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Liz 3d
The past holds me by the ankles,
Dragging me across the floor
Through the wreckage
Of my desperate decisions.

There is no destination,
Nowhere to drop me,
Or leave me to bleed
After the debris of memory
Has pierced me
Like a nail through a tire.

The fixed,
Glass eyes of the past
Stay locked into the dark distance behind us,
Retreating into reminiscence.

In the moments when I am strong enough,
I twist to face forward,
In search of the present
And something sturdy to hold onto,
Lest time immemorial flay me
On the rubble of my insatiability.

Just yesterday,
The tearing of skin
And willful deterioration into anamnesis
Came to me as effortlessly,
As sweetly as wine on my tongue
Washing down an ambrosial pill.

But today,
Though it would be easier to concede
To times' torment,
I aspire to want a grounding in actuality.
Praying I find that now
Fills me with a more substantive contentment
Than then.

But everything I grip
Rips from its roots
And disintegrates like a forgotten semblance
In my frenzied hands.

For how am I to know
What lies beneath the dirt?
How can I anticipate the integrity
Of his assurance
And avoid shallowly entrenched
Semi-permanence?

There is nothing but eternity
To continue falling into.
So with tepid hope
And resigning repetition
I keep looking
And I keep grasping
At tethers showing tenable-enough sincerity.

The hours will pass anyway
And, for now,
I retain the belief
That my languid attempts
At thwarting history's absconding of my contemporaneity
May eventually prevail
In standing me upright,
Existant in currency.

Then I may turn
And face remembrance as I please,
With ankles rubbed raw
And stationary feet.

I can visit the displays
Of bygone horror
Without becoming part of the atrocity
Again.

Clutching fast
To the most invariable helve
I've yet found,
I only fear that the past
May rip me in two.

Leaving me halved
And but a fragment
Of the entirety that I was
Before recollection animated
With retribution against me.

I beg to heaven
That he possess me
With the same fervor that I cling to him
And that his coherence
Stays material enough to
Wrap my despairing fingers around.
Liz 7d
The songs you watched me cry to,
Remembering him,
Have rearranged memories
And are now about you.

What I crave to do again
Has shifted forward,
Framing new dates
Like a rotating exhibit
That is always a year behind.

Borrowing the soundtracks
From the reels of older grief,
Unarchiving the loss of other lovers,
Taking the signifiers of pain
And giving them to you.

And when I stumble over the artifacts
That have found their way under my feet,
Coming directly from you,
I pick them up and hold them close,
Tracing every angle and seam
Hoping to feel some trace of you.

I listen close,
Pressing my ear to the glass,
Closing my eyes to focus on the silence
In case one might ring,
Just a little,
With the sound of you.

Now I see why I've been drinking so much.
Because through the glasses full of laughter
And the warm days stained hues of whiskey,
The taste has turned into you.

So now I drink,
Desperate for mouthfuls of you.
It burns me the whole way down,
But to swallow your fire
Is how I stay close to you.

I pretend that maybe,
On the other side of town,
You drink me too.
Taking your gin warm
To remind you of my blood
You couldn't help but spill.

I know you don't,
Because I am a chore to remember,
But I hope sometimes
When you drink,
You ******* fire too.
Liz Mar 13
No words follow your visage.
I think of you
And my mind materializes your face,
Your shoulders,
Your hands.

I see your blue eyes
Clear as a stream,
Your wispy blonde hair
Balled up in my fist,
Your jagged nose bumping mine.

My heart jumps,
I hear your slow laugh.
I smirk,
Watching you turn away,
Looking up to the side,
Your hands deep in your pockets.

You are every sensation
As stark as memory allows,
With no definition,
No rhetorical root,
So I struggle to write about you.

You don’t say much
So it follows
That my mind has not assigned a vocabulary
For mourning you,
Though I continue to.

The regret resounds
And I’m at no loss
For names to call myself,
Knowing that I held you
And let misguided indecision
Let you go.

If I could take it all back,
Un-drink all that wine,
Un-cry all your tears,
Go back in time and tell you I love you
The second I thought to,
Maybe you might still love me too.

But the damage is done,
Our bodies untangled,
The pills have all been swallowed,
And you’d rather
I just give up.

