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Where to start
I don’t know where to begin
I don’t even know you
We’re not even friends
You’re a fantasy
That got carried away
As you sneak in my mind
And destruct my whole day
You’re a place
I just can’t find
Alone in an elevator
Don’t think that I’m blind
You’re an ocean
When I’m lost in your eyes
All the lust that I’m feeling
Makes me feel compromised
06/28/2017
Andrew Rueter Jul 2017
I started on the rooftop
The empty sky above was all I had
And all I needed
It was pure
Like a blank page
Waiting for a story to be written
But at the first sight of clouds
I fled to the top floor

There were fun and simple things on the top floor
Like Pokémon games
I got red, white, and blue
The monsters seemed so banal and repetitive
But nobody else would acknowledge it
Sending me into a dragon's rage
I tried using flamethrower on Charmander
Ending in futility as I ran out of burn heals
I looked out the window in frustration
Rain was falling outside
Inside
Patriotism was buffeted by the hail
So I devolved into a lower level

Going further down this building
For ***** and giggles
I found more ****
Less giggles
On a floor with a TV displaying the news
I was eager to learn about the world
Only to learn everybody hates each other
And nobody talks
Or cares
And the smartest person in the room
Is the one I agree with the most
Unable to view the tokens in my mind
As anything less than treasure
And those who try to persuade me otherwise
Are thieves
My spite steals tranquility
Like the persistent storm outside
My solution is shelter in lower levels

My experimentation on communication
With the general population
Had rained on my playful parade
But I felt very comfortable on a floor with friends
Until they saw through my charade
Discovering my emotions in disarray
As the people who made me love this building
Made me curse it's walls the more I loved them
I searched for the peaceful embrace of solitude
Once the storm outside transformed into a typhoon

I found that solitude
In a tiny bare room
With a syringe and spoon
I was unaware
That room was an elevator
That lowered me down the concrete void
As the hurricane outside rattled me violently inside my box
Trapped and lacking all agency
I resigned myself to wherever the elevator chose to take me

After the elevator finished pulling me into the basement
The tsunami seemed to cease
But I was buried under debris
I had to burrow out of my tomb
The dig was tedious and *****
My perseverance was heroic
But triumph was thwarted
When I reached the surface
To discover only wreckage remained
And when I looked up
I saw the building I inhabited
It's damaged facade
Made it clear
I would never visit those floors I missed on the elevator

Above my building
Hangs an empty sky
It's purity is a lie
The page was never blank
Just constantly written on and erased
To lure innocent readers into a tome
Bus Poet Stop Sep 2017
the bus poets

we are the modern day chimney sweeps,
the ***** black faced coal miners of the city,
digging up its grit, toasted with its spit,
the gone and forgotten elevator operators,
the anonymous substitutable,
still yet glimpsed occasionally,
grunts of urbanity
provoking a surprised
whaddya know!

once like the bison and the buffalo,
we were thousands,
word workers roaming the cities,
the intercity rural routes and the lithe greyhounds
across the land of the brave,
free in ways the
founders wanted us to be
us, the stubs and stuff,
harder working poor and lower cases

we were the bus poets,
sitting always in the back of the bus,
where the engines growls loudest,
seated in the - the most overheated
in winter time, so much so
we nearly disrobed,
and then come the summer,
we were blasted with a joking
hot reverie from the vents,
but vent, no, we did not!

no - we wrote and wrote of all we heard,
passion overheated by currents within and without,
recording and ordering the
snatches and the soliloquies of the passengers,
into poem swatches;
the goings on passing by,
the overheard histories,
glimpsed in milliseconds, eternity preserved,
inscribed in a cheap blue lined five & dime notebook,
for all eternity what the eyes
sighed and saw

books ever passed
onto the next generation in boxes from the supermarket,
attic labeled, then forgotten beside the outgrown toys
with our names writ indelible with the magic of
black markers

if you stumble upon a breathing scripter,
let them be, just observe,
as they, you,
these movers and bus shakers,
as they, observe you

tell your children,
you knew one in your youth,
then take them to the attic
retrieve your mother's and father's,
teach your children
how to read, how to see,
the ways of their forefathers,
the forsaken,
the bus poets.
dedication: for them, for us, for me
lmnsinner Nov 2017
she just shakes her head

she meets me on the street-corner, me from work, she from dance,
in the grayling dusk of a thank god it’s a freedom Friday night,
I greet her with words semi-adventurous -

