get them. She's just gone
and somewhere there's a tiny part of a server
with all her messages, photos, likes and dislikes
on it, and no one will ever check it again.
She left a tiny cybernetic scar on the skin of the internet,
and what happens to all that stored data is as uncertain
and as unknowable as where she is now, if either
still exist at all. And she's not the only one - there
are so many little things left unattended
in the absence of the dead, minuscule holes
torn in the fabrics of our lives because no one
will ever fill them completely again.
No one will ever laugh like they did
or run their hands through their hair
in the exact same way. And if they do,
there is more missing - the same smile,
but different eyes. The same name,
but a different feeling. Nothing will ever
be the same again. Each moment the whole universe
is made and unmade again, infinite combinations
of personality and circumstance, and you never think
about what you're really going to miss until it's gone,
and then it's all you can think about.
Somewhere in the vastness of this empty planet,
a light on a server is blinking, the graveyard
of abandoned Facebook pages: some intern's hand is reaching
to pull the plug.
Aug 2014 · 287
for now
Ellie Stelter Aug 2014
empty on the insides
like a dish scrubbed clean
full up of nothing
even memories
feel too much like dreams
like all those things
that we did
and we said we would do
are just echoes
you're not anyone,
you're just a reminder
of someone i once knew
i don't know where i'm going
i don't know where i'll land
i get a feeling it's different
from everything i got planned
i'm not afraid of the future
but i'm still shaking somehow
weighing nothing means
i could just float out the window
i'm just a shell of a person
just a shell of a girl
not anyone or anywhere
or anything right now
i exist in this space
and this space exists in me
and the words that i want to say
won't make it past my teeth
i am empty and i'm no one
and i used to be so full
at least there is no darkness
at least now there is no cold
i'm not ready for the future
but i'm no longer afraid
i'm not thinking about anything
but i think that that's okay
for now
Aug 2014 · 438
Molting
Ellie Stelter Aug 2014
I feel so detached some days.
I am not who I was. I am not
the girl who walked those high school halls,
red lipstick smudges and sidelong rejections
of boys who didn't know the mess they were after -
I am her and I am not her; at the heart
of things, the real truth of it, yes
we are the same, but I now
would not say those things she said
or do those things she did, or think
even as she thought.

Detached from the past I am now wholly
freed from the fetter of past selves, free
of their guilts, their regrets, their desires;
I am floating, minuscule distances above the dust,
I don't belong in that skin anymore, I can't help
but feel itchy in it, wanting to claw my way
out of my own skin. I don't know
what it was that tied me to her before
and is now gone, I can't see
the ribbons of gravity that held me
to the surface of this luminous planet:
reforging those bonds is a task invisible
and out of reach, something I won't know I'm doing
won't know I've done until it's over -

and on it goes, the floating and the molting,
and I can't quite see the places
where my new feathers are coming in,
but oh God how they itch.
Jun 2014 · 473
bone itch
Ellie Stelter Jun 2014
Part I
i wake and turn over in the night
as i do
and i can feel my bones stir, feel
the restlessness just under my skin.
i gotta get out of here, but i am
so afraid of what's coming next

in daylight i walk
the same hallways as always
i love it here, i love my life
i love being alive, i love the people i know
i can't imagine living
any other way.

but i gotta get out. my feet itch
my skin don't fit right over my bones
my mind wanders too far
too quickly, i gotta follow it
even though i don't know what's coming
next, even though saying goodbye
is so **** hard.

