Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
sickophantic Jul 2022
it's one of those days
where your memory fails you
and a look outside your window
compels you to walk out the door and then
keep on walking, like you're aimless,
like you don't know exactly where
you want to end up. who you want to run into.
but a place is just a place unless he's in it --
and you could walk until you bumped
your feet against the edge of this world and
still not find what you're looking for.

today is one of those days
where i would kiss him wherever
he wants to be kissed. but i'll settle for a walk
and a bench somewhere with a pink sunset
where maybe if i just kept looking up at the sky
it wouldn't fade to black this time.
the warmth is doing things to my head i swear
sickophantic May 2022
it all happens so fast
you almost look a little blue, baby
“here’s where the language barrier gets us”
you laugh now, but as you say that
your eyes are glued to the ground

when does every lovely thing break into shards?
always looking for the beginning of the end
this isn’t the way. hammer in your hand—
tear it all down, i say.
i’m done with this house of mirrors.

don't you almost feel a bit
like the guy who discovered fire?
there’s poetry before you fall asleep next to him
and there’s poetry after it.
the latter which is all worthless, of course.

turns out it’s rather comforting
to look in the mirror and see someone
other than yourself.
to see you, darling boy.

to see you.
yes after obsessing over the idea for all my life i am actually finally in love. it's nice. a bit scary
sickophantic Sep 2021
can you tell my teeth are clattering?
taking your hand by the wrist, placing it
on the soft underside of my stomach
where only soft tissue lies between vital organs
and the negligible possibility of your cruelty,
i am letting you know: this is enough
to make the old animal of my body shake in fear.
keep your hands right there until they’re warm.
you can have this. you can have me.

will you stay after the curtains are down?
after taking their bows, i swear,
even the greats still look like people.
the well-dressed stranger in front of you at the checkout.
your cousin’s old piano teacher. and there’s a reason
why celebrity gossip sells more than the local newspaper.
here's the thing. you want to bare the darkness, the cancer;
to be loved, desperately, despite the horror of it.
but no one's ever willing to be the emperor --
you want to be the child, clothed.
tattling fingers forever raised.

it's always just been fog machines and fitting costumes.
your eyes, sharp and weary, search for a way
past the infinite charades, beyond the gaze of the winged,
half-lion abomination.
and i think i finally understand.
because your hands are shaking, too, as you tell me:
neither of us are destined for godhood.
next time, i’ll call you when i’m sick.
next time, i’ll take you grocery shopping.
tomorrow, i’ll kiss you in the morning and it won’t taste like mint.
does the idea of true vulnerability make you physically ill or are you normal
sickophantic Jul 2021
my vision blurs and refocuses around the sight of tamed blue fire. i am waiting for the low wheezing sound of the kettle as my mind wanders everywhere i wish it not to go. there was always tea ready for me at my therapist’s office; i think that’s where it started. we used to talk about my parents a lot, me and my old therapist. i remember telling her this one time: I love like my dad. I rage like my mom. she asked me to elaborate and i couldn’t give her much more to write down in her little notepad. i wish i’d said something about how sometimes i wish oranges could grow out of apple trees.

this is one of those days. every move i make has been pre-programmed. i grab a mug from the cabinet. i place it down on the counter. i am trying very hard not to cry. the teabag bobs to the surface so i stick my trembling finger in the water, i drown it until skin turns red and sore, and i’m thinking, You know, maybe I’m not so above it all (hurried whispers, clashing teeth, the hesitant theatre we make out of our long-starving hands). Maybe i need it, very badly. but then again, i’m not bad at being in love; it’s the being loved part that always gets me.

it's funny, isn't it? the paralyzing, nauseating threat of requited affection. funny if you’re the dissector and not the dissectee, that is. ****, but isn’t that what we all want? to be seen? for someone to finally notice everything we love about ourselves and love everything we hate about ourselves? would i not rather see myself through the reflection of your eyes than my own, unforgiving? sharp bathroom LEDs can’t ever beat half-dark and candlelit. see, i know that much. but such is life. some people will walk towards the light and some people will run from it.

