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Shofi Ahmed May 2017
A night owl in the harvest moon
was awake till the crack of the dawn
but wasn’t surfing online, wasn’t rowing
the boat in the digital river.
Deep down to a dreamweaving scene
that was, in musing, painstakingly creative.

Wait till you snap up a witty aphorism.
The darling buds of May will be in bloom.
The tickled pink nightingale too will
give out its voice, singing a song.
Save a copy and tweet it to all,
but do give us a demo, tell us a bit more.
Where does it shine and sizzle?
Where did the winter tuck away the rose?
This is a poem from my book Zero and One available on Amazon.
onlylovepoetry May 2016
wondrous words,
shades of colorations,
this pain,
artfully slow, steady stalking,
finale staking into
my hardened heart

with tireless twinges
of loss and constant regret,
painstakingly plinking away,
leaving pockmarks of bullets shot
at the concrete ring-fencing,
failing to protect me from just another,

oh god not again,
have no mo' time

for jes one mo' time

love's aftermath regret,
bitter acid wash,
that cleanses nothing,
for you are already nothing
when love loss wrenches/rents your
soul's garments with knotholes of
unfashionable distressed
distress

better not to have loved,
better, better, better,

than this battering silent hurricane
invisible thunderstorm internally,
than respects no seasonality,
for which the meteorologists
can predict neither its path or its
final cessation

painstakingly,
did I build my walled shelter,
only to fail-fall to the siege machines
of beauty and desire,
and
once conquered,
with fire and heat,
they burnt me
from the outward edges inward,
and I am not a
Phoenix


see the stooped slow white walker
more than dead, yet alive enough
existing to be witness to
his own devouring,
his hands wrapped round
the stake in his chest stuck,
painstakingly
protecting it,
lest its removal
be one more undoing of the
painstaking man
Wk kortas Jul 2018
He has taken rake and shovel in hand,
Taking advantage of the light,
Rare in these climes this time of year,
Still welcomed, though rendered severe
By the sun's reluctant trudge above the horizon,
The type which, sauntering through a window pane
(Falling upon a crucifix anchored above a cradle
Or some ancient, gilded frame
Containing a photo of some grandparent's wedding day,
Exploding into full undifferentiated diffusion)
May possess a dram of warmth, albeit resigned, nostalgic
A bittersweet reminder of what has gone by
(And in the shade, the air is filled
With the portentous chill of what lies a few months hence)
But there nonetheless as he tends to those final farewells
From the trees bowing to December's inevitability,
The droppings not the *******-esque bursts of October
(Those having been collected and consigned
To the normal corner of the back lot)
But dreary brown-hued things, not welcomed by eye nor heart,
Simply corralled perfunctorily and dismissed.
One could contend that such activity is unnecessary,
The mere vanity of all endeavor,
As the snow will come soon, and steady as well,
Performing the seasonal, cyclical function in its own time,
But he soldiers on nonetheless, a unseen one-act nearly-farce,
Painstakingly raking and bending and scraping
To leave his patch of green uncovered for a little while
Until the locking time comes to seal the earth's secrets once more,
To be revealed to those
Who shall receive the teasing ministrations
Of the fickle, fitful March equinox.
This remembrance somehow still makest me guilty;
in every minute of it I feelest tangled, I feelest unfree.
I loathest this less genial side of captivity,
but still, 'tis ironically within my heart, and my torpid soul;
ah, I am afraid that it shall somehow becomest foul,
and I wantest very much, to endear my soul to liberty,
but so long as I hath consciously loved thee,
My confidence remaineth always too bold-
But I promisest that this shall becomest my last sonata,
Should thou ever findest, that thou desirest it to be;
whilst my incomplete song shall be our last cantata.
Ah, this series shall but never end,
Should I approachest and befriendest it,
but to confess, more I thinkest of it, the more my heart is pained;
No coldness shall it feelest, nor any beat of which, shall remaineth.

To thee whom I once loved, and now still do,
To thee whom my soul once gratefully honoured,
To thee whom I then endorsed, and magnified,
My heart, ah-my poor heart, is still restricted, and left within thee,
And amongst this dear spring's shuffling leaves, still blooms,
And shall bloomest forever with benevolence,
and even greater benevolence, as spring fliest and leavest
Just like thy sweet temper, and ever ostentatious laughter,
Thy voice and words, that are no longer here for me,
But still as clear, and authentic like a piece of gospel music, to me.

To thee whom I once loved, and now still do,
To thee whom my soul once gratefully honoured,
To thee whom I then endorsed, and magnified,
My pleasurable toils, and consummation still liest in thee-
as forever seemest that I shall trust thee, and thee only,
For the brief moment we had was but grand-and pleasant,
All the way more enigmatic, though frail, and exuberant
than I couldst perhaps rememberest,
But as I rememberest them, I shall also rememberest thee,
For those short nights are always fond and stellar to my memory,
As thou pronounced me lovely-and called myself thy lady,
As thou lingered about and placed thy sheepish fingers on my knee.
Ah, thee, whose heart is so kind and ever gently considerate,
From the moment thou stared at me I knew thou wert my unbinding fate.
And thy scent-o, thy manly scent, too calming but at times, poisonous;
Was more than any treasures I'd once withheld in my hand.

To thee whom I once loved, and now still do,
To thee whom my soul once gratefully honoured,
To thee whom I then endorsed, and magnified,
My enormity liest in thee, and so doth every pore
of my irrevocable, consolable sense;
Thou awakened my pride, thou livened up my tense,
Thou disturbed my mind, thou stole my conscience.
And with thy touch I was burning with bashfulness,
meanwhile my mind couldst stop not
ringing within me, unspeakable thoughts.
Ah, thee, thou made me shriek, thou slapped me awake;
And thou steered me away from any cruel dreams, and lies
these variegated worlds ought to make.
But still I hatest myself now, for leaving all of which unspoken,
Though plenty of time I had, whilst walking with thee, by the red ferns;
And every now and then, their branches ******* terrific sounds-
But not loud; benign and soft as heartfelt murmurs in our hearts.
And those dead leaves were just dead,
Over and under the gusty tears they had shed,
And their surfaces had been closed,
But as we stormed busily with laughter, along their dead roots,
All came back to life, and polished liveliness, and guiltless temperance.
Ah, thy image is still in my mind-for it is my ill mind's antidote,
With all the haste and loveliness and ardour as thou but ever hath,
Thou art loved, by me and my soul, more than I love myself and the earth,
Thou art more handsome even, than the juicy unearthed hearth yonder.
Ah thee, my very own lover and drowsy merriment at times,
Thou who keepest fading and growing-
and fading and growing over my head,
Thy image hauntest my sleep and drivest all of me crazy,
For justice is not justice, and death is not
death, as long as I am not with thee,
And I shall accept not-death as it is,
for I shall die never without thee,
For I am in thy love, as thine in mine,
And dreams shall no longer matterest,
when thy joys are mine-and fiercely mine,
I am blinded by urgent insecurity,
That occurest and tauntest and shadowest me
like a panoramic little ghost,
Massively shall it address me,
Painstakingly and, in the name of justice, ingloriously,
And shall them address my past and destroy me,
For I hath carelessly let thee fade from my life,
And enslavest and burdenest my very own history,
For in which now there is no longer thy name,
ike how mine not in thine.

To thee whom I once loved, and now still do,
To thee whom my soul once gratefully honoured,
To thee whom I then endorsed, and magnified,
Still thou art gentle as summer daffodils,
Thy image slanderest me, and its fangs couldst ****.
Thou owneth that sharpness that threatens me,
Corruptest and stiflest me, without any single stress,
And charming but evil like thy thirsty flesh.
Ah, still, I wishest to be good, and be not a temptress,
though all my love stories be bad, and
endest me and shuttest up in a dire mess.
I feelest empty, and for evermore t'is emptiness
shall proudly tormentest and torturest me,
Stenching me out like I am a little devil,
Who knowest but nothing of love nor goodwill,
I needst thee to make everything better, and shinier,
In my future life, as later-in my advanced years,
As death is getting near, for more and greater
shall my soul hath accordingly stayed here.

To thee whom I once loved, and now still do,
To thee whom my soul once gratefully honoured,
To thee whom I then endorsed, and magnified,
Thou art my summer butterfly and beetle,
I shall cloakest thee with sweet honey and sun,
And engulfest thee safely and warmly
under the angry sickly moon.
I am thankful for thee still, for thou hath changed me,
For thou made me see, and opened my flawed eyes
Thou enabled me to witness the real world;
But everything is still, at times, beyond my fancy,
For they keepest moving and stayest never still,
Sometimes I am, like I used to be, astonished
at the gust of things, and the way they grossly turned
Their malice made my heart wrenched, and my stomach churned
What I seest oftentimes weariest my *****, and disruptest my glee
And still I shall convincest myself, that I but needst thee with me,
Thee to for evermore be my all-day guide and candlelight,
Thee who art so understanding, and everything lovable, to my sight.

To thee whom I once loved, and now still do,
To thee whom my soul once gratefully honoured,
To thee whom I then endorsed, and magnified,
If thou wert a needle then I'd be thy thread,
If thy rain wert dry then I'd makest it wet.
But needst not thou worry about my rain;
For 'tis all enduring and canst bear
even the greatest, most cynical pain.
Ah, and thus I'd be thy umbrella,
Thou, whose abode in my heart
is more superfluous, and graceful-
than my random, fictitious nirvana;
Oh, thee, thou art my lost grace,
And everyone who is not thee-
I keepest calling them by thy name,
How crazy-ah, I am, just like now I am, about thee!
Ah, thou art my air, my sigh, and my comfortable relief,
And in my poetry thou art worth all my sonnets, my charm,
and forever inadequate, affection!
And only in thy eyes I find my dear, effectual temptations,
As under the hungered moonlight by the infuriated sea,
Who standeth strenuously by the peering strand of couples,
Thou evokest within me dangerous eves, and morns of madness,
Thou makest me find my irked melody, and vexed sonnet,
Thou made, even briefly-my latent days gracious,
Thou made me feelest glad and undistant and precious.
Thou art a saint, thou art a saint, though thy being a human
intervenest thee and prohibitest thee from being so;
ah, and whoever thinkest so is worthy of my regrets,
and the worst tactfulness of my weary wrath;
For thou art far precious, more than any trace
of silverness, or even true goldness,
Thou art my holiest source of joy,
and most healing pond of tears;
Thou art my wealth, ****** trust,
and my only sober redemption;
thou art my conscience, pride, and lost self;
Thou art indeed, my eternally irredeemable satisfaction.