Part II
i have finally done it, i have done it
moved out moved away
moved on and
i sleep as i haven't slept
in years.
and it's surreal being here,
like i'm living in a dream
and i don't want to wake up

everything is so much better
than i thought it could be. my bones
are resting for now, i can stretch out
and feel free for the first time
i've ever known.

time runs in slow circles
on this lazy island and i've been here
for weeks but it feels like lifetimes,
and i never, never want to leave,
and if it was my choice,
i wouldn't. but it's not,
and i have to be going again

Part III
culture shock
all over my body, shaking me
awake all night, and i never thought
being home could feel
so strange, like i'm a stranger
like i don't belong.

the faces of my family
are memories, stolen
from photographs. i don't
really know them, i've changed
so much, and they haven't.
i don't know who i am here
and all my friends are ghosts
trying to convince me to stay.

but it won't work. in the morning
i'll be gone again, like rain
always moving on, have to go again
have to get out get out get out
of here, this place is too lethargic,
too much residual fear here, i

loved the time spent here,
but i'm too far gone. i love my
friends here, love my
mother and my brothers,
my father and my teachers,
and all their voices
crying out as one
wouldn't get me to stay.

Part IV
it's not really leaving. it's not really
wandering, as much as i'd like it to be.
but if i left, if i really truly left,
i might never settle down again

if i scratched my bones and picked up
and left every time i felt that itch,
i don't think i'd ever come home
i'd never be anywhere at all
Jun 2014 · 534
anyone's arms
Ellie Stelter Jun 2014
i wanted so badly
to not be alone
to curl up safe
in anyone's arms
but i never did

did my fears
outweigh my wants?
did i think that
it was wrong
or too selfish
or too childish
somehow?

from now on, when
i don't want
to sleep alone
i will find my way
into anyone's arms
i will seek out safety
i will seek out rest
Jun 2014 · 378
can't wait
Ellie Stelter Jun 2014
i'm on the verge of the future now,
really truly on the edge. i'm riding out
this high while it lasts, hoping
that i won't wake up anxious,
burdened with all the stuff i've got
to take care of. these short days now
will soon be over: that's what matters,
that the end's in sight. can't wait
to be gone, can't wait to be
moving on. all my life i'll spend

leaving now: jumping one city, one life
to the next, trading friends, families,
swapping beds and patterns and
smiles whenever my bones start
to itch. all the time i'm waiting now,
it's just a matter of days, of hours,
of minutes. everything big will soon
be something much smaller: a rock,
a thought, the time left, the distance
between me and you. it's all almost over
and i'm not scared anymore. i can't wait.
May 2014 · 382
10
Ellie Stelter May 2014
10
wandering
city streets alone
as a child
gets old
as soon as
your popsicle melts
and you drip
on your favorite shirt
and you lose your steps

bare feet rough
on sun-baked
pavement
glittering
with broken glass
and i don't feel it
and i don't bleed
and i want
to go home.
May 2014 · 352
convergence
Ellie Stelter May 2014
i wake up every morning
more ready than the last
to fall asleep that night
and be that much closer
to the end.

my heartbeat's growing now,
stretching itself out
to fill the long hours
that lie between me
and leaving.

i have no time, for
all the time i am working,
preparing myself,
but in the empty spaces
in the minutes where
i am catching my breath

there is still an eternity: it lies
between me and my fate,
between the dreams of a child
and the reality of age,
between separation
and alignment.

let's drift in those eternities,
let's build monuments to whatever
in our minds, let's exist
in the moments we are resting
and imagine the future
as it's happening,

we are tomorrow and
we are today. we cannot
give up now. we cannot
give up hope. we are tomorrow,
and tomorrow's crashing down.
May 2014 · 547
mountain
Ellie Stelter May 2014
today was long
and full of
wonders:
a sky, a mountain,
technology, a dress,
a photograph.

