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Steven Fried Nov 2014
The Overpass
Boys get high

and pass the warmth

vivid and bright.

Living surfaces surround them-

 spray paint
under the overpass.

They were nigh new members

a nation of addicts.

Here recruitment was rampant

where friends went to try

and they broke-

chemically chained

under that overpass.

In the summer

strange souls pressed together

to ****, to love, to grow,

a maiden voyage

hailed by the night
inhaling the night

under that overpass.

If ever you get high

and look for something more

it’s right there

under that overpass.

Behind the weedy grass and paint

a blue door waits.

Bones litter the escape-

to a new world.

Pass out of  this lif
and lay before it.
Release yourself,

enter paradise

under that overpass.
a m a n d a Aug 2013
i had an epiphany
under the overpass
cognitive dissonance
finally cracked
like a raw egg
and i understand.

i've been racking
my brain for months
hours spent staring at the wall
reviewing 10 years
trying to figure out
what i've ever done to you
to make you
want to  \d e s t r o y\  me

now i understand,
your highness
i've been clinging to the
assumption that
you are a decent man!
my god!
what a ******* idiot i am!
the answer is so simple
when  /perspective/  shifts

even after all
your hurled at me
it didn't sink in...
after year upon year
of selfish behavior
i still
sit here like a fool
wondering why you are
only thinking about yourself
and don't give a **** about me

apparently you don't reward
your faithful servants.

now i understand,
your highness
everyone just seems
to adore you
their eyes are upon you
because they don't know you
you shall have
every ******* new
shiny toy you want

but under the overpass
i understood
i know how much woman
was behind the man
|apparently there is already a new woman|
so i ask

where is the man?

how long will it take
for the man
to collapse atop
his poorly built costume
stumbling about on stilts?

this woman is just
                                   pure ***
|a fine ***|
   ******* woman

so **** this ****
**** your selfish ******* attitude
your kingly pretend
pennies for my service

the overpass granted clarity
                                       and i will take it
you have egg on your face, *****!                  
                 and i am *brilliant
Daniel Mashburn Dec 2016
I've paced around in empty parking lots with myself and a guitar. And I spent almost 9 years thinking about you. And now you're gone.

And everybody says the same thing. They say they think I've lost my mind. And I was counting stars on the overpass, baby. But I was just wasting time.

She said, "Boy, you almost had it. But you were just too blind to see." She said, "Right when I wanted you was when you gave up on wanting me."

She told me I wrote too many uncomfortable poems. Said I was too busy being alone. She asked me why I never seemed to notice how she sang along to every unhappy song.

Her eyes gazed off in to nothing and I knew I should have said something but I didn't say anything at all.

It was all private screaming but was masked as day dreaming but she left and she didn't say a word.
Sjr1000 Apr 2016
I don't know what I'm doing
I don't know what I'm feeling
I don't know where I'm going
I don't know who I'm being
I'm overwhelmed,
I can't cope

These are the slogans
I repeat to myself
Over and over again

Oh yeah

I'm a failure too
I've lived this life
What did I do?
What do I have to
show for it?

These facts about myself
are the one thing
I'm very positive about.

I repeat these slogans
day in and day out
always wondering
what I'm so
depressed about

I bury my head in these sands

choking on anxiety
in my own
advertising slogans
on my private airwaves

To complicate
just because we think something
doesn't make it true
that goes for
self worth too.


watching the passing cars
from a freeway overpass
like our racing thoughts
not holding on
not making them go away,
in peace
letting them
States of mind are transitory, come and go.
Allen Davis Nov 2013
The ruler comes down from on high
Dragging himself along the earth
Insulation going up like confetti
Take cover, take shelter

Ice the size of softballs
Comes streaking from the sky
There’s nowhere left to run
Huddled under the bridge

And then a sound like rushing water
Feels like a freight train overhead
We weep and cry and gnash our teeth
As the trumpet blares

Drove down Telephone Road
Where it crosses the highway
Sandcastles washed out to sea
Old bills put through the shredder
L Thor Pedersen Jan 2017
I traverse the twilight to be discovered,
endless days-searching a complex caliginous maze,
-the sky held my heart and the stars were my lovers,
each moment unique, some more than others,
you must breathe your first truly FREE breath and release,
exhale all the sorrow,
all the anger,
and all of the grief,-you’ve bottled up beneath,
-you must find within yourself a tranquil repose,
the indulgent overpass,
it’s ocean blue fingertips reach and drip, overcome,
-ill equipped, yet somehow you saw hope,
in the midst of all of this-I barely exist,
-cant you see inside how I’ve been broke?!?
deprived of my air supply,-I lost my way and became a ghost,
grey gallows, shadows and silver lit shallows,
from the bowels of my imagination into reality,
a pen and a bottle, a door and a key, some speed and a throttle,
-tantric models,-terror toggled and set free,
just let it go, simply let it be,
for four thousand days I’ve wandered this place amongst the masses of the cold and broken hearted,
I’ve learned 2 love as if it were my very last day-
I remember to laugh,
I recall how to play-
so when this body dies and my flesh and soul have parted,
all that will remain, is the memory of my name-
but my actions will echo in a world from which I’ve long since departed,
i’ll blind my future-and drown the sounds of the past-
ill escape to a place
-where I might feel safe,
ill run away…..
to the indulgent overpass.
Ryan Bowdish Sep 2013
School was always humuorous to a degree in my opinion because of the underlying idea
that the more damaged you were, the cooler you were in the eyes of the rest of the school.
I have heard numerous conversations that began with something along the lines of, "Oh, you
think YOU got it bad, well my dad blah blah and my best friend blah blah and my life is hell."

I decided to get a little personal and share with you guys something I have never actually
told anyone in entirety yet. I am pretty sure the whole story is still only here in my brain.
I will, out of respect for these people, change their names.

It's October 31, 2012. It's about noon, and all of us sixteen to twenty-two year olds are just waking up.
Brianne woke up probably a few hours ago already to tend to her son, Aaron. He is adorable, one
and a half, blond hair, blue eyes. I have been living here for nearly two months. I am supporting her,
Aaron, and myself with food stamps. I get two hundred dollars a month to basically smoke **** and drink
on the government's budget. Trust me, I'm not proud of it either, and if I could I would pay it back.
Since Brianne is a single mother and an adopted child, she has a single-digit monthly rent (I was *******
baffled to hear this) and receives support from her foster parents. Basically, if I want to stay here forever
with absolutely no consequences save to miss out on a life of my own, I can.

Brandon is putting on clown make-up so he can troll the streets as a juggalo. I find this amusing as I always
liked to mess around with ICP fans, but he's a really cool kid so I let it go and I even help him perfect it.
I notice he has a bottle of Stolichnaya in his backpack and it's practically full. That, to me, is temptation.
I ask if he would mind me taking a few drinks here and there from the bottle and he says it's fine, so I proceed
to get a nice one p.m. buzz. It was always my favorite drunk, very light, and airy, almost like you're still asleep.
Something bogs you down, but it doesn't bother you, somehow it makes you lighter.

For the rest of the day, we hook up with a few friends, go out and trick or treat in the pouring rain, get soaked
and wait for two hours under an overpass while Brianne goes and gets her car. From there, we proceed home.

At this point, everyone is over at Breanne's and we're all making dinner and drinking beer and having a good time
(Aaron is with the grandparents tonight). I guess I started getting angry about the recent events (for about a month,
everyone in our group with the exception of Brandon have been slowly losing items...but they're obviously being stolen.
At a point, a few of us did some research and determined the only person who could possibly have stolen
a good deal of these things has to be Brandon) and I decided I was tired of sitting on the news waiting for no one to make
a move after a solid two weeks of being certain that we had our guy. So I called him out... and proceeded
to begin burning bridges slowly and very surely for the next few days. I am pretty sure a fight would have broken out
if Bri hadn't taken me into her room to relax. When I finally do, it turns out I woke up the upstairs neighbor,
her baby, and everyone in the house has left save for my friend Jeff and his girlfriend Marissa. This concludes night one.

I later learned that Brandon was not actually the person who was stealing from us (unless of course
he just happened to not get caught when we found out who had done most of it) and I feel bad for bringing the whole
thing up because I would have liked to stay in touch with him. We got along swimmingly and he actually did have
a lot of interesting things to talk about. Smart, nice, hilarious... Well, maybe he'll turn up one day.

The next morning, I woke up to find the house empty save for Jeff and Marissa in the next room, but where I am,
it simply appears empty. I don't know what happened but I intuit that I have been sleeping all night without
my girlfriend. This upsets me and I begin to weep like a confused child, which is exactly what you do when you're
helpless and too drunk in the brain to figure out how to pull yourself out of a helpless situation (trust me,
I own the handbook). Marissa walks in and begins to explain to me that I had scared her too much and she slept
on the couch and that she had left to go pick up her son. So I realize I need to calm down, but I can feel
Jeff is not happy with me in the slightest, considering he will not come and talk to me (this is extremely painful
because he is probably one of the best friends I have ever had, with a mind that vastly exceeds that of everyone
I have met save one other, and he's a different story). They leave and I decide to stay in the house all day.

