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Grace Feb 21
Ride a bike without training wheels in an empty parking lot until found.
Eat lunch without deodorant in a sweaty cafeteria until nauseous.
Go to prom without a date in a one stop-sign town until dawn.

Walk to class without pants at a small liberal arts college until famous.
Play guitar without calluses at an ex-partner’s house until fingers throbbing.
Hike a trail without a stick on a one-day trip until sore.

Write a poem no meaning in a 4 x 4 apartment until lost.
Throw someone else’s toothbrush in the trash in a studio until crying.
Delete numbers without reason in a frenzy until numb.
Walk down the aisle without a father in a rustic barn wedding until the groom is smiling.
lavender Feb 10
the first time in years,
my mother sings me a lullaby
silent night, the words have been etched across my brain
for centuries,
still this is utterly foreign to me,
because i gave up lullabies years ago and it made my mother cry
the lyrics from addict blaze into my mind
/i'm addicted to the madness/
i'm addicted to the stars, the everlasting crave of poetry, the lonely search for belonging
addicted to the twist between adult and child.
the lights of the adult house blaze into the night sky with the gentle milky stars and everlasting expanse of darkness
/But I don't want to see the stars if they're just one more piece of land for us to colonize, for us to turn to sand/
the music burns into my mind, with the creases on my mother's forehead, her judgemental eyes searching for the child in me when melanie sang /i'll rip your ******* face apart/
to a million milky stars and the blazing moon and the artificial twists of darkness.
the twists of darkness in my mind blot out the poetry in me like warm ink, filling the cracks in my brain, with music like flowers growing in them,
upwards, toward the sun and the sky that sobs and shines. The flowers are placed at a grave,
with my mother and her creases and lullabies,
with her tears flowing down like stardust
putting them there.
I am confused as to why I was put here.
The childhood inside me still blazes.
I am only half dead.
Hindsight, hallowed be thy name.

All I've got is luggage... luggage!
My God! Turn around; find my comrades slumped under the weights strapped to their spine!
Limping, bearing, burdened by non-negotiables while the High Court of Good Karma takes collective sabbatical —
and this knapsack of shame, I've partial credit in filling.

Grey handkerchief, original sin:
one. single. suckerpunch. and my fists are raised forever,
begging for the chance to swing and prove my own strength
— supposing the opportunity never fell into my lap — I'd said "**** it," packed a

hundred grams of bushy brushed-out curls, stop-sign red
fifty grams of lips to match (uniform too, now I think about it)
fifty grams of raccoon eyelids and coloured-in brows
hundred grams of halls of mirrors, circus-attraction Alice
lose a hundred/gain a hundred/repeat til dizzy
hundred grams of ******-in stomach, eyes averted in changing rooms
wigs by the armful — that's three — nom-de-plumes thrown in gratis
(it's only a journey to the rest of my life anyway, I'll need them,
alternative being cinematic debut as Myself)
hundred performances to imaginary audiences, less-than-stellar reviews
hundred grams of overwhelming then underwhelming "on purpose"
hundred grams of laughing off any belief in potential
hundred grams of scratch-marks and verbal fountains of venom
hundred grams of giving almostneverquite as good as I got
hundred grams of group-work alone thank ****(?)
hundred biro-holes stabbed in martyred pencil cases
feral in broad daylight spoiling for a fight
kilo of aiming for 'scary' and landing on 'strange'
kilo of being third to make good company a crowd
kilo of taking sixteen years to find Her
— Shadowboxer Fiona, rhythms invisible, catharsis in art —
hundred doodled superstitious evil-eyes in the ruled margins
hundred laments over the inability to provide a better future

(removed one by one whenever I think the future's mutable)

that one glimpse of white lightning in a violet storm
one single minute's pause to look over my shoulder
scarce-to-zero progress made
endless miles to go
breathless body soaked to the bone
and this useless! *******! bag! of Everything and nothing of value!!
mansions worth of loathing yet there's nothing to lose
did I decide that because I can't change the world, I can change nothing at all
(instead throwing darts at reflections/emotional *****/kicking stray dogs as a full-time hobby)?

