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278 · Mar 12
Chamber of translation
Andrew Layman Mar 12
I want to know you
but you are another world away;
a barrier stands between us
my words don't reach your ears.

I need to know you more
to love you better,
or my feelings remain incomplete.

Within your eyes I see a distance
it becomes a cancerous growth,
and our relationship shrinks,
from lack of communication,
redeemable therapy.

The action is mine
a decision held within my hands,
to give away, jettison my pride,
and finally speak to life that you recognize.
CHAMBER OF TRANSLATION, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
Not promised life
yet take from it
assigned to a station
and not far to get
all ponderance is infinite
as human I remain
seeking joy
and clarity of life
beyond my early stain.
135 · Jun 15
Time will tell
Andrew Layman Jun 15
Nostalgia is what anchors me
gentle reminders of a more simple life
where the minutes drifted through
and I couldn't process time.
Now, I am overwhelmed
when youth has sheltered me
and blessings were so easily overlooked.
131 · Jun 16
Salute the flag
Andrew Layman Jun 16
Let my words burn and catch fire
to better reach you in the high tower
propel callous thinking to new heights
in order to teach the biased few.

Do not roughly misconstrue
the sacred meaning of life
since it is meant to be this
and not made wholly out of that.

We were born in a broke down palace
where purpose is disagreement
and forgiveness in all its charm
has become worth less than a fraction.
127 · Jul 23
Offered condolences
Andrew Layman Jul 23
Stand by me
for I am still at last
no rythm in the vein
no fog upon the glass
no light will ever dance forth
for my time becomes past.
124 · Apr 20
Into the unknown
Andrew Layman Apr 20
Drain the venom with your pen
write it out,
until it wraps around you.

Stem the bloodflow
use it as a tourniquet
spit out the poison onto paper.

This world was made to devour
unhinging its jaw,
seeking to binge on us.

Do not be afraid
be forewarned;
take off the head of the hydra
and be resolved to continue with the cause.
INTO THE UNKNOWN, Copyright © 2020 Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
107 · Apr 29
Buyer's remorse
Andrew Layman Apr 29
The deepest cut
is the first
then the one that follows
I find that I am tired
as my essence puddles out
crimson tears form in the well
and become a weeping waterfall
of wasted life and battered choices
I want to take it back---
but the redness of me,
breaks free
seeking to be exposed to the outside
and remain uncaged from weakness.
BUYER'S REMORSE, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman, All Rights Reserved.
105 · Mar 12
Exhaust me
Andrew Layman Mar 12
You are exhausting---

The constant hammer
that falls upon my head;
driving me to fulfill a goal,
making me always think,
with ideas that keep me fed.

Years before---

I was feral as a man
wild of tooth and tongue.
Uncaring in my approach
both aimless and blameless,
from the badge of being young.

Still---

Out of the faceless crowd
I chose an expression,
imprinted now, only you would do.
To save me from my sickness,
and secret life that only you knew.

That stubborness---

I can not quit because of it
and so I reach to climb;
through thorn and thistle,
moving higher, higher still,
until I reach that azure sky.

However---

Once I'm staring at it
I feel it's just not true.
Thinking ******* the challenge
I dig up through cloud and heaven,
and continue on my way...

Because you taught me to.
EXHAUST ME, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
Restless are the eyes that follow
searching out a purpose,
some nameless claim,
so warm, tepid,
and full of oceanic wonder;
those following two---
those damp spheres of shade.

Regrettably, a thought arrives---
I did not request your name,
lovely living statue,
found of selective voice.

Mark my posture
as a ship listing on the waves,
turn back to port,
turn back to safety,
return to the familiar
these things I know.

Pulse cease,
disquiet chamber
place hold and become stagnant,
meaning and reason please return;
human folly was born of myself,
and remains nameless,
such as my captive audience.

Such bindings of flesh and form,
build me to agony,
and remain a prisoner of chemistry
this creature, this mystery,
this name---
was never offered to me in kind.

I suppose---
there are things best kept hidden,
not spoken loud
as the heart manages its uttering
I walk down the hallway,
perceiving your gaze at journey's end.

Slowly still,
my footsteps fall in procession
and knowing not at all,
when the day concludes
such thinking is above my own
and I am left to wonder
if such a goddess was ever meant
to have earthly title.
EYES (I HAVE NOT SEE THE LIKE) Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
96 · May 22
Layered touch
Andrew Layman May 22
Rose,
what creature
of creation are you?
the pale silent canvas
that invites artist's touch
starving talent
that wants for stale bread
a still life waiting for purpose
or become the unfinished landscape
as sadness paints your face
eternity shrouded in layers
in a blue period of self-discovery.
94 · Mar 8
Becoming Unborn
Awaken
then recede
ebb and flow
so much has been lost
when memory has faded,
and has been left to yellow in the sun.