To thee whom I once loved, and now still do,
To thee whom my soul once gratefully honoured,
To thee whom I then endorsed, and magnified,
I adorest thee only-my prince, my hero, my pristine knight;
Ah, thee, thou art perfect to my belief and my sight,
Thou who art deserving of all my breath and my poetry;
Thou who understandest what kindness is, and desires are,
Thou who made me seest farther but not too far.
Thou who art an angel to me-a fair, fair angel,
Thou who art beguiling as tasteful tides
among the sea-my courteous summer sea,
Thou who art even more human than
our fellow living souls themselves;
Sometimes I think thou art courage itself-
as thou art even braver than it, the latter, is!
Thou art the sole ripe fruit of my soul,
And my poetic imagination, and due thought;
Thou art the naked notes of my sonata,
And the naughty lyrics of my sonnet,
Thou art everything to nothingness,
As how nothingness deemest thee everything;
Thou makest them shy, and dutifully-
and outstandingly, changest their minds;
Thou art a handsome one to everything,
Just as how everything respectest, and adore thee.

To thee whom I once loved, and now still do,
To thee whom my soul once gratefully honoured,
To thee whom I then endorsed, and magnified,
By whose presence I was delighted, as well my breath-dignified,
Ah, my love, now helpest me define what love itself is;
For I assumest it is more than fits of hysteria, and sweet kisses
Look, now, and dream that if death is not really death
Than what is it aside from unseen rays of breath?
For love is, I thinkest, more handsome than it doth lookest,
For in love flowest blood, and sacrifice, and fate that hearts adorest
But desiccated and mocked as it is, by its very own lovers
That its sweetness hath now turned dark, and far bitter;
Full of hesitations engulfed in the best ways they could muster;
O, my love, like the round-leafed dandellions outside,
I shall glancest and swimest and delvest into thy soul;
I shall bearest and detainest and imprisonest thee in my mind,
But verily shall I care for thee,
ah, and thus I shall become thy everything!
Let me, once more, become obstinate-but delirious in thy arms;
let me my very prince-oh, my very, very own prince!
Doth thou knowest not that I am misguided,
and awfully derogated, without thee!
Ah, thee! My very, very own thee!
Comest back to me, o my sweet,
And let me be painted in thy charms,
o thee, whom I hath so tearfully,
and blushingly missed, ever since!

To thee whom I once loved, and now still do,
To thee whom my soul once gratefully honoured,
To thee whom I then endorsed, and magnified,
I loveth thee adorably, and am fond of thee admirably,
so frequent not outside when all is dark and yon sky is red,
For I hatest justification, and its possibly hidden wrath;
I hatest judging what is to happen when our hearts hath met,
but how canst I ever knowest-when thou choosest to remaineth mute?
Then tearest my heart, and keepest my mouth shut
O thee, should this discomfort ever happenest again;
Please instead slayest me, slaughterest me, and consumest me-
And lastly let me wander around the earth as a ghost.
Let me be all ghastly, deadly, and but penniless;
Let me be breathless, poor, imbecile, and lost-
For in utter death there is only poverty,
And poverty ever after-as no delicacy nor taste,
But I shall still dreamest as though my deadness is not death,
for I am alone; for I am all cursed, without thee.

To thee whom I once loved, and now still do,
To thee whom my soul once gratefully cherished,
To thee whom I endorsed, and magnified,
My heart, ah-my poor heart, is still left within thee,
Just how weepest shall the leafless autumn tree,
Waiting for its lost offspring to return,
and be liberated from its pious mourns;
And as I hearest their shaky, infantile chorus,
I shall but picturest thee again, thus;
Thy cordial left palm entwined in my hand,
Strolling with me about the leafy garden.
A joyed maiden having found her dream man,
a loving man swamped deeply with his love, for his loyal maiden.
Sally A Bayan Dec 2016
On days, when time is going too fast,
I can't catch up, and there're things i can't get past,
I'd pull a chair at the verandah....just sit there
To witness, the gentler goings on in life...
See, how...why  all plants face towards the sun,
On a dimly lit corner, watch a spider patiently spin its web,
Underneath the gravel and green grass, somehow,
The earthworm, painstakingly, bravely emerges,
Finds its way out of the soil...to remind us,
"...soil is healthy....it's time to plant!"
:::::
I feel, the beetle knows me, as it inches on,
Carrying its own body, crawling down the pine tree,
I won't ever grasp it, nor tie a string on its body
To control its range of movement,
As we do to tethered beasts of burden...
:::::
While sitting there, i decide: by all means,
Towards the flower ***, i  lean
Take time to smell a rose, feel its rough leaf
Not just a quick touch and sniff
But hold its thorny body, without daring to blink
While deep within, i'd let its fragrance sink
:::::
Some early evenings
When the cicadas' music are echoing
And the moths have started flying
Circling round the light at the ceiling,
I am warned...soon, it will be raining
And.....when it starts to rain, i keep listening
Til i'm soothed by the sound of rain...falling,
From sky to treetops.....flowing...landing
Next to the leaves......cascading down
To the concrete ground
Spreading quickly, far and deep...and as fate,
As nature would have it....the soil, without fail, waits...
:::::
Long time ago, we were small,
Curious and brave, we tasted glory, and all,
Armed with a child's innocence
And an insatiable hunger for learning...
Our eyes, our minds dilated,
Our brains were like sponge...
Like the soil.....we absorbed
All, that we discovered...
:::::

Sally

Copyright December 1, 2016
Rosalia Rosario A. Bayan
(Once in a while, we can be a child....right?)
Dorothy A Feb 2015
She yelled out her back porch and into the alley as if one calling home the hogs. “Johnny! Johnny! You get home for supper! John—nyyy! You spend all day in that godforsaken tree that you’re gonna grow branches! Johnny, get home now!”

Up in his friend’s tree house, Johnny slammed his card down from his good hand that he was planning to win from. “****! She always does that to me”, he complained. “Just when I’m right in the middle of—“

Zack laughed. “Your ma’s voice carries down the whole neighborhood—practically to China!”

Everyone laughed. Iris’s daughter, Violet, said to her mom. “Grandma and Dad always butted heads.” She loved when her mom told stories of her childhood, especially when it was amusing.  

Iris’s good friend and neighbor, Bree, asked Iris, “I bet you never thought in a million years that she’d eventually be your mother-in-law”

“No, I sure didn’t”, Iris answered. “I am just glad that she liked me!”

Everyone laughed. Telling that small tale took her back to 1961 when her and her twin brother Isaac—known as Zack to most everyone—would hang out together with his best friend, Johnny Lindstrom. Because Iris was like one of the boys, she fit perfectly in the mix. Zach and she were fifteen and were referred to in good humor by their father as “double trouble”. It was that summer that they lost their dear dad, Ray Collier, and memories of him became as precious as gold. If it wasn’t for her brother and his friend, Iris be lost. Hanging out all day—from dawn til dusk—with Zack and Johnny was her saving grace.  Her mother was glad to have them out of her hair, not enforcing their chores very much.

“I was a tomboy to the fullest”, Iris told everyone. “I had long, beautiful blonde hair that I put back in a pony tail, and the cutest bangs, but I didn’t want to be seen as girly. I wore rolled up jeans and boat shoes with bobby socks, tied the bottom of my boyish shirt in a knot—but I guess I could still get the boys to whistle at me. I think it was my blonde hair that did it.”

“Oh, Mom”, Violet said, “You were beautiful and you know it! Such a gorgeous face!” She’d seen plenty of pictures of her mother when she was younger. Both Iris and Zack were tall and blonde. Zack’s hair could almost turn white in the summertime.

“Were beautiful?” Iris asked, giving Violet a concerned look, her hands on her hips in a playful display of alarm at her daughter’s use of the past tense. She may have been an older woman now, but she didn’t think she has aged too badly.

“Are beautiful”, Violet corrected herself. She leaned over and kissed her mom on the cheek. Iris was nearly seventy, and she aged pretty gracefully, and she was content with herself.  

They all sat in the living room sipping wine or tea and eating finger food. It was a celebration, after all—or just an excuse to get together and have a ladies night out. Not only had Iris had invited her daughter and friend, she had her sister-in-law—Zach’s wife, Franci—and her daughter-in-law, Rowan, married to her youngest son, Adam.

“Weren’t you going to marry someone else?” Bree asked Iris.

“Yes”, Iris responded. “We all wouldn’t be sitting here right now if I did. My life would have been very different.”

“A guy named Frank”, Violet stated. “I used to joke that he was almost my dad.”

Iris said to Violet, “Ha…ha. You know it took both your father and I to make you you. Everyone laughed at how cute that this mother-daughter duo talked. Iris went on, “I actually went on a couple of dates with your dad when I was seventeen. I was starting to get used skirts and dresses and went out of my way to look really nice for guys, but it was just high school stuff. After I graduated, I met a guy named Frank Hautmann, and we were engaged within several months.”

“What happened to him?” Rowan asked.

Iris sipped her tea and seemed a bit melancholy. “We did love each other, but it just didn’t work out. I know he eventually married and moved out of state. I ran into John about two or three years later, and everything just clicked. His family moved several miles away once we all graduated, so being best friends with Zack kind of faded away for him. But once I saw him again, we were really into each other. We took off in our dating as if no time ever lapsed. Soon we were married, and that was that.” There was an expression of “aww” going around the room in unison.  

Bree stood up and raised her wine glass. She announced, “Here’s to true love!” Everyone lifted their glass or cup in response.

Franci stood up next to have her own toast. She said, “Here’s to my husband and father of my three, handsome sons being declared officially cancer free, to Violet’s little bun in the oven soon to be born and also to my *****-in-law, Iris, for finally finding that pink pearl necklace that she thought was hopelessly gone forever! Cheers!”

“Cheers” everyone echoed and sipped on their wine or tea. “That’s some toast and makes this get together even more meaningful”, Iris complemented Franci.