O clarity so saccharine that I cannot be angered by the wasted years
I take it
   off my shoulder,
the first kind action I have spared myself in time unguessable
    air it out...
and trudge on
The world's enough of an uphill climb.
written after too much time poring over allen ginsberg. ambivalent about this but the alternative is endless writers' block so this way i've at least got something to show for myself
Alex Kabat Dec 2020
i crack open
like some kind of piñata,
crumbling on the floor
leaking hurt,
the desire for her to be
someone she cannot.

dressing myself in streamers
yet naked to the core

a sickly sweet ache
drips down my esophagus
coating my throat until there is no room
for forgiveness;
of her,
but also myself.

the saddest shade of irony:
demolished by the same hands
that once promised healing

this pity party is over.
Bee Nov 2020
he crawled under my skin
asked politely
“is there any room for me?”

“no” creeped the whisper
from my heart to lips
but i was met with a zipper
a refusal to let slip

because i want you there
i swear i do
but when this heart quakes
with the slightest shake

i fear this house may crumble
crushing us both under the rubble

the foundation is cracked
i wish i could go back

to those trees we used to scale
when we were just
the great explorers of a new land

but now the frame stumbles
under the softest breeze
kings that have fallen to slaves
of our own debris

so when you ask me
why i must always be alone
all i can tell you
is that this house is not a home
Man Nov 2020
boyhood hid nothing
the snow only recently, laid to rest
to hang like rhime
but adolescence gave it a new lense
breathed in new breath
and animated the rotten corpse
to be so in shock, sickening awe
as to shriek out
"𝘐𝘵 𝘭𝘪𝘷𝘦𝘴!"
Claire Hanratty Nov 2020
My first cigarette was at twelve years old:
under the climbing frame,
after my turn on the monkey bars.
My mate told me not to do it,
he tried to take it off me but
was too late.
I’ve been trying to quit ever since.

Soon after, that little climber
discovered cider, yearned
for something wider and
ended up with alcohol poisoning by
the end of the year.

My first stand-up gig was Lee Mack. I was 13.
I sat right at the back on the balcony and revelled in the
happy faces below me.
Ending with a slow motion impression of Eric Morecambe,
I could’ve sworn it was the fastest hour of my life.
I can’t believe I was
so naïve.

When I sat my first exam at sixteen,  
an hour seemed a minute.
Move forward to A-levels and I
was being examined in a
therapist’s office-
how the tables had turned.
Ticking boxes to be assessed and there’s no way I can
pass this test because a
high score can only mean
very bad things.

How can life be so virile, yet so lacking and sterile?

I was told I’d find myself at uni but
I’ve ended up losing myself at twenty.
The story of how quickly my childhood was lost
Carlo C Gomez Sep 2020
in the sand

Laid out
and toweling off

Curvatures to
algebraic form

They define her lines
shape her axis

My island of

Amid summer's long
For more about this
See the related poem:
Teea Jul 2020
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
Thump. Thump. Thump.
The blood fills our hearts and rushes
through every crevice of our bodies.

One. Two. Three.
We breathe in unison as our hearts travel
And our thoughts diverge into particles,
bright as the stars, but strong as my heart.

My cold and bruised cheek makes love
with your warm and red cotton shirt.
Eyes closed, I take a leap of faith.
Failed me before, I cross my fingers and jump.

I fall into your arms and dissolve into you.
Engulfed by the stench of your sweat,
the warmth of the skin baptized me.
Swish. Our skin mingles like newlyweds.

Honeysuckle. Honeydew. You’re sweet.
I miss you.
The sun tattoos the red you give me,
a reminder of a week on Calypso’s island.

Emerald and pearlite. Eyes that enchant.
Your freckles make Bermuda’s triangle
a perfect landing point.
So safe but so unknown. Mary Magdalene

No wonder I fall, you are gravity.
Bring me down to earth. Away from the
Burning sun. Apollo rapes Artemis.
As he prophets my fate. Poetry.

I ignore the stars and their cries,
as together here and now, I am infinite.
Soaring like a bird on ecstasy. I believe.
A crusade brings me to faith. Love.
I wrote this poem after spending a week with someone I care very much about.
Bee Jun 2020
there’s a rabbit with moon hooded eyes inside of my heart
and every night she looks up to the stars
yearning not to break apart

my rabbit and i feel fine most of the time
but when she starts racing i cry
because my mind believes my existence is a crime

and my heart can’t take it
she thinks she must’ve stopped
so she relentlessly pumps
creating dangerous music; thud thud thud

and look! there goes my rabbit
thrashing around in my war torn lungs
creating chaos in case of catastrophe
because future battles must always be won
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