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meadowbrook Oct 2020
They all look so **** healthy -
standing over me, staring at me,
speaking so loudly -
as though the illness is in my ears.

And I don’t appreciate being
stood over or stared at,
or having somebody raise their voice at me
yet barely hear a human word of what I say.

They just look so ******* healthy -
I think I’ve been abducted by aliens.
They want to search every part of my body
to find out what is wrong with me,

as if their perfectly supple skin
and their bagless eyes
and their stupidly crisp clothes
aren’t totally wrong to me.
This one’s for the people who’ve spent too many hours of their life in hospital.
meadowbrook Dec 2020
I might just be a little hungry or tired
I might just be a little scared

Used to clawing for the sunlight
even in moon rays

For once
I am afraid of a good thing

I am loved and I am scared

What does this mean if I can let go,
if I can lean a little?

A little loved,
a little scared to lean a little
meadowbrook Oct 2020
When will it be enough?

When one’s cheeks can smile no wider?
When one’s heart has burst itself with joy?

Will one climb all the peaks and
on the journey home from the last
say “What else?”

So - what else?
(And will it ever do?)

Why must one aim Everest-high,
when one feels ever so low?

Why must an ant exist for the crawl?

Will one ever rest at all?
meadowbrook Jan 22
Ain’t the water a drag to wade in?
All I know is what I don’t want

Off the top of my head
I can think of
nothing in particular
particularly pleasing -
more evident
with every morning
the apathy wakes with me.

Through the day
this apathy is an anchor
inside my body -

My body and its constant crashing
into sandbanks,
under unpredictable waves,
saltwater scorching through

I take all my slow walks with apathy -
it holds my hand, saying nothing
but it's there
when I swallow till my lungs are full

Anything but air

And I don’t need a sigh
for this constant exhale -
clenching my jaw,
waiting for rain

If the world was water
I think I could breathe

meadowbrook Feb 25
I don’t know if you can see it

Every action of mine is a shadow of you
Every movement in movement with you

So now that I am older, now that I synthesise
I am long-lost, now I see

Every move I make for you
is a move away from me
meadowbrook Sep 2020
A wildflower

Is a thing of contradictions,
Flourish in the sun and in sadness,
Asks for nothing in return
But to keep making sweet of the rancid.

Pushes through the dry earth,
Holding frost drops in the winter morn.
Asks not for admiration,
Stands quiet and soft and strong.

Ever-growing everywhere,
And through its generous sprawl,
Turns a place into a paradise,
Dotting hills like stars at nightfall.
meadowbrook Oct 2020
deep talks
over Whatsapp

each turn of the year
you are brighter, darker

two pleasant surprises
in the form of brothers
meadowbrook Nov 2020
mean streak
to pass on

whoever you meet
earns a mean streak

I see patterns
in everything
but you

like to tell me
that everything I do
is the first time

humble my hope

in the shadow of memories
you made on your own
meadowbrook Feb 21
And yeah, sometimes I find myself here

on this endless lake,
and my canoe is sinking

Getting creative, getting by

In the holes of the boat
I am clumping the reeds,
clutching at straws,
and wondering what I do this for

Half afloat, I ripple -
see these ****** echoes?

I cannot move without a trace

And still, the boat is sinking -

I think about how
I’ve never been good at swimming

Treading till I ache

Aching for the shore -
where could I find it?

Half afloat and rippling, as I empty
and I’m sinking

Yeah, I find myself here sometimes
meadowbrook May 8
they say on the news
that we'll live past eighty-five

see you slouch on your couch,
how tired you are of life

and you're thirty-two
chewing through
life - like it's a cardboard box

and I know that you will
recycle these shreds
and chew through it again

the way you do with
your lovers and friends
meadowbrook Sep 2020
And you say you love me
in the hiss of coffee’s steam,

but you clang the spoon into the cup and -


coffee on my skin
and the cold shock of heat,

what a joke of sensations -
what a joke made of me.
meadowbrook Feb 26
cavernous cupboard,
with your door swung wide open
like an arm to invite me in -

if I clamber inside,
will you promise to close flush?