Almost eight months pregnant, Violet restricted her drinking to tea. Her mother was so thrilled that she found out Violet was having a girl. It was equally wonderful that Iris’s beloved brother had recovered from his prostrate cancer, for throat cancer had taken their father’s life when they were young. So really finding the necklace that her mother gave her many years ago—that was misplaced while moving seven years ago—was just the icing on the cake to all the other news.    

Iris said, “My brother being in good health and my daughter having her baby girl is music to my ears. It trumps finding that necklace that I never thought I’d ever see again—even though it was the most precious gift my mother ever gave me.”  

At age thirty-five, Violet had suffered two miscarriages, so having a full-term baby in her womb was such a relief. It would be the first child to her and her husband, Paul, and the first granddaughter to her parents. Iris had three children altogether. Ray was named after her father, and then there was Adam and Violet. Only Adam and Rowan had any children—two sons, Adam Jr. and Jimmy. Ray and his wife, Lorene, lived abroad in London because of his job, and they had never wanted any children.  

“What name have you decided on?” Rowan asked Violet.

All eyes were on Violet who had quite a full belly. “Paul and I have agreed on a few names, but we still aren’t sure.” She turned to her mom and said, “Sorry, Mom, we won’t be keeping up the tradition.”

Iris was puzzled. “What tradition?” she asked.

Violet smiled. “I know it’s not really a tradition”, she admitted, “but didn’t you realize that your mother, you and I all have flower names?”

Everyone laughed at that observation. “That’s hysterical!” Bree noted. “Flower names?”

“That’s news to me” Iris said, not getting it.

“Me, too”, Franci agreed.

“Okay”, Violet explained to her mother “Grandma was Aster, you are Iris and I am Violet. Get my drift?”

The others started laughing, but Iris never even thought of this connection. She responded, “Well, my dad’s nickname out of Aster for my mom was Star.  I never thought of her name as something flowery but more heavenly…I guess. And I never thought of Iris as the flower—more like the colored part of the eye comes to mind. And Violet was my favorite name for a girl and also my favorite color—purple—but you can’t really name your daughter, Purple.”

The others laughed again. Everyone began to get more to eat, mingling by the food.  The gathering lasted for almost two hours, and eventually lost its momentum. Meanwhile, everyone took turns passing around the strand of beautiful, light pink pearls that Iris displayed so proudly in its rediscovery. It was a wedding gift from her mother in 1971, and Iris was painstakingly careful with it, swearing she’d never lose it again. She’d make sure of it. She prized it above anything else she owned, for she had no other special possession from her mother. Her sister got all of their mother’s items of jewelry, for Aster always felt it was the oldest girl’s right to it and this other sister gladly agreed.  Aster was never flashy or showy, and didn’t desire much. Her mother’s wedding ring, silver pendant necklace and an antique emerald ring from generations ago in England was all she wanted. Anything else was up for the grabbing by her two younger sisters.  

Iris learned the hard way to be mindful and not careless about her jewelry. An occasional earring would fall off and be lost, but any other woman could say the same thing. There was only one other incident that happened when she was a teenager that she never shared with anyone other than Zack. If she would confide in anyone, it would be him. Not even her husband knew, and she wasn’t going to tell anyone now. It was too embarrassing to share in the group, especially after tale of the pink pearl necklace that went missing.  

Bree told her, “Keep that in a safe or a safety deposit box—somewhere you know it won’t form legs and walk away.”

“Oh, ha, ha”, Iris remarked, flatly. “I don’t know how it ended up boxed up in the attic with my wedding dress. I sewed that dress myself, by the way. I guess too many hands were involved packing up things, and I am sure I did not put it in that box. Tore this house apart while it was stuck in the attic. Tore that apart, too.”
  
“And yet you didn’t find it until now”, Rowan stated. “It is as if it was hiding on you”.

“Well, I wasn’t even really looking for it when I found it, Iris said. “I was just trying to gather things for my garage sale, and thought of storing my old dress back in the closet. Luck was on my side. It’s odd that I didn’t find it earlier… but it sure did a good job of hiding on me.”

“Like it had a mind of its own”, Franci said, winking, “and didn’t want to be found.”

“Yeah”, Iris agreed. “It was just pure torture for me thinking I may never lay eyes on it ever again. All I had were a few pictures of me wearing it. I was convinced it was gone. ”

After a while, Iris’s friend, sister-in-law and daughter-in-law left one by one, but Violet remained with her mom.  They went in her bedroom to put the necklace back in its original case and in a dresser drawer —or at least that is what Violet had thought.

Iris placed the necklace into the case and handed it to her daughter. She told her, “I’m sure you’ll take good care of it.”

Violet’s jaw dropped as she sat on her parent’s king-sized bed. “Oh, Mom—no!” she exclaimed. “You can’t do that! You just found it, so why? Grandma gave it to you!”

Iris sat down beside her daughter. “I can give it to you, and I just did”, she insisted. “Anyway, it is a tradition to pass down jewelry from a mother to her firstborn daughter. And since you’re my only one, it goes to you. Someday, it can go to your daughter.”

Violet had tears in her eyes. She opened the box and smoothed her fingers over the pearls.
“Mom, you won’t lose it again. I am sure you won’t!”

“Because I’m giving it to you, dear. I know I can see it again so don’t look so guilty!” Violet gave her mom a huge hug, her growing belly pressing against her. The deed was done, for Violet knew that she couldn’t talk her mother out of things once her mind was set.

Iris shared with her, “You know that when I was born—Uncle Zack, too—my parents thought they were done with having children. My sister and brother were about the same level to each other as me and Zack were. It was like two, different families.”

Iris’s sister, Miriam, known to everyone as Mimi, was fifteen years older than the twins, and Ray Jr. was almost thirteen years older. Being nearly grown, Mimi and Ray were out on their own in a few years after the twins were born. Mimi married at nineteen and had three sons and two daughters, very much content in her role as a homemaker. Ray went into the army and remained a bachelor for the rest of his life.

“I never knew I was any different from Mimi or Ray until I overheard my Aunt Gerty talking to my mother”, she told Violet. “I mean I knew they were much older, but that was normal to me.”

“What did she say?” Violet had wondered.

“Well”, Iris explained, “I was going into the kitchen when I stopped to listen to something I had a feeling that I shouldn’t be hearing.”

Her mother was washing dishes, and Aunt Gerty was drying them with a towel and putting them away. Gerty said in her judgmental tone, “You’ve ended up just like Mother. You entered your forties and got stuck with more children to care for. How you got yourself in this mess…well…nothing you can do about it now. Those children are going to wear you down!”

Gerty was two years younger than Aster, and considered the family old maid, never walking down the aisle, herself.  She prided having her own freedom, unrestricted from a husband’s demands or the constant needs of crying or whiny children.

Aster replied to her sister, with defensive sternness, “Yes, I’ve made my bed and I’m lying in it! Do you have to be so high and mighty about it?”

“I couldn’t even move”, Iris told Violet. “I was frozen in my tracks. Probably was about eight or nine—no older than ten. I heard it loud and clear. For the first time in my life, I felt unwanted. It just never occurred to me before that my mother ever felt this way. Now I heard her admit to it. She didn’t say to my aunt that she was dead wrong.”

Iris’s mother came from a big family—the third of eight children and the oldest daughter—so she saw her mother having to bring up children well into her forties and older, and it wasn’t very appealing. Her mother never acted burdened by it, but Aster probably viewed her mother as stuck.

“That’s terrible. I don’t have to ask if that hurt.  I can see how hurt you are just in telling me”, Violet told her with sadness and compassion. “I don’t remember Aunt Gerty. I barely remember Grandma. She wasn’t ever mean to me, but she seemed like a very strict, no-nonsense woman.”  

“Oh, she was, Iris admitted. “I don’t even know how her and my father ever connected—complete opposites. Unless she changed from a young, happy lady to hard, bitter one. I don’t know. You would have loved your grandfather, though, Violet. He liked to crack jokes and was fun to be around. My mother was so stern that she never knew how to tell a joke or a funny story. Dutiful—that’s how I’d describe her. She was dutiful in her role—she did her job right—but I began to realize that she wasn’t affectionate. Except for your Aunt Mimi—their bond was there and wished I had it. Mimi was more ladylike and more like a mother’s shadow. Their personalities suited each other, I suppose.”  

Iris pulled out an old photo album out of a drawer. There was a black and white, head and shoulders portrait of her mother in her most typical look in Iris’s childhood. She had a short, stiff 1950s style bob of silvery gray hair and wore cat eye glasses. Not a hint of a smile was upon her lips—like she never knew how.

“Do you really think Grandma resented you and Uncle Zack?” Violet asked.

Iris responded, “Well, I’m sure my mother preferred having one child of each and didn’t wake up one day and say, ‘I’d like to have twins now’. I mean, she had a perfect set and my mom liked perfection. That’s all it was going to be—at least she thought. Nobody waits over a dozen years to have more. If my mother really resented getting pregnant again, now she had to deal with two screaming babies instead of one.  Must have come as quite a shock and she was about to turn forty.”

“It’s a shame, but woman have children past that age”, Violet pointed out.

“Sure, and some wait to start families until they have done some of the things they always wanted to do. But if I was to ask my mother if she wanted children that time in her life—which I never dared to—I think she’d have wanted to say, ‘not at all.’”

“It’s a shame”, Violet repeated. “Grandma should never have treated you two any differently.” Iris wasn’t trying to knock her mother, but Violet felt the need to be very protective for her against this grandmother that she barely remembered. Aster has been dead since Violet was six-years-old, and she had a foggy memory of her in her coffin, cold to the touch and very matriarchal in her navy blue dress.

Iris admitted, “I knew Mimi was her favorite, and I was my father’s favorite because I was the youngest girl. Zack and I we
ottaross Aug 2013
Once it was garbage, refuse, trash.
A jumble of foul-smelling detritus hauled to the curb
And removed by sinewy men
Contributing a harder day's work
Than anyone else in the city.

Our energy now removes its entropy.
Sorted and classified into coloured bins,
We add order to our rejected matter.

Specialized trucks arrive to collect
The date-synchronized bins
Emptying them into functionally compatible mechanisms.