Without notice,
over there---
sits a solitary person,
flesh and blood cage
a defective cup that no longer holds
who has become another empty page.

A collection of white now exists
in a nonsense world, home to Alice
unkempt books with capsized spirit
and tattered page and spine;
where vacant stations play
only garbled static on the radio.

Lucidity has been banished
to a place where names and noodles
can no longer stick to the wall.
food can no longer nourish or satisfy
and add appetite to comprehension.

Where words once stood in stone
now a cemetery grows its garden,
and gray vines hang low
ensnaring all passing travelers
waiting to mark them in their place.

With closed iron gates
there can be no welcome neighbor
no way to tell friend from foe,
as grown children are orphaned of thoughts,
and former feelings are lost to the hourglass,
forever sand-filled, cracked and broken.
BECOMING UNBORN, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
92 · Mar 6
Contagion
When it settles
it clings to my lungs
and I breathe in,
until it becomes me.

Whether ash or rust I can not say
but it binds to me either way.
What I am becoming
from setting sun to dawning day,
be it man of dust or man of clay;
I do not know
I can not say.

Perhaps----
mercy forfend,
the breeze will carry me away.
Cast down the street in piles and droves
spread out to where other humans stay,
forgotten like scattered salt,
or neglected ashtray.

Flakes of prayers
left to swirl about,
and gather in the storm,
or lay sleeping in the gutter.

Perhaps---
There might be a day
in my sojourn,
where it shall be
my humble priviledge,
to renew the ground where youth can play.

But with arid lungs,
without mouth and tongue
I do not know
and I can not say.
CONTAGION, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
89 · Mar 13
Desperate Amen (55:22)
Andrew Layman Mar 13
The well is dry now

I...

When the sky goes dark you'll know

I'm...

The birds in the trees are quiet

I'm ready...

Even the wind is calm and hushed

I'm ready to...

God throw down your hardest rain

I'm ready to die...

Let nothing more be left unsaid,
Let nothing more of me remain

I'm ready.

A vision of weeping

I...

Faces of my family pass by

I'm...

I have left a hole in this world

I'm ready...

I didn't want to see my worth

I'm ready to...

My grave is still shallow

I'm ready to die...

Remorse sets in from my actions and deed

I'm ready to die another...

There is sudden realization as gray appears beyond black and white

I'm ready to die another day.

Please---
Let me live.
DESPERATE AMEN (55:22), Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
87 · Apr 21
In the moment
Andrew Layman Apr 21
I stood staring
not moving
but aware
feeling the breeze
and its touch
light as a feather
hinted at freedom
long since forgotten.

Heavy is the gravity
that anchors me
to the ground here
so when a shadow
covered my face
I raised my eyes
and I cheered
as a white bird dissected the blue sky.
IN THE MOMENT, Copyright © 2020 Andrew Layman, All Rights Reserved.
81 · Apr 30
Upon the broken throne
Andrew Layman Apr 30
Allow me to borrow your golden halo
agree to let me purchase your soul
every thing that shines has a silver price
every one who walks the earth must know
nothing sacred remains here
there is no more holy ground
crusaders and pilgrims alike have all faded
and the world has muted its siren sound
80 · Apr 21
Let this be a lesson
Andrew Layman Apr 21
Let the rusted shackles remain
all the tread-marks and the bruises
to remind me in this life,
that I was once a prisoner
of my own habits.

Show the bars were fashioned
from the idleness
of my own two hands,
which bestowed upon me the title
of lecherous warden.
LET THIS BE A LESSON, Copyright © 2020 Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
74 · Mar 8
A dark place
Dreamer do not worry
I am outside your door
keep yourself safe in darkness
until I come,
until I knock,
until I breach the doorway.

Cold touch, intrusive
the unforgiving nature
of human monsters
with appointment
a need born from convenience
numb from disconnection.

They deny you exist
yet I see you
through a glass darkly
still angelic in your design
This is not my choice
It is theirs.
Your body immaterial
It is theirs that matters.

Dissemble all
until only the soul remains
upset the altar
a child no more
puddled in yourself.

Take my hand,
You miracle
Darling spirit
I will return you home
let us journey to a sacred place.