I breathed
deeply
of the air and sun, and
out there
among the trees,
I felt strong
and real
and alive
for the first time
in months.

it is not
man alone
in nature: the Romantics
had it wrong.
when we walk
into the woods
we do not walk alone
for we are part of it,
part of the earth
breathing in time
with the trees,
hearts beating
along with rivers.
no. we are not
as alone as they would
have you believe:
there is earth
and mud, grass
and dirt and mountains,
and us.
May 2014 · 400
you are not mine
Ellie Stelter May 2014
i told you that i dreamed about you
and that's more truth than
i've ever told anyone,
but still i held back.

i said i was a queen
and you were my knight
and together we brought our world
into a new age of light

which i wish could be our truth.
i'd love to rule the world with you.

but where i was a queen,
you were my only conquest,
my bloodied hands, rough
from fire and from fight
mapped out your skin
traced the lines of your collarbones,
danced over your veins

my lips played connect-the-dots
with your freckles
my words healed your scars
together we devoured one another:
and i woke up guilty.

because that's not where we belong.
we should be in the story
i told you: a queen
and her champion,
beating back the armies of night.
May 2014 · 1.0k
your days are numbered
Ellie Stelter May 2014
if it's meant to happen,
it will.
but do not think this means
you get to sit
on your *** all day,
waiting for Fate.
Fate's here.
Time's now.
do something about it
disturb the universe
swirl the stars
and they will dance for you

life is good and long
and there are risks
well worth taking
your days
on this green earth
are numbered.
make them count.
im doing this thing where i write a poem every day until the day i move
my days are quite literally numbered right now
May 2014 · 1.6k
inertia
Ellie Stelter May 2014
when i sleep, i dream. when i dream i

i am lost in the woods little bird lost in the woods alone in the woods
so small so young so green
i grow
as i have grown
as i will grow
my mind melts
mutates
i am someone else
i have lost all meaning
everything has lost
all
i am grown
i have grown
i will grow
as i float i am growing
as i fight i am growing
i remember little bird
lost in the woods alone in the woods
all alone
all
who am i? who was i?
who am i becoming?
have i forgotten?
or did i ever know
and where is the future
where is my future
why so intangible
why so unmanageable
where is the knowing
where is the sense of stability
where is the meaning i was promised?
who promised
who said
who
left me alone, all alone, alone, little bird, alone in the woods,
who am i?
(then in a hundred different voices) who am i?
where am i?
why am i?

when i sleep, i dream. when i dream, i am lost. i try to stay awake
to hold my mind awake
an object in motion will stay in motion
oh let not me rest
maybe if i stay awake
if i work harder
all the time
i wont lose.
May 2014 · 397
the in-between
Ellie Stelter May 2014
It is a good thing that your life is long,
And your heart beats deep.
Fires blaze red for you, laughs, a song:
And the wine still runs sweet.

All will be ashes soon enough,
The smiles will fade, and the laughter
Run out. What once was tough
With youth will wrinkle and wither.

The in-between, the years that pass
As your glory and passion flicker,
Before your bones rest beneath the grass,
Make your smile softer, your hide thicker.

Don't discount the days not written down in song,
For it is a good thing your life is still long.
May 2014 · 1.2k
junkie
Ellie Stelter May 2014
i am holding on too tightly
let me fall. let me let go,
let me feel let me hurt
i want that ache again
love ******, im a slave
to heartbreak, i wanna
seek out those kisses
that leave my lips burning
want that fire reignited
deep in my chest again

there's just a shell now
built up like a cage
protect me from harm,
so i thought, but no
it's not letting anything out
it's not letting anything in
and im done im done
with that i need to feel again
i need to be alive again
my heart needs to beat
again. love ******, slave
to comfort, too afraid
of passion, of losing control

so here i am, heart beats
in a cage, needles in my arms,
anesthetized, clinging
on too tight to what my life was
let me fall into the unknown now
before i push myself off this ledge
it's been no fun at all
let me feel
let me fall
Apr 2014 · 597
the glow-stars
Ellie Stelter Apr 2014
I can't sleep
when the stars aren't out
so instead
of lying awake
300 nights of the year I
put glow-stars on my ceiling
thinking it would help

But these are
poor replicas of real stars,
dishonest reproductions
of the wild and infinite
cosmos.
I sleep better now but it
is the sleep of a liar:
I awake often and know
that above me
is spread a false sky.
Apr 2014 · 482
nap
Ellie Stelter Apr 2014
nap
in a car
in a parking lot
wrapped in a grey day
I too am wrapped,
curled against seat
under blanket,
as comfortably
as in the cloud that
holds the sky in its palm
outside somewhere
there are voices:
high with laughter
drunk on company
a car thrums past,
musical heartbeat pulsing