This is a very bad idea. I stay home, watch re-runs of a show I have seen billions of times, and considering
that Brandon and I are no longer on good terms, like a complete *******, I drink the rest of his *****.

In walks Bri, it's around 7. She's not happy. She proceeds to tell me that the night before I asked out a friend of mine
and she said yes. And I was a bit shocked because I couldn't remember it at first. Then it all hit me.

A few days before, Aaron called me "dad." Now remember, this is not my child. I am dark, dark, dark, and she had this kid
about two years after we had any past relationship. I am extremely worried in my mind and I realize I am headed toward nothing.
That I am stagnant and can not even afford to go back to school. This scares me, so I drunkenly asked out Tanya.

Tanya...we had been friends for about five years, and I had tried to get with her so many **** times... she was like
one of those girls you see and you're instantly reminded of an anime character. Tall, thin, beautiful hips, perfect
proportions, lovely hair, eyes, voice, and a personality I can liken to a Disney princess/black metal lumberjack.
The kind of girl who has a tough exterior, but inside, she just wants someone to tell her everything is going to be ok.

After about two hours of pleading with Bri to let me stay, I finally send Tanya a message, and we hang out for the next
two days, whence I whisper in her ear that everything is going to be okay and we proceed to have quite passionate ***
for those nights, where I discovered the secret to making a woman ****** with my tongue (tip: if the underside of your
tongue isn't completely torn apart, you're doing something wrong). But alas, I could not stay.

This is the part I dreaded, because I know I have to go back to Jeff's house and ask him if I can stay there for a while.
And I got the answer I expected.

The words he used...

"I'm *******...extremely ******* at you, and disappointed." It was like a father saying it to you. And him and I
have a very interesting friendship built on such an extreme understanding that I knew exactly how badly I had been spiraling.
I began to leave and he gave me a slice of pizza, with that slight smile that told me "just go find yourself, we'll be fine."

I hobbled off into the night drunk, with one piece of pizza and all my food at Bri's, which could have lasted me another few days,
easing the transition into homeless. And it could have prevented a horrible occurance that took place the following afternoon. I
was crying, because I knew I was dying, but I didn't want to ask either of my parents for help, because this was the first time
I was out on my own and I was far too proud to give up and let the world make me its victim. So I walked...

Sixteen ******* miles...

To the next town. Took me all night because I was dodging traffic, easing into trees, avoiding on and off ramps, trying to stay
away from any police that may exist on the road. When I finally arrived in the next town (where I knew I may have one contact)
I decided to sleep until the morning came so I could have the energy to find my next venture.

It was five thirty am. I had 3 hours until sun-up, I had just walked enough to be burning, and there was plenty of whiskey in my veins.
I had left my sleeping bag with Tanya hours earlier, wishing in the park that I had not been so naiive as to think I would be allowed
back in the house. So I pulled out a pile of ***** clothes and put them over me like blankets, in some random corner of the local
park, under some bushes, hidden from cold and sight, with great hope...

Fifteen minutes pass. My eyes shoot open. I am freezing. The sweat has dried and frozen to my body. This is hell.

I grab my things and with the worst effort I can ever remember myself mustering, I drag myself to the toilet.
When I open it, the first thing I check for is cleanliness. It's spotless. I am so relieved. I sit in the corner of the room,
which my knees to my chest, head in my hands, wrapped in a leather jacket I had gotten from Jeff (ha, he really is my
guardian angel, though he would laugh to hear it).

I catch winks, occasionally looking up to check if the sun is rising. When it finally is, I get up, change my clothes (I had
ONE clean set of clothing and it had been rotting with the rest in the backpack) and immediately head to a thrift store where
a family friend is working.

On my way there, I notice in a little parking lot near the store a sight I had never actually come across but I always thought
would be the most amazing luck, and it was timed in such a spot in my life that it was the ultimate miracle...and a curse in

In front of my eyes (this miracle appeared in my path as I was walking looking down, so it startled me) was the worst possible thing
for me: A half finished fifth of Smirnoff, and a half smoked pack of Marlboro 100 Reds. I open the pack and sure enough, the celophane
protected every cigarette inside from any water damage. I am ecstatic. This is not only amazing, but highly unlikely.

So I down the bottle in one go and take the rest of the smokes with me.

When I arrive at the thrift shop, it turns out I am there on a day when my potential savior is not working, so I get her number from the clerk
and head over to a payphone and realize... I have no money. So I decide to go on a quest for dropped pocket change.

Before I even leave the parking lot, I see a young man, no older than 23, sitting on a nice red classic-style Corvette and he's
reading William S. Burroughs. So naturally, I decide to strike up a conversation with the young man. Turns out he's the nicest guy
and his name is Jordan. So him and I got together and decided to go out for a game of disc golf (some may not know what this is;
Imagine frisbee but with a golf theme, so you need to get from a tee pad into a basket. Really fun, centering, and extremely popular
with potheads, Californians, beer-drinkers, and hippies) and before we go, he asks if I would like to snag a few beers first.

I tell him a piece of my story and he can tell I am down on my luck and broke so he decides to help me out. He buys us both some beer
and we proceed to disk.

Turns out he's an ex-****** and has been through quite a bit of hell himself, so we find that we're in a good position to help each
other make some better decisions in life. After the game, we go over to a payphone and he gives me money to call my friend.

Buzz (this the only name I am not changing because her name is ******* badass) answers the phone and unfortunately informs me that
though she would take me in any day of the year, she just moved in to a house with one older lady she takes care of, and its a single
bedroom apartment, so there is just no way it can work.

So I go back to his car and tell him the news, and he says he thinks he may be able to put me up for a few days until I can sort
everything out. We go back out to the store and grab ourselves a fifth of *****.

We end up in the park playing music, talking, performing standup for one another, and I begin to realize I am drinking too fast,
so I try to ease back a little. He was playing a version of a Radiohead song I had never heard before

"Everyone this way. Okay, get your hands against the wall. Spread your legs. Don't move."
The doors clanking, some ******* won't shut up in the next cell over.
More slamming of doors, someone rubbing my body all over trying to find my knives, no doubt.
And my AK 47 I conceal, and my ****, and my ... oh ****, I really did have **** on me.

"Move forward. Turn around. Alright, go to bed."


"Get up. Come on, slowly... There you go. There's a few more coming in so we got to get you to another cell."

Clank, clank...

"Pick a bed."


Something is wrong. This bed is not covered. There is no comfort. It's just a mat. And I have no pillow. This is not a house
of any sort, my bag isnt what I am sleeping on. Something is very wrong here.

I am in jail. Oh of course.

I know the answer before I hear it, but I ask anyway: "What are my charges, ma'am?"

"Drunk in public."


I'm about thirty miles or so North of inner Seattle. Not a bad place to be. I'm working for a Safeway. It's somewhere around
the first of June. I receive word that Bri has been on ******. And I may have left at a crucial time in her life thinking
only of myself, but I needed to go somewhere I could be productive. Yet my decision left her in a position where she turned
to hard drugs...

I can't help but feel I am to blame. I am listening to the dull, stupid words of my ex boss, Rod, who is telling me
that even though I may feel like I need to help her, there is nothing I can do for her, so I should bury myself in my work
instead. He tells me this in about six hundred different ways before I leave the room after twenty minutes. Well great.
I may have no focus here at work today, but at least I killed almost a half hour of the day just listening to someone

I am at a loss of what to do here, but I eventually get a hold of her, and after a long time not talking, we come to
somewhat of a closure, and she is beginning to sober up herself. I realize we were both in incredibly hard times, and I still
wish with all my heart there could have been some way I could have helped her raise that boy and stayed and been her
love, and at the same time, still go to college, and progress and get a good job...but I was in a small Northern California
town. There was nothing left, all the old shops were out of business. It was time for me to move on then, and we have
all seen better days for it. She looks incredible these days by the way. She lost an insane amount of weight, and I know
a lot of it had to do with the drugs, but if she truly is sober like she says she is, she'll be getting much better.

A few weeks ago 3 people I used to know and hang out with died in the span of a week. It was a terrible tragedy, and I have been
thinking back on all the names of people I used to love very, very much before they got lost in some way.

There's Lorne Holly, who killed himself after a few weeks of detoxing from crank.

Layla Harmon, who died in a car crash, blunt head trauma, with a drunk driver (I have a tattoo for this, I will never drive drunk).

Heavy Eagle, who killed himself after years of drug problems.

Chaz Lipman, who died in a car crash as well.

Ren Rain, who I am still not sure about...

And of course, Tray Beraldi, who was my closest friend's cousin... I wish I were there to mourne with him...

Last night I got a text from my best friend, who said he couldn't sleep and he barely eats anything anymore, and he feels like his throat
is going to explode, and he cant swallow and his neck is killing him constantly. He has been this way for a year, and he is talking constantly
about getting a gun and blowing his head off. And no one believes him because he constantly talks about it because he is in so much pain.
No doctor can diagnose him so far, he has no idea what's wrong with him, he's been tested all over the place, he has no hope, he's barely
cligning and he doesn't know how much longer he can hold on.

All I really want to say is

Lord? What I have done? I don't pray, I never pray, I don't even know who I would pray to. But WHAT ELSE DO I HAVE TO DO?!