Most desolate is the black box of paper and cardboard.
Brochures and flyers, old magazines and letters.
Annual reports and cereal boxes.
Once these were enameled with crafted sentences,
Painstakingly typed, edited and debated,
On the monitors of copywriters.

Now they are just millions of words printed on flattened fibre substrates,
Jumbled into the bruised and scarred black box,
Entering into the recycling stream.

The nouns and adjectives,
Prepositions and gerunds,
All jumble together.

Fragments of precisely-crafted sentences and paragraphs
Are gradually broken, shredded and pulped.
Incomplete thoughts, broken phrases
Like those of a rejected stranger
In an lonely, unknown country.
Then words without context.
Then just disparate letters
Are all that remain.
Their  M  ea  N inG
G  r a Du all y
is re mov
e d
.
Nigel Morgan Apr 2013
As he walked through the maze of streets from the tube station he wondered just how long it had been since he had last visited this tall red-bricked house. For so many years it had been for him a pied à terre. Those years when the care of infant children dominated his days, when coming up to London for 48 hours seemed such a relief, an escape from the daily round that small people demand. Since his first visits twenty years ago the area bristled with new enterprise. An abandoned Victorian hospital had been turned into expensive apartments; small enterprising businesses had taken over what had been residential property of the pre-war years. Looking up he was conscious of imaginative conversions of roof and loft spaces. What had seemed a wide-ranging community of ages and incomes appeared to have disappeared. Only the Middle Eastern corner shops and restaurants gave back to the area something of its former character: a place where people worked and lived.

It was a tall thin house on four floors. Two rooms at most of each floor, but of a good-size. The ground floor was her London workshop, but as always the blinds were down. In fact, he realised, he’d never been invited into her working space. Over the years she’d come to the door a few times, but like many artists and craftspeople he knew, she fiercely guarded her working space. The door to her studio was never left open as he passed through the hallway to climb the three flights of stairs to her husband’s domain. There was never a chance of the barest peek inside.

Today, she was in New York, and from outside the front door he could hear her husband descend from his fourth floor eyrie. The door was flung open and they greeted each other with the fervour of a long absence of friends. It had been a long time, really too long. Their lives had changed inexplicably. One, living almost permanently in that Italian marvel of waterways and sea-reflected light, the other, still in the drab West Yorkshire city from where their first acquaintance had begun from an email correspondence.

They had far too much to say to one another - on a hundred subjects. Of course the current project dominated, but as coffee (and a bowl of figs and mandarin oranges) was arranged, and they had moved almost immediately he arrived in the attic studio to the minimalist kitchen two floors below, questions were thrown out about partners and children, his activities, and sadly, his recent illness (the stairs had seemed much steeper than he remembered and he was a little breathless when he reached the top). As a guest he answered with a brevity that surprised him. Usually he found such questions needed roundabout answers to feel satisfactory - but he was learning to answer more directly, and being brief, suddenly thought of her and her always-direct questions. She wanted to know something, get something straight, so she asked  - straight - with no ‘going about things’ first. He wanted to get on with the business at hand, the business that preoccupied him, almost to the exclusion of everything else, for the last two days.

When they were settled in what was J’s working space ten years ago now he was immediately conscious that although the custom-made furniture had remained the Yamaha MIDI grand piano and the rack of samplers were elsewhere, along with most of the scores and books. The vast collection of CDs was still there, and so too the pictures and photographs. But there was one painting that was new to this attic room, a Cézanne. He was taken aback for a moment because it looked so like the real thing he’d seen in a museum just weeks before. He thought of the film Notting Hill when William Thacker questions the provenance of the Chagall ‘violin-playing goat’. The size of this Cézanne seemed accurate and it was placed in a similar rather ornate frame to what he knew had framed the museum original. It was placed on right-hand wall as he had entered the room, but some way from the pair of windows that ran almost the length of this studio. The view across the rooftops took in the Tower of London, a mile or so distant. If he turned the office chair in which he was sitting just slightly he could see it easily whilst still paying attention to J. The painting’s play of colours and composition compelled him to stare, as if he had never seen the painting before. But he had, and he remembered that his first sight of it had marked his memory.

He had been alone. He had arrived at the gallery just 15 minutes before it was due to close for the day.  He’d been told about this wonderful must-see octagonal room where around the walls you could view a particularly fine and comprehensive collection of Impressionist paintings. All the great artists were represented. One of Van Gogh’s many Olive Trees, two studies of domestic interiors by Vuillard, some dancing Degas, two magnificent Gaugins, a Seurat field of flowers, a Singer-Sergeant portrait, two Monets - one of a pair of haystacks in a blaze of high-summer light. He had been able to stay in that room just 10 minutes before he was politely asked to leave by an overweight attendant, but afterwards it was as if he knew the contents intimately. But of all these treasures it was Les Grands Arbres by Cézanne that had captured his imagination. He was to find it later and inevitably on the Internet and had it printed and pinned to his notice board. He consulted his own book of Cézanne’s letters and discovered it was a late work and one of several of the same scene. This version, it was said, was unfinished. He disagreed. Those unpainted patches he’d interpreted as pools of dappled light, and no expert was going to convince him otherwise! And here it was again. In an attic studio J. only frequented occasionally when necessity brought him to London.

When the coffee and fruit had been consumed it was time to eat more substantially, for he knew they would work late into the night, despite a whole day tomorrow to be given over to their discussions. J. was full of nervous energy and during the walk to a nearby Iraqi restaurant didn’t waver in his flow of conversation about the project. It was as though he knew he must eat, but no longer had the patience to take the kind of necessary break having a meal offered. His guest, his old friend, his now-being-consulted expert and former associate, was beginning to reel from the overload of ‘difficulties’ that were being put before him. In fact, he was already close to suggesting that it would be in J’s interest if, when they returned to the attic studio, they agreed to draw up an agenda for tomorrow so there could be some semblance of order to their discussions. He found himself wishing for her presence at the meal, her calm lovely smile he knew would charm J. out of his focused self and lighten the rush and tension that infused their current dialogue. But she was elsewhere, at home with her children and her own and many preoccupations, though it was easy to imagine how much, at least for a little while, she might enjoy meeting someone new, someone she’d heard much about, someone really rather exotic and (it must be said) commanding and handsome. He would probably charm her as much as he knew she would charm J.

J. was all and more beyond his guest’s thought-description. He had an intensity and a confidence that came from being in company with intense, confident and, it had to be said, very wealthy individuals. His origins, his beginnings his guest and old friend could only guess at, because they’d never discussed it. The time was probably past for such questions. But his guest had his own ideas, he surmised from a chanced remark that his roots were not amongst the affluent. He had been a free-jazz musician from Poland who’d made waves in the German jazz scene and married the daughter of an arts journalist who happened to be the wife of the CEO of a seriously significant media empire. This happy association enabled him to get off the road and devote himself to educating himself as a composer of avant-garde art music - which he desired and which he had achieved. His guest remembered J’s passion for the music of Luigi Nono (curiously, a former resident of the city in which J. now lived) and Helmut Lachenmann, then hardly known in the UK. J. was already composing, and with an infinite slowness and care that his guest marvelled at. He was painstakingly creating intricate and timbrally experimental string quartets as well as devising music for theatre and experimental film. But over the past fifteen years J. had become increasingly more obsessed with devising software from which his musical ideas might emanate. And it had been to his guest that, all that time ago, J. had turned to find a generous guide into this world of algorithms and complex mathematics, a composer himself who had already been seduced by the promise of new musical fields of possibility that desktop computer technology offered.

In so many ways, when it came to the hard edge of devising solutions to the digital generation of music, J. was now leagues ahead of his former tutor, whose skills in this area were once in the ascendant but had declined in inverse proportion to J’s, as he wished to spend more time composing and less time investigating the means through which he might compose. So the guest was acting now as a kind of Devil’s Advocate, able to ask those awkward disarming questions creative people don’t wish to hear too loudly and too often.

And so it turned out during the next few hours as J. got out some expensive cigars and brandy, which his guest, inhabiting a different body seemingly, now declined in favour of bottled water and dry biscuits. His guest, who had been up since 5.0am, finally suggested that, if he was to be any use on the morrow, bed was necessary. But when he got in amongst the Egyptian cotton sheets and the goose down duvet, sleep was impossible. He tried thinking of her, their last walk together by the sea, breakfast à deux before he left, other things that seemed beautiful and tender by turn . . . But it was no good. He wouldn’t sleep.

The house could have been as silent as the excellent double-glazing allowed. Only the windows of the attic studio next door to his bedroom were open to the night, to clear the room of the smoke of several cigars. He was conscious of that continuous flow of traffic and machine noise that he knew would only subside for a brief hour or so around 4.0am. So he went into the studio and pulled up a chair in front of the painting by Cézanne, in front of this painting of a woodland scene. There were two intertwining arboreal forms, trees of course, but their trunks and branches appeared to suggest the kind of cubist shapes he recognized from Braque. These two forms pulled the viewer towards a single slim and more distant tree backlit by sunlight of a late afternoon. There was a suggestion, in the further distance, of the shapes of the hills and mountains that had so preoccupied the artist. But in the foreground, there on the floor of this woodland glade, were all the colours of autumn set against the still greens of summer. It seemed wholly wrong, yet wholly right. It was as comforting and restful a painting as he could ever remember viewing. Even if he shut his eyes he could wander about the picture in sheer delight. And now he focused on the play of brush strokes of this painting in oils, the way the edge and border of one colour touched against another. Surprisingly, imagined sounds of this woodland scene entered his reverie - a late afternoon in a late summer not yet autumn. He was Olivier Messiaen en vacances with his perpetual notebook recording the magical birdsong in this luminous place. Here, even in this reproduction, lay the joy of entering into a painting. Jeanette Winterson’s plea to look at length at paintings, and then look again passed through his thoughts. How right that seemed. How very difficult to achieve. But that night he sat comfortably in J’s attic and let Cézanne deliver the artist’s promise of a world beyond nature, a world that is not about constant change and tension, but rests in a stillness all its own.
I never did know when to shut my mouth,
So I guess it’s no shock to feel it smarting against your back handed swing,
But to be honest, I bet it hurt you more, does it sting?
Can you feel it in your bones ?
Copper taste against my tongue,
I’m choking on my own blood,
Does my manic laugh horrify you?
This Cheshire smile plastered across my face,
Do my cheekbones slice your knuckles?