will you turn your key?

tidy my commotion
as though a commodity
meadowbrook May 18
I guess now I’m good
There are people who will go to my funeral

People who remind me I’m a tree on a hill
giving shade to a dog, being home for a bird

I guess now I’m good
I tend to say all things tentatively

I guess I’m scared I’ll miss my parents
I guess I’m scared I’ll regret
rushing forward to my chosen lights
always choosing, always rushing

Scared to look down the trap of the past
so I keep running

Once I leave I am gone

I am going

My mother was right
to say I would go and stay going

Some steps cannot be backtracked,
some doors never reopened

Why does it feel like this door is forever closing?

I’m sorry I am short of breath for you
I’m sorry I want so badly to be somewhere else
I’m sorry you were right
meadowbrook Feb 15
Drying eyes,
don’t you shut
I want to see -
I want to see it all.
meadowbrook Sep 2020
a dwelling,
is that what this is?

am I dwelling on this?
meadowbrook Oct 2020
up in flames,
the racing thoughts
feed this fire;
so hungry
for fruition,
for extinction

put me out -
how can I put me out?
meadowbrook Mar 31
I damaged up the tissue -
not to say that it's a scar -
it's an old wound, ever-tender
from that time I stumbled in the dark

I feel it in the nighttime!
Place the traffic cones around me,
and cover all the mirrors -
I don't need to see you leave

Is a goodbye really goodbye
if it feels more like good riddance?
meadowbrook Sep 24
My cat has learned
to love my kisses -

cats don’t kiss -

somehow he learned
that it’s a good thing.

All anybody, any lovely, can do
is to embrace the love they’re given,

and I can’t take it -

how few of these good things
do we find?

Why does a good thing
hurt to find?
meadowbrook Oct 2020
send me home
send me packing

our strains have never strained so terribly

I am needed in other places
I am happy to go

deep down I know
it’s the best thing and the first thing
I’ve done for me

over our blues

before heading for home
I was finished with you

the strain never drained me so empty.
meadowbrook Sep 2020
Here am I
settling in for the night -
lay myself down in bed,
to bathe in the clarity of moonlight

and I find the spring breeze
dancing shy on my face -
but I lay overwhelmed
in the trace of its embrace

for I needed this
gentle touch today;
having barely a hold
on the words I can’t say,

in these long weeks
of wrestling myself again -
and yet I find the night’s breeze
meeting me as a friend.

Then - along my spine,
the blanket agrees
with the lovingly
overwhelming spring breeze,

and suddenly so
does the brilliant moonlight -
and so do the pages
of the book on my bedside,

and they all move to agree with
my nothing inside.

And with that -
I drift into the night.
meadowbrook Sep 2020
How do I put it lightly?
How could I, anything?

I see now why some words are printed after death.
Can I bring myself to wait?

In the shame of omission, a truth becomes futile -
Too late are the words which will never bring change,
which will never tell you how you changed me.
meadowbrook Jan 7
hush me down

the more I talk, the less I know
your face is a stranger to glance past
for twenty four years in a row

hear your anger in so many tones
raise your voice to a bird from the wilderness
a bird you claim to own

the threat is to go to your garden shed
to find those wing clippers,
to make this bird an object for show

silent and beautiful and alone
nothing ever to come by
no place ever to go

slice the scars into wounds again
for you never did say in what way
you would love me so
and you never did so

letting me be, till I’m plotting to leave
then to strike when I stretch my wingspan
learning to fly, trying to grow

hush me down now
the more I talk, the less I know

nothing ever to come by
nowhere for this to go
meadowbrook Oct 2020
You fall asleep, phone in hand
the light of your game shines over you
in a slumber far-off and away