Do not look back
as mother moves down the hall
where smiles are like cardboard
You, at such an age
have accomplished so much already
you have outgrown them all
as ignorance stays the same
and words echo against the wall---
Please come back again.
A DARK PLACE, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
73 · Mar 15
Billboard of the weak
Andrew Layman Mar 15
Polished in the mirror,
I shine.
There's evidence
everyone who knows it
now knows of ME,
and has liked my image repeatedly.

This is my good side
quickly, capture that twinkle,
sparkle and finesse;
from every angle imaginable,
and photoshop it
until my form is pleasing and recognizable.

Stare at ME entirely
but only after I have given consent,
after you subscribe to the content.
Please don't bother ME
while uploading my deep thoughts,
I am trending now;
but yesterday I lost a follower
for ME it's like losing a limb.

Such stress makes ME lose focus
I forget to breathe or eat,
such a price for the framework;
I'm not just a vessel, I'm an idol.
I'll rise and steal the moment,
little snares for captive time.

Look at ME
don't lose interest,
stop texting when I'm talking to you.
That's annoying
that's rude,
pay attention to ME for once.

Automatic flash goes off
set for selfie, now filter applied
something is missing here,
a selfie born without the self.

Don't pity ME
the phone doesn't lie;
imperfection can never be
I'm immune,
ME indeed,
addicted to the social feed.
BILLBOARD OF THE WEAK, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
70 · May 9
Roll end credits
Sometimes---
I just don't know
I just say I'm fine
when really I'm not
my soul is on fire
screaming on the inside
and my sense of worth is shot.

Sometimes---
I don't know
what makes me breathe each day
the hand that stirs the ***
the urge that pushes me to the end
I have never seen this book being written
perhaps I am just waiting to transcend.
64 · May 18
Unclaimed is his name
Andrew Layman May 18
I was a son
born without protective shield
given a borrowed name
and no confidence to yield.

For years I loathed my own skin
no kind word did I find
your attention turned to someone else
and your eyes became blind.

I wish I could hate you
with your earthly presence gone
it is cavernous inside me now
between evening shade and dawn.

I still hold that fear
that buried thorn I didn't see
afraid that the product of you
might become the whole of me.
UNCLAIMED IS HIS NAME, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
64 · Apr 18
Gourmet
Andrew Layman Apr 18
The world seeks out the youth in me
waiting to devour it eagerly
wanting to remember the flavor.
Lukewarm without seasoning,
consuming it---
first body, as sparse appetizer
then soul, as both dessert and entree.

Mistakes are used as marinade
drowned in salt and vinegar
the recipe of all humanity
before I am tenderized,
with each violent flash of the silver mallet.

Finally plated---
on the finest china
surrounded by soft flowing table cloth,
and folded napkin of regret.

Mind the spotless silverware
once cut, the juices begin to flow.
The menu is carried away
and the wine list is red.

I am revealed
then served with a green garnish;
under the nose of unforgiving critics
whose taste buds had withered long ago.
GOURMET, Copyright © 2020 Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
56 · Apr 21
The Sherpa's Apex
Andrew Layman Apr 21
Raise the ******* high
to salute the fairness of life,
a signal to the clan of the world;
to those blameless few,
content to merely pass through,
it becomes a warning
to those other wretched ones.

The fur and pelt of clothes
becomes a second skin,
animals on the mountain once more;
half covered by white curses
bodies pocketed in snow,
the chilling embrace of eternal season,
reaches all that know
and are deeply felt in the bones,
by brethren and coven alike.

It is the flag of Everest
to mark how far we have come;
ignore the scar tissue
hunger pangs and brokenness
and climb upward to find a perch,
as thin breath of the lungs remains.

Come out from the caves
and seek your mantle;
where others have fallen,
from the towering heights.
Despite the consuming frost-bite,
the finger remains on the tallest peak,
as a cross to bless other weary pilgrims.
THE SHERPA'S APEX, Copyright © 2020 Andrew Layman, All Rights Reserved.
55 · May 23
When tragedy smiles
Andrew Layman May 23
It is a vacant place now
this world didn't deserve you
you were incandescent in nature,
when all the lights went out.

The lies they told you
were designed to hold you
the wounds that never healed
you wouldn't speak of them;
you wore your camouflage daily
and I never understood,
how that smile was your tourniquet.
WHEN TRAGEDY SMILES, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
52 · Jun 11
As we live and breathe
Andrew Layman Jun 11
Let us submit to fate
both you and I
we were never meant to live
and never resigned to die.

Our hands crafted to gather
then push far away
all those fragile little things
that raise our emotions high.