I bring myself across hell and I pull myself from the worst depression I h
This is be prepared for somewhat of a story.
Charles Darkly Jan 2014
In the murky clots of consciousness
between sleep and awakening
we clung to an icy overpass railing
spitting down on graffiti camouflaged
train cars as their charging rickety
boom carried our uncontrollable laughter
toward destinations unknown
Our spirited tenacity was matched only by
turbulent winds whipping us into submission
Forcing us to brace ourselves to avoid getting
swept away
You tumbled backward off the slick rounded bars
of the overpass rail
and bit your lip so hard
I thought you would need stitches
but you kept on smiling as the blood plummeted
dripping all over the tracks in a sanguinary frost
Feeling arrogant and invincible
like two avante guarde dog soldiers
we marched past our old urban battlefields and
grimy fast food cattle fields
closed in on a ramshackle bar
and drowned our taboos and inhibitions in
foam drenched pitchers until we closed out that
ramshackle bar
We gleefully stumbled
wearing hazy street light halos
back to the
duplexed squalor of my doorstep
Sloppy kisses stained with the scent of
cheap beer completed the night
as we tore into each other and
made love on that ratty creaking mattress in the front
All I had at the time to rest on
was that ***** old bed
and you
until several months later
when they confined you to
pristine hospital beds instead
Intravenous deceptions and false hope blood tests followed
but even with all the motions of our modern medical drama
we couldn't avoid you getting slowly swept away
I regret never having the strength or honesty to visit you
just as I regret never telling anyone about you and I
I go hang on that overpass railing sometimes
remembering the knock-down-drag-out-reckless perfection
of that night
knowing that my agonizing love for you should
have been something I proudly proclaimed to the world
Now the trains carry away my atrocious wails
as the weight of my shame
nearly pulls me onto the tracks
and spills my insides in sacrificial testament
to all we've lost
life's jump Nov 2016
probly a few minutes
and i was done
writing wasn't feeling the same
i stood on top like
bricks around disaster

i was looking up
i took my shoes off
threw them aside still laced  
i wasn't being funny
i know where this is going

where i write  
where i see cracks in perfect paths  
where blood taste like metals of purity
with every year burning
where these flowers like to live
die on vines from inside
allowing ivy to climb my back

i am a length of fence
in a yard with no dog
on a gate without reason
sitting on a post during live events

i am a fool for giving into seasons
romancing everything like a poet
following every inch of broken glass

nodding to my friends that i'm willing to mend
but waiting for them to laugh
outlined with chalk on the sidewalk
where blood stains concrete my convictions
flowing from the curb to the overpass

in the night like candles floating water
under tree branches ready to crack
formatting clouds to sky write, come with me
a man in the park on his back
Larry Potter Sep 2013
They say, in the wheel of life, you'll spend half your years rising to the top and the other half tumbling to the bottom. I guess they got it all wrong. I believe life is a crooked tire that can never roll up and down. Pretty sure, it is nailed to the ground where weeds could grow to entangle it forever. Until now, what they keep trying to say remains a puzzle to me. Perhaps I can never understand what they mean. Or maybe I just won’t. Why? Because from the moment our eyes opened for the world, we’re already stuck down below and I’m afraid we’re trapped here in this limbo for all eternity.

We’re just simple people living an ordinary life. Like every family who seeks refuge from the storm, we do have a place we call home although it’s not much of an architectural delight. However, for some reasons, I find our roof appealing like a real work of art. Patches of cardboard embellish the underside while a combination of tarpaulin and ad posters works in harmony to provide an extended shelter. On bright mornings, we’ll wake from the sunbeams piercing through its many gaps. On rainy days, however, the sound of raindrops falling from the gaps down to our water containers serves as our wake up call.

To jumpstart ourselves for another day’s challenge, we could either eat breakfast (if there were any), or just sing our skipping meals away and spend the rest of the day with sacks of scraps and rubbishes on our back hoping to make a good deal with Mr. Gomez, the junk shop proprietor. He reminded me so much of my father but without the alcohol problem and violence, though. During nighttime, we bring with us our drum to sing carols on the lonely streets. If our feet become too weary to walk, that’s the time we head home. We rush all together, eager to count the coins we’ve collected that night. We make sure to put a plastic cap underneath two of our table’s feet so that it won’t lean uncontrollably and spill the tiers of ten, five and one peso coins we’ve dedicatedly piled over. Then the next part does the trick. A portion of our collection for the night goes straight down a big jar and joins in the many others which fill more than half of the container. The remaining part is used to buy supper to save our hungry tummies from
shrinking again. However, during slack nights when drivers and busy people decided to become miserly, we’re fortunate enough to have a pack of noodles for supper. But if we ran out of luck, we just set our untidy beds ready and drown our raging stomachs to sleep. I know there’s not pretty much but this is where our lives revolve. And as they say, life must go on no matter what.

Together with the three most important persons of my life, I continue the journey for a better living. Along the way, we try to search for the good things out of life’s bitter truths. We never let misery **** our hopes and dreams. Instead, we work harder and tougher. Take Islay, for example. She’s cheerful,
clever, aggressive, talented, a model of hard work. She’s got most of everything. Well, except for height, probably. I wanted to be a doctor so I could help the needy. Islay dreams of becoming an elementary teacher. She said she really likes kids and teaching them would surely be a more exciting thing to do.

Then there’s Nova. Her looks may require you a little more time to think and consider, but she has a good heart. However, she gets a little, uhhm, what term do we use for an unsociable person? That’s it! She’s a bit of a Killjoy!

Islay and Nova caroled a store swarmed with drunkards. It was always Islay who’ll find every creative idea and propose it convincingly to Nova, who in turn hesitates and rejects it but then ultimately respects it in the end. Islay always has the winning edge. Maybe that’s one of her abilities. Her convincing power deserves a credit to the list.

The two didn’t mind the ***** that welcomed them. Inside her mind, Nova asked herself how many people could waste their money on a doze of liquid or spirit that can poison their mind and bring them to imminent danger. If only they have given it to the poor and needy, they could have saved a lot of lives instead of ruining their own.

But Aling Nena, the wicked storeowner, unleashed her witchy wrath to the two. She looked at them with eyes of contempt, of prejudice and disgust. She accused the two as jinxes and blamed them for the
store’s unprofitable end. If only she could look at herself and discover a chest of shimmering blame, she might shrink into shame. Islay and Nova ran off not because they were afraid of Aling Nena or the drunken men but because of what Aling Nena said to them. They cannot defend themselves from such
an attack. How could they when they were surrounded with eyes of ridicule?

And of course, there’s my dearest sister, Juaning. We’ve only got each other since our mother’s death. It has been months already. Juaning was still 15 when mama left us. She’s 16 now. It’s been quite a while and I know she misses mama a lot like I do.

And so they fought life’s bitter realities. They begged and implored to the unconcerned passers-by, almost falling to their weak knees for one very important thing - to live. But even if the three of them were sitting, lying, and rolling down the cold pavement, these people with more graces just pass by without even sparing a glance of concern. Wouldn’t it be happier if they shared their God-given blessings? But as the day continues, they have to endure the hunger, the contempt. Because other than filling their
hungry stomach, they have a sibling, a friend to support.

That’s my part of the story. It has been months now since I caught a serious illness which bound me
to this bed, flat on one’s back, weak, inutile, and useless. Every time they come home, I wish I was with them to taste the sweet and feel the pain, not just a good listener to their stories of survival and moments of friendship. Someday, I’ll become strong again, and this curse of a disease shall be gone.

I woke up to the longing for water. I’ve never been this thirsty before. I called out their names but my voice just echoed deep in the four dark walls of our crooked house. With no one to help me, I summoned my strength and decided to get a glass of water by myself. But my legs aren’t as strong as my will. And as I attempted to stand, they betrayed me. I collapsed and plodded down the floor. Luckily Islay came and helped me get back to bed. She scolded me for being careless. I cried. I can’t help it. I pitied myself all
over again.

The cold evening wasn’t a problem for Islay. Seeing me cry like that crushes her heart. I know, as a friend and a part of our family, she wishes the best for me. And that’s why she’s still out there in the middle of the night, working late to earn more for our better future. She ignored the chills and the exasperation. She knows she has to work harder and she’s more than determined for it.

But something happened to me while she’s away from home. I cannot move my body, not even my mouth. Tears just fell from my weary eyes. And before it’s too late, Juaning caught me unresponsive and paralyzed. My sister cried for help. Nova sprinted to get the jar. Juaning told her what to do. And wasting no time, Nova rushed to the nearby pharmacy to get me some medicine, and most probably to save my life.

But Nova’s effort was in vain. Prescription drugs cannot be bought that easily. The pharmacist closed down the only lining of hope for me. The security guard felt pity on Nova and he suggested her an alternative decision that will change our lives forever.

Islay was still busy serenading the busy streets with her chants of joy and sweet hums. But the clouds become unwelcoming. And by the sound of the thunder, big droplets of rain started pouring down the highway. She ran as fast as she could and sat on a corner where she thought of something deeply. She hugged the drum that she was carrying for five hours or so and tried to remain calm in the presence of the bad weather.

After half an hour, Nova came back with a pouch of medicine on her shaking hand. She handed it carefully to Juaning whose faith and hope were hanging to the tiny bottle of miracle.

