Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
Khalif May 2017
if i wrote a love letter to humanity
i would write it in all lowercase
i. would put periods in places where
there shouldn’t be because sometimes
endings are more abrupt than we expect
and sometimes endings
aren’t really endings at all
if i wrote a love letter to humanity
i would look to other poets
to all the other love letters
and i would steal one line
try to make it my own
and fail
if i wrote a love letter to humanity
there would. probably be a point to it
i wouldn’t explain it though
not because i want to make you think
but because i can’t make you
if i wrote a love letter to humanity
i would try to think about everyone i’ve loved
i wouldn’t trust. myself to remember them all
so no one would be mentioned
you’d just know
but maybe you wouldn’t
and that would be just as beautiful
if i wrote a love letter to humanity.
i would remember that love is complicated
and even if we steal definitions
we don’t steal the feeling
we already have enough of them to drink our fill
we only need remember
there are times when our lips grow parched
or maybe you’re already drowning
but this is a love letter
not about drowning
or living in lowercase
or abrupt endings
i wouldn’t trust
look for it
Khalif Apr 2017
Her fingers are freeze frame waterfalls,
Beautiful. They always find a way to glisten
even when the sun feels like sleeping in a little.

It worries me how unresponsive they are.
I just want to taste the brush strokes
until I develop a fondness for still life.

But I don’t want to look towards her eyes,
I'm afraid those will be just as dead.
Khalif Apr 2017
In Seattle from a hotel windowsill
one can speculate the faults of those
who roam the wasteland below,
only they know
but the darkened alleyway will tell
their story just fine.
There’s a homeless woman who looks down-
right ready to cry when she receives leftovers
and I sit there and ******* hate myself
because I can’t live up to my own expectations.
Seattle is just the excuse really.
There’s a little girl playing on the stairs
who falls but is not defeated
she says it just takes some practice
and in that moment I love her.
Part of me wants to say hold up,
how did you become so smart;
and part of me wants to hold up
a knife to my chest, just to keep something close.
I know I wouldn’t use it that way
I’m a ******* coward and maybe
that’s what brought me here in the first place.
Not to Seattle, but to the windowsill,
where I speculate the faults of those
who call this wasteland home.
Inspired by Terrence Hayes': New York Poem
Khalif Apr 2017
She asks me if I believe in angels.
I wonder if she can see the disappointment in my eyes
when I tell her not lately.
Maybe I should’ve lied.

I wonder if she can see the disappointment in my eyes
when I tell her I don’t know if I’m happy anymore.
Maybe I should’ve lied.
This always seems to happen.

When I tell her I don’t know If I’m happy anymore,
I can’t tell her why
this always seems to happen.
It just happens.

I can’t tell her why
my fingers stop holding on so tightly,
It just happens.
Maybe it’s time to let go.

My fingers stop holding on so tightly.
I wonder if she sees the tears.
Maybe it’s time to let go.
I hope she forgives me.

I wonder if she sees the tears
when I tell her not lately.
and I hope she forgives me
when she asks if I believe in angels.
Khalif Mar 2017
I love you,
I tell her in parenthesis;
Which is to say I didn't tell her that at all.

And that has made all the difference.
Khalif Mar 2017
Remember Wesley’s Theory. Remember they haven’t taught you everything.
And no one actually gives anything For Free. Don’t take it and expect to give nothing back.
They will beat it out of you. Spit back King Kunta even though you’ll feel nothing like royalty.
Google Institutionalized. The first example reads, The danger of discrimination becoming


Maybe they didn’t want to flat out say racism?
And instead pretend like u won’t try to climb over These Walls.
You in Trumps America now boy, everything ain’t just gonna be Alright.
You might wake up tomorrow, sign chained to your ankles, “For Sale”.

Momma never warned you. At least you don’t remember, you haven’t talked lately.
You never understood Hood Politics, found yourself on the wrong block
Too much change in your pocket tryna to figure out How Much a Dollar Cost
But the Complexion of your currency ain’t quite correct cuz

That’s when you realize The Blacker the Berry, the less like you.
You Ain’t Gotta Lie, you like where you are now.
Starting to think i belong and ****.
But remember, even though you know how to **** a Butterfly, you’re just a Mortal Man.
Italics are songs from "To **** a Butterfly"
Khalif Feb 2017
On the eighth day she coined the word Poetry
And I savored the syllables, dipped them in silence,
Just so I could remember a time before her.
A time where I didn’t know, and she didn’t tell me.

I threw away an empty box of tea,
The blue label read, Chamomile
A mug sat on the counter, never a chance
To plead half empty
                                      or half full.

She sang without opening her mouth –
A foreign language. And I savored the syllables
But don’t remember what they tasted like.
Something calming perhaps.

Maybe one day I’d be able to speak her tongue.
Then she wouldn’t need to tell me.
I’d find a new box of chamomile,
And savor the syllables.

— The End —