“come with me, few errands to run, keep me in good company”

to the candy store we go for to purchase my weekend eve
lottery tickets and blow-pop lollipops, just in case some
kids appear, a surprise omen as they come
trick-or-treating just before Thanksgiving


the Bangladeshi candyman calls out a long prayer
in his native Bangla

she asks “what’s that he’s saying?”

“Oh, just wishing us a pleasant Sabbath and
may his gods smile upon our good lottery fortune”

she just shakes her head, from side to side

emerging from the store, walking home in the
now doubly ***** darkly dusk,
a set of white teeth from a passing shadow-man says to me
“you’re home late and have a great weekend,”

she asks, “who is that?”

“why,” I reply, “that is our very own personal postal carrier’

she says:
“he delivers mail to ten thousand people all in tall buildings,
yet knows your name, your face,
where u buy your lottery tickets,
your coming and going hours,
how came that to be”

but waits not for an answer
she just shakes her head, from side to side

I show her my secret entrance to our apartment house,
the fast route to collect our mail, dry cleaning in one fell swoop
a secret door, secret elevator taking us directly to our apartment

a secret elevator which is under the direction of
Bimal from Nepal,
who I greet in Nepalese, (my tutor)
asking after Brian and Bryce, his 100% American boys

now she says nothing, but before our door, as I go key digging,
she just shakes her head, from side to side

later she says:

“let’s order in, apprise me of  your expertise,
some exotic fare from Manhattans First Avenue,
known for its aphrodisiacal powers
afterwards,
you must tell me each dishes name,
in its tongue’s nativity,
but much, much later,”

and as she speaks,
she sticks out her tongue,
while she just shakes her head,
but this time,
up and down!
11/17/18 ~ 11/18/17
q Oct 2018
the boy who grabbed me at a party
and ran his hand up my inner thigh
while i stood tense and
pushed his hand away
lives on the 13th floor of my building
i get to ride the elevator with him
while he takes out his trash
and somehow i feel ashamed
the air in the elevator seems to disappear
i have to remind myself how to breathe
i think about how i should not have worn
THAT costume
because somehow my clothes act as
an invitation to my body
and when my friend sees him get in the elevator
she can no longer speak
and when the doors to my floor finally open
i cannot stop myself from crying
the tears feel hot running down my cheeks
and i have to remind myself
that the air is safe to breathe
that my body belongs to me
that i did not invite this
Meteo Aug 2015
Two birds flying at night crash into each other
and as they spin falling from a cloud of feathers and starlight
they are reminded of a time before they learned how to fly...

Will we fold into each others secrets
would we fit each other like a spoon
won't you take my hand and chase stars with me

we'll catch them if they fall
and bury them in the backyard of our childhood dreams
so we can always find our way back there

Chase the shoreline
fly with a flock of airplanes
we'll signature the moon
as we dance our footprints upon the clouds

swim with me through an ocean of bed sheets
and Sunday mornings
and we'll chase dinosaurs from our bedroom

The warmest place in the world is next to you
let me sip coconuts in your arms
won't you plant my name behind your tongue
that it may bloom in a garden of your smiles

We'll find a beach to name after our children
and serenade the ocean as it refuses to stop kissing the shore
we'll use toothbrushes as tuning forks

fake a limp at new years eve and ride the elevator to the highest floor
and dance with me above the skyline

'cause if you sing me a lullaby of forgiveness
I will keep you from all the broken promises
we can finger paint sunrises on each other skin

Be orphans with me
so that we can name each other
the way we once named the stars
as if the constellations held the promise
we could find our way home
Crinoline filaments
Rolling over and over
Mid-flight the ochre velvet ribbons sailed to the left
Instead of to the right
Two feet retreating
But with one shoe on

Memory returns
For a few seconds of
the calamity
At that private house in Paris
She’d tumbled down the central staircase
Sailing with legs overhead
until she stopped miraculously with her ***
at the shining leather toes of the footman.
He kept his head up.
She wore a beautiful dress.
Her hair was quite precise and she hoped that that would be a sufficient enough apology towards an empty silence.

