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GC Feb 2015
We slipped into the same cold
March, forgetting each other less
than a mile away, shifting
life from death:
some sobbing blue, some receiving sun.

You took lemon and salt
to salmon, oil and a cube of sugar
to dry skin.
I wear hats on bad hair days
and don't drink enough water.

Did you know all our spoons were wiped clean
from our kitchen
in a blistering July?
I can hear God's small voice
in a rare fantasy
before I realize it's your favorite
show on the television set
in the living room thirty feet away.

The calendar's propeller
brought us to December.
Iris petals are tucked
into journals. All the cable lines are down.
The lemon trees,
a rare love poem
GC Feb 2015
My scalp is hot from ironing my curls out. My skin is burnt
from the callous on the tips of your fingers and your nicely kept nails

while mine are brittle and broken. I pick at the fire for a second or less, fall
asleep to the touch you left

so I wake with warped skin, pink and wrinkly
at the surface. You're not there yet. You keep your pores clean

while mine will fill and flush. My knuckles are paralyzed:
you, fluid.

Four years of collecting kindling, of poking. The last of May is in my
sweat stains. There is bonfire in your hair.

Our joints move to mold

, your world shapely with straight lines and perfect
acute angles. Mine, obtuse.

You're the only one to ever tell
me I was beautiful, and look at what it's done.
GC Dec 2014
i'm beginning to wonder if i'm making these things up in my head
from boredom or maybe because i was socially misinformed on the
ways that one responds to advances and putting i in you and yours
did nothing other than let me know that i'm a fool, my god, every
memory i tried hard and fast to forget comes to surface, and it hurts
but more than anything it makes me wonder when the **** i'll learn
the lesson you and yours have been trying to teach me all this time.

it's more than just banter and it's far more than just the loneliness on
both our ends, it's all in trying to fill the voids that were left by the
coldest of weather and the memories of our ears bleeding when we
didn't know the time or day or place but we knew that it's not supposed
to feel like this, as least that's what mom always said - no, no it's not,
but i think i’ve come to terms and i think you’ve been forgiven but i
don’t know quite yet so don’t hold me to that for i’d hate to turn into.

i was chugging a beer the first time i tried to forgive you but freud has
a name for that, i think, even though freud is an idiot who says that one
day i'll find someone just like you and fall in love with the emptiness
of the promise for the void that you left to be filled but everything is as
hollow as the straw i sip my *** through, ***'s my only connection to
you and it's the only thing that i remember you being so committed to
and the only promise that you ever made was to ***, every night, until
every other promise you made was forgotten because you fulfilled the
only one that mattered in the way you and yours could never do for i.
GC Nov 2014
in the middle where I start,
dark ebb, dark flow.
     The Alice in Wonderland:
a washing machine on spin -
weaving this and that 'til
it's just dips between the strings, just perforations in the canvas
     that tear and break night into

pounding pavement,
bringing ocean's hairline to itch and flake
and radio waves booming
to tear mesh 'til texture.

     a post-sodapop hiccup.

     the jump and stumble of a green button-up blouse
whose brown buttons blend slowly
     until, on either side in a landslide
of springtime pollen on the sleeves and
     slowing to a rinse draining dark with a single
highlight of white drizzle
left on shingles and on Monarchs' wings

to drip to soil with the dark dip of horsehair
into the ***** watercolor that’s left over
from the spin where Alice got lost and began.
GC Oct 2014
are the walls talking?
it’s the neighbor’s dog across the street
wailing over your ugly unkempt lawn.

is the staircase creaking?
you forgot to take your coffee hot this morning,
get a grip.

is my kielbasa burning?*
you put plastic on the stove.
you put plastic on the ******* stove.
GC Oct 2014
I've been cracking my knuckles since I was six,
but back then my bones were still practically cartilage.

My mother could only make me stop during dinner.
Her brass voice echoed through the house,
like the trumpets in a marching band on the Fourth of July.
(Although not as patriotic.)

My mother didn't know about all the times I cracked
my knuckles when I was by myself.

Sweet sixteen and the joints between my fingers still
crunched secretly under my skin and between
what was now developed into hard white bone.

I've only broken one bone in my entire life.

It was my nose during my homecoming soccer game,
senior year, under the lights and across the street
from the stone-cold brick building that housed
my Catholic education.

Soccer ***** have hit my stomach and my chest countless times,
leaving hexagonal imprints in scratchy blotches of red
over an empty envelope of acid and oxygen.

This time it hit me and I fell to the cold and frozen dirt,
my jersey conforming to the brown-green of roughened grass
and the blood from my nose providing contrast
and complement all at once.

Someone picked me up and I became conscious and self-conscious
that someone’s hands could touch my skin and
that someone’s hands could feel my body.

My hands hung off the sides of the stretcher I didn't need
(I thought it was crazy, all this fuss over a broken nose)
and they swung as I was carried, bringing blood
to my knuckles so that they could swell and expand.

My mother tripped over her questions
when she asked if I could
breathe or eat or speak or if my choking was cause for concern.

“B-b-baby don’t d-d-die,
I m-m-made rice and b-beans.
B-b-baby don’t d-d-die,
I m-m-made your f-f-f-f-favorite.”

You tied me in a robe and stuck a tube down my throat.
B-b-baby don’t d-d-die,
it’s your f-f-favorite.
GC Oct 2014
the first time i smelled your skin against mine it was tootsie roll sweet,
just as someone i loved popped into the room to turn my senses sour,
but you didn't see him.

it was a tuesday in the winter,
a day when everything was very hopelessly frozen
but your skin met with mine was fire to the ice on your window
and all on the outside could see.

all i had said was what i thought was obvious
but you met me with pity and a sad look that said "no"
before she showed up outside
and her skin froze the ice which ours melted away.

then someone shoved a blanket to my feet
because i had forgotten how cold it got this time of year
and he came with open arms to replace the jacket i didn't have,
but it wasn't your skin meeting with mine
so i was very cold, still.
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