That’s going to leave a bruise,
Not that you care,
Twisted my head back by my hair,
My body is peppered in greens, purples, blues,
But with the way you turn your head down you’d think I was the one abusing you,
When you wrap your meaty fingers around my windpipe does it give you pleasure?
What goes through your mind while your holding my life in your hands,
How many of my ribs have you cracked upon your feet,
Only to lick my thighs later like a treat,
One of these days it’ll be my fingers around your neck,
And I won’t stop squeezing till your dead,
Until then use my body to your hearts content,
This dangerous dance,
Like egg shells beneath my soles,
I’m waiting for you to slip on the blood you painstakingly draw from me blow by blow,
And in your own sick way you actually love me,
Convinced the only way to save me is to hurt me,
But I’m not that sick or twisted to believe the words you croke out,
One day very soon it’ll be you who shouts,
Ya I never did know when to shut my mouth,
So I guess it’s no shock to feel it smarting against your back handed swing.
If anyone was triggered by the nature of the poem , please accept my apology. Domestic abuse is very serious  and not something I take lightly.  

1 (888) 579-2888

Above is a Canadian victim services hotline.

If your in a bad situation please seek help.
of this wilting wall the colour drub
souring sunbeams,of a foetal fragrance
to rickety unclosed blinds inslants
peregrinate,a cigar-stub
disintegrates,above,underdrawers club
the faintly sweating air with pinkness,
one pale dog behind a slopcaked shrub
painstakingly utters a slippery mess,
a star sleepily,feebly,scratches the sore
of morning.  But i am interested more
intricately in the delicate scorn
with which in a putrid window every day
almost leans a lady whose still-born
smile involves the comedy of decay,
zebra Oct 2017
Here is a primer on the history of poetry

Features of Modernism

To varying extents, writing of the Modernist period exhibits these features:

1. experimentation

belief that previous writing was stereotyped and inadequate
ceaseless technical innovation, sometimes for its own sake
originality: deviation from the norm, or from usual reader expectations
ruthless rejection of the past, even iconoclasm

2. anti-realism

sacralisation of art, which must represent itself, not something beyond preference for allusion (often private) rather than description
world seen through the artist's inner feelings and mental states
themes and vantage points chosen to question the conventional view
use of myth and unconscious forces rather than motivations of conventional plot

3. individualism

promotion of the artist's viewpoint, at the expense of the communal
cultivation of an individual consciousness, which alone is the final arbiter
estrangement from religion, nature, science, economy or social mechanisms
maintenance of a wary intellectual independence
artists and not society should judge the arts: extreme self-consciousness
search for the primary image, devoid of comment: stream of consciousness
exclusiveness, an aristocracy of the avant-garde

4. intellectualism

writing more cerebral than emotional
work is tentative, analytical and fragmentary, more posing questions more than answering them
cool observation: viewpoints and characters detached and depersonalized
open-ended work, not finished, nor aiming at formal perfection
involuted: the subject is often act of writing itself and not the ostensible referent

............
Expressionism

Expressionism was a phase of twentieth-century writing that rejected naturalism and romanticism to express important inner truths. The style was generally declamatory or even apocalyptic, endeavoring to awaken the fears and aspirations that belong to all men, and which European civilization had rendered effete or inauthentic. The movement drew on Rimbaud and Nietzsche, and was best represented by German poetry of the 1910-20 period. Benn, Becher, Heym, Lasker-Schüler, Stadler, Stramm, Schnack and Werfel are its characteristic proponents, {1} though Trakl is the best known to English readers. {2} {3}

Like most movements, there was little of a manifesto, or consensus of beliefs and programmes. Many German poets were distrustful of contemporary society — particularly its commercial and capitalist attitudes — though others again saw technology as the escape from a perceived "crisis in the old order". Expressionism was very heterogeneous, touching base with Imagism, Vorticism, Futurism, Dadaism and early Surrealism, many of which crop up in English, French, Russian and Italian poetry of the period. Political attitudes tended to the revolutionary, and technique was overtly experimental. Nonetheless, for all the images of death and destruction, sometimes mixed with messianic utopianism, there was also a tone of resignation, a sadness of "the evening lands" as Spengler called them.

Expressionism also applies to painting, and here the characteristics are more illuminating. The label refers to painting that uses visual gestures to transmit emotions and emotionally charged messages. In the expressive work of Michelangelo and El Greco, for example, the content remains of first importance, but content is overshadowed by technique in such later artists as van Gogh, Ensor and Munch. By the mid twentieth-century even this attenuated content had been replaced by abstract painterly qualities — by the sheer scale and dimensions of the work, by colour and shape, by the verve of the brushwork and other effects.

Expressionism often coincided with rapid social change. Germany, after suffering the horrors of the First World War, and ineffectual governments afterwards, fragmented into violently opposed political movements, each with their antagonistic coteries and milieu. The painting of these groups was very variable, but often showed a mixture of aggression and naivety. Understandably unpopular with the establishment  — denounced as degenerate by the Nazis — the style also met with mixed reactions from the picture-buying public. It seemed to question what the middle classes stood for: convention, decency, professional expertise. A great sobbing child had been let loose in the artist's studio, and the results seemed elementally challenging. Perhaps German painting was returning to its Nordic roots, to small communities, apocalyptic visions, monotone starkness and anguished introspection.

What could poetry achieve in its turn? Could it use some equivalent to visual gestures, i.e. concentrate on aspects of the craft of poetry, and to the exclusion of content? Poetry can never be wholly abstract, a pure poetry bereft of content. But clearly there would be a rejection of naturalism. To represent anything faithfully requires considerable skill, and such skill was what the Expressionists were determined to avoid. That would call on traditions that were not Nordic, and that were not sufficiently opposed to bourgeois values for the writer's individuality to escape subversion. Raw power had to tap something deeper and more universal.

Hence the turn inward to private torments. Poets became the judges of poetry, since only they knew the value of originating emotions. Intensity was essential.  Artists had to believe passionately in their responses, and find ways of purifying and deepening those responses — through working practices, lifestyles, and philosophies. Freud was becoming popular, and his investigations into dreams, hallucinations and paranoia offered a rich field of exploration. Artists would have to glory in their isolation, moreover, and turn their anger and frustration at being overlooked into a belief in their own genius. Finally, there would be a need to pull down and start afresh, even though that contributed to a gradual breakdown in the social fabric and the apocalypse of the Second World War.

Expressionism is still with us. Commerce has invaded bohemia, and created an elaborate body of theory to justify, support and overtake what might otherwise appear infantile and irrational. And if traditional art cannot be pure emotional expression, then a new art would have to be forged. Such poetry would not be an intoxication of life (Nietzsche's phrase) and still less its sanctification.  Great strains on the creative process were inevitable, moreover, as they were in Georg Trakl's case, who committed suicide shortly after writing the haunting and beautiful piece given below

................
SYMBOLIST POETS
symbolism in poetry

Symbolism in literature was a complex movement that deliberately extended the evocative power of words to express the feelings, sensations and states of mind that lie beyond everyday awareness. The open-ended symbols created by Charles Baudelaire (1821-67) brought the invisible into being through the visible, and linked the invisible through other sensory perceptions, notably smell and sound. Stéphane Mallarmé (1842-98), the high priest of the French movement, theorized that symbols were of two types. One was created by the projection of inner feelings onto the world outside. The other existed as nascent words that slowly permeated the consciousness and expressed a state of mind initially unknown to their originator.

None of this came about without cultivation, and indeed dedication. Poets focused on the inner life. They explored strange cults and countries. They wrote in allusive, enigmatic, musical and ambiguous styles. Rimbaud deranged his senses and declared "Je est un autre". Von Hofmannstahl created his own language. Valéry retired from the world as a private secretary, before returning to a mastery of traditional French verse. Rilke renounced wife and human society to be attentive to the message when it came.

Not all were great theoreticians or technicians, but the two interests tended to go together, in Mallarmé most of all. He painstakingly developed his art of suggestion, what he called his "fictions". Rare words were introduced, syntactical intricacies, private associations and baffling images. Metonymy replaced metaphor as symbol, and was in turn replaced by single words which opened in imagination to multiple levels of signification. Time was suspended, and the usual supports of plot and narrative removed. Even the implied poet faded away, and there were then only objects, enigmatically introduced but somehow made right and necessary by verse skill. Music indeed was the condition to which poetry aspired, and Verlaine, Jimenez and Valéry were among many who concentrated efforts to that end.

So appeared a dichotomy between the inner and outer lives. In actuality, poets led humdrum existences, but what they described was rich and often illicit: the festering beauties of courtesans and dance-hall entertainers; far away countries and their native peoples; a world-weariness that came with drugs, isolation, alcohol and bought ***. Much was mixed up in this movement — decadence, aestheticism, romanticism, and the occult — but its isms had a rational purpose, which is still pertinent. In what way are these poets different from our own sixties generation? Or from the young today: clubbing, experimenting with relationships and drugs, backpacking to distant parts? And was the mixing of sensory perceptions so very novel or irrational? Synaesthesia was used by the Greek poets, and indeed has a properly documented basis in brain physiology.

What of the intellectual bases, which are not commonly presented as matters that should engage the contemporary mind, still less the writing poet? Symbolism was built on nebulous and somewhat dubious notions: it inspired beautiful and historically important work: it is now dead: that might be the blunt summary. But Symbolist poetry was not empty of content, indeed expressed matters of great interest to continental philosophers, then and now. The contents of consciousness were the concern of Edmund Husserl (1859-1938), and he developed a terminology later employed by Heidegger (1889-1976), the Existentialists and hermeneutics. Current theories on metaphor and brain functioning extend these concepts, and offer a rapprochement between impersonal science and irrational literary theory.