Tuck you in tonight
and in nights past
the way I wished to be

I am your blindside

I must turn away
or it will be the end of me

I must climb the stairs, go to bed,
I must face away from the door

No longer to lend from my voids;
consuming me inside to out

No lock will stop
what wanders these halls

For tomorrow, we will talk again
scathing speech still to cut

still to pull myself apart
to attempt a reach once more.
meadowbrook Dec 2020
my mind plays tricks on me

kitchen sounds
of false hope
and warm breakfasts
still early
cool blue

and maybe I woke
to those sounds one day
but I forget

that my mind plays tricks on me

your smile in pictures
tender words
trust in midnights

I forget

could I dream
up a life?

sometimes I remember nothing

I forget,
I know nothing -

I forget I know nothing
meadowbrook Aug 10
inside the shell
I heard the emptiness
of my ear canal
meadowbrook Nov 2020
Why is it so hard to write about you?

I guess
when I search myself
I can understand

Inside me is a door
that stays open for
mostly anyone who
willingly steps in

And you ransacked the place
and I have no insurance -

Poor as they come
in stable love

Locking down
and locking out
meadowbrook Nov 2020
wordlessly sinking
to the soundtrack of soft rain
and Explorers on the stereo

I’ve said time and again
that life really is a joke

but right now, as I tell you that I -

Explorers plays obnoxiously,
I hear myself speak so comedically

and we can’t help but laugh about it later.

As bad as life can be,
at least it can be funny -

I said

free me
free me from this world
meadowbrook Sep 2020
I thought I saw you,
in the corner of my eye,
or maybe it was the corner of my mind?

In passing moments,
as I flit along,
I feel a familiar tether -

out in the vastness of this city…
the feeling of having you.

Having you…

or were you ever?

I think of you in your apartment alone,
I think of the state of your room,

I feel that you are gone from the world,
and I am fearful of the feeling manifesting as truth

Yet through your local haunts I pass by,
quickly -

As quick as I can -

God forbid having to face you again.
meadowbrook Feb 1
Here, take my resumé -
I hope you will take me

I give you my choices, my history

Justifying myself
to a chain of perfect strangers

Yeah it’s “just a job”
(my time and my life)

represented so neatly
in the attached PDF, 30KB

(hours, and body, and mind)

I just hope your computer screen
makes these corporate words pretty

I just hope you will throw me a line

I just hope it will make you see

that I’m just a person
who, given the chance,
will try.

meadowbrook Apr 12
Lines on the road,
heart beating,
and you in the passenger seat
like we've been doing this forever.

Am I the rhythm
of broken lines on the road -
how it all feels ready for collapse?

Sometimes I forget I exist,
and I can't touch enough
to know this isn't true.

But you touch me
and I am part of this world -

I am the lines on the road,
I am the wheels turning.
meadowbrook Dec 2020
The sadness clings to me like lint
and brings the cold to my skin

But among the lint
stick the warm words of friends
to say this will not be forever

And I’m felting quite a coat now
from these accumulating words

Sometimes in secret I see
the sadness forget itself,
I see the sunlight incubating me

Sometimes, I look
and there,
among the wool of friends,
is my pain
padded up on all sides
like a winter newborn
meadowbrook Oct 2020
a magnolia tree
on spring’s eve;
bare branches blooming.
Matsuo Basho is my favourite poet - his haiku (translated from Japanese to English) are such a source of comfort for me, reminding me of the beauty in little things, in the understated - reminding me to appreciate slowing down.

I could only aspire to evoke such beautiful imagery as effectively. I would learn Japanese just so I could read his original words and understand truly what he meant.
meadowbrook Sep 2020
Little rock in space,
you float and you yearn and you spend

Hitched your wagon to the wrong star,
burning out before your journey’s end

The embers catch you, wasting -
you’re not enough for yourself

But you’re not home yet
and it’s all you can do

to ration the last of you
to the seemingly endless length of life ahead

Maybe you will never see another soul again.
meadowbrook Sep 2020
They say “know when to quit”
but I haven’t yet

