soft spoken girl poking holes
in my torso with her words and her nails
she inhales short sharp breaths, piercing
my eardrums and exposing my nerves,
sounds that sound a lot like love would.
sensitive teeth sink into collarbones,
and we both hurt. and we both want to.
pressed against me slowly bleeding
into my pores. i'll smell her on my skin
for weeks and months on end.
salt stains that won't wash out.
hard times, strange vibes.
bad luck. short lived, she said
just friends.

m Sep 12

irma in the distance
it was cold and the sheep were bleating.
your hands had made there way under
my shirt, tracing your warmth on my back.

we had talked for hours,
about politics and food,
and tattoos and love.
showing me a sliver of your mind.

you kissed me like you would die without my breath. you took my hand and showed me inside and asked if i wanted to brush my teeth. you gave me one of your extras. the entire time in your bathroom you ran your hands all over me, and we discussed our preferences in perfumes, and the color of each other's eyes. in the bedroom we had a race to see who could get naked the fastest, and you won. we laid under the covers and kissed, everywhere, and you whispered,

"i don't love you, you know"

i said "okay". you continued, "but i like you, a lot, i think you're so damn cute. kiss me." and so i did, forever. i feel like i still am. i could create a home out of your bed and cocoon in there for the rest of eternity.

i leave for europe in three days. you haven't texted me, or anything. your passion has left a mark on me that i will have for a very long time, a mark i will cherish with every part of my soul. these fleeting connections created have left me with bruises on my neck; i have a necklace of lovers that could have been and you're the deepest one of all.

why do i keep fucking doing this to myself.

I don't belong
to anyone but me
I belong to wind
and wood
and water
and Earth
and the taste of a whistle
dancing in my teeth

I belong
to every beat
of my mother's weary heart
I belong
to the wildness
of children
as their lives start

I don't live anywhere
but here
and now
the tick-tock of a clock
as it chisels though
these rock-hard hours
every twitch,
twist, and turn
of my growing body
marks each second
that I can declare,
my heart's wide open,

I am the blessed
and the cursed,
the simple and complex,
thriving on faith,
dying under the weight
of wasted dreams
I will survive
so I take every ashen scrap
of burned dream
with them build the steps
up which I climb
to the place
where I belong.

skin melts. my fingers fumble around
holding the flesh onto my face
or it'll drip into a puddle in my lap
i can't control my body heat when
she speaks so sweetly
i get a strong sugar rush and collapse
into myself like sticky liquid. overflowing.
i want to melt into the floorboards. it's hot.
she's hot like chilli and chocolate.
i like it.

skin melts which helps me
chew through the walls of my cheeks
and pull out my sweet teeth. i can't cope
with feeling this sickly. she speaks and
acids build and fill my mouth 'til
i start throwing up
stupid, sugary, childish words with
the lining of my stomach. it's a hot mess.

i'm a pompous, writhing, childish mess,
trying to hold my flesh together
and best express myself with words
that trick her tastebuds into tasting
her favourite flavours. i want to make her
feel hot like i'm chilli and chocolate
on her tongue.
i want to make her melt into the floorboards
so i can pull them up and dive into
the bubbling pool of skin she'll become
underneath them.

BE McComb Aug 7

teeth shouldn't
lie on pavement
and blood shouldn't
run down your face

and as i dragged
myself along the
side of the road
i thought to myself

this is the lowest
moment of my life

flat on my back
staring into the
12 o'clock high sun
and sobbing

i wanted to die before
this moment but now
it's only reinforced
cemented in place
that in fact i can't
do anything right

some wise woman
supposed sage of ages
once told my mother
that for every great emotion
a person needs a physical
container to put it in

but what should one do
when their container
has always been a retainer
that now doesn't fit?

hit where it hurts most
my mouth
years spent suffering
so i can wake up
every morning with a
fresh twenty dollar smile

and now that's
all gone i suppose

maybe i'm vain
or maybe i'm dumb
but the smile makes
the woman and mine
is looking like i'm
not so human

penny for my thoughts?
i'd give a lifetime of
change jars to get
back my perfect teeth

copyright 8/6/17 by B. E. McComb

i noticed my mother's front teeth
are chipped just like mine
the same small dent in her left hand canine
like i got from chewing steel
engrossed unflinching
until i was spitting up white knives
or swallowing them whole.
i can still pick pieces from my tonsils.

she can't have made mistakes like that,
what would make her bear her teeth
and how could they ever break?
that's not the person who raised me.

lick your palms before you dive
i've sweat all my salt into your hands
don't lose it
cramp scared the daylight out of me
so i'll sit in the sun a little longer
sipping my pink lemonade.
wearing my enamel.

i'll watch you swim. seize the day.
from a distance where i can still hear the little winged love birds singing in the canopies. and cicadas chirp at dusk.

there's days to come i'll remember this
and wish i had the guts to be even waist deep in the sea
just to be close to you.
when the rain paints a river on the hillside i sit upon. my teeth chatter 'til they crack, and you were here once (but now you're not).

feel free to knock out a few
of your sweet teeth,
so you can get down to business
drinking this bitter bean juice

i keep screaming that it's just. not. smart.
if you keep cutting ties, you'll never get a job.
for one thing,
short ties look unprofessional
you'll not make much of an adult
without some more support
you need to put yourself out there
and find it on your own

the real world is scary
if the window cleaner would dig a little deeper
and you were less blinded by the shine of my bleached teeth
i'm sure it would be clear

Janae Jul 25

I smile
nose crinkled
skin wrinkle
make my eyes
and teeth

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