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JR Potts Mar 2018
You are singing silence out in the yard,
the newly empty nest hanging overhead,
like cliché clouds of grey, foreboding so.
Twee words feather dust the ironclad guard
with your feelings locked in its bear trap jaws,
hold them long enough and they will starve.

Stoicism has its cost.

Oh Ghost bird, how can I fix what is wrong
if the tune is subdued? Sing it slow.
Let the words bend at the edges,
allow your voice to crack and crow.
There is beauty in its breaking,
a love in the nakedness of it all.


Muted light shown though like saltwater
spraying through holes in the canopy’s hull,
kissing your eyelids with a warm familiar glow.
Twisting paths of gnarly branches pass
towards either dark clouds or blue skies
and you are drowning under all its mass.

Confusion has its cost.

Oh Ghost bird, how can I fix what is wrong
if the tune is subdued? Sing it slow.
Let the words bend at the edges,
allow your voice to crack and crow.
There is beauty in its breaking,
a love in the nakedness of it all.


I meet you underneath the dogwood tree,
arms around arms, my forehead against yours
the rain now falling ever so softly under the sun.
I am pleading, let go the injured doe, yelping there
in the grasp of your iron bite and in the daylight
let go of what holds you in the dark of night.

Romance has its cost.

Oh Ghost bird, how can you fix what is wrong
if the tune is subdued? I’ll sing it slow.
Let the words bend at the edges,
allow my voice to crack and crow.
There is beauty in its breaking,
a love in the nakedness of it all.
JR Potts Jan 2018
It is in the midst of strife
when the burden weighs most heavy,
your innards writhe and twisted;
the discomfort tugging at you so intensely
you cannot help but feel the tightness in your throat.

It is in the thick of this black mist
when your hands pick and pull
upon the wisping thread inside your head,
unraveling the rabble of cowardice voices
which spill like venom on your thoughts.

It is the unsettling notion
you are alone in a vast and empty ocean
sinking, suffocating and claustrophobic,
your mind is brimming, overflowing,
afraid it might just crack right open

It is knowing
these thoughts which come pouring
from that fractious bore inside your skull
seethe with undisclosed emotions
and their exposure to the air could crush you whole.

Will you allow this shameful wave
to crash atop you with all its galling weight
and drag you under grain by grain?


Will you battle back the coming storm,
standing above the surging tide
a rampart refusing to forfeit a single inch
of your distinguished shore?

I say battle.
Battle with the erosive waters rising inside you.
Battle knowing fully at first you are destined to lose.
The hero must be humbled
before others see him as the hero too.
So battle **** it, battle you glorious fool!
JR Potts Aug 2017
I want to fill my days with you
the way I fill my mug in the morning
with coffee

my passenger seat is full
of empty bottles in the shape of a conversation
we need to have

because that seat used to be yours
and this boat has gotten harder to captain
without a navigator

I can’t read the stars like you
even with the telescope you gave me,
I lack your patience

except for that night on Outer Beach
when we laid on the roof of my car to watch
the evening blue turn black

it started slow but soon the night sky
was consumed by the shine of a billion lights,
some over a million years away

but today I’m staring at an empty closet
draped in naked hangers where your clothes
once hung

somedays I still catch a whiff of you
the smell of your shampoo on my pillow case
I should have washed it by now

I know I am not a perfect man
and I need not remind you of every flaw
but I find it easier to be a better one

with you here...
JR Potts May 2017
What whispered words
linger on our longing lips,
they go unsaid at the hands
of our fingers tips.
These touches talk like old friends,
o’ how familiar
the conversation feels,
even after all these years.

Undress your formal tongue
and we will speak with the slang
we spoke when we were young,
when our bodies were still foreign,
even to us.
We were explorers consumed
not by god, glory or gold
but by lust.

So if we must speak
let it be with our skin pressed,
hot breath on sweat glistened *******,
biting at the napes of our necks
and fingernails breaking flesh.
In the morning we may regret
but we're both here because
we cannot forget.

I promise
this is not a reconciliation,
this is only ***.
JR Potts Dec 2016
The mirrors are now flush with a fog,
the air grows hot from the bodies
that move about the mat like acrobats,
swimming through the guards and grips
of their opponents’ limbs
as I sit back and admire
another training session
at the monster gym.

Sometimes I think, not too often
(but occasionally) and I wonder
where would I be if I had not been here-
for the last two and half years of my life?
What kind of person would I be
had I not met all these different personalities
who have wandered in and out those doors
both day and night?

   For some this place is an escape
               but for me it’s become a way of life.
JR Potts Oct 2016
I hate to be the bearer of bad news baby
but I was broken a long time ago.
I had hoped
when I showed you that video
on kintsugi, the Japanese art
of repairing broken pottery
with lacquer and powered gold
that you would've seen our history
was not meant to be hidden,
that our imperfections,
the cracks in our ceramics
were meant to be illuminated
with gold
JR Potts Oct 2016
One year I had a really bad toothache
it felt like all the wrong words
kept coming out my mouth
and I couldn't help but bite my tongue
just to the numb the pain I was spitting out.

It hurts to be hated
but it hurts worse to be loved,
especially when you don't think your worthy of it.
Put those lines next to all the other dumbs ones I've used  
swinging hammer handed words, scalpel-like terms,
some of the meanest **** you've ever heard
trying to break you in two and you might just have enough
between the half truths and the promises I never kept
to write one really, really sad tune

I knew better than to speak to you the way I did
but some people act like welcome mats
for other people's ***** shoes,
you left the front door unlocked
and I made a habit of wiping my feet
as soon as I walked on through.
I'm not proud of what I tracked in
and I take responsibility for most my actions
but lets not act like they took place in a vacuum.
You had to lay down first
before I could ever step all over you,
and when you refused to love yourself,
what did you expect everyone else to do?

One year I had a really bad toothache
and you were just too sweet a taste for me to take,
without getting angry at myself
for trying to have my cake
and eat it too...
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