Moving forward into days ahead,
the flesh melts off me
with a velocity I don’t have
but expel anyway
meadowbrook Oct 2020
Sunday shut-in

thoughts like moths
in the basement

beating their wings
on the sores in my mouth

I am terrified of moths
I am the dark

I am all the plagued things
that I didn’t think I could be

I used to believe I was made of sunlight,
being born to a summer Sunday’s sunrise

but right now I lay in the dark
to the sounds of everyone else having dinner

thoughts like moths in the basement

I am a low-hanging light bulb,
I am slow-burning toward the inevitable

dust settling
meadowbrook Sep 2020
I can still see us there in the distance,
us in my eyes as though it were yesterday -
the icy wind and my clammy hands,
trying somehow to reach your heart -
or at least your hands.

You ask me for the only money I have left -
you know I don’t have anything but you.
You don’t see it, I buy the guitar for you
hoping this instrument will bring us together,
the way music usually would.
meadowbrook Jan 21
May the stroke of midnight lose me again
in the new year’s eves to come

I remember forgetting time and looking up
among the laughter, the smell of soda,
and my quiet fear -
it was six past midnight into the next year.
I didn’t know this would be
the year I heard my darkest voices
and dared to reply,
to be left by my fighter’s will, high and dry

Here now, this new year
is marked by the midnight
my friends and I missed,
grabbing for the remote control
to watch the fireworks broadcast
in a room dimly lit.
We laughed -
it was lovely
to escape
that dreaded turnover again;
the false promise of magic,
that last digit switch,
the secret wishes -
secretly superstitious;

May our future year endings
slip by us

May these minutes
make safe passage through our lungs

May the moment pass quietly by me
in the new year's eves to come.
meadowbrook Sep 2020
He’s been stuck at 25
since I’ve been around 6 -
planning to go through life
top of class, breezing by

And I come down the stairs
just to tell them I’m alright

He waves off my little heart -
rinses and wrings it -
as he leaves behind
some things for she and I to do;

Writing me into history books.
meadowbrook Aug 26
the mahogany red
of these sticky beads,
they stick to me
and stain the sheets,

even here in bed,
even in my dreams,
clotting in my head -
a book that won’t be read
words printed large and wide
as the blinding of dread

could I make out a letter?
backing up on the bed,
hit the wall with the back of my head,

peeling, scraping the scabs off
old wounds I don't know how to tend

just once, could I
peel, and feel
my skin again?
meadowbrook Sep 2020
our singular imaginations
share one shy dream;
to breathe again, and be again,
in the thrill of possibility

some of us timid, mouths tight,
holding the hope in our throats
some wild-eyed and fanfaring,
indulging the smoke

we all felt it coming;
the wind and the rain
bring visions, and lift resignations
meadowbrook Nov 18
Still, I can’t forget
how you would like to tell me lies
just to see if I’d believe them
and you knew I always did;

a body built of blind faith
the skin of our arms touching -
two forsaken parallel lines

hands to never meet or hold
your body plumed too deep
within a cloud of cigarette smoke

And selfishly
your bold-lined letters came,
dusting off your guilt-laden coat -
you tell your tales, such make-believe,
to make belief of old false hopes

I wake sometimes remembering
our years-long fever dream
broken out in sweat of dread and shame
at having fallen for so grand a scheme

Of all things, I did not believe
in love but common decency,
until you shook me to my senses
shaking off the rosey lenses

Did you cage me or set me free?
meadowbrook Sep 2020
In these words
do the valleys
open into plains -

in these words
are the sounds
made silently,

as these words
are not easy
to speak in earnest.

So here I am
putting thoughts to paper,
to the sounds of my bleeding heart

And it’s so silly in its drama
but I can’t do it any other way
without shrivelling these petals;

it's all so delicate.
meadowbrook Sep 2020

Could I just take a peek inside?
What’s the colour of your blood? Could I take its temperature?
Could I examine you inside and out, head to toe, just take my time to figure it all out?

A human, healthy and vital in all physical regards. Radiating with what I could only call temporary immortality. I know I’ll never see it fade in my lifetime…

So won’t you stick around?