So why has the Symbolism legacy dwindled into its current narrow concepts? Denied influence in the everyday world, poets turned inward, to private thoughts, associations and the unconscious. Like good Marxist intellectuals they policed the area they arrogated to themselves, and sought to correct and purify the language that would evoke its powers. Syntax was rearranged by Mallarmé. Rhythm, rhyme and stanza patterning were loosened or rejected. Words were purged of past associations (Modernism), of non-visual associations (Imagism), of histories of usage (Futurism), of social restraint (Dadaism) and of practical purpose (Surrealism). By a sort of belated Romanticism, poetry was returned to the exploration of the inner lands of the irrational. Even Postmodernism, with its bric-a-brac of received media images and current vulgarisms, ensures that gaps are left for the emerging unconscious to engage our interest

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

.
IMAGIST POETRY
imagist poetry

Even by twentieth-century standards, Imagism was soon over. In 1912 Ezra Pound published the Complete Poetical Works of its founder, T.E. Hulme (five short poems) and by 1917 the movement, then overseen by Amy Lowell, had run its course. {1} {2} {3} {4} {5} The output in all amounted to a few score poems, and none of these captured the public's heart. Why the importance?

First there are the personalities involved — notably Ezra Pound, James Joyce, William Carlos Williams {6} {7} {8} {9} — who became famous later. If ever the (continuing) importance to poets of networking, of being involved in movements from their inception, is attested, it is in these early days of post-Victorian revolt.

Then there are the manifestos of the movement, which became the cornerstones of Modernism, responsible for a much taught in universities until recently, and for the difficulties poets still find themselves in. The Imagists stressed clarity, exactness and concreteness of detail. Their aims, briefly set out, were that:

1. Content should be presented directly, through specific images where possible.
2. Every word should be functional, with nothing included that was not essential to the effect intended.
3. Rhythm should be composed by the musical phrase rather than the metronome.

Also understood — if not spelled out, or perhaps fully recognized at the time — was the hope that poems could intensify a sense of objective reality through the immediacy of images.

Imagism itself gave rise to fairly negligible lines like:

You crash over the trees,
You crack the live branch…  (Storm by H.D.)

Nonetheless, the reliance on images provided poets with these types of freedom:

1. Poems could dispense with classical rhetoric, emotion being generated much more directly through what Eliot called an objective correlate: "The only way of expressing emotion in the form of art is by finding an 'objective correlative'; in other words, a set of objects, a situation, a chain of events which shall be the formula of that particular emotion; such that when the external facts, which must terminate in sensory experience, are given, the emotion is immediately evoked." {10}

2. By being shorn of context or supporting argument, images could appear with fresh interest and power.

3. Thoughts could be treated as images, i.e. as non-discursive elements that added emotional colouring without issues of truth or relevance intruding too mu
...............
PROSE BASED POETRY
prose based poetry

When free verse lacks rhythmic patterning, appearing as a lineated prose stripped of unnecessary ornament and rhetoric, it becomes the staple of much contemporary work. The focus is on what the words are being used to say, and their authenticity. The language is not heightened, and the poem differs from prose only by being more self-aware, innovative and/or cogent in its exposition.

Nonetheless, what looks normal at first becomes challenging on closer reading — thwarting expectations, and turning back on itself to make us think more deeply about the seemingly innocuous words used. And from there we are compelled to look at the world with sharper eyes, unprotected by commonplace phrases or easy assumptions. Often an awkward and fighting poetry, therefore, not indulging in ceremony or outmoded traditions.
What is Prose?

If we say that contemporary free verse is often built from what was once regarded as mere prose, then we shall have to distinguish prose from poetry, which is not so easy now. Prose was once the lesser vehicle, the medium of everyday thought and conversation, what we used to express facts, opinions, humour, arguments, feelings and the like. And while the better writers developed individual styles, and styles varied according to their purpose and social occasion, prose of some sort could be written by anyone. Beauty was not a requirement, and prose articles could be rephrased without great loss in meaning or effectiveness.

Poetry, though, had grander aims. William Lyon Phelps on Thomas Hardy's work: {1}

"The greatest poetry always transports us, and although I read and reread the Wessex poet with never-lagging attention — I find even the drawings in "Wessex Poems" so fascinating that I wish he had illustrated all his books — I am always conscious of the time and the place. I never get the unmistakable spinal chill. He has too thorough a command of his thoughts; they never possess him, and they never soar away with him. Prose may be controlled, but poetry is a possession. Mr. Hardy is too keenly aware of what he is about. In spite of the fact that he has written verse all his life, he seldom writes unwrinkled song. He is, in the last analysis, a master of prose who has learned the technique of verse, and who now chooses to express his thoughts and his observations in rime and rhythm."

.............
OPEN FORMS IN POETRY
open forms in poetry

Poets who write in open forms usually insist on the form growing out of the writing process, i.e. the poems follow what the words and phrase suggest during the composition
Emily Pidduck Mar 2014
Sometimes to survive you need to be painstakingly emotionless
You need to bite your lip to hold the screams
Block it out
just Breathe

But beware the stories.


There's a mother who at 33 became a drunkard
and she had 3 lovers
and she loved none.
And Dad stopped loving
because it hurt too much to love
even his own son.
And the neighbour had to tell Tommy
he wasn't a brother anymore.
And that family
broke
at the core
           -wailing

And this kind of failing
the kind where each who lost
added to the cost
only to push themselves further under: it makes me wonder
How long can I deceive myself?
to pretend that it's all good
Told my mind
Just breathe it out.
and We'll be as We Should


There's a brother
I've been told
Who sold his body for less than gold
and he is RIDICULED
His Father Beats Him
and his darkness deepens
But his 12 year old sister hallucinates:
redemption as his fate
But his story held a choice
it was Him or Her
and his voice pleaded
that he should be the one
so she might have freedom
and they agreed
Now at night, while she's Dreaming
he's Screaming

That boy said to me
that he holds a dream
of a sister still clean
which means to him
That he's worth something still
and the nights can be bared
as long as she never knows
his type of scared
And this has me bawling
and clawing for air.
And my lungs fight for life
just to get there.


There's a father
with a wishful life
with cheerful children
and a gentle wife
And he's a Grandma's Boy
well, that's all he had left
and at her death
he's pitiful, on the ground
gasping for breath
Now he lives in FEAR
of the loneliness returning
that devoured him as a little boy
for years
So now he's running, so afraid of what's coming
that the path back is lost
and he never
recognizes
the cost

and I feel tears when I watch him chatter with his family
because it's always a bonding moment of one on one
but if you look around, there's absolutely none
And I've started to feel lonely
when it's only me
but I remind myself: you can't go down that road
and you won't
if you can just Breathe.


There's a sister
with a child born out of wedlock
and she's felt fury
from her loved ones
Because of this Situation
Even Though
she resisted *******
And she just wants to find some love
so she protects that baby with everything that counts
and every ounce of resistance she has left
And She Will Keep Every Cry Inside
until that child arrives
and starts screeching
and she's shrieking
until that baby's tired eyes fall asleep
and she can enter her own weary zone
but she goes to deep

I'm having trouble processing
this story ending
because I've heard that beginnings are a beautiful thing
but this child won't even have
a mother to sing
to her at night
so How is she supposed to stop screaming?
and with this knowledge
How am I supposed to find meaning?

And I know

I know

I know there's good


And I know that pain can't win
so long as we hold it in


Breathe in
and out
and in
out
in
out

But Sometimes


I can't Breathe.