from the bottom of my cup, the teabag stains clear water a dark, muddy brown.
i should definitely be asleep
sickophantic Jun 2021
i take a step outside in the city of dust and bones.
the game it likes to play goes something like this:
every passage i uncover leads to a narrower one, and
each candle blown is a promise of darkness ahead.
it's a game of shells where my feet can never, ever
take me far enough before they outgrow my shoes.

the first rule of the game is to never stop walking.
the second rule is to keep your ears closed shut.

i wake up once more in the city of dust and bones.
where my eyes cannot be trusted; where my hands
don't quite do what they are supposed to be doing.
where, like beasts, we can only stand and watch
while the will of some ******* god is viciously carried out.
(by that, of course, i mean the same old game called

Power and Whoever Doesn't Have It;
the one with the never-ending shells. you would know it.)

in this city, my rotting city of dust and bones,
i am always irrational and stupid;
i am always the child who can't ever shut her mouth.
and here my head is turned all the way backwards:
nose always pointing towards the footprints i left
when shells turned into sand under my weight. and i wonder:

how far can my feet carry me before i know where i stand?
before the best thing about life are not its countless distractions?
some thoughts about leaving my hometown
sickophantic May 2021
yesterday, i choked up my heart and placed it in your hands. my whole self phased in and out of existence but you just kept talking. not a single look before putting it down, a used up, pulsing thing, on your bedside table: a glass of water, half-full; a statement earring without its pair.

i thought maybe you hadn’t noticed it. which is strange, naturally; mostly because i know i would have. i have never liked to be handed things and much less to be in control. and yet i write. what is poetry, if not the art of plucking on heartstrings? if not learning how to make souls sing? it’s power, too, a type of hunger as well as any other — albeit painted in gold. i will say this: a beast, touched by Midas, still has teeth.

but what’s really amazing about this is that tomorrow, tomorrow it will still be there — my heart — spilling blood and making a mess out of your hardwood floors. you’ll make a face when it gets your socks wet and I'll apologize, pale-faced and mortified, yes, but mostly out of habit. you’ll nod, and I'm thinking, really? a singular nod? that’s how this great crusade, this blundering shitshow of a circus act ends? i won’t say it, of course. and we’ll keep on walking around and dragging red everywhere with our elbows and our feet.

you’ll gather it on the tip of your fingers and doodle something on the wall. A heart. and it's nothing like the real thing but i'll still smile. It looks beautiful, darling. you’ll look away, then — how polite! — as i pick up the offending thing and force it back in between unyielding ribs. this is how it ends. this is when the curtains fall, the painter becomes the life model, the petals turn to dust. a secret message, written in the sand, is too forgotten by the wind.
not too happy with this one
sickophantic Mar 2021
my mother dreams of apocalypses.
every night she watches
as the world falls to ruins at her feet;
and every time, she tells me,
there’s a strange sense of peace
as her shoulders bear the weight of the sky.

in my nightmares there’s no peace,
no heroics; i dream of pain and
of heels hitting the cold earth;
at night i'm pursued and hurt —
a scrappy child, all teeth and wide-eyed fear
power stripped away from small,
helpless hands.

does that make her paranoid?
or does it make me selfish? no matter.
lately you’re in all my dreams;
you never hurt me in those.
it’s nice. and i know being needed
would be the most beautiful thing
but i’m not the child. i’m not dreaming.
time will ruin us in the end.

i’ll see your eyes in the dregs of my coffee;
my hands will itch to remind me
how to dial your phone number and God,
i know, i know that in my deathbed
my fingers will tap the Moonlight Sonata;
they’ll trace your birthdate in cursive
on the white sheets below my slowing heart.

i’ll remember when you called me pet
then i’ll take off my sweater. yes,  
that time when you pulled my hair?
my body went limp —
a rag doll, a disgrace of a child —
laid out bare on the slab of stone.
i’ll think of you ’til i’m stupid and numb:
sand in my mouth and you put it there.

no, i will keep my terrible secret
as if it is not enclosed in glass.
because she looks nothing like me,
and what i feel can’t quite be
described as relief. but no matter.
whether you’re unaware or uncaring
deceit is so easy
except when it comes to you,
except when it comes to you.
at this point all i write are love letters
Next page