I don’t mean to be cruel, it’s just...

How I envy your physical freedom - your need for so little sleep, the way you bounce back after a night out, accidentally missed the bus so you just walk home. What I could do with that kind of power… my body feels so much older than you.


Humiliated and betrayed by this heavy casing I carry, have carried and cared for, and defended from hands with no self control.

How could you do this to me? I thought I loved you well, I thought this transaction was forever. A permanent wrench in the system, what can I do but accept it all and push on?

The alternative...well, it’s not something I can accept.

I didn’t carry you all this way, all the way through childhood recklessness, years of kicks and stances on hardwood floors, basketball games, over oceans, and through forests of trees, all the way to shifts at the diner, at the cafe, or the book factory, and on bicycles through streets (almost ending it), through crowded cities and up countless flights of stairs, all the way, for this.

A physical self-gaslighter, fixing problems which aren’t even there. Talk about the placebo effect - a self-doubting, gaslighting mind, and a body with an attitude to match.

I’m sorry I doubted myself so much - criticised and never gave slack to my mind or my body - convinced there was always something I was doing wrong, never trusting the idea that my instincts could actually be right.

And this all leads me to ask… did I do this to myself?

Here I go again.
For a little context, this poem addresses my experience of having an auto-immune disease, and the relationship between a person's mind and body when one's own body attacks itself.
meadowbrook Apr 26
Wide awake at night,
waiting for sunrise,
I wonder and wonder...

Do I watch the clouds
in wish for rest?
meadowbrook Nov 2020
I slip into my dressing room
and close the door behind me

I take off my people clothes
and rub my people skin

I am people too

So why don’t people feel like people?
Why don’t I feel as people do?

I wipe off my people face
and look into my people eyes -
I often forget that I look like a person
and what that person looks like

So, I sometimes spend
secret minutes staring
at this people person
and wonder why

a people person
is not really a person at all.
meadowbrook Jul 12
cracks in the pavement
stepping with my eyes closed

the ghosts under the dinner table
have nothing on
the skeletons in your closet

have nothing on
my lack of superstition
and the squid ink you deposit

over oceans
around me

say I never could, so I did
say there’s no such thing as love
so I go ahead and make it
meadowbrook Sep 2020
I see the way you seethe sometimes -
would you ever hurt me?

There is nothing to see in a mirror like me -
I soothe as you seethe.
meadowbrook Oct 2020
in the edges of my vision,
writhe the snakes of murky dreams
turn my head - vanish
shake me free of leaden sleep
follows me
down lanes and streets
dizzy at the prospect of the journey home;
heavy legs to bring back
and lay along the bed
with pragmatic tenderness
for I am ponderous as a stone
please wrap me warmly in
sunlight and clement winds
to send me off tomorrow
to do it all again
meadowbrook Oct 2020
I walk myself slowly to the door of myself,

so I can let myself out,
so I can be with you, my friend.

Life is such a joke;
the least meaningful of things
become figurative inside.

My mother never did like me
to have people over, so

I chat to you in the front yard
of my heart,

I pretend to see warmth
in your marble eyes -

please, may I have the eyes
I glimpse between laughs?

I find it hard to face you,
my house front is a backdrop,

it should be more of something -
whatever ‘something’ is...

My silences - inadequacy,
my comments hog the stage,

I know up in my mind
you never see me that way -

this is just something I have to say.
meadowbrook Oct 2020
I’m sorry that I
always feel like I’m stepping up a staircase
which is climbing ever higher, yet descending into earth,

sorry that I
think I can tell you how it hurts
to be blood and flesh and bone,

sorry that
the words never reach anybody,

sorry that I
like to pick apart the pain
and show you the results,

sorry that I
sway between “all of this matters”
and “nothing ever does”,

sorry that
the whole of me
does not feel whole,

sorry that I
really am sorry
for the whole of me,

sorry that I
keep saying sorry -

****, I’m sorry.
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