Days gone by and my condition wasn’t going any better. It turned out that my medicine was consumed to the last drop. Still I remained immobile and my hands are going number by the days. Slowly I was losing hope. I wish they weren’t mad at me. I’m trying my best to live on. That’s why I’m still here. But Nova shared something worth listening to. She revealed how and where she got the medicine.

It was from a quack doctor on a stall put up on the corner of Rizal Avenue. She said he was well versed and very convincing. And that she spent all of our savings for a bottle of deception. But we can do nothing about it. We did not have formal education. We were fortunate enough to meet kind children on
the streets who would try to teach us something they have learned from school. We would attempt to read newspapers and the description in the carton boxes we spread beneath the Badelles overpass.

Nova cried in guilt and shame. Islay was still angry at her, and it can be understood. My sister, Juaning, comforted Nova with a promise that everything will get better in time.

December 27. It was my birthday. And more than anything else, what I wish is for the four of us to be happy. Nothing in this life is more important than seeing everyone you love smile with absolute
happiness. Juaning never forgot her job and that’s to buy me a cake. Every year, they will try to surprise me with every creative possible way. But that’s how their surprises become predictable with my age.

They sang me a birthday song. But this time, they were the ones waiting for a surprise. As my sister was about to hand me the cake waiting for me to blow the candle, she noticed something she was least expecting for. My lips are pale and my eyes are shut from the light of the world. I caught my last breath and before I gave it away, I left a smile on my face that can never be changed forever. That is how I want them to remember me. Not that heck of a frown clown whose audiences are stricken with sadness.

They say, in the wheel of life, sometimes, you'll spend half of your years rising to the top and the other half tumbling to the
bottom. Maybe they were right. It was then that I’ve come to understand what they were trying to say.

Our life’s wheel revolves around things way beyond just money, food, and shelter. It is about the moments you spend with your loved ones, friends and family that will be forever carved in your heart. We can never know when our life here on earth will be over. So let us cherish every bit of it. And for me, even if we skip breakfasts and eat only noodles for supper, I have realized in these last fleeting moments that my life has always
been on the top of the wheel after all.
Ian Cairns Jan 2016
And it was there I said I'd meet you.
Under the overpass, your eyes grasping for new ways to say I told you so. And that smokestack heart of mine piled up a few more miles of the most beautiful memories that could fit into my nap sack before the bus left:

When you remind me I'm lip-synching on our car rides to nowhere which is everywhere with you and how I hate telling you I'm wrong.

That smile- and how it wraps around my lips when I try and refuse that lighthouse from ushering me home.

The echoes your laughter makes across the empty dining room and how intentional you spin this sound so I can hear it from the bedroom.

Your left temple- tabernacle and all- leaning against the smoke. Every night.  Not afraid of the fire.

And before I leave you remember that these trips are every bit as permanent as they are temporary. You tell me to hurry home and I remind you that I always am with you. You smile. The Sun screams, raising its voice across your face as we depart and you've never been as beautiful as when you said

*Just come back soon
Zero Nine Mar 2017
Doing recreationals under winter under your dim lights
Within the house leaning sideways, deep in the basement
Drinking twice our size in sweet white,
whatever cheap wine
With my humming lips, bless your pale hips in a headspin
You say, "Choke me out."
And when I squeeze, you scream
I'm no top. Better learn it early, right?
JJ Hutton Jun 2012
Abigail slides the glass door shut.
As beads of water percolate off her body
and land on the faux stone tile,
the smell of chlorine from her swim
and the smell of coffee from my brewing *** blend.
My uncle, Abigail's father, and my mother
are seated at the sticky, spilt soda kitchen table beside me.
"Go get ready for dinner," my mother's brother says, sending
Abigail's bikini'd frame through doorway and around the bend.
The brew idles, and I'm all porcelain and sugar substitute for a moment,
then back by my uncle and mother.

"Abigail has gotten so thin," my mother says.

"Is she eating?" my mother asks.

"I know it's tough for girls her age. When they're looking to marry," my mother says.
I want to bash the smoking cup into her face.

My uncle says she's been training for a marathon.
My neurons get tidy and taper off.
So, it's out of the kitchen and into an empty living room
to park my *** on an empty piano bench.
I set the coffee on top, and press eight of my fingers down
on black keys.
I hear toes-to-heels, toes-to-heels.
I gaze over my shoulder.
Now, Abigail's in a black, black dress. Mid-thigh.
In her left hand,
red ****-me-shoes with a heel that could turn a curious man blind;
in her right hand,
black pantyhose and cherry lipgloss.
"You should have swam," Abigail delivers with hushed precision,
like she'd been reciting the line throughout the duration of her swim.

Abigail has long brunette hair,
and it's sticking to her neck.
Deep permanent dimples frame her lips.
She's a nurse in Waco.
Each time I see her, I think about
Bukowski's 103-pound "Texan".
It makes me rash, violent, a heady monstrosity,
and trembling sick.

"I forgot my trunks."

"That's no excuse."

I would respond, but she's sliding the hose up her leg.

In the living room.

While my uncle talks a second mortgage around the bend.

Her right leg crosses her left,
an overpass and an interstate.
My forehead overheats in a flash,
and I feel like she's staring back at me.
When my leering eyes shift from
her toes to her eyes, the pupils beckon:

"All roads lead to me."
mike Dec 2013
i dont smoke wen i ***.. i *** smoke.
i dont think out loud.. its too loud to think.
wen i destroy planet. i dont destroy planet.
i make space.
if my eyes are open and no one can see them..i must be in a restaurant with an all blind staff.
eating alone. after hours. recycling *****. recycling puke. singing to tiny people who live on my shoulder. in my car. driving tiny cars of their own. and i lay down with a brick on the gas so they can make an overpass on top of me. and there is a sunset in my car. and we all try to catch it. but that would **** us. or at least make our hands disappear. and no one can drive safe now. we're going to crash. drive off the overpass and into my mouth. or fly. and this is all happening in every tiny car. they are giant people. with tiny cars driving in their cars. whos cars... the worlds cars. cars for fleas. cars for ded birds. cars for ded people. we are all ded people. we are all worlds. we are planet. ded planet. exploding and harboring the tiny suns. making too much sound. so no one thinks. because ded dont think. they make space. i am space. a space with shape. inside space. talking to animals. and eating. and drinking love potions. and none of them werk. especially the animals. theyre disabled. they have no hands. and have suns for eyes. but all they see is planet. with a restaurant in it. where waiters are blind. spill your soda. walk into knives. get cleaned up by night crew. werk for nice things. spend time on things. until they are destitute. but things still stay. and change shape. and are fake food. for disabled animals. and they lose all their time. the fake food absorbs all the time. the last of their time makes them rot. and the thing is now ready. to trick someone. into eating fake food. things are real. they have lives now. they miss birthdays. they have birthdays. they have time. they lose time. time is walking. but time is not moving. planet is moving. space is still. space stops breathing. space gets fat. space dies. time is stopped. nowhere to go. turn inside out forever. loses its mind. doesnt have one now. doesnt kno its gone. doesnt kno its time. its not time. its the only thing. not a thing. everything. no friends. no family. no pigs. just inside and outside. no inside. no outside. turning inside out. forever. so no inside. outside. no space. no shape. filling up itself. constantly changing. but never different. and never die. we die. we are lucky. we are happy. happy poeple. very big and very small. emotional. stupid. too loud to think.
I walked to buy some Marlboro Reds
the kind I always used to smoke when I lived at home
with my parents
"Cowboy Killers"
"Coffin Nails"
My mom would relentlessly criticize my choices.
I tried to drown myself most nights,
but my parents broke the lock on my bathroom door
and stopped me, taking to a country hospital in-patient
I felt alone, and my shoes were stripped of laces.
But I drew a picture in an art therapy session
of my car driving over a bridge
like the one I'm crossing now,
that spans a creek I don't notice for the first time.
It was a clear day, in my picture, but I had been stripped
of my car keys, as well.

It is a clear day today, too, but it is still Nebraska
and the wind is blowing
and I still want to swerve into traffic, on foot.

My family liked my picture, and made allusions
to helping me cross this metaphorical bridge.
No one asked me about the way I imagined the bridge ending,
how I would fall over the edge and die.
But I successfully crossed the overpass, alone,
my shoes permanently tied.

When I got to the counter, the cashier made me aware
that the prices had gone up since 2006.
I had expected this, but they were already expensive
for my body, for my lungs.
I was thirty
pounds overweight back then
and ate mostly fast food, and cheese tortillas,
but the body I carry now seems heavier.

I wear earplugs to combat
the unrelenting flow of traffic
and people going to their houses, families.
I try to fabricate a reason to tell my parents
I won't be there
for Thanksgiving.
But I can't,
I just won't go.

I walk harder now.
The trouble I had breathing
as a fat schmuck
as a skinny schmuck
and I go back inside
to ask for matches at the counter.

I just want to smell the sulfur strike
it reminds me of the chemicals my father used at work
and it is extinguished by the Fall wind, like I knew it would.
But still, I stood behind the gray gas station
the red trim.
I find this oddly exhilarating
this moment,
this fading scent,
from failed matches,
reminds me of when I got a friend to buy me cigarettes
in middle school
and I hid them in my room, until my parents went away.