I could be plugged
in too; I could be
out there with them
but I am a cloud
in a sunset yellow sky,
a wave
on the rolling sea,
a red star hiding
beneath the skin
of the cosmos
my eyelids blur out
the world and become
the canvas for a new one

here I nap -
and I want to carve it
in stone,
let it tumble mountains,
HERE I AM,
the idiot child of reason
and fate,
drenched
in hazy past
as futures crystallize
before me
my body confined,
my mind transcends

I see all,
know all, be all:
I awake
and find myself
nothing, just
wrapped.
Mar 2014 · 302
let roses rise
Ellie Stelter Mar 2014
say I love you while you can,
and while you mean it,
and in as many ways
as you know how: there is
altogether too much time
when your heart is not beating
in tune with hers,
you may as well admit it when it is

and do not be
ashamed, my friend,
if she proclaims
your eyes are starlight
your lips are moonbeams
and she does not look like any sun
you've ever seen

perhaps just turn away,
let roses rise in your cheeks
and whisper a soft thanks
because you know her heart
beat so loud for you
it poured out through her mouth

and wait for the moment
when you can say the same,
or if you cannot: do not
lie and say she is
your world and stars and sun
when she is none.
Feb 2014 · 404
Ashes
Ellie Stelter Feb 2014
there was a time when I was not
what I am now.
to say that your death warmed me
is an understatement. to say that
the fire which turned you to ash
lit my soul
is a clean metaphor
for the gruesome truth:
I am no phoenix

but people say I look like you.
people who loved you better
who knew you better
say I am becoming like you.
I don't want to be you.

I loved you
like a planet loves her moon,
and now you are more distant
and more close to me
than ever before:
you are both
here and not here,
and if you can hear me
I'm sorry, but

your life is gone already,
and I don't want to carry
its weighty remembrance.
I am not the result
of your ashes.
it has been two years:
I will not stay rooted
in the past, no matter
how much it changed me.
Feb 2014 · 475
Six Feet Under
Ellie Stelter Feb 2014
For all your versatility, though you change more constantly than I do,
There's a heartbeat, smooth and steady, running through you.
You take my compass and spin it round.
Now South is up and North is down.
Winds from nowhere lead me on. I cannot turn my sails away.
My heart is rooted to your earth, my feet will go no other way.
So forward into you go I, and never to return,
Though always I loved to wander, it is now for you I yearn,
And bear upon my shoulders the heavy yoke of destiny
Which my forefathers did not accept so readily
But turned from love and light and hope
To deep and dark and turn and stroke.
Now in the heavy earth they lie,
Observe and laugh at all that has gone by.
Six feet under does not bury their love for the sea,
Six feet under cannot bury me.
Feb 2014 · 317
hands & eyes
Ellie Stelter Feb 2014
she invaded the space behind my lungs
and slowly, by degrees, pushed me out
of my own life. she took over
my heartbeats, my hair, my voice.
I wanted you and now she does.
I laughed in the sun and now she does.

people ask us if we're sisters
and I can't say yes
and I can't say no.
we are linked, two peas in a pod
she built from dust and desire,
but she is not me. I am not her.

my hands and my eyes are not hers.
my thoughts are not hers.
but I am hers, I belong to her,
without her asking or my giving
she pulls me under and I don't
even beg for mercy: I want to be drowned
in her stupid tidal wave.
perhaps then we will find
the line between us: that I am dying
and she is living; that she is standing
on my heart, pushing the blood
into my throat.
Feb 2014 · 459
just really damn sad
Ellie Stelter Feb 2014
I stared at city lights tonight and I wanted to die.
The distance laughed at my eyesight
Like I didn’t deserve it.
I’m sad, and it’s not beautiful.
It’s messy. It’s tangled wires in my heart.
It’s crossed communications in my brain:
When someone smiles and I want
To cry and scream and rip out their throat.