and that's when I bellow
right before the never-ending screams
I'm not suggesting giving up, but I want recognition for those who feel the burden of every story and weight they hear.
My life is a brilliant and vivid mosaic of failures. If depicted horizontally, it would span countless walls, each with its own tapestry. Intertwined in each image would be a visage of myself in yet another battle of me, metaphorically David, and the vastness of the woven problem, here named Goliath. The only difference however, I don't succeed. My slingshot, as it were, isn't good enough.
     "Almost" is a callous and cold word, however it is the most veril word I know. It shouldn't just be something on my body like a tattoo, but rather etched painstakingly into my hardest bones. Always. Always "Almost" is not a fulfilling way to live.
     My Father once said something along the lines of "The only way I wouldn't be proud of you or that I would be disappointed in you is if you did something or made choices that lead to your unhappiness." With that, I feel as though he couldn't have been proud of me in quite some time, and further, there is no evidence that it will change. I am unhappy all of the time. I am disappointed in myself.
     I am afraid, fearful, of the hatred inside myself at times. I try and use it to my advantage, to prove my "worth", to try and do better at the current task (whatever it may be at the time). But as it usually happens, I get so angry, even vengeful, with no explanation. I sit and think about it, come to nothing, and am scared of what I am becoming.
     I am breathing, organic garbage that, because of sentience, assumes too much of, and from, my existence. I am a ******* paradox. I am realistic but full of wishes, longing for what I know does not exist; I am pessimistic, yet full of hopes, or false hopes rather, that I know fullheartedly are hubris and lost time. Whenever I need logic, emotion takes control. Whenever I look for my heart, my mind conceals its help.
     I believe in absolutely nothing but who I think I am, but I doubt myself to my bitter, black core.
I have achieved nothing with what I have been given (everything) and therefore deserve nothing that I have.
     I Am A Fake. I Am A Lie. I pretend to understand, to know, to help, to listen, but I have no idea what the **** I'm doing, who the **** I am, or why the **** I'm even here as undeserving as I am. With that, what right have I at all to "help" anyone else when I, myself, have no idea where my words will lead them? That itself makes me worse than half of the people that have killed others because at least they know who they are and what they were doing.
     I find it hard to believe that I, personally, was crafted in the image of God because I can't imagine that I resemble (in spirit, mind or matter) anything like the Perfect Being that I love and pray to. I am handcrafted debris, trash, attempting (out of place) to be something more.
     I was once told by someone I truly loved, "How can you love someone if you don't love yourself?" It's pretty easy. You first look at them, think of all the things they do and all the things they represent that lead to them making you happy, and you fall in love with that. it isn't a choice, you just do. I do nothing that makes me happy successfully, in the end, I try and fail consistently whereas someone I love is victorious repeatedly just by being them self. Why wouldn't you love someone for making you happy, yet love yourself in spite of your inability to do so?
     I don't believe anything I've ever encountered or experienced in my, as of yet, short life has prepared me for the utmost feeling of loneliness that creeps like the most dark and shadowy oppression. No cigarette is long enough, no vat of bourbon deep enough to escape that thought. Even in upbeat company that fact lingers, and of it, I am afraid.
     Why must I settle and "stay the course"? Why hold onto a sinking ship? I don't mean in terms of living versus dying, I mean in terms of living in insufferable struggle versus changing the reality. Why is this made to seem so impossible?
     Why am I in constant debt before even being old enough, experienced enough, or brave enough to even make decisions with that debt as a possible outcome?
     Since I was old enough to formulate my own opinions of the world I live in, it's been the epitome and meter of one resounding conclusion: "I will try my best and fail, suffer, but in doing this, I will have no choice but to think one day it will get better, and I can hope in my time of struggle that when that day comes, I Might Be Able To Be Happy.
     I'm in love with someone who is half a country away. She even knows, She might even feel the same, but it is for naught. I justify this by telling myself every "writer" needs a Muse.
     I lack the natural talent required to achieve my dreams in this current world. I was born with a gift I should have kept the receipt with; something I could have traded for something more realistically useful.
     Those closest to me have no idea who I am. They are the only thing that glues my sanity, and I'm fearful if they fully knew what I am, they'd leave.
     I've condensed some of these thoughts and feelings into spoken words to those I trust the most, hoping and praying they might say this is normal, that everyone goes through this, that we are all fighting the good fight. Their deaf ears betray their silent mouths.
     The rhythm in music, the voices in plays, the words to poems, the flow of my pencil, are all I have to escape this solitary confinement. But upon realizing the only things I have to help me feel "normal" are inanimate and incapable of understanding, it only further drives me into the chasm.
     I have become everything I hate. A petulant, assuming, and undeserving child ******* about his life when it's not even fully begun, and worse, has been given everything along the way and pitifully has done nothing with ******* any of it.
     I look at my Father and my Mother, and mouth agape, am stunned at their character, their perseverance. Compared to the two people who made me, I am grovelling ****, with absolutely nothing to complain about.
     I have never made a serious decision in my life unless I fully knew the only outcome before the decision was made. This makes me a coward. Logically it might make sense, but this is real life, you shouldn't do that, and **** logic.
     I always have an excuse, I'm not a real man, I'm afraid to take a fall because it's just another piece of the prosecution's evidence pointing to the guilt I possess in relation to my long record of failures.
     I'm cast outside "normalcy" because I don't believe in society. I'm not afraid to die, death actually intrigues me, a lingering curiosity. I adore the macabre because I believe there is truth of humanity in the darkness that everyone ignores exists. We profit and capitalize on procedures that **** thousands, but because it's not us they target, and usually not until the long run, we pay no mind. I believe that more than half of our so called "society", myself included, are no better in most senses than Dahmer or Panzram. At least they were honest about the monsters they were.
     I'm obsessed with thing that don't matter; theories that wouldn't make a difference in the world if proven true, questing for a Love that I rightly don't deserve and that likely doesn't exist, searching for acceptance of anyone but at the same time and equally, in paradox, caring about none of it, especially myself.
     Most nights instead of praying to God as I intend to do, I find myself wondering if I deserve His forgiveness. I know, on some level or another, if the Holy Father, Himself, came to me at any time during those sleepless nights, I would not have an even close to decent answer arguing for His forgiveness, but rather, a full of tears and chopped up, pathetic plea for it anyway.
     I dream of someone to love romantically just for the sake of being able to love someone for exactly who they are and because doing so makes me happy. It has been so long passed of this being even close to a chance of reality, that the thought of ***, or even intimacy, without that love does not even interest me anymore.
     I'm twenty years old and every job I work wants one-hundred percent of my soul and time. Is this normal? Am I not allowed to be a responsible but stupid kid for a while before I have to settle with the reality of a mundane and mind/body numbing job that takes so much of your day that at night you can only imagine the freedom of sleep rather than having a spare few precious seconds for thinking that dying has the upside of never having to show up to that ******* place again? I have no problem with working at all, in fact, I appreciate anything that has a general task and goal that is monotonous enough to keep my mind focused just enough that anything I've written here, the things that upset me, don't leak in and ruin the day, but realistically, how can I give my soul to cutting lawn? To stocking a ******* shelf? I am part of the worst generation on Earth so far, I have potential to be better than ninety--nine percent of the drooling unfortunate vertebrae we call "society", and this is what I'm supposed to wake up for? If this is what I need to accept and I'm just going crazy, fine, I accept it, but in doing this, you need to accept that if I'm crazy, you're batshit ******* nuts.
     I find myself not ever wanting to wake up. I'm not even close to suicidal, I don't want to die yet, I just can't see a logical point, or an emotional reason for any of this nonsense to continue. Can anyone identify with that? Don't misconstrue and worry yourself with me being honest with myself, I DO wake up. I wash my face, but I look in the mirror afterwards and ask "Why?", and I get the day over with anyway so I can hurry up and get home to get ready to do everything over again exactly the same the next day the exact same way, the only difference being the date on the calender and the minutes of the one life I get slowly building themselves into hours and days that will now be an empty black void of memory in my head that could've been used for something worth remembering. Why? Why settle to sulk and squander in ***** and depression when you haven't even tried to bathe in gold and happiness?
     I hate almost everything. The way things are, have been, will be. I hate the faceless sheep that complain yet attempt nothing to change their circumstances. If there is one thing to look on with pride, it is at least I'm better than that. At least if I failed, by default it means I ******* tried.
     I lack the capacity and the capability to voice these kinds of thoughts. As well-spoken as I am, I choke the hardest when I try to speak about any of them. I have to scribble and usually type them, and further, put them in a format a possible reader might be able to understand. Alas, I have failed at that as well. I put my heart and thoughts into my poetry, but anything resonating from within me that I've pounded into the countless pages I've written is lost in a sea of meter and rule-abiding rhetoric as well as aesthetically and audibly pleasing metaphors and rhyme-schemes rather than just blunt structure. No one reads anything with nothing left to the imagination. And justly so, why would they? Why try to decipher someone's heart if it doesn't also apply to you? Why read an ending if you know you won't like it unless it has "happily ever ******* after"? Why not emulate the thoughts and endure the cramping in the thumb an forefinger if it's not something you already know or something you clicked "like" on to impress the friend with the independent mind that was the one who told you to read it in the first place? I may sound bitter, I am, and hateful, but at least I am not a liar.
     If I had one absolute thing, one pure thought, one controversial heading, one cry to all who have ever asked me and I have failed to explain it better; If I can leave you with one thing; If it were possible for me to speak one line to the empty church at my funeral when I die someday and move on to peace, it would be this:
The Words I Seek With Which I Wish To Express My True Misery Elude Me.
Dena Dec 2014
Brick walls are incredible structures
The builder must realize the need for the wall,
then for many days must painstakingly
place mortar between bricks.
They must build with intention.
If not, it is no longer a wall
it will be left to decay in the rain.
However,
once finished it will stand strong against the weather,
impede prying eyes and thieves,
dissuade creatures and man alike,

The nature of the brick wall is this:
It only takes a single person
willing enough to remove that brick,
to break the mortar and push the brick through.
Their motivation
does not matter
so long as they find the reason for it being built.
Lucas Keith Aug 2012
Flat and Lifeless
These plains so similar
To the untouched canvas.
On and on, stretched and cracked
Dry, and holding its breath.
Lungs full of a Weary,
Nervous, delusional anticipation,
Desire for a strange beauty
Only bestowed by God.
Who of all people can give beauty,
Save the painter himself?
Slowly, like an Hourglass' sand,
Pouring over an eternity,
The first strokes of color
Grace the horribly eager canvas.
Gentle tingling fills my barren soul
As the brush caresses
The lonely desolate landscape.
With the Care and Focus of a Master
A base layer of basic
Emotion, knowledge, and humanity
Begins the agonizing process
Of becoming Human again,
Of learning to love again.
With the precision of a Surgeon
She cuts the layers of skin
Quickly and full of purpose.
Fingers stroking ribs she pulls
Firmly yet gently revealing
The ivory gleam beneath.
Caressing the bone with her saw,
Painstakingly careful to not harm
Lung and other tissue,
Her eyes burn hot as the rhythmic
Beating of my heart becomes audible.
Slowly shades of green are added
To enhance the gradually growing
Soul being created by the painter.
The virulent viridians soon become shades,
Then shapes resembling greater life forms
Born to represent the many facets
Of a resurrected life.
From the base greens,
New colors are added,
And the scene becomes a field
Of Roses of every color
Singing sweetly beneath
A two o'clock sun
And a scattering of striated clouds.
Her hands close gently
Around my still beating heart.
Deep in my chest, pulsing,
Hands surrounding and holding,
She feeds her essence, her love,
Through her fingers
And the black and white line between
Physical And spiritual fades, disappears
Leaving her fused to my soul,
Keeping her closer than my skin.
Brazen brown eyes open slowly,
I look on her for the first time.
The Pale Moon on a clear night,
Hovering over a crystal lake
In no way compares to her beauty.
The intense immensity of the Universe
Compares not with my Love,
Unconditional in its core,
Quintessential in its structure and design.
Blood-stained white walls
Paint the scene behind her
And this strange iron-scented room lurches.
Black specks begin to invade the walls,
And reach across the distance between
Stretching out to consume
The so recently insipid walls.
Strangely the crimson stays.
The two colors refuse to mix,
Operation room no longer sterile
Starts to spin and swirl,
Black and crimson warring
in a circular, Draining sink motion.
Her image fades back into the color battle,
Leaving me alone on my bed,
Still bleeding through my stitches.
Frantically searching this acid induced nightmare,
I leapt off my bed,
Into a green field full of roses,
Under a two o'clock sun,
And a water color scent.
Naked and bewildered I stand
Surrounded by roses of every shade.
The air is richly permeated,
Overflowing with the smell
Of this lover's flower.
The quintet of senses nearly overload,
The beauty of this haven overwhelming.
Each blossom rendered so realistically,
As if the greatest Painter in the world
Reached out and crafted each
And every single one
With the utmost care and love.
My Nose drowning in the reverie
Is awoken by a new scent.
The aroma of a rose,
Yet deeper and with hints of love,
Like the flavor of mint
Added to the finest chocolate.
Quickly succumbing to curiosity
And the strangely familiar
Lacing this feral fragrance,
I venture off following my nose.
Many of these flowers
Are very beautiful
And offer distraction and respite,
But these lesser scents
Cannot hold sway over me.
Closer and closer,
Stronger and stronger,
This one perfume consumes,
And this body soon hurries,
Quicker, quicker, tearing through the field.
Crimson begins to trickle down my legs,
As each rose latches on and
Tries to forestall
The finding of this strange aroma's source.
Pain and fury lance up and through
As the thorns bite deeper into flesh.
Finally stumbling and blindly falling,
The comfortable green grass
Meets my body in a violent fashion.
Spitting out the pieces of pasture,
My eyes wander upward
And land upon the strangest rose.
The blossom of this flower
Is a mess and spiral of black and crimson,
And the possessor of the haunting scent.
Reaching out to caress this most unique of beings,
My hand wanders down the stem
Only to be stabbed and held
By thorns barbed and twisted.
Screaming in horrified pain,
And hastily pulling back,
This rose attached to my hand
Is completely torn from the earth.
As soon as the roots leave the dirt
My heart convulses as if being
Squeezed tightly by two hands.
Clenched and carnal does this hold become.
Insurmountable pain rages through this body,
And it collapses to the ground.
Slower and more infrequent become the breaths
As my eyelids flutter trying to stay open
Trying to stay closed.
Life and Love leave me dying
Shattered and hopeless are my visions
and frozen is the only sensation I feel.
The breeze blows softly across the viridian field
And all that's living responds to its touch.
The grass and roses sway gently
As the stench of death
Mingled with the aroma of Love
Are mixed and entwined
And blown away.
Setting down his Easel
The painter laughs and walks away.
Sterilizing and putting away her tools
The surgeon silently cries a few unsalted tears.
Covered in dried blood
The fool remains forgotten and eternally comatose.
Flat and Lifeless
These plains so similar
To the untouched canvas.
On and on, stretched and cracked
Dry, and holding its breath.
Lungs full of a Weary,
Nervous, delusional anticipation,
Desire for a strange beauty
Only bestowed by God.
Who of all people can give beauty,
Save the painter himself?
Nabs Dec 2015
By Nabs
Dear, My Past Self
I've always wanted to say a lot of things to you.
A lot of things that I would like you to change.
A lot of things I wished that you haven't done
(Like chanting hate to your self before you went to sleep).

