I want you.
I want you to call me in the middle of the night crying, telling me whatever it is that would make you feel the amount of emotion needed to a) actually literally cry and b) feel the need to open up about it. I want you to tell me you're failing math so I get my pen and notebook and teach you the fucking formulas, I want to watch you while you do homework and I write some stupid poetry about the way your eyes roll, I want to watch you a) feel overwhelmed with school work and start to give up and b) realize your future is more important and read it over again, and again and c) start to understand. I want to watch you start to understand in school, in life, in work, in us, I want to watch you grow. I want to see you wake up one morning different, growth inside of you, flowers sprouting from your fucking forehead, and all I want to do is have the chance at being able to water them. Like the kits of cosmos and daisies you bought me to start a garden in my kitchen, I want to sprinkle nothing but good things like kindness, support, adventure, a shoulder to lean on and a phone number to call when you need to cry. I find myself really hating myself for causing problems, jinxing us in ways I never wanted to. If I could figure out why I like to self sabotage so much I would never do it again, but I never notice the road I'm taking until I'm forced to look back on my mistakes- and that's exactly what they were, mistakes, everything that led me to this moment I'm in with you. See, I don't want to lose you. I don't want to lose my chance to see the person you really are, underneath the orange that just peels to another layer, underneath the snake (scorpion?) that sheds skin just to have a fresh new batch- I want my chance to know you. I've felt joy sitting next to you I don't remember feeling in a really long time, maybe ever, and I am stuck in this limbo that I want out of. I want to be able to sit next to you, smoke hookah, hear you talk about the classes that are changing your outlook on the way you speak to people about what you are feeling, I want to be there, in the lobby, at my house waiting, to hear about whatever it is you discovered that day. I want to listen to you- listen to you speak, listen to you grow, listen to you start to open up. I imagine you, standing there in front of me, moving your ribs aside for a second in order to grab your heart and sticking it to your sleeve. I imagine going to your house one day in between classes and noticing the blood-stained- T-shirt you're wearing and the beating organ stuck with scotch tape to your wrist. I imagine being there, because that's all I fucking want. Call it another chance, call it me shedding MY own skin and opening up to show you the version of me that fucks up, that self sabotages, that scared you into wondering if I'm someone who is worth the pain of letting your caution aside. I know words don't show much, but I am. I am. All I want to do is show you. I close my eyes and I see your eye roll, the scars on your leg, your love for your family, the way you insult me in Spanish when I'm being annoying, the way you hide your smile instead of just vocalizing your happiness. I close my eyes and I see your busy schedule, your extremely high standards, your responsible nature and your hatred of promising me time in case I end up upset- AND I WANT IT ALL. I want all of it. I want all of it.
We threw a mattress
in the back of my car.
I packed eight books.
He packed a skateboard.
We drove along
behind a car
the same as my mother's.
I thought about when she left
and all the tears I know she cried
She drove for five days.
That's a lot of tears
I can't do.
The driver had the same tanned skin
my mother has now,
and sun-bleached caramel hair
I imagine she would have too
had she not preferred
the taste of licorice.
I've been reading
the subtle art
of not giving a fuck
and too many a-fucks
about her leaving.
Let me record
the last fuck given
and move on.
So my love and I
We're best together.
Do you walk down my street?
Do you know my routine?
Are you looking for me?
Help me, for I cannot breathe,
Help me, for I cannot see,
Help me, do you know what I mean?
Do you believe in what I say?
Modeling one like clay, to your perfection.
Give me your undivided attention,
Give me your endless affection,
For I am less than absolution, a part to your delusions and confusion caused by the intrusions.
i’m 13 and my first kiss is from a boy named nick behind dick’s sporting goods in stale street air. nick’s canadian and when i ask if he can speak french he says no but I can play hockey and that is the next best thing
a week prior when i tell lauren we’ve been dating seven months and haven’t kissed yet she can’t believe it but all i believe is i’m 13 and a first kiss was supposed to be so special
so special i am too scared to close my eyes so my first kiss is a waterfront view of spider-leg eyelashes, too much spit, and all nick.
two weeks later he calls me cherry and i call him kiwi because we think normal pet names are too mainstream.
three weeks later nick breaks up with me when i corner him by the west wing lockers in the middle school by english class. i confront him, lay out the facts, and that is that.
i’m 14 and my second kiss is by the bleachers at the high school football game – not behind because behind the bleachers is where kids go for second base and to form virgin lips around leaf sweet smoke.
i‘m 14 and my second kiss is still nick but it’s not all spit and i wonder who he’s been kissing
i’m 14 and my second kiss is to the melody of a collective crowd’s stamping feet and a boy named jared with no real teeth wolf-whistling at us from the corner
i’m 14 and i remember to close my eyes
i’m 15 and grind on levi who’s twice my height to a rihanna song at homecoming
his crotch is against my upper back when it should be against my ass
he doesn’t kiss me, drops me off, speeds away in his oldsmobile
i’m 17 and my first fuck is with a man named dan who serves at the same restaurant i smile at and hand menus out for tips. i’m his twenty-third and for a while after 23 is my favorite number
i’m 17 and i’m bleeding on dan’s brother’s sheets
i’m 17 and afterwards dan sleeps with a girl named stephanie who probably fucks better than me. i got my ears pierced at claire's last year but stephanie has tattoos between her tits and a dermal.
i’m 20 and barely flinch when i see nick at the local community college. i ask if he still plays hockey and he asks me what good books i’ve read lately and i wonder if he’s any good in bed.
i’m 22 and i’ve laid with a dozen men, all nestled like eggs in my crate of shame
i’m 22 and i've learned to close my eyes until they've finished with me
in my white beater
n pants i turned into shorts
in hot ass arizona
got a ski mask
in my trunk...
just in case
i came here a week ago
to meet up with a girl i met on the internet
too bad we're both broke
she just got fired from her job
and i haven't had a job in six months
tomorrow she's getting evicted
at least we got my car
but it's a piece of shit and
we only got 15 bucks between us
the sex is great
who knows where we go from here
but i’ll figure out a way
I don't know how to keep going on
I can't open up to anybody
They can get into some rooms
but I lock up parts of me
Isolated and dusty
I'm an island sinking into the depths
Of my sin, of my despair
I used to have a lot of friends
Now so very few are left
I hurt most of them right in the heart
I never intended to harm them
Haha, look at all the I's I have in this poem
Just so self-centered...
I never meant you any harm
Family matters the most to me
Then why do I take you for granted?
I'm sorry, I'm saying I'm sorry a lot lately
The weight of what I've lost is crushing me
Irony of something you don't have killing you
Hey, that's just how I'm going to die...
Every season gets worse
Years behind me, years stretch still in front
Now accepting madness
part and parcel
for who's fucked me and I've fucked
Fucked my share of life
Souls in proximity
souls wrapped in snare
souls drained for empathy,
Beaches are lots of fun,
Until you realize you cannot
Go because your body,
Mind, and soul have been
Cut a million times.
Salt water burns people like me.