I took them and the matches, to my parents' porch
and smoked one, imagining my neighbors saw me
imagining they cared.
The crinkle of the foil, the match strike--
these were the experiences I wanted.
And the nicotine.
But I did not want the coffin nails
for the dead cowboys.

I had a lighter with me, though.
I knew I'd have to light one.
I pull it from my pocket and inhale.

I had removed my ear plugs to ask for the matches
and all I hear is wind and vehicles.
I start to walk across the bridge a second time
I spit on the dying grass
that hangs in the dry chill
between the cracking sidewalk
in front of a gas station employee
getting off
her shift.
Her shadow races mine, and I am going to win.

I don't feel the nicotine yet, but I expect it to
kick in
as I listen
for a sign of life, not drowned out by thoughtless travel
for a moment,
I hear some young birds, sqwuaking under the overpass
spanning a creek
no one takes time to look
but I do.
All that collects there is trash.
There was a torn, Tar Heels hat on a rock, in the water, once.

I start to think again. It's working.
I'm open
Enlivened by the sound of hatchlings,

I hear young birds!
But I can not see
an anachronistic Spring
in my step, I am sure
for the first time in weeks.
I imagine having hope
and stride, watching my shadow crash
against the concrete ditch, relentlessly.

Suddenly, I realize,
what I thought were baby chicks
bound to freeze
were clanging coins
in my pocket which
I couldn't distinguish
until I'd passed into a parking lot, away from cars.

My momentum faltered.
The ******* my knee-support lost its velcro hold
and before I knew it
I was under the leaf-less trees
where red berries dangled
and no squirrel felt brave enough to ****** them.
I thought of reaching up and grabbing one,
but I knew no one else would think this seemed brave.

I smoked the cigarette until it burnt my finger,
then put the **** in the receptacle beneath my stairs
and went inside.
Enabled by the substance, inside my body just ten minutes,
to write again
19 times.
Lost for words Oct 2010
Incessent drumming and the roar of raindrops
Keep me from sleeping past dawn
Welly boots step into the cold, wet day
as the sky weeps for the loss of summer.
The wind takes the wheel,
driving water up trouser legs, into socks, under hats
Blown out beş lira umbrellas discarded on the overpass
A graveyard of useless metal spiders.
Still it rains
Impromptu lakes form from the spontaneous rivers flowing in every street
Bosphorus babies, cleansing the heart of the city
People look like street cats;
Soaked, preening, cowering under any shelter they can find
And still, Istanbul.
Still she rains.
Patrick Conroy Sep 2014
It's the first day of summer heat.
Temperature is one hundred and four.
The junkies and drunks hit the street,
shufflin' towards death's door.

Freon raindrops fall from air conditioners
that hang from windows on the third floor.
I think "this day couldn't be finer",
as I shuffle towards death's door.

Bicycle tires roll over broken glass
from the shattered window of a store.
The prostitutes all congregate beneath the overpass,
as they shuffle towards death's door.

**** smoke fills the air
as I finish off beer number four.
A chance to put my mind elsewhere,
as I shuffle towards death's door.
Look at us, I'm carrying a basket made of trash
and you're carrying a mouse, well
the dog chewed up your glasses
but you're still rockin it
you have a single drop of coffee on your nose,
we're ready to go to D.C.

I had another where-are-we moment, it was fun.
Good, that's downtown Baltimore right there,
****** capital of the world.  

An elaborate mural graffiti.
Wall after brick wall.
A rustbelt city like Grand Rapids
Detroit Cincinnati.

Did you sleep well?
Yes I woke up feeling like a clam in a cocoon.
A sea creature inside of a forest insect, okay.

I've wasted too much time on both desire and regret.
Yellow bridge.
Blue-green supports.
Singer on the radio saying, we're young right now.

There's a healthy and an unhealthy way of dealing with pain,
I'm sorry for my selfish behavior in the islands.
I want to go back and leave a better legacy.

Last night to come see you I drove I-95 N, the overpass
and though the rest of the city was really moving
I was all alone up there, it was like
driving in the sky.

We pass signs saying: Icy Conditions:
bridges and ramps freeze first.
And a billboard: Learning Kick Flips
Takes Work, So Does College

We listen to our favorite island song:
love the islands, love the islands, oh.

You look like a rasta snowboarder girl
There's something really right
about having you in this car
happy birthday Vinny Vinny (
Anne M Jul 2013
Broken promises
stain breaking cement & life
grows stubbornly on.
Notice how he has numbered the blue veins
in my breast. Moreover there are ten freckles.
Now he goes left. Now he goes right.
He is buiding a city, a city of flesh.
He's an industrialist. He has starved in cellars
and, ladies and gentlemen, he's been broken by iron,
by the blood, by the metal, by the triumphant
iron of his mother's death. But he begins again.
Now he constructs me. He is consumed by the city.
>From the glory of words he has built me up.
>From the wonder of concrete he has molded me.
He has given me six hundred street signs.
The time I was dancing he built a museum.
He built ten blocks when I moved on the bed.
He constructed an overpass when I left.
I gave him flowers and he built an airport.
For traffic lights he handed at red and green
lollipops. Yet in my heart I am go children slow.
Daniel Mashburn Oct 2014
Standing on bridges,
Feeling something I don't know how to explain.
Seeing headlights,
And taillights disappearing around curves.

Hearing how the overpass sings to me
Of hope and forgiveness, quiet contemplation.

These conversations aren't working.
Ghost Relics**

where Main intersects Main
you'll see the last living tissue
of a breathing bazaar.
They weighed down her chest with bricks and girders.
It's a wonder she breathes at all.
Wander too far in any direction
and you're sure to see the husks
of once proud and bustling businesses.
Abandoned sanctums of mortar and majesty.
Scars of the Midwest etched as constants in our mind.
Dusty and silent since the cradle.
The theaters are bedeviled with dolled up haunts
who just wandered over from Greenwood to catch the matinee.
Management still leaves the lights on for kicks after hours
to throw off their sleep schedules while they wait for the feature to start.
Up all night, sleep all day; they read by neon and slumber under Sol.
Here I am, left lounging in The Devil's Chair. Crickets keep quavering.
Underneath the Franklin Street overpass sleeps a family bound by naught.
They watch in dawn's light as the few pedestrian that traverse Cerro Gordo
advert their eyes as some sort of silent symbol of respect for their situation.
It's as if the very stare of a privileged man could drain 'til depleted.
They never ask for anything, they just wade it out and listen to
the cars overhead, the train-clock's trumpet, and the heartbeats in between.
Leaks are patched, potholes filled, and yet
we're still loosing blood; becoming beguiled.
So many stray cats in the civilian savanna,
aimlessly seeking names and second chances.
"This premises is under police video surveillance" -
hanging like ornaments from streetlamp poles.
Guarding the gates
of a dwindling dominion,
as the armies of Union and Grand
wait in their camps
for the rust to take hold
of her iron veins.
Turn your head to the right for the skyline to come into view. Rise and decay. Rise and decay.
Samuel Jun 2011
The moment when you
Pass under a bridge and hear
The rain stop

Just a moment, a perfect
Few seconds of silence before the sights and
Sounds come flooding back in

Enjoy it.
dania Jul 2016
let me guess we weren't the first
to sneak out here on our own
to "break the ice"
by raising skin to skin
and bone to bone

to tell all your good friends to leave us alone
when you know i'll tell you to leave me alone

god i always liked the flow that went
getting another life to swallow
without needing to pay rent

just another person to know we were just
other people to know

before figuring whether you were
the person to tell me when to come
or the one to tell me when to go

how do we know we know?
when i only try by saying
i'll try to know

but we look towards each other and
invite the other
to come and be the latest reach
for me to refer in relativity
all true all emotion

and if we could just choose the things that run forever
then let it be the golden feeling i found
in the absence of sound

in the absence of speech

if skin was touch and touch was reach
and reach was sin and sin was breach

and if we pretend preach
could and would make it all better

then were you back here
when you finally got it together
put it all together

and when she tried to ask you to come back
why did you go ahead and get her
This isn't a poem but I just wanted to share it. There is a poem at the end however.

Chapter 1: Kenzi

The room is dim. The only light emanating from the small desk lamp in the corner.

“Unhappy with the life I'm living,
Not finding anything to
Wash my ***** slate of emotions
And to keep me from crying.
Nothing to turn to when I cannot
Take anymore of this pain.
Each tiring day I 'm getting thrown
Deeper into the rainstorm.

Trying to find a peaceful way to
Escape contention and get
Away from this life I hate. I
Refuse to cry anymore.
Sunshine doesn't stay with me for long.”

A poem I once wrote. The words ran through my head like a melody.
As I rummage through disorganized desk drawers, I search for a paper and pen. After glancing at the time on my cell phone, 2:11 AM, I begin to write:


...dear who?...


                          If you are reading this—“

...what do I say in a note like this?...

                “—it means that I've finally released myself from this painful world. I'm   
                          sorry for any heartache that I have caused you and I want you to know
                          that I love you more than anything. Once again, I'm sorry...I'm sorry I left
                          like this.

