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Meka Boyle Dec 2015
There is no movement here
(Except inside my head)
Besides the rhythmic heaving of my chest,
My arms readjusting around my pillow,
Legs contorted into what I can only describe as
A lying down flamingo.
There is no motion that cannot be accounted for,
Only the necessary,
The slight,
The human impulses that cannot be quelled
By bedrest.


I laid there—two weeks—
Alone with my thoughts,
My fears,
My shortcomings,
My inability to be
Anywhere but where I was:
Facing the ceiling
With such intent
You would think I was waiting
For a ghost to appear
(Maybe I was),
Haunted by myself.
Meka Boyle Dec 2015
You cannot resurrect
Have wedged themselves between
The future and the past,
Yet are too fragile to
Exist within the present—
You cannot
The way you felt
(The way you felt invincible)
In remembering mannerisms that outlive
The moment.
You cannot reconcile
The heart's defiance,
Deliberately giving yourself to
A void not of your own,
Gathering gathering gathering
Sentiment and stitching it into
The fabric of your narrative,
When you should have
Gathered your senses in a pail
And lowered them down into a wishing well...
You cannot resurrect what never
Wholly, entirely, unconditionally
Existed without
Your warm breath
Encompassing it in meaning,
Feeding an emptiness not of your own making.
You cannot escape it either;
So it lingers:
Your regrets, your self loathing, your incapacity
To accept that
There is no way to breathe life back into
Something that was dead before you
Pressed its surface with your fingers,
As if you, yourself could
Impose a pulse upon what you could not

Understand this,
Time will not resurrect
That which you long for in the night,
It will not reconcile
The incongruent nature
Of desire:
To feel
To be numb
To hold on to
To understand
To forget
To destroy
To save

Save like a wilted flower pressed between
Two aged, yellowed pages: present only in its allusion to the past.
You do not wish the flower a different fate,
To fill its dried up veins with green, pulsating life,
To have it become what it once was.
You cannot reconcile the purpose of its carefully preserved petals.
You do not question its existence,
Question why it has been uprooted from the ground,
Why it has changed shapes while remaining a flower.
It was never meant to remain the way it was.
And so, it exists
As an indicator of what it once was,
As a reminder that it will never be again,
As memories do
When we press them down
Between the past and the future,
Until like the dried up flower,
They cease to change,
As we continue.
Meka Boyle Dec 2015
I do not know you the way a morning glory knows the sunlight: dependent, wilted in its absence.
Nor do I know you the way a vowel knows its predecessor: dependent, indifferent to chance.
Still, I know you. The way a palm knows
Each singular line that runs down the twin fingers of its opposite, independent yet inseparable.
Parallel creases of experience, your hands rewrite language by their subtle movements—
Alluding to a oneness that scatters once it is spoken, a secret dialect that spreads from your fingertips into mine, sending signals up my outstretched arms.
Reflexively, I trace the outline of your presence. I do not know you apart from the way I know myself.
At times, I yearn for the indifferent dependency of the morning glory, the formulaic way a vowel flirts with the past. Yet this can not be. To know you is to
Become you (the contours of your fingerprint contains my very being). To know you is to love you entirely.
Lose my singularity, to take your hands and place them decidedly over my eyes, look out into
Eternity: the world filtered through your presence—our harmony—this is how I know you.

Meka Boyle Jan 2015
When I discovered I had cancer,
I was told that I would learn a lot
About Life and Death and Time,
But I never thought that I would
Discover what it means
To be intimate
With strangers,
Or anyone, for that matter.

When my insides were cut open like a game of operation,
I told myself:
Be detached.
When visitors came,
We talked about the weather.

When I arrived home, I spent my time
Trying to forget
The experience
Of impermanence
And shared emotions
That I couldn't even grapple with

When the person I loved
Left me
I flinched
And then sunk back into an abyss of
Emotionless functioning,
Cutting myself further and further
Off from my narrative
Of pain.

When it was time to go back to school,
I flinched
And signed up for a workload
Heavy enough
To push out the fading reality
Of my condition.

