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Gwen Whitmoore Mar 2015
pop songs made us feel *****
so we coerced ourselves into penning curse words
and eating them in a closet we thought
had been Anne Frank’s- only that war had been across the
Atlantic & our grandfathers now only knew military agents
of strange orange colors.

we’d pin up torn-out posters & record some daily static to replay
wondering if our laughter could insulate us forever
or if our mother knew it hurt us too when she would sleep all day.

now I just eat apples (you tell me they make your mouth itch)
& when I worry- its just a thought of you, hating your thighs and
feeling lonely.
now we talk of how evolution kills off too many
unable to weather clamoring silence; empty mirrors.

at bedtime, our father would read us Aesop's fables with pensive eyes
& an antique ego he kept from his ancestors’ childhood
so we learned long ago that
clarity comes
(but at a solitary price).
still work to be done.
Gwen Whitmoore Feb 2015
his laugh-
a continuous tsunami over
the under-privileged third world of my body.
more to be added.
Gwen Whitmoore Feb 2015
(I think I fell in love in the back of a theater
foreign languages on the screen-
mourning dew in your eyes.)

Empty bars encourage the best conversation
in the dead of winter
when nobodies feel the most alive.

they order Irish coffees and Old Fashions
to remind them of the
grandfathers they never knew, while we talk
and covet the ****** hair of exotic men.

(I always awake feeling close to you
and then go to bed
disintegrated by distance- by need

love is always easier when your face is numb
having mistook the blemishes its supposed to hide
for forbidden fruit within the promised land.)*

there's a depressed bartender talking to
a manic patron,
reminding me to visit my parents soon.
Gwen Whitmoore Jan 2015
I left work. Rode my bike home, but don't romanticize it- don't feel left out. The ground in this city is uneven and the rush of anxious minutes escapes no one- ticking fuel for everyone's consistent commutes.

Especially on a bicycle; no one ever sees you. So I ride quickly to keep  pace and avoid my self-imposed sympathies for holding everyone up.

A quick shot down gradient asphalt teaches you that riding your bike to work carries with it a perpetually aching ***. A living classroom experience that an object in motion, will continue in motion until an object of equal or greater motion inhibits it.

The streets are stationery and they rule, godlessly. So, just don't romanticize what it is you think I am doing here.

I had nothing to do. I laid on my roof shirtless and let the sun mistake me for one of its feline Maenads. On days like today, it's hard to not worship beauty. Or the feeling of heat. Eyes shut, I imagine writing- at one point I imagined writing this.

It sounded better then.

A helicopter files parallel to the horizon.

I think of a police state and what a sunny day in them must feel like. I think of the constants; of fear & the times in life spent missing the mark.. My thoughts interact like the clouds above my closed mind. Meeting briefly and passing ways with parts of them missing, yet with new formations attached.

I come to- from a lucid daze. The neighbor two row homes down is now on his roof, but it's a deck- a place where you can welcome other people.

The breeze begs my hair for attention; it obliges itself across my face. I breathe in.

I go inside. Lie down in the warm security of my bed. Breathe in its comfort, it's unforgiving acceptance. But it's too beautiful of a day to waste (aren't they all). I sigh.

Grab a pen, my notebook, a countless refill of still water.

I return.

To my mind's abode with its offering of a grounded bird's eye view.

I begin.
Gwen Whitmoore Jan 2015
I like sitting on my rooftop, in a city that the one over finds
degraded and blue-collar. Its quiet and the sun heats the
tar- a soft lullaby on the bottom of a pair of feet that traverse
a life I’m always trying to get closer to.

I like things like ginger ale and lemonade; faded colors
& antiques. The belief that people still listen to vinyl
and care about our founding fathers. That they
still hand write love notes to themselves as much as for

People okay with the company
of an occasional fruit fly and a toasted bagel with butter
and honey alongside a sweet peach iced tea, sweating from the
thought of summer’s

I like sky lights & well-lit rooms; shadows permitted the freedom
to dance across exposed brick and structures
incapable of forgetting the daily histories of all their inhabitants.

My passwords are always about the planets or Greek mythology;
(I rotate).

Because I need a daily dose of the cosmos & humanity’s
attempt to better understand its purpose on this solitary fleck of dust.

I tend to bleed my existence through learning history and maintaining eye-
contact. Weekends are where people smile and emerge from their
carefully soaked-in showers, feeling clean and comforted by the silence
of a fogged mirror.

I like sentimental movie trailer music and bathtub tunes - whatever
can put to rest the parts of society that demandingly vibrate within me

(I leave).
my front door open because I appreciate individual curiosity
and creating an invitation for people to look in and see how very
much we are all alike. Needy and wanting to watch for signs of life
in others.

I like people who can carry sorrow in their back pockets & yet
**still offer to
pay for your check.
feedback forever appreciated!
Gwen Whitmoore Jul 2014
I sighed.
I only wanted to sit down and resign myself to never thinking twice about you again,
You've buried yourself in my rib cage, rooted yourself in the compacted red clay surrounding my bicuspid valve.
(People like you  always need a challenge, digging around with blemished, infectious hands)

You brought back weathered leather filled with emotions ancient playwrights would be horrified by
Especially alone, in the dark
Making trip after trip, til there were trenches through my soft tissue, (preparing  for a stand off; prepping for a war)

Do you know what you're capable of?
How the only moments of silence I have are standing in the hot steam of a barely resolved shower, patting my face dry while exhaling the parts of me that crave your tongue?

How thoughts of you are treacherous mountain hikes into a no man's land?

How your name on my lips is a torrential downpour of what ifs.

Cigarette stoops used to be my safe haven,
now they are shoddy trips through chicken-wire memories,
that claw through my skin and seep gray flesh through exposed punctures.
(In the mirror, my scars talk to one another, gossiping about your bad boy image)

People ask "who is this"- "I need to know what this is about"
but I have no room for apologies about the things that I will never know
I never knew you.

**Only the mysterious road maps you left on my body while heading South for the winter.
Gwen Whitmoore May 2014
In this city, every morning begins with a Siren
one bright and brilliant Eastern Awakening
that doesn't carry with it a threat
to sing us lovingly to some romantically unknown demise.

Yet we've forgotten that our ears aren't the only part
of ourselves capable of hearing & we've forgotten
of how our eyes read each others long before language
could be taught with structure.

So we lay in bed and await
the cheaper sirens of bad news or an alarm
to superficially awake us and send us off to tally
another day towards death.

I overhear people in the bustle speak of life
as if it were paused in the present, so I buy my
black coffee and when you don't hear me say thank-you
its because you never looked up.
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