When I rain, I pour.
But this year broke me.
Sank its fingertips
into my shoulder blades
and tore me asunder.
Nailed me to the
floors of this apartment
that weeps like a willow.
While you wrapped yourself in goodnights
I screamed into the floorboards.
I licked at your fingers
like a dog.
No matter how deep I dived
I never reached the ocean,
And I cried.
Sweet Jesus, did I cry.
But men aren’t supposed to,
so I begged instead.
At the age of twenty
I discovered shame.
I felt like calling for help,
but my voice cracked
like a frozen lake.
You’d tell me you were going out
with a few friends, and I’d beg you to stay home,
but my guilt tied my tongue down
with fish hooks.
When I rained, only ashes fell.
And no phoenix clawed its way out.
Only my naked back, flayed by the chains of the prison
I forged for myself,
bleeding out poems that I’ll never see
******* out air from music notes
in order to survive.
This year I discovered guilt.
I could never count how many times I said I’m sorry,
but I tattooed it to my chest
so when I made love to you
I wouldn’t have to say it out loud.
I used to burn.
Burn so loud that
smoke climbed from my lips,
I lived my life like a car crash
but sang like a music box.
I plucked smiles from strangers
and drank up the voices
I played loud.
And at the age of nineteen I found myself unworthy.
I inhaled smoke instead of speaking it,
and never let the car
leave the driveway.
I cried ink from my fingertips,
and used you as a telescope to search for God.
With you, I discovered far too much.
I still feel that only shackles embrace me,
but I want to shred open my rib cage
and the let the songbird
out of my chest.
Pull the hooks from my tongue
so I can say
I love you.
When I rain, I want to ******* pour.
So the world knows my heart’s beating.
My wounds are canyons,
that I’ll stitch up with poems.
I want you to know me.
I want you to hold your breath
when you press your hand to my chest.
I want to scream so loud these
walls split open
to let the ocean pour forth from their eyes,
so I can swim to the surface and write my name on its face.
Sing the moon into my hands.
And free that fire from my music box,
so I can find my way