          Kenzi Mullberry ”

After signing the letter I just sat there, staring contemplatively at the paper. I really going to do this?...

I looked the time again, 2:25. I usually hear the train roll by around 3.
After carefully folding the paper into thirds, I laid it on my bed.
...I hope they see it here...

Peeking out, I slowly opened my bedroom door.


I froze, listening... All quiet. Cautiously creeping down the carpeted stairs I let out a deep breath of air and arrived at the front entrance. Then, hesitantly, unlocked the door and stepped outside. Standing in the cold night air, I scanned the empty street. Then finally took a deep breath, and started walking.

My thoughts quickly drifted to Adam, my boyfriend.
...would my family tell him about the note? I don't want him to worry...

I took out my cell phone and typed up a text. Staring at the words, a tear rolled down my face. SEND

I checked the time again before putting the phone back into my pocket, 2:43.
...I'd better hurry...
Picking up my pace, I wiped my eyes and then shoved my hands into my sweatshirt pocket.

It was crisply cold out and my pale nose was red and running. A quick shiver ran through my body as the chilled breeze whispered past my ears and fluttered my dark brown hair. I looked up at a car traveling across the freeway overpass. It's surprising that there are still people driving this early in the morning. It's like that saying, "The city never sleeps."
There wasn't a sidewalk on this road so I stayed on the grass, even though there were no cars in sight. I looked to my right as I passed the canal, dry and empty. The irrigation water has been turned off for the winter.
Slowing down, I approached the crossing and my eyes examined the rail line. I could hear the train getting closer. I stepped onto the tracks and could feel them shaking beneath my feet. The train was getting closer and I started to panic as the bright headlight grew and I heard the horn. I have to do this...
I closed my eyes, embraced myself, clenching my teeth and my frozen fists.
”I'm sorry...”

Chapter 2: Adam

Music ran through my ears.

“...I miss you and it still feels like I know you
I've got pictures of us side by side to show you
But it feels like I owe you so much more

And you will always be perfect
You'll always be beautiful
Our hearts will never forget you
You didn't belong here
And it's become so clear
Why heaven called your name

And it just doesn't seem right, was it really your time?
Are we dreaming?
We'll never let go of you
Wish you were here but it's becoming clear
That Earth's just not the place for an angel like you...”


I paused the music and looked down from the bright laptop screen, picking up the bottom corner of my pillow to reveal my phone.

*               1 MESSAGE:

“Huh, what's she doing up so late?” I thought, as I waited for the text to open.

                *Hey babe. sorry...i know i'm about to
break ur heart, but i just cant take it anymore.
When you wake up and see this, i'll be gone...
I Love You Adam <3 im sorry...


I re-read the text...

“Kenzi! You idiot–“
I jumped out of bed and threw on my jacket as I burst out of my bedroom and around the corner to the front door. I quickly slipped my shoes on and bolted out, not caring if I disturbed the others sleeping in the house. I had to stop her.
I sprinted across the driveway, knowing exactly where she was going.
She had talked about it so many times before, she'd say, “Adam, I'm so depressed I wish I could get hit by a train.” She'd pretend it was a joke, but I always knew she was being literal.
The air was cold and thin, making my throat dry so it was hard to breathe. I heard the train whistle.
“******* Kenzi...”

I strained to make my legs move faster, they were burning.

After cutting through the park, I passed the cemetery.
“Don't end up there k?...not yet...”

My shoes we're untied, due to my rush out the door, and I stumbled, but regained my balance. All I could think about was running. I could hear the train rumble as I turned the corner and the tracks came into view. I saw her.
“Kenzi!...Kenzi get off!” I was breathing hard and my face stung from the cold. “Kenzi!”

I saw the headlight and knew I wouldn't reach her in time. But I kept running.


I finally stopped 10 feet from the tracks. Raising my hands to my head, I grabbed my hair, then threw my arms back down and placed my hands on my knees as I caught my breath.

“” I softly spoke, I could feel tears creeping out of my eyes.

The end of the train finally passed and I jogged over to the tracks. Her body was on the ground, limp; lifeless.
...I can't believe she actually did it...
I bowed my head and closed my eyes, taking in a deep breath of air, then gazed up at the sky in discouragement.

...why did she have to–…


*He­ looks into her motionless blood-shot eyes,
and sees something he hasn't seen in years.

A pain so deep, it's stitched into her skin,
leaving dark scars she knew would never fade.

He wants to help, but can no longer feel
The life that once ran through her veins.

The cold has taken over her weakened soul
and left it in the troubling dark of her mind.

She can no longer see, no longer taste
The endless joys they once together shared.

In a world full of happiness and sun
Were only memories of things left behind.

She couldn't see, didn't want to feel, the light
that was softly beckoning her away.

And now he stares at her in a state of something
He knew he could never bare the thought of.

As he kneels beside her he plainly whispers,
“This heart wasn't made for suicide...”
Akira Chinen May 2016
The calender reads 2016
But its feels more like 1984
Have you heard the crying
The American dream
Lying dying in the streets
While big brother
Is strapping blinders
On our heads
And shackles to
Our hands and feet
Were being lined up
By the rows
Willing prisoners
Of the slave power
Empire of minimum wage
Shuttling our children
Off to the animal farm
Market of big business
And big lies
***** water mixed
In with the rotting
Apples of the
New American pie
The sugar isn't sweet
To the starving
In the street
While trash cans
Over flow in the back lots
Of the super market
Super chains
Of the slave power
Empire of criminal rage
And its the cold dark waters
Of nuclear waste
Soaking the pages of the calender
That reads
In these days that feel like
No kindness or compassion
For hands shaking tin cups
Needing just a little change
Just a little shelter
From their sad weather lifes
Living on the cold ground
Below our overpass ways
No shelter and no change
No compassion and no kindness
In the fist and pockets
Of the slave power
Empire of ignorant ways
Bullets, bombs and hate
Harvesting fresh blood
For the ink
To print the pages of the calender
That reads
As politicians write us back
Into the pages of the days of
Dahlia May 2019
I have been here before, and with this same pen, I express myself through words.
To better understand myself, and to avoid being misunderstood.

Some call it bewitched, but I call it love.
There is an emptiness in the freedom of being alone,
And liberty in being caught in that divine spell.

The day that I stop writing love poetry is the day that my pen's ink will run out,
Along with my sense of connection to humanity.

Love is hard, and so difficult to describe,
Too complex to express simply by stringing words together.
Yet here I am, trying over and over,  
Always feeling limited, unfulfilled, unsatisfied.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I have been here before, I am comforted by love's familiarity,
Its pleasant tenderness, shining like rays of sun, enveloping me in warmth and sincerity.
Its floral fragrance in the form of beautiful golden sunflowers,
Bundled with red ribbon at the stems, followed by conversations that go on for hours.
Its sweet taste in the form of kisses, followed by more and more and more, all over my cheeks and face,
Until there is not a spot that his lips have not touched, and then I point lower, to a different space.
I want more but I am too timid to say,
But my flushed cheeks and smile gives it away anyway.

But, I've also been here before, reminiscing on this familiarity,
I am then reminded of the heartache that follows, and I get a sense of polarity.
The shattered promises of forever, and the final goodbyes,
The returning of sweaters that smell like him while holding back desperate cries.
The empty and cold interactions as he shuts the door behind him,
The sinking loneliness as I stand in the room that is now increasingly dim.
The racking sobs as my heart begs me to stop doing this to myself,
So, I take the thought of love, lock it in a box, and put it high on a shelf.

But, I have been here before, knowing that I cannot stop,
Love is embedded deep inside of me, it is not something I can just drop.
My heart knows how capable I am to feel such raw emotions,
It flows gracefully through me, and soars with plummeting waves like the ocean.
My heart demands to spark a flame in the one who ignited such feelings inside of me,
It longs and yearns to douse them with love and unwavering loyalty.
It demands to be expressed, through every form of self-expression that I use,
Whether that is poetry, painting, music, whatever outlet I choose to let loose.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I have been here before, trying to express my feeling of love.
It is difficult and frustrating, and most attempts are ripped apart and disposed of.
I have been trying to describe love for years, and still feel unsatisfied,
The countless filled notebooks are evidence of all the times that I have tried.
I cannot find how to put it simply but in a beautiful way,
I write about it for hours and hours, from night until day.
I want to be cherished for not only who I am, but who I was, and how I came to be,
So instead of writing about love, I will write about how to better love me.

I have not been here before, so I will take it slow,
If it helps you better understand me, please let me know.
This is for you, if you want to love me,
It is complex and it may not come immediately.
Please understand that it will take time,
For you to love me the way that I need, this is not just a rhyme.
This is new to me, I have not been here before,
If it makes you see the real me, for you I will write more.
I have not been here before, but I am still using the same pen,
If you follow my trail of disorganized thinking, please nod every now and then.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I am honest, and I will never lie.
I want you to be my best friend before being my guy.
I want to build a sense of familiarity -- to know about you and your life.
I want consistency, continuous communication, so we can avoid all strife.
I want passion and longing, the magnetic pull between our lips and bodies until they unify.
I want "I love you"s to be meaningful, not fillers to be thrown in when our conversation dies.