To say we truly understand
is to be understated,
and to live on those terms
is bound to be a lie.
AS WE LIVE AND BREATHE, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
51 · Jun 17
Tally the marks
Andrew Layman Jun 17
I raised my voice today
You only tuned me out again
The pregnancy wasn't planned
But it was a chance to begin

You reached out to me
then knocked me to the floor
feeling betrayal
at how my body
so willingly accepted the gift of yours

You were scared
And so was I
the choice was ours
and it became our guilt
as the life inside me went away

Finally----
as day led on to coupled day
the only surprise left
was departed touch
as did our love
until nothing stayed.
TALLY THE MARKS, Copyright © 2020 Andrew Layman, All Rights Reserved.
Andrew Layman May 19
I'm bruised
I'm broken
tired
outspoken
looking for a purpose
wondering what my worth is
angry
confused
and so afraid to lose
everything I've gained
until nothing else remains.
46 · Apr 27
Anticipation renewed
Andrew Layman Apr 27
Each day is of the phoenix
so let us leave the former ashes behind;
rise above the strife that plagued us
as only yesterday could,
and stand on the newly formed magma
of today's covenant,
when it finally cools on our lips.
ANTICIPATION RENEWED, Copyright © 2020 Andrew Layman, All Rights Reserved.
Andrew Layman May 27
I am dead

Or perhaps---
I am not dead enough

Remember me once,
if memory is kind,
your small song bird.

Chorused stories that I once happily sung for you

Filling a house which made it a home

With my echoes of voice
that heightened ceilings, and breached the walls

And you answered back, encouraged me, with silence.

Your form merged into rigid countenance, face hidden behind the folded others.

 

My song--- was it enough to provide me with your love

Tell me please because I cannot hear you

Soil has no speakers, only the quiet ones with distilled tongues

And life shall be its only witness

 

Truly my hidden pain was your sordid gain

Has my late dowry increased your love for me

Dusty dollars of faded ghosts that once carried with them, morality

Sadly, there was never enough time, never enough to hold for ourselves

So the time has come for your voice

I’m so afraid of the darkness, my bed is hard and cold, where are all the comforts I once knew

I ask you please, begin--- there can be no shame when I am your only audience

Do not fail, the reach is too great in some other way

Sing me a song father, sing me back to sleep.
Andrew Layman Apr 27
My life is on the tethered line
as I watch you go by
dirt caked, through dusty eyes
on those legs that have no restraints.

Those young ones leave the yard
and return to it without issue
I am amazed
there is nothing chained to them.

Why do I have chains...
What is my purpose...
Where is my master's presence...

These questions do little to give me warmth
as the earth gathers around me
and collects inside my nostrils.

I keep the seasons in my fur
And snow and leaves cover me
Like a ***** blanket.

Where is my kind master...
He brought me here
to share this life
then deserted me
just out of reach
I think of you as God
so please don't cast me aside.

I'll sit here as faithful servant
beside my empty bowl
and pray some more
for the master to return
when my tears turn to mud
I will know
that I have been on my leash
far too long.
BOUND TO NIRVANA'S GATE, Copyright © 2020 Andrew Layman, All Rights Reserved.
Andrew Layman Jul 13
It all started with saying hello
and now I barely know you
each day grows shorter
and I struggle just to grow through
the disagreements and anger
that find themselves at our door
that only seem to flow true
the only thing I remember now
when you said you hated me
is the sad fact that I asked for this
and how I still only want you.
Andrew Layman May 26
Blink first please
I need this win
when you're always right
the argument will never end.

What bookends, are we:
you, a verbal conquistador---
who seeks to conquer the conversation
and I, an unwavering peacemaker---
who extends the olive branch
ready to give right in.
IN THIS WORLD, NOT OF IT, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
Read me through
then bleed me too
a tempest of words awakens in me---

When the weather rages on
hold fast, seek to last
or find understanding to be incomplete.

When such an old soul, bound to fresh form
becomes left out in the rain
it's warped from the touch of the storm.
34 · May 21
A symbiote life
Andrew Layman May 21
I hurt
each day
both inside and outside
forever quiet to the world
trapped within this suit of flesh
and that is all I'll ever know

The irony
of this life
happens when I comfort you
Whenever I am doing so
I take nutrients from me
as the wound festers deeply
and continues to darkly grow.
A SYMBIOTE LIFE, Copyright © 2020
Andrew Layman
All Rights Reserved.
34 · Apr 22
Unsettling
Andrew Layman Apr 22
The light from under your bedroom door
It bleeds golden streams
Spilling out onto the floor
Making a bridge of light

We're both connected.
You and me.

Your room is so close by.
Can I come in?
It's locked.
And I've tried knocking.