It wasn't until I was sitting on the steps
Outside of a bar that was slowly beginning
To empty out,
As intoxicated shadows gained substance and lit cigarettes against the brick wall.
I sunk down next to friend I had recently met-
My big t shirt inched up above my abdomen
And the lower jagged mark of my scar
Peeked out-

I didn't choose to tell him my story
Until he asked me about the obvious
Stale incison mark that had a presence
Of its own.
Piece by piece, it peeled itself from off my stomach
And liquified into a sequence of events
And feelings
That poured from me
Like a stream of bubbling bath water
Overflowing from the rim
Of a porcelain tub.

That's when I realized that there is something shared and intimate about scars:
Marred reminders of the flesh
That speak to our upmost human
Encounters with our own mortality.
An indecipherable label of sorts:
An unsigned invitation into the taboo.

In a moment of unintentional word *****
At 2am to a stranger,
I regained my intimacy with myself
And my journey.
I learned that while Life and Death and Time
Will always plague our existence,
They distance us from the human experience that is
To feel:

To feel everything in this God forsaken world.
To feel angry at people for leaving when they should have stayed.
To feel compassion at the same time.
To feel intimacy with others.
To feel intimacy with yourself.
To feel love.
To feel pain.
To feel the cold creases in the wooden floor as you make your way to the bathroom in the middle of the night.
To feel alone.
To feel surrounded.
To feel the trembling echoes of the past and be able to grab its elusive coattails and shake away the dusty remnants of time and shout that you are present.

To feel nothing.
Meka Boyle Sep 2014
Pain is beauty:
The thick, swollen red line
Runs jagged between my hip-bones
To right beneath my belly button:
Peeking out from under my
Drawstring pants
As my figure wavers
In the fogged bathroom mirror reflection:

Beauty masks pain.
I focus on a freckle above my midriff
While my stomach heaves in and out-
A testament that I'm still Here.

Life is concealment
Of all the run ins with death
That we are too humble to
With the same unabashed glory
That we attribute to the very
God- whose own son's hands
Were marred with the scars
Of a self righteousness
That isn't felt in hospital recovery rooms.

Sensations are transitory-
Leaving subtle marks upon our fragile
A reminder
That death can never be beaten;

I trace my fingers across
The rigged Scar- but I don't feel
I don't feel the missing faulty pieces
Of my body,
Carefully extracted like a childhood
Game of Operation:
They didn't belong there, anymore.

Beauty has fallen
(Down from the right hand of god)
Into the arms of modern medicine,
Adorned with sickly sweet lilies
And medals of honor
Pinned upon the breast
Of anyone tragic enough
To experience
Without the security
Of a timely exit.

I am whole because my experiences
Are hidden beneath a functioning
My marred flesh burns against
The heavy fabric draped over
Last summer.

Experience is merely a fallacy
For survival:
My raised skin outlines
A tragedy too human
To pray about over the dinner table.
Meka Boyle Sep 2014
How can one measure happiness?
Today's youth fades into tomorrow's yesterday,
As age wears its weary toll upon
The cherub faced nation that cried at it's mother's breast
And asked for the world in technicolor.

The sun slinks his ambivalent profile across the unforgiving sky,
As we pace face down against the grain of time,
Counting seconds until they spill over,
Lapping up against our freshly polished shoes and quivering ankles,
And drown out the dying magic
Of the coming hour.

Day after day, we are aware of nothing,
Moved forward by the simple urge to live,
Created by motion pictures and life insurance billboard advertisements.
Is this what it means to be alive?

Years pass, and we pursue the same ancient questions,
That have disrupted our conscience
And held us accountable
For millenniums.
Yet, we are still no closer to an answer to our empty prayers.

Afraid of the unknown, we peel the face off God,
And disguise him in languages and fables
That embody an entire civilization
And the fear that turns it's wheels.
Meka Boyle Sep 2014
We are
Born like this
Into this
Into these carefully mad wars
Into the sight of broken factory windows of emptiness
Into bars where people no longer speak to each other
Into fist fights that end as shootings and knifings
Born into this
Into hospitals which are so expensive that it’s cheaper to die
Into lawyers who charge so much it’s cheaper to plead guilty
Into a country where the jails are full and the madhouses closed
Into a place where the masses elevate fools into rich heroes
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