So I will lie in the mess I’ve made,
Drenching myself in the blood,
The drinks I have spilled.
Soaking up the guilt,
Absorbing the hurt I let spew.

I will grapple with wordlessness,
Yearning to poeticize my longing.
But I will get what I deserve,
Silence and prosaic grief.

Only images remain,
Flashes of your face.
Tactile memories come in pieces
And I hear your exasperation
In short breaths.

This is what I have left of you
And with this
I must make do.
Liz Mar 12
The sun stays later
And rises higher,
It thaws the first flowers
That open like my chest.

Today spring is here
And the radiating light
Reminds me of your wide grin
How it shines,
Your voice excited to have a day
Calling me sweet names
That still echo in my head.

I drive with my windows down
Feeling the warm breeze soothe my crosshatched raw skin.
The sensation pulls me back
To last years melt,
When we walked hand in hand
Out of the dark winter
And into the river
Into the woods
Onto the beach
Over the mountains.

Now even sunny days make me cry
Thanks to you.
Even the sweet smell of spring
Sours in my nose.
And the promise of longer days
Sounds more like a threat.
Liz Mar 11
Either I have wasted my breath
And spent my air on useless ramblings,
Leaving meaning like a cloud to float away
With intended ears bare to my point.

Or my mouth has not parted nearly enough
To exhale with any worthwhile purpose,
Trapping my objective still in my lungs
Swelling like an over-inflated balloon
Ready to burst at the slightest poke.

My chosen phrasing has been inadequate
Or my audience has decided to stay ignorant,
Rejecting my analysis in favor of blissful unawareness
So they may continue their rejection of truth
And keep pace against self-knowledge.

I have tried to change the story
Be revealing the subtext.
I have unfolded a canvas of consciousness
To one who revels in negligence,
Finding that my efforts are all but transformative.
Now wondering if I have mistranslated
Or muddied the blend.

I have framed this endeavor as an act of service
To one who denies my care.
“It is for his own good” I tell myself,
As I venture to illuminate the truth of the character
I have come to know through lashings and tears.

Now it is clear that the reflection I have conjured,
The mirror that I have painstakingly crafted
Has no form to display.
I have written it down, painted it out
But your attention will not sway
From the mangled path that you have cut every which way but home.

Some urge continues,
Telling me to find another way
to make you listen,
To make you care,
To make you take heed of what I have to say.
Despite your deafness to my voice,
which has been demonstrated again and again.

While my instruction has not enlightened you,
It has taught me to know you
better than you do.
I have sifted through your archives
to find the nuance of your avoidance
And detail it with citation and reference.

The theories I have conjured
And observations I have made
Serve me better than they do you.
They have discerned the route that I must take
Away from you and your refusal to acknowledge the roots of suffering
You cause to those who only wish to be close to you.

So I will venture to stray
From the course which would be easy to take,
Toward deeper understanding of self
And conscious correction of fault.
To one who has taken stock of the harm they have caused
And allowed selfless change to wash away
The habits that hurt.

It is true
That one can only understand me
As deeply as they have understood themselves,
And your defiance of perception
Will keep you from knowing anyone
And anyone from knowing you.
Liz Mar 2
Stop falling backwards, I try but I can’t.
Thinking of the dreams we had,
All of it was a shadow, a lie.
Too sweet for my bitterness
Heavy enough to drown me.

Rare love was anything but.
Feeling, fleeting forever for you.
Tremble, my hands. They still reach for you.
Rush to push you out of my head, replace you.
Dare myself to try again.

Don’t do it, I say. Knowing I always will.
Over and over, I come back to you.
Think of me, if you can remember sometimes.
Cry, please, I know I beg in vain.
Again, I beg for a sign that you feel anything.
Liz Feb 17
Down
Up
My eyes bounce from the water below me
To the dark and dancing river
That runs under the stone fortress I wander

Im sure I have felt this before
Mostly sure
But I can’t forage a memory
From the wilderness
That has rooted in me

I consume myself
Starting with my feet
I twist further to the start
Back to the beginning
But I haven’t yet tasted the memory of this feeling

Stepping into the treeline again
Touching the vastness that I have nurtured
I mingle with the my past selves
And paint pictures of the myriad of selves-yet-to-be
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