I can hear you crying through the door.
Is it me?
Why don't you let me in?
I can help you.

You have your secrets
I'll keep mine.

I'll come back later.

I'm back.
Compose yourself.

There's nothing to fear
It's only the house settling.

I'm only down the hallway

Getting closer now

The boards creak

I hear your heart beat faster

Don't be afraid

It's only me.

And I've always been here

Since the day you moved in

Waiting for someone like you

To share the house with me.
UNSETTLING, Copyright © 2020 Andrew Layman,
All Rights Reserved.
34 · Jul 29
Wake me at world's end
Andrew Layman Jul 29
Such angry hunger pains
how the world quivers and shakes,
while men and women
fresh from their work,
whisper the toll it takes;
as clay forms lay listening
glistening, and salted in their beds.

However, not an alarm is raised
not a single head turns
we are safe, comes the lie
we are secure, comes the swallowed pill.

As we close our eyes
and prepare for borrowed sleep
I think with great dismay:
oh, what a difference,
does indifference make for us sheep.
32 · May 18
Broken home
Andrew Layman May 18
Four walls of a home
without architect
***** sides of a prison
with no shape of escape.

At first I resist
only after lengthy initiation
do I break upon the tiles
and finally accept the drywall.

Rage turns into mumbled mantra
shelter me, protect me
so I never know my true age.

In time---
you will become both:
my greatest strength and weakness
until my body leans the same way as you
broken planks of wood,
plaster covered with human sheen
As sacrilegious as a sweat stain---
against a polished gold frame.

My voice...
will fade from lack of use.

As one timid word becomes two
two forms a dependent relationship
that gives birth to premature three
and the shape of unhealthy four---
crafts the walls,
and erodes the decrepit foundation
of what I am now.
31 · May 22
Balanced scales
Andrew Layman May 22
There is goodness inside
somewhere---
I know this to be true
my horns can hold up a halo,
and the light shines evenly on me too.

Urges can be suppressed
just as sins can be forgiven;
priests can be measured
like condemned sinners,
when hands are finally opened
and stained palms are turned upward.
Andrew Layman May 18
A waltz begins
and I bow low
to some unseen partner.

The wind picks up the music
and our bodies spin and twirl;
as the branches of the trees
snap its fingers in time.

The canopy of the heavens open above us
stars streak across the landscape
to highlight our forms,
and celebrate our silhouettes
as we glide past.
30 · Jul 29
Even mermaids succumb
Andrew Layman Jul 29
It comes in deep waves
first the warmth,
then the chill;
the salty taste that overpowers,
and the foam that seeks to fill.

Above beckons the alternating current
a body becomes stretched
only to sink,
and rise no more beneath the surface;
past the seaweed
among the fiery reef,
beware,
there lurks the end of still life.

Soon when muscles ache
when there is no fight left
with such heavy limbs that struggle;
heed my tepid words
when the dark clouds form,
it's much better to sink low,
and embrace the undertow.
26 · May 13
Family reunion
Andrew Layman May 13
These horrible grinning things
Some how---
they know me.

They come closer to invade my space
without warning
with loaded handshake and contagious kiss

I have no camouflage
I'm a bird caked statue
I'm a deer paralyzed in the headlights.

Maybe---
like my gently rotting teeth
if I ignore them
eventually, they'll go away.
Andrew Layman Jun 18
In my youth
the trees sung to me
their arms reached out kindly;
those giants who shaded me
from the brightness of the world
enabled me to later return
in the entrenched skin of a man
and at breaking day,
repay them harshly.

As the rusted teeth of the saw
bit deep into their bodies
I marveled at how their backs leaned
as they peered into final sky,
seeing only unfeeling blue
and not the caring green heads of neighbor.

My aged hands ached
from the effort and rotted task
of misdeed
and all too late,
did I remember that past smile
as arboretum became mausoleum;
now my gums bled freely
from my own hand's past neglect,
as I struggle to remind myself
that I was once born from the same soil.
Many times, I have fallen
Despite the sun
Too many, I surmise
Despite the rain
With each new breath
I am reborn
With each new day
I still remain.
23 · Jun 18
Translucent wings
Andrew Layman Jun 18
There's a joy
that resounds
in my soul that rings
a halo around Saturn
that blinds all when it is reflected.

I reach for it
the treasure
long since hidden
something I thought gone
Mourned when it was left behind

When I dig down
it shines
catches my eye again
it becomes the tableau
that gives me peace of mind

I know that
dawn comes
night holds a chill
as I remain steadfast in feeling
I understand I'll make it
No---
I KNOW that I will.

— The End —