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ghost man Apr 22
i spill the words like coins into the couch cushions.

you look at me.

i say, hello,
in that way that people say hello when they
really need an answer now,
before panic, ideally,
before regret.

you look at me.

you look at me.

you look at me.

is anybody in there?

is anybody in there? i joke,
because i'm joking now
because that is how to salvage things
or, at least, it used to be,
pretend it's humor,
pretend it's a misunderstanding,
pretend it's anything other than what it is,

but you're grabbing my face
and your nails are sharp
and you're pulling me into you like limp cloth
and my hands are out to the sides like limp cloth

and you're calling me
idiot, idiot, idiot
and i'm saying
sorry, sorry, sorry
and i feel the metal of my cents start to warm
under the bodies we've got
ghost man Apr 15
rest assured
you taste
exactly as
i thought
you would
ghost man Mar 6
what does a fleshy thing do with her grievances?

flesh and blood and bone.
i sit. i lay. i walk. i sleep. i eat.
i live luxuriously.
i live... fleshily.

you do not.

so, what are my grievances to you?
you, already burdened.
you, already taken.
you, condemned.
what do i do with my surplus burdens?
surely, not as heavy as a sky, but a feather.

even so.
what am i to do with my feathers?
what if this feather is the one to break you?

you hold the universe and i know it to be painful.
i sit. i lay. i watch. i hear. i know.

all you do is hold.

my feather is this:

you hold the universe, husband,
but when will you hold me?
ghost man Mar 2
okay.

this bench, i think.
i'll take this bench.

and a little portion of this bathtub.

i'll take this seat in this room
and if it's taken
i'll leave,
i'll leave and find another room
another seat,
i'll find my scraps
my dusty voids of the universe
to curl up in.

i deserve this bed.
mine, my bed.
i deserve this part of the floor,
this stain on this rug,
this tear in this sheet.
i deserve the bricks in the hall,
lean myself up on them,
catch my breath.

i deserve that too. air. just a little bit.

i deserve this corner of your fireplace,
as i sit here and listen to you
speak about the space you take up
and i think, i think, i think,
i think it's never enough.

i think you should have more.

this bench, please.
this bed.
this floor.
this crack in the window,
put my hand up against it,
push until its legs grow longer.
this stair.
this wooden board of this porch.
i want this song,
i want this moment,
i want the things i can't see,
but only a morsel of it.

and, if i can manage it,
i'd like this piece of you.

this one.
yeah, that's the one.

this grouping of atoms and blood,
just under the ribs,
in the divot between bone,
i wanna pinch the skin
and claim it.
i want to exist here,
i want to belong here,
right here,
i want this intersection
between the stuff inside you
and the rest of the world
and, more than anything,
i want to say that i will
return soon
ghost man Feb 25
there is me,
and then there is what i was
before.

the first one and then me,
two-point-oh,
upgraded,
without the pulse,
i had a pulse before,
i think.

i know what a pulse feels like,
so i must have had one.

she has a pulse.
a heart.
it's musical
and far larger than should be possible.

the first one wrote poems.
the first one kissed her bare chest
and smiled when he could feel the thrum of it on his mouth.
the first one recited poems against her skin.
the first one was warm,
the first one had noise on the inside.

two-point-oh.
hello.
the sound scooped out,
the heart and the guts,
bang on my chest and i'll crumple,
kiss me and i'll melt.

she loved the first one.
i look like the first one.
i am him, i think, just quieter.
crumplier.
aluminum can tin man.

she loved the first one
and the first one was warm.

i am not.

they took my hot blood, i think,
cracked me open and poured me out,
my blood and my heart,
i wonder what they did with them.

i had a pulse, before.
or, he had a pulse.
hot and red and loud.

i miss it.

i will have to borrow hers.
borrow her pulse,
borrow her clothes,
give neither of them back.

sometimes he talks to me, the first one,
tells me how to talk to her,
how to hold her,
what to say and what not to.

i try on a First Tone.

she wrinkles her nose.

don't do that, she says.

do what, i say, and i'm nervous
and empty.

try to be him, she says.

the first one wrote poems about her body.
i don't think i know her body anymore.
she takes my hands, holds my wrists,
guides me to touch.

i start over.

i write poems.
ghost man Feb 25
she doesn't like it when i think of it as coming online.
she said, you're back.
she said, you woke up.
she did not say, you turned back on,
no matter if that was truly what happened.

truly what happened.
i'm still not sure.

it was almost as if i shone myself awake,
a light through a thin paper lantern.

heat made sense again,
touch made sense,
both were suddenly mine.
heavy. they were heavy.

i remember the feeling.

i was on the ground, i think,
propped up against the wall
under the window,
like an old TV she was planning to haul down
to the road for someone to pick up,
but she could never find the time.

i remember how she smiled.

hands on my shoulders, i felt them.
lips on mine, i think, they were still numb.
i'm sure i had to be terribly cold,
badly soldered metal,
baby's first frankenstein.

i remember how she cried.

i couldn't join her. didn't know how.
i sat and watched her,
curious,
the way her face blotched pink
and her eyes reflected the windows,
reflected me.
i'm sure it was particularly robotic to study her
while she crumbled
but i found her beautiful.
she cried and i remembered what beautiful meant.

she sat on the ground with me.
kissed me.
moved each of my fingers.
flexed my wrists, my ankles.
the weaponry inside had been swept away
and my body was not equipped for much without it.

she introduced me to my joints,
my muscles,
my reflexes,
my words.

she called me the tin man
and kissed me over the space where a heart would go.

i did not yet get the reference.

yes, i remember now.

she helped me thaw,
slowly picking the concrete structure
from around my inhibition
with her fingernails.

i came online.
i woke up.
she said she recognized the light inside.
paper lantern.
ghost man Feb 25
she climbs on top and he folds his hands behind his head,
smiling,
like go ahead,
like a challenge,
like let's see what you've got.

this isn't domestic bliss, she doesn't think.

something a little bit to the right of it.

domestic bliss is a ceramic plate that got broken
and they super-glued it together
and put it back in the glass cabinet
and the cracks were white like the plate
white like the cabinet
and it looked just like it did before they picked it up
in the first place.
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