More and more, people make me shut off.
They flip the switches that have held light
To the dark corners of my heart.
Children make me want to cry:
What are they going to grow up to be?
When I was seven I didn’t think
I’d be this **** sad.
What wars will they fight, with their friends
With their family, with the world, with themselves?

When you are depressed, or anxious, or bipolar,
Or have another one of
That host of mental disorders:
You cannot control it.
Just like you can’t make your blood
Flow back into an open wound,
The feeling doesn’t fade
With positive thoughts.

I wanted to die tonight, like I have
Wanted to die before,
And it was not beautiful, and it was not
Something I wanted to be feeling,
And it wasn’t under my control.
I was just really **** sad.
Feb 2014 · 382
I'a
Ellie Stelter Feb 2014
i had a dream once
in which you died
you drowned in the sea,
became one with the tide

i sat on a dock
at the end of the day
staring at the horizon,
my life leaking away

you came to me then
from deep in the blue
you cried and i promised
i won’t forget you

so now i wander the waves
and i wander the kai
praying that i’ll find
where your spirit abides

but if that doesn’t happen,
if i don’t survive
i pray that i drown,
become one with the tide.
this is written about a Hawaiian friend of mine
i'a is the Hawaiian word for fish
kai is the Hawaiian word for ocean
Dec 2013 · 467
chamber music
Ellie Stelter Dec 2013
i haven’t seen you in months
and your memory causes
heartbeats to flood my chest.

who you could be,
who you are, causes
symphonies, causes
thunderstorms in the chambers
that lie under my ribs.

i can imagine growing old
with you, old like oak trees,
stretching and wrinkling
till we touch the sky and fall,

but i would be happy knowing
that you are growing old at all.
i am so in love with you
that your life, happy and long,
with or without me,
is all that i want.
Dec 2013 · 460
I lied: I am afraid
Ellie Stelter Dec 2013
I once said I wasn't afraid of you,
of oceans or the deep black dark.
And I guess these things are true:
I'm afraid that they'll leave a mark.

Will the surging waters drown me,
will the heady darkness take its toll?
And worse, will you surround me?
How can i dig myself out of that hole?

For if you set my heart on fire,
will it fill my lungs with smoke?
I know that it's what i desire
But i just don't wanna choke.

If you give to me your heart,
will it leave room for my own?
Will they be able to beat apart,
would i be able to live alone?

I'm not afraid of falling in love,
I'm afraid of the aftermath.
What will it take to be empty of
you, once we've split our path?
Dec 2013 · 1.4k
Existentialist's Love Poem
Ellie Stelter Dec 2013
How would you take the news of my bitter insomnia?
Would you feel conflicted knowing that could I sleep,
I might not still want you? I know that you’re just a heap
Of atoms tied together, cells powered with mitochondria,
And without you I am just succumbing to hypoxia.
You are nothing to the universe, just an ignorant sheep,
And were my head unclouded, no illusions would I keep:
I’d know in lucidity it’s just my acute monophobia.
But you are there still, hiding under my thin skin,
And you’re not going away, and it’s driving me insane.
How could I discount your memory, your incredible smiles,
Your hands rough like heartbeats, your eyes glowing like sin?
You are a heap of molecules, mere bone and membrane:
And your soul is a fire, your ardor drives me for miles.
Nov 2013 · 1.9k
contentment
Ellie Stelter Nov 2013
i don't want for anything.
i don't have a single
deep-seated desire
running about in
my brain,
driving me
crazy.