He must know that the "he" in this story, could also be a she.
My ability to love isn't limited by appearances that fade with time, life’s bittersweet guarantee.
He must know my personality, my strengths, goals, hopes, and dreams,
And when we fight, he must remember that we are not on opposing teams.
He must know how to support me and my life goals, how to motivate me,
When the coldness of the world frightens me, and I search for ways to escape reality.
He must want the best for me, for me to be happy, even if that is not by his side,
If we realize that we are not compatible, or our relationship makes us feel unsatisfied.
He must know my weaknesses, my flaws.
My tendency to push away when I am overwhelmed, and how to find the probable cause.
He must know that though I love to care for others, I am not great at caring for my own body.
My self-destructive nature has a story of its own, and it is not shared with everybody.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I have been here before, and with the same pen, I try to help him understand me,
I have been fighting my demons for a long time, and I can't remove the shackles that would set me free.
He feels a need to fix me, as if I were a broken wine glass,
I tell him to mind his footing, bringing attention to the pieces he should avoid and overpass.
He thinks that sweet words could be the glue to adhere my shards together,
And praises the curvature of my body, accentuated by a jacket made of leather.
He believes that he could love me more than anyone else has, and by doing so, he would mend me,
I quietly sigh, close my eyes, and slowly count to three.

I have been here before, and with the same pen, I try to make him see,
My broken pieces are not mean to be picked up by fragile hands, nor by anybody.
He learns this when the sharp sting of glass runs along the tips of his digits,
He realizes that the scars on my fingers were from all the attempts I made when I felt brave and ambitious.
Trust me, I have been there before -- I know how much it hurts, I do not want you to share my pain,
I know that I am a sad girl, but still some happiness remains.
I want to embrace this darkness, my ability to feel emotions so immense,
My dear, there is no need to put your fists up in defense.

I have been here before, and I watch him try to fit the pieces together,
But they are sharp, merciless, and weigh much more than a feather.
They are not a puzzle, they do not even fit me anymore,
But he becomes increasingly frustrated, exclaiming that this is more than he asked for.
I try to make him understand that they do not define me,
I only want them to be a visual for my story, I do not need them to be complete, nor to feel free.
I want him to see my past and my struggles, laid on the table,
Only then he will know how intricately strong the roots are that ground me and keep me stable.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I have been here before, and I don't feel like rhyming anymore,
It took me a long time to understand myself and what I stand for.

The shattered pieces that lay before him are all of the times I've lost a piece of myself;
The innocence that I clung to for so long and had to drop in order to survive and adapt.
The ideologies of supportive families, shattered by abusive alcoholics that no one questioned.
The expectations of loving and supportive friends, broken by betrayal and abandonment.
The life that I once knew, had to leave behind, and the shock that crackled my perspective and forever changed me.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I have been here before, and with the same pen, I try to reassure him,
But he is drowning in my sorrows and has forgotten how to swim.
He feels a need to scare away my demons, and cure what plagues my mind,
He becomes frightened by my pain and wants to protect me, so he covers my eyes.
But my self-destructive nature was never his job to correct,
I try to help him understand that I am grateful, I never meant any disrespect.

I have been here before, and with the same pen, I try prove that I am his equal and that we are the same,
I am not expecting him to be anything more than he is, I am not a helpless dame.
But he feels that it is his duty as a man to complete me, to support me, to give me a reason to smile.
I put down my pen, and and stare into his eyes for a while.

Though I may be broken, I am complete on my own.
The only support I want is holding hands as we walk side by side, not in the form of you carrying me.
Our world is beautiful enough to make me smile, I only want to enjoy it alongside you.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

But, I have been here before, and I have been through all that.
For 24 years actually, so that makes me stronger than you.
I am better equipped and more than capable to deal with certain things on my own,
These pieces are not even a part of me anymore.
My demons do not need to be slain by a knight in shining armor, because they are more afraid of me.
They know what I've overcome, and know that I will not take **** from anybody.

I've been here before, and with the same pen, I acknowledge my strength,
I've rebuilt the walls of my wine glass exterior with precise width and length.
I designed them using the knowledge that I have gained from my hardships and where I went wrong,
I shaped and molded them with the experiences that have taught me how to be strong.
And I placed seeds that blossomed when nourished by my own self-determination,
I spent many years adding to my durable and unbreakable flooring and foundation.
I painted the walls crimson red, and hung golden accents on the ceiling,
And laid mats to meditate on when I am hurting and need healing.

I have been here before, and I've created this for myself,
I will invite you in, if you'd like to see it for yourself.
I am strong, I am intelligent, and I hope to be more brave,
But I am a lover and a fighter, so please don't think that I need to be saved.
I want to share this beautiful experience of life with you,
But it is not a journey that you have to carry me through.
We will put on comfortable shoes and make our way together,
And we'll prepare for obstacles, challenges, and unpleasant weather.

I have been here before, and I see that look in his eyes,
The corners of his lips curl down and he feels the need to apologize.
I don't need an apology, or for you to change who you are,
Let's enjoy our time together and have a cigar.
The universe granted us to exist alongside each other, and we have crossed paths for a reason,
So please enjoy the warm weather with me this season.
There are so many beautiful sights out there,
I don't care what we do, or where we go, we can go to Times Square!
As long as I'm by your side, and you love me,
In the most pure, raw, and passionate form, it would make me so happy.
Put on the other headphone in and listen to this song,
I think now that you understand how to better love me, you can do no wrong.
I put my pen down as we listen along,
I dedicate a playlist to him, filled with love songs.

I have been here before, and even though my pen is down,
It seems that I cannot and will not stop expressing love.
Frank Ruland May 2014
The ignorance in this Hell of a hole is appalling! Day in and day out, I find myself witness to the testaments of fools and blasphemers of common sense. They come out of the woodworks like flies on dog **** during a hot, summer day. They've come to wallow in the filth that is their world of contradictions and lack of respect. I hate to use the word "****"-- not really-- but ****, if that's not how I feel and what they make me think. And I swear on a stack of Bibles written by Judas himself that some days these heathens make me want to come down upon them like the wrath of an angry God. There's nothing that makes my liver quiver and brain bitter like a dose of disregard for those who are just trying to live a life free of the poison that is society's naïveté. And trust me--I want to take matters in to my own hands, but I think waving around a loaded .45 in these *******' faces would just scare the **** out of them, and I have wisdom to know that fear and respect are two different things. Alas, short of a less passive and more aggressir death threat, I don't think I could get these sorry sacks to change their ways. I guess I'm just stuck in a world where "understanding," is something you do when you're hanging out with your friends beneath the overpass and sharing a ******* joint.
Alexis Dec 2014
Shy, funny man,
Did the best that he can,
To raise me to be what I am,
Beautiful baby girl,
Smiling every second,
What everyone wants in the world
Years pass,
Daddy always there,
Doing the best he can,
Raising me to be the way I am
Beautiful baby girl,
A baby no more,
Middle school,
Diminished smile,
Daddy where are you?
No reply
Daddy's soul has left his eyes
No more doing what he can to raise me how I am,
Doing what he can,
To stop the voices in his head
Searching for cameras,
In the walls,
Paranoia controls his all,
Everyone out to get him,
Stumbling upon his daughters sketchbook,
Sketch unfinished;
Headless body
Convincing to be dismembered,
Out to get him;
Dismember him,
Paranoia growing,
Irritability as well,
Mommy a victim,
Strangled, breathless,
By a body with no soul
Life flashes amongst her eyes,
Children being married,
Daddy's alone,
In a mental home
Not for long,
Returns with medicine to fix the harm
Void of soul replaced
Daddy regained,
Medicine disposed,
Voices grow,
They're going to **** me,
The 9th,
Facing doom,
Departure to a highway overpass,
Aimlessly walking,
The edge
Concerned bystandards,
Authorities called,
No way out,
A fall,
A crash,
Is dead.
The story of the loss of my father from schizophrenia and suicide. I'm hoping to raise awareness to mental illness, if you or anyone you know is struggling with mental illness please be there for them, & pursue them to seek treatment. I would hate for the heartbreak of another beautiful life to be reaped from such crippling illness.
Traci Sims May 2017
Fifty feet above, the steady whir
of traffic and the slur of rubber
on asphalt sounds like a river.

On calm nights I can look down
at Lake Union and see the lights
of the city reflected in dark water.

No stars. Heaven here is I-5,
north to Canada, south to Mexico,
but below, as in an empty cathedral

filled with broken bottles,
random car parts, and old newspapers,
I lie here and breathe gas.

Some day these pillars will fall,
but listening to a river tonight
I'll sleep well under the overpass.

From "Bird's Nest In Your Hair" by Brian Jobe
demosofpyr Feb 2017
I'm underneath an overpass
I come here when I'm mad
My family was fighting --
And I fled, the fight was bad.

I'm smoking my last cigarette
It's the fourth time that I've "quit"
And I'm surrounded by broken bottles,
Heh - drowning spirit with spirits

And I'm surrounded by this droning roar
Which makes me hear my parents more
When I was little I would have cried
But that fragile part is trying to die
And here, with sobs wracking my spine
I try to remember happier times..