But this isn’t that.
I shoved her.
And she went willingly. They all do.
We’re roughly a group of fifty-three.

Gathering in the last few years
Whispering over drinks
of tumors
And vascular difficulties
Of pills and appointments and forgetfulness
They never mentioned that
In those climate controlled rooms with
Blackboards covered in Latin and Trigonometry
Of the body’s failure.
Now there’s no longer any mention made of the kids
or whether or not that husband was worth the bother

Did we notice atop
The balance beam not a peep was mentioned
About the moment when you can no longer walk or stand?
That the brain asks please but the body will not comply?
How cool the marbled floor feels against your cheek while you lay for hours in your own feces?
One can rest comfortably knowing at long last that that wallpaper was the right choice.
Kept one really engaged while waiting and waiting for someone.
And that is just the beginning, right?

Perhaps some assumed that the end would come with a daily circle reviewing the contents of their chamber ***
Grimacing and worn
While they recline in white nightclothes
Something akin to what they saw on the BBC

Perhaps a startled disquiet at the rebuke of their intent and gamely stares from a premiere specialist in Switzerland
an expert in alternative therapies
for what someone dared call
terminal
Anyway, this is quicker.

So we’ve come together
As sisters
And when the time is right I get the call
We go onto the roof
There’s an elevator now because
Otherwise that wouldn’t work
And one by one
In small batches
They are dispatched
It doesn’t take as long as you would think
We are confident and have agency
We were taught that we could do anything
And they are right.

The ones with a lot of metal can be a bit tricky
They have balance issues
But are always chic and always polite
There was a time when we were forced to be together when we clearly did not want to.
We never thought as one.
Some families are better than others.
But everything is different now

One day it will be my turn and
I wonder who will deliver me?
And what shall I wear?
Will I try to see where I’m going or will I rest comfortably in my finale.

I adore the way the wind catches the cloth.
How the crystalline beads are removed around the neck and handed over
so as not to add to any distraction
Or delay
The pinky coral mouthed “Thank you” and
And the sweet eyes that once were bright and shining say their
Goodbyes
Rippling
twirling
looping
interweaving
cascading
Down.
B L Costello Feb 15
“Very fine people, on both sides”,
I wonder just who decides?
The ******* the elevator clutching her purse,
Or the man in hoodie who got on first?
“Very fine people”,
How could he know,
She’s been a victim,
It just does not show,
It difficult to see the truth,
Underneath his jogging suit,
Just like him,
She cannot see,
the bible in pocket,
Or his PHD,
How fragile we are,
So easy we shatter,
God teaches us ALL LIVES MATTER!
©B L Costello 2019
Navigating the morning migratory commute
      Mother Luna, Venus Magus, Jupiter Rex
      and little cygnets of pink appear
            —just for her

She hums a few notes
      from her Hildegard repertoire
             in memoriam
      to a mostly recycled paper cup
      organic hand-roasted coffee, fair trade
      brewed by a kid, her favorite barista
      because he can quote Albert Camus

She soars on a plain of existence
      Alto Cirrus Allegro
      where gods kibitz in several languages
            —at once
      on topics that span the gamut
      of not-so-trivial pursuits

My Pen, at her desk, preens her brand
       though this is the season of her last days
       an executive where money
            is unapologetically—God
       where women are hens
       recognized holistically
             as the large fleshy area
             that surrounds the ******

It's difficult paddling upstream
      in that sewage
      when you are a swan

That's why, I, her Cob who surely,
      surely by true gods that fly
               do not deserve
      such a precious spirit feather as she
      calls to her, waddles my mating dance
            —just for her
      spreads my wings
      to flap scents of sky in display for her
      cranes my neck to honk
      across interstate traffic
            and elevator gropes
      to bring her back here—home
our pond of still water
for LoML
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