Today was a day.
Nothing more or less
just a touch of gin
poured over unbroken ice
a hint of vermouth
neither shaken or stirred
and a simple olive
for life did not think
I was ready for
a lemon twist
it seems to be true
that in a glass like this
the day is half empty.
Never ask a poet what they think
about the things that matter.
They will not give a definite answer
for their hearts tend to ache
somewhat too severely
and even then some things
are better left unsaid
in a black and white world
where any shade of grey is a crime
somewhere over the rainbow
in a place where it is the safest
to not be there at all
or else you are certainly the one to blame
even if the lace is buried deep within
your overwhelming guilt and shame
hidden under all the what ifs and pleats
and somewhere deeper yet
there is the quietest of voices
too afraid to speak of the bruises
left on the inside of her thighs
and within her heart
the voice of reason that tells you
please don’t walk down that alley
keep your friends close
and the keys in your hand closer
keep your head up high
and your hopes down low
or whatever else makes sense
in this dog eat dog world
where everything you will ever know
will be shredded and recycled
oh, if only
to be crushed into a pulp
and spoon-fed to another generation
diluted with careful consideration
into a day-in day-out nine to five
not even a cog in the machine
a ***** at best
and you will be *******
tightened up more and more
until you can’t hold it together
and whatever it takes
falls apart into pieces
broken glass on the asphalt
a hole in the wall
that sinking feeling
where a soul should be
but the angels don’t visit anymore
or answer our prayers
the line is always busy
there is always something else
something more important
a bullet in the bible
escalating into emergency
but who is out there for the unarmed boy
dying on the sidewalk
misjudged for the colour of his skin
who is out there to stop the hand of a father
suspended in mid-air
with the children cowering at his feet
who is out there for the American dream
turning into a global nightmare
who can tell the pending future
staring down the barrel of the gun
wondering which side you should be on
and what of that which you call freedom
only to trade it for martyrdom
what of candour and justice
and their antonymous nature
what of the artists and the poets
and everyone else that took a shot
but didn’t even come close
living in a daydream
playing from the same broken record
telling us that there is meaning
and there is worth in the things we do
except that from time to time
the needle would skip
distorting the vision
and at times like these
it’s the easiest to look away
for every scratch on the surface of reality
encourages you simply to
pull the trigger
I will not, I refuse
to let this get the best of me.
The pen is a blade. I slit my wrist
and pour my heart out onto the page
instead. This is a sacrifice
I am willing to make.
I will tear myself apart
on my own terms.
If I cannot do it myself,
who else will?
My most recent poem for my university class, inspired by the likes of Baraka and Ginsberg. Prompt given to us was "protest poetry".
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth
or so I was told at the humble age
of seven years old. I did not ask
and I did not question.
I saw that it was good. Or did I?
It was only the beginning
but what of the rising action
what of the darkness growing
over the surface of the deep?
I was yet to learn for sure
the conflicting nature of faith
or the meaning behind every rosary bead.
Thrown in at the deep end
I stared into the void. A vault
between the waters, or perhaps
an endless sky covered in stars
a ceiling in my bedroom
yet another thing I did not question.
Thus no answer came.
How was I to know the darkness
if not for the light of day?
I waited days and years
until the night came again
and for the first time in forever
I asked myself why
do I truly seek forgiveness
or salvation? Could I be
reborn into a creature
of fire and vengeance
or a winged bird blessed
with the gift of flight
and a lack of conscience?
Perhaps I could have been
state of the art
a true reflection
instead of this serpentine twist
somewhere deep within me
in the manner of a deadly disease
clouding my vision
and numbing my senses
taking away any certainty.
The very nature of existence
is to learn its meaning
is to doubt the ideal masters
and their conjured ideas of freedom
infinitive and infinite.
I do not have the answers
but I ask the questions. I am
in control of my own fate
I rise above the darkness
I am the master of the seas
the shepherdess of my own herds
I see all that I make of my life
and I see it is good.
Thus the heavens and the earth are completed in all their vast array.
Another poem I wrote for a class. This one had a straightforward prompt, "faith".
It’s autumn, and I’m five years old.
The trees are tall. I look up
I can’t see the sky
We walk on. Under my feet
Mud, gravel, sand?
I’m not so sure.
It doesn’t matter
My tiny hands wield a mighty sword
I run, the fallen bridge trembling
The world at my feet, at last.
A stick, a log, the past.
It’s summer now, and I’m thirteen.
We walk upstream. The trees
Are silent, and so am I.
There is no destination
Yet there is an end. I don’t know it yet
But this is goodbye.
It’s winter. I’m nineteen
And a thousand miles away.
The memories are blurry, confusing
But I don’t want to go back
Not to the falling leaves of autumn
Or the scorching heat of summer.
That place is frozen now
One of the poems I wrote for a class at university. The prompt we were given was "describe the first place from your childhood that comes to mind".
I thought you were gone
Closer than the most distant star yet
Further than any constellation
Lost in space, floating
Somewhere along the bedstead.
I realised that it was not disinterest
Because even though loving you was a frozen lake
Melted awake with every touch of your fingertips
To you, loving me was the sight of sea
In which just being side by side was as natural as breathing
Or the waves gently washing ashore.
I will be your calm before the storm
The quiet moment before the waves come crashing down
Tearing apart our illusions of the peace
And the sunshine on ice.
— The End —