Just a little part more of me dies
"It'll be fine" another lies.
Lexi Vinton Nov 2013
The rattling
of an empty plastic water bottle
on a trash-ridden street
at 3 a.m.
is so exceedingly hopeless
that it makes me want to

Seeing the two drops of water
lingering in the bottom
causes me to untie
my beat-up shoes,
take off
my plain grey socks,
and place them in a neat
and hopeless
next to the overpass.

The label
peeling away from the bottle
forces me to climb over the railing
onto the little ledge,
high above the busy street

Glancing at the forlorn
plastic water bottle,
I prepare to jump.

A ****** homeless man
shuffles down the ***** street
picks up the bottle
and puts it in his bag.
“'scuse me miss,
do ya have any spare change?”

I stare at him with dead eyes
and begrudgingly climb down
from the railing.
Jack Turner Feb 2011
Well I woke up in a car
- Those are the lyrics to the song -
And I find myself in that same car,
Racing towards the 91.
We go up a rise and I look over;
The mountains in the distance,
See the fog in the breeze,
The zoo, the fountains, the houses it seems...
Its the city, seeing it through the trees.

Somewhere out there,
Somewhere in the haze,
Is you.
Somewhere in space,
The only place,
Is You.

Well I woke up in a car,
Or at least that's the way it seems to me.
Life through these new eyes
Shines so brightly on me,
Except when it comes to you.
I can't quite find

The words to express my thoughts.
How I adore you.
I am taken by inaction
As I lift my hands
And focus on the fingers.
I watch you slip through
As I write these words for you.
Listening to "I Woke Up In A Car" by Armor For Sleep while on the freeway
JAC Aug 2018
Today I died on the freeway
by the overpass on the 427

a hot and relentless August rain
made it too dark to be five thirty

I walked home slowly from work
as you do when you're tired

oh yes, I was sad too
but we all are

it's easy to be sad
when it rains in August

when I reached the overpass
in the middle I leaned over

my hair passed my eyes
and droplets fell

down, down

I thought about it
twenty feet into traffic

the guardrail is never as useful
as a sweet and good-hearted hug

so then I thought better of it
and put my headphones in

I died on the freeway
then got up and kept walking.
A lot of poems about rain and highways recently, but that's only because it's been raining very consistently and I'm on the highway every day. I don't seek out clichés, they find me.
BR May 2018
Did you know that if you leave your car in your driveway,
With the keys in the ignition,
And someone sits down in the front seat like they own it, and drives away,
You are the one who is liable for theft?
They can drive that sucker to the coast.
They can burn the upholstery with their cigarettes. They can bring their friends into the back seat, and fill the compartments with their refuse, and ****, and they can leave it ruined in front of your house, or crushed into the median on the highway, or left in disconnected pieces under an overpass.
It will be called, “unauthorized use of a vehicle.”
It will be called a “misdemeanor.”
But you left the car running.
Weren't you kind of asking for it to happen?

They said,
(Gesturing to the skirt which fell to two inches
above my kneecap),
Is like that.

If I walk outside of my house in jeans and a t-shirt, or a long dress with thin straps,
Or with my chin tilted out,
Or with long eyelashes,
Or with full lips,
Or with my hips swaying when I walk,

It's like I left the car running.

It's like I invited them to force their bodies into the front seat.
In their minds, or with their hands, or with their lips to anyone who would listen to them.

Little girls in leotards become like unlocked car doors;
Where men can burn their cigarettes into their skin,
Or stick their fingers in
In plain view of their parents,
And told to let it happen,
It isn't theft,
It's “a medical examination.”

What did they expect?
It isn't a theft.
She was just as guilty of negligence.
It isn't really a felony.
It's not THAT BAD. (Stop being so dramatic.)
It's the unauthorized use of your body, for a time, or one night,
or every time you close your eyes for the rest of your life,


But you left the car running.
Andrew Kerklaan Mar 2012
He catches an upward blast and is cascaded toward the heavens  

A plume of feathers both grey and blue  

Soaring high above, riding the draft  

Elegant and careless like the Valkyrie's flight  

Sailing onward to certain victory!  

The drums roll and the trumpets shout  

Beating to the crest of the aerial knight

Streamlined magnificence fit for a king

A slave to no one -- A peasant to all  

The overpass pigeon takes flight
Matalie Niller Jun 2012
Ever seen the inside of a Teletubbie's belly?
I did
that **** gave me cataracts and glaucoma
which lead to injesting large amounts of guacamole
got huge
mostly in the head-
found a homeless man, let him sleep on my couch
he liked to tell stories about his encounters with celebrities
oh which he was one
back in the day, I think he was on Rosanne
never watched it but he was cool enough
we biked to the overpass to drop waterballoons on those who needed them most
like fake-tanned blondes in convertibles
and bicyclers.
I love all kinds of people and can forgive their beligerence
though mine are quite strange
I like canoing in trees and making mosaics from bone fragments and rubies
just a bit of a mind juggler
smacking singles on counters for pregnancy tests and breath mint
tell a tubby his belly is wide
and boy you'll be scoutin' a whole new skull.
Ellis Reyes May 2017
The EMTs respond.
A Jane Doe is found dead.
Beneath the I-90 overpass.
They lift her
Zip her into a bag,
And transport her to the morgue.
They can’t feel sad.

The few wispy strands of hair that remain
Dangle haphazardly from her scabby head
Jagged misshapen teeth protrude from dry cracked lips
betraying breath that stinks of infection and decomposition
Vermin gnaw on exposed flesh while parasites feast within.
Her eyes dim as her body putrifies.

Last Week:
Mission workers prop her up against the wobbly chain link fence
A thin blanket is wrapped around her bony shoulders and
Her blue-tarp awning is adjusted
She would be less wet and cold.
For a night.
They leave a cheese sandwich and chicken noodle soup.
The rats eat most of it.
She wouldn’t have kept it down anyway.

Last Month:
The shelter is scary and dangerous.
She couldn’t sleep without nightmares and her screaming disrupted other ‘guests’.
The shelter workers apologize and put her out at 2:19 AM.
She finds a spot between two dumpsters.
It reeks of **** but is unoccupied.
Sometime in the dark she is ***** and beaten by two crackheads.
The crime is unreported.

Last Year:
The fluorescent lights sting her eyes.
The antiseptic smell burns her nose.
The noise and chaos that surround her make her dizzy and disoriented.
She fights hard to get away but is restrained by strong hands – then leather straps.
A painful jab in her arm and then nothing.
Days or weeks later she emerges in a haze.
Kindly eyes greet her.
They stay with her.
They accompany her to the shelter.
They tell her to come back for follow-on care.
She never sees them again.

The divorce rips her heart in two.
She has nothing.
She is nothing.
Her world crumbles beneath her and she crumbles with it.
Where would she go?
What would she do?
Everything has become so wrong.

Once Upon a Time:
She was happy. Joyful.
Filled with life and hope.
He was smart, funny, successful.
Together they were magical.
Caytlin Rae Apr 2014
I have never quite understood it,
But every now and then,
A smile that is very rare appears on your face.
I doubt you even realize it.

It creeps out when you sing in the car.
When you are proud.
When you hold a volleyball in your fingertips.
When you look at the mountains.

And I wish there was a way for me to capture that.
You don't know the pride I have in you,
My little sister,
When you grin like the world
Does not control your mouth.

I want you to know you can smile.
You have every right.
Let your eyes be the sunshine,
Let your lips paint the canvas
In shades of yellow, pink, and orange.
Stretch your arms out wide so you can
Welcome each soul with kindness,
Because I know that's who you are.

I know this because I am her, too,
The girl with stars in her eyes
And her heart on her sleeve.
And let me tell you,
There is not a better place to wear it,
Because the pain that comes with it
Is so worth the beauty that follows.
Because the people that break your heart
Will always be followed by the ones
That have been picking up the pieces
So they could return them to you.

All of me wishes you knew your inner beauty.
Of course you are gorgeous outside, as well,
But dig deep,
Shovel down in to your soul until you see the gem.
And I cannot believe you do not already,
Because you shine so brightly
That even the moon pales in comparison.

Karena, you are compassionate.
You feel things that people overpass;
You are the definition of a "friend."
Forgive, forgive, forgive...
Because you do not have time to hate.
Holding grudges is not your style;
And although I do not always think it's wise,
I admire you very much for that.
You see the good in others.
Thank you
For seeing the good in me.

Remember, forever and always,
That I love you.
I'm always your biggest fan.
We've been through it all together,
And that will never change.
Don't lose the spark in your eyes,
Or the warmth in your heart.
Keep being spunky and opinionated.
You are a fire, a ball of life,
And isn't it wonderful
That while some merely
You are truly
And please--
Jacob Oates Sep 2014
When you asked me to prove if you're safe with me:

You're asking me to be the airplane and the parachute, as well as your jump partner

You're asking me to dive down and explore your depths while I'm covered in waste and hoping I don't mess up the place

You're asking me to drive through lightning storms to Reno and be assured neither of us will lose on the poker table waiting at the end of the overpass

You're asking me to hold you so close the pressure cauterizes open wounds where our hearts keep falling out, and hoping I won't stain your clothes

You're asking a controlled fire not to burn too hot for fear of hurting your eyes

You're asking for poison and antidote to mix without either being diluted.

I'm going to need your help.

— The End —