i have everything that i need.
i don't lie awake at night
i don't wonder
i don't ask what if
i don't
i don't

what will it take to convince you
that i don't need anything?
i don't want anything
i am content
i am content
i am content
i am content
i am content

but what if i
Nov 2013 · 1.2k
Love Yourself
Ellie Stelter Nov 2013
our culture preaches self obsession:
to always be looking at ourselves,
to always be editing, editing, editing,
photoshopping away our scars to look pretty
on a computer screen,
to be focused continuously inwardly,
focused on our own flaws.
our culture preaches self obsession
but not self love.

the things we are born into,
the things we grow into,
people tell us they're not good enough
somehow. there is such a narrow
margin for error. there is such a narrow
road to walk if we want to be thought beautiful.

it took me 16 years to understand
that I was not worthless: I hated
myself for all the things other people
told me I was:
fat because my ribcage didn't
shine through my skin
a ***** for my opinions
a ****, and ugly, because of my body,
because of my face.
is it any wonder
I was so uncomfortable in my own skin?

in the past they told you: love your neighbor
as you love yourself,
but we need a new mantra.
think of the most beautiful person you know
and treat yourself that way.
would you let them starve themselves,
would you let them cut away at their own skin,
would you let them wallow
in self pity, in regret, in fear?
think of the most beautiful person you know
and then understand, that person is you
to someone else.
you are so beautiful.
love yourself.
love yourself.
Nov 2013 · 5.2k
Goldfish
Ellie Stelter Nov 2013
every night since Rosencrantz died,
I've had dreams about dead goldfish,
their silver and gold scales gleaming sickly
red roses of blood blooming from beneath them
dead and bulging eyes staring at me.

every day I come home to find
Guildenstern still swimming is a gift
but the goldfish are still dead in my dreams.
They are always there
and I never know why.
Their bodies are piling up.
this is literally one of my least favorite things ive ever written pls stop
Nov 2013 · 356
can you tell
Ellie Stelter Nov 2013
can you tell
when I'm not here
when my head
is worlds away

can you say
where I go
when I don't
want to stay

do you know me
who I am
where I'm going
where I've been

do I know you
who you are
all your goodness
all your sin

I'd like to think
we were tied
together our souls
like binary suns

I'd like to think
we were lovers
stitched together
at the runs

I dream about
a lot of things
of other worlds
and living free

I dream about
a lot of things
I dream of you
do you dream of me
oops I didn't like the ending so I added more sorry
Nov 2013 · 757
Winter Sonnet
Ellie Stelter Nov 2013
How elegant the sunshine seems
as the rain pours down on the earth!
What luminous and golden beams
shower the Southern world with mirth!

How excellent, in retrospect,
is Summer's passing glance;
how gorgeously do we reflect
upon our August dance!

Yet Winter soon will claim her own
with snow and cold grey ice,
and how I long to see my home
gleaming with the frozen lights!

Summer's a lover in a golden crown,
But Winter's a goddess in a silver shroud.
Nov 2013 · 2.1k
Ctrl
Ellie Stelter Nov 2013
I used to bury myself in huge jackets.
I'd mope about and hate my curvy body,
hate the way my lips puffed,
my long hair, the way I was soft all over,
the way I was expected to shave
everything but my face.

I used to hate makeup and dresses,
girly movies and shoes and bobby pins.
I hated boybands. I hated pink things.
It took me a long time to realize that
I didn't actually hate these things.
I hated women.

Femininity was lesser. I was not good enough
because of my two X chromosomes,
because of my *****, because of my period.
I was weaker. I was stupider. I was
statistically less likely to succeed,
less likely to be important,
less likely to be loved.

These things weren't right. They were never true.
But it didn't matter, because nine-year-old me
believed them. My opinion didn't start to change
until I was thirteen and I wore a pretty dress
as a character in a home movie we were making
and I walked down the stairs and my friends
whispered whoa.

I began to understand then the power I had.
As a girl I was never lesser. I was never weaker.
Maybe physically, but that was more my personality,
and all those lies I'd told myself about success
about my importance about love
I began to reconsider.
I thought hey wait hold on
this can't be right, I'm not stupid, I'm not weak,
I'm not ugly and I'm not fat
and I'm not any of these things because
I'm a girl.

