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Zywa 1d
Events flow through my head
faucets spontaneously spray
memories over my feet
Frogs jump out of the pool

What seemed so ordinary
is now demonstrating
and keeping me awake
Smashing the window panes

I hide behind the lace curtain
Shadows beat the drum
They live on the street
and declare me guilty

I am no longer safe
from the straight faces
and the doubts of my family
They slink through the house
Film "La Llorona" ("The weeping woman" [looking for her drowned children], 2019, Jayro Bustamante, about the Guatemalan Genocide in the 1980s

Collection "Greeting from before"
Was I maudlin over our breakup? For a minute.

If I think of you now, it’s like a slideshow of unflattering images.

At the time, my breakup buddies reminded me you were a bad
choice - like a brand of deodorant that gave me a rash or fashionable shoes that chafed, even after they were stretched.

“Ruca,” my girlfriends would say, “you’re shootin-terrible, they’re a million pork-swords in the sea.”

Finally, I pulled the trigger - double-tapped us.

At first, reminders of you, those siren whispers of nostalgia, were everywhere - like the moon - which, I just had to live with.

You passed from memory though, that’s how memory works. Events fade, like last week’s chemistry test, or yesterday’s lunch.

Now, if someone asks me, “Hey, remember, what’s his name, your big love from high school?”
I say “Nope.”

I chose to laugh, dance - and shoot birds at the moon.
BLT Marriam Webster word of the day challenge: Maudlin: “exaggerated sadness”

breakup buddies = friends who help you get over a breakup
ruca = girlfriend
shootin terrible = on a losing streak, not doing well, making bad choices
Pork-swords = come on, think about it - it’s funny.
miki May 24
it was your birthday yesterday
mom reminded me
like it hadn’t been the only thing on my mind all day
she said she couldn’t believe that it’s been so long
but it felt like i had just hugged you yesterday
i didn’t want to believe it
i don’t believe it
and i’m not sure that i ever will
so i set up a number that leads to no where
because i wondered what it would be like to call you
to leave you a message
to tell you how my day was
and i think of you
whenever i see a flannel shirt
when i eat peaches
when i smell fresh flowers
and sometimes when i want to feel close to you
i’ll go into my spare room, open the closet
and put on your army green police jacket that you left
it even still smells like you
i was too young then
i was too young to be sorting through an entire house of things so the entire family could decide what i would be able to remember you by
but even now
i don’t need your things
i remember you as clear as the blue skies you loved
it would just be nice to have more of you around
but i know you’re there
i look up at the photos of you in the living room every single day and smile
you’re gone
but i know you’re here

twelve years gone
but i can still feel you all around
light TS sample - marjorie, evermore.
it’s more than just a happy song

i don’t know how to write a poem when i’m happy
but if i did, it would be called "strawberry swing"
i’ve had this title in my head for two years now
because an unexplained feeling always engulfs me when i hear that song
probably because it reminds me of that day

we went to the lake
but funny enough
that’s what i remember the least
what do i remember?

well, first, i remember turning into the wrong parking lot
hoping we were lost
so we could stay there longer
hoping the forecast for rain would hit
so we could “sit in the car and wait for it to blow over”

i remember the curving country roads that you drove around
(probably a little too fast—but that’s okay, it added to the thrill, to the excitement in my heart)
that wound for miles with no end in sight
which i was perfectly fine with
as i sat in the passenger seat listening to you hum along to the playlist we made together

i remember it was late june, early summer
warm enough to have the windows down
warm enough to see the sun dance across the windshield before speckling our skin, our eyes with light
the same sun that i noticed, for the first time, called your freckles out of hiding
warm enough for the car to get just a little bit too hot once we returned
but i didn’t care as long as you were in it

i remember having a conversation and being surprised that you were looking at me while i spoke
nodding your head along
interested in me
i remember thinking that was a new feeling

i remember the closer and closer we got to home
the more and more excuses i tried to come up with in my head to get you to stay
how many red lights could we hit?
do you need to fill up on gas?
will all the street parking outside my house be full?
(so we can circle the block
even 5 more seconds will suffice)

well, we sat there for a while
you wanted to stay longer
making small talk like we did for months
neither of us wanted to leave
what are you doing later?
have you heard this song?
are you free any other days this week?

but we didn’t want this week
we wanted today
right now
this moment

it’s such a perfect day
we each bought
a burrito from
that same van
i would visit back
when i lived there
two pork burritos
one with added
sweet potato
brazenly requested
the other simply
the expected guac
my overconfident request
should have cost more
than I was charged
but the man serving
could not bring himself
to demand the full cost
for "just" a burrito
we sat and ate
on the bank of the river
that i used to
think of as mine
we bit
we chewed
we swallowed
catching up
as napkin-less
salsa-dripping hands
were licked clean
and wiped dry
across the thighs of
already marred jeans
Mays Benatti May 17
A stranger stole my heart
left a mark I can’t deny
I never got to touch you but I feel you everywhere with me
It’s like our souls are intertwined
Isn’t it strange, stranger Or should I call you beloved stranger who stole my heart
You’re not a stranger no more
You have a place in my heart
I saved your love notes incase this is the last time you’ll write to me
I saved your voice notes incase I never hear you voice again
You said you’ll be back when you’re own you own two feet
I pray to god you find your peace
irinia May 4
he used to call me only when it rained
or the light was full of moaning
a smile was drying on his face
like a scammer's top hat
you could cut the mist with a knife in his eyes
he used to touch me like i was a chocolate wrapper
he spoke with chalk between his teeth

sometimes there is no progress between hello and hello
Dad's been dead a while now, but he used to always say, 'boys, don't let the ******* get you down.'
Or, 'they can **** us, but they can't eat us.'
Nine times out of ten,
he would utter these great pearls of wisdom when we received a large bill in the mail.
Minutes later, we would peel away down the Pacific Coast Highway to the track, Santa Anita or Hollywood Park.

It was an exciting experience, being around
that environment at such a young age.
After all, it's the sport of kings.  Dad took everything in stride; he didn't worry much.
Unfortunately, I didn't inherit that from him.
He was an English and drama teacher, and what he did pass on to me
was a love for literature.
He made it come alive, and for that, I'm eternally grateful.
So Dad, wherever you are, I just wanted you to know, I didn't let the ******* get me down.
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