When I started to see myself as worthy of
other peoples' love, I realized I should love myself.
I don't hide my femininity away in huge jackets anymore.
I don't walk down the street fearful
of the people walking past who seem stronger.
Because in my lipstick and my cute heels,
I am in total control.
Nov 2013 · 685
A Way (I Were)
Ellie Stelter Nov 2013
Were I a shoe, I would squeak;
For O! to have a tongue
And not be able to speak.

And were I the sea, I would roar;
From dawn to dusk, at everything,
For, being great, I'd want still more.

Were I a swallow, I'd take wing
And make sweet music till I ceased to be -
I would not be a bird who cannot sing.

And were I your heart, I'd show you to love
And teach you the ways of beautiful things,
From us here on Earth to the stars up above.

Were I a flute, were I an axe,
Were I a wish, were I the rain,
Or were I a candle, made of wax;

It matters little, it matters not;
I'd still find a way to say what I thought.
Nov 2013 · 504
Nothing Else
Ellie Stelter Nov 2013
Truth of the matter is, I never was one for essays.
I can insert quotes like mad, I can, but the words
Don't sing for me in papers like they do in poetry.
I can't paint you a world cause you're already
Living in it and you already know it well.
The only gift an essay has to give is analysis and
Let me be honest with you, my opinion
Ain't worth as much as my heartbreak.
Essays don't let me talk like I want,
Don't let me layer in the truth behind a lie.
It ain't fair to kids like me that we get graded
On how well we use big words.
I wanna be graded on a scale I can't trust,
I wanna get credit for making you cry my tears.
Maybe it's hard to be an artist so that
No one will half-*** it: only the idiots who
Wasted art class making cartoons,
Failed English for the sake of their poetry,
The idiots who can do nothing else,
Will be the ones to do nothing else.
Oct 2013 · 545
don't go
Ellie Stelter Oct 2013
o how difficult the years
that weigh on
without you,
the endless nights
with emptiness
my solemn
singular
bedfellow.
what a treachery
is every sunrise
what a regret
is every breath.
and i am sure
you don't feel
this way.
i am sure you
are far away,
in some paradise,
and have found
someone better,
someone new,
someone to
not be alone with.

o how impossible
to explain
the pain of the left
to those who are
leaving.
i would trade
a thousand worlds
that i could
go back in time
and beg you,
don't go.
Sep 2013 · 572
Stagnant
Ellie Stelter Sep 2013
I do not know how the fashionable people of the past did it.
How were they able to sit still for hours on end?
Shouldn't having money mean doing more?
For I've found that if I sit around for too long,
I stagnate like water, I thicken like blood.

I need to move, need to run in order to breathe,
Need to laugh in order to feel like I exist at all.
Without the confirmation that is my own beating body,
My own moving heart, I might as well fade away,
Might as well be a pixel of static on a TV screen.

In the early morning hours as I lie awake in bed,
I can feel myself slipping away into nothing.
I know that if I lay there long enough I will melt
Into my blankets, and cease to exist.
Most mornings I force myself to move,
Force myself into movement, back into existence!

But some dark rainy day, too soon I fear,
I will lie back on the pillows
and let the sheets take their toll
and I will die even as I live:
stagnant like water
thick like blood.
Sep 2013 · 419
I Don't Want a Dream
Ellie Stelter Sep 2013
I don't want a dream. I do not desire that
which is fleeting, though perfect - which will be gone
once sunrise comes. But when will I arrive at
the place where I will find joy in every dawn?
I don't want a dream. I want something that's real.
I want to want to wake up in the morning.
I don't want to get lost in some far-off ideal
world that won't be there to react to my going.
I need to live in reality, not dreams -
though there are plenty of reasons for sleeping,
though the real world isn't always as it seems,
there are things for which I would go on living.

I don't want to dream any longer, please, I
need to wake up now, please don't just let me die.
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