But that is not the reason I am sending this letter.

We both know how the past cannot be changed, the same way we both know that girls will be girls and boys will be boys (which to say not at all, after all we are a firm believer that time travel and The Doctor exist).

I know that you are going through a lot of forked roads, right now.
Gnawing your lips and making it bleed, from worrying whether to choose right or left?
Afraid, not to take the wrong road but to take the road that you want, the third road that you've always thought off but haven't gathered enough courage to step to.
It's okay to be afraid of where will you get stranded in life. Being afraid doesn't make you weak.

But at the end we have to move forwards even if it will literally kills you to leave the breathtaking view behind.

At this point in your life, You will realize that the handful of people that you surround your self with are more of an aquantaince than friends. And you will lose some of the friends you have because of the directions you each choose to go. You will feel lonely and miserable.

A deceptive man called depression will lull you with the promise of kindred spirits and ask you to let him be your companion. You will accept this offer, not fully knowing the Concequences because Depression, in your neighborhood, is something that goes unacknowledged.

You will regret the decision of taking his hands
(He's a good friend of mine now, I know how to deal with his quirks and how to cope with him living in my home. He still ask me to join him in drowning, but I learned how to say no)

    There will also be a lot of people telling you that you are a freak. They will consider that being true to yourself is a sin and you will try to repent by torturing your self with soul leeching mask that will leave you identity in tattered remains (You will spent years trying to piece it back, taking new pieces and discarding old ones).

They will also paint names on your back, whispers lies and making a game on how much they can stab you in one day. (You always come home bleeding, but you covered it with 1000 watt smile and perfume to mask that fact that the wounds are rotting)

Do not try revenge, it will leave you with a guilt so heavy that the act it self would only taste like ashes and sour your heart. (I know how horrible that is, and I know you'll still do it because this letter isn't about changing the past)

Remember that you have an untapped core of titanium in your backbone.

I know you will spend some sleepless night thinking of ways to not wake up in the morning, how to keep dreaming, and letting the ghost take you away. I know how close you are to the temptation and how you almost bitten that forbidden fruit because you wonder if it taste like peace. I also know that you will deny yourself.

(Because that's the lesson that was taught to us since the beginning )

Society may tell you, to **** all the things that are different in you. The things that make you see a shade differently, the things that make your angle on the world askew, the thing that you were (and still is) proud of. You will ask why, and they will reply because you are not perfect.

Do not listen to them because a few months from now you'll learn that their reasons are poison and you had been fed spoiled milk all along.
(You'll get some stomach ache that will feel like butterfly wings, you will mistake it for infatuation. It's not. You'll learn that infatuations taste like sugar and the coffee that you'll grow to like)

At this point, You will also painstakingly build a shrine, made of ivory and desperation, for the one you mistaken as a saint (she's not but she's still one of the best things that happen to you). A shrine for a saint that you tried to be, a saint that was hailed from loneliness and envy.  

The shrine will be the invisible wall that you will simultaneously try to tear apart while build it everyday. You will always be the one who ask for forgiveness because you were a faithful believer who believe that you are a despicable sinner.

(You are as much as a sinner as she is a saint.)

The day that you look her in the eyes and burn the shrine, the wall will crumble and fall like the Berlin Wall. Both of you will become human ( Also you will find that she is easily bribed with pizza and you will find that you are different than her and that's ok).

You will also learn the taste of despair from the way the mother dove cannot understand that your screams are the way you say that you are breaking and you just want to quit breathing. Instead mother dove will translate it into screams of rebellion, and you were always the obedient daughter first, than you are a teenage girl.

(You will learn how to jab your scream into paper, and turn them into poems. You will truly make some bad ones at first. Don't worry I'll help you along the way)

One day, between where you are now and where I am now, the world will give you a present of awareness to the danger of smiling to strangers. You will cry in the hotel bathroom and try to scrub your skin until it bleeds, trying to feel clean but only managed to ***** the tub. The world and mother dove will tell you that its your fault and you were asking for it (You're not).

You will lose the ability to smile uncaringly.
(This is one of the things I wish we would have keep)

You will slowly watch the colors that you know fade from the world, leaving it a mottled grey. The same state that you are feeling now. You will paint lies and invent new colors to just make you believe that there is something worth living for. You will hate your self more and more for your new painting skills.

Don't hate your self, You are a survivor and you are still fighting (I know you wouldn't listen to this, that you would keep hating your self until you met some people who will be kind to you and help you hold up your forts from the monster inside your skin. Like I said this isn't that kind of letter).

I know that the day you smashed all your anger and hurt into the table that you sleep on, was the day where you first tried to draw red lines with sharp markers on yourself. It will be messy but you were addicted and soon all you can paint was release and the occasional victorian girl

(You will not draw boys because you despise the way that you cannot draw wide board shoulders, like the one you hate on your self but admire on your brothers because those shoulders look like they could carry the world unlike yours).

You will lock your emotions tight, and learn how to hide from the world (It wouldn't last long, you have the universe inside you that is screaming to be shared to people. You haven't learned how to say no yet, unlike me)

You will learn that you are also an idiot, that karma exist and it bites you in the *** as a payback for all those tyranny. You will laugh your self until you're sobbing and fallen asleep. The next day you will bring a book to educate yourself to your school.

You will be turned into a mess of paint, anger, bitterness, and dramatic flair. The only one that will be left without blemish will be the mask (not the face beneath). The woodcutters will saw your legs of from you, and you will be left without the means to stand on the ground

But you still will crawl your miserable 90 kilogram mass of body to the next crossroad, and the next, and the next, and the next, like the stubborn mule you (we) are.

And you will came out of the personal purgatory, that the world gave you, with a brand new legs, soul liberally littered with scars, and a tuft wings on your back (Albeit still very tiny. It's okay, It's still growing).

You will learn to walk again with your new legs, the one that isn't smooth like baby skin but full with callouses from all the road walking.

You will learn that being full of flaws is ok, that not being beautiful is fine.

You will also learn that you are allergic to cats (You will deny this fact when you find out until you almost passed out because you couldn't breathe. But we will still cuddle with them because cats are the best)

You will meet new people, wonderful new people. The ones that you care so very much and the one that cares for you back. The ones that's just wonky like you. (You will love this guy and girl that I am close with, they're very kind and sappy like you are)

You will get to fall in love, like in the romance manga that you secretly love, and you will broke your own heart (I wanted to say for you to savor it more, but like I said this isn't that kind of letter).

You will be ok with it, and you'll gain the skills of cutting people from your life

You will learn that the world isn't kind to your gender, and you'll ask for equality ( the same way you're asking for a new set of paint, which is to say with a lot of care and thinking). You will learn that the world will always be a ******* but there will always be change.

(The world needs its balance)
You will learn that patience isn't really your virtue. But you will learn to grit your teeth and wait.

You will learn to love your self. Even at some point the hate still managed to rear its ugly head. You will learn to be proud of your self and yet still be kind.

And you will continue to write your own story, you will make mistakes and learn from them, you will make unexpected plot twist and pull your favorite cliche. You will learn that not all people like your story and that it's okay.

That is so very okay.

This letter isn't about telling you to change yourself.

It's my way of saying thank you.

Because darling, ****** well done (pun intended)
                                    Love, Your Future Self

P.S :
(This isn't the end, how about we meet up for tea later?)
This is a long piece, cause I was writting this when I was feeling very stumped.
Hope ya'll like it.
Alexandra Mor Mar 2015
The sketch that ensues
will soon
be transformed
over the course of many months
into an heirloom.

Painstakingly crafted,
my intention
is that it’s created to remain,
now and forever.
A classic.
For the special woman,
who will wear it.
ALEXANDRA MOR LLC
All Rights Reserved 2015
OCD
In my perfectly painted room
All my books in order
on my painstakingly clean shelf
Not a speck of dust
Everything is spotless
All of the artwork on my walls
straight and alligned
I look around happily
making teeny little adjustments
just to make sure
it's perfect
And then I realize
everything
is
crooked
Every single madness is in my soul,
and fires like t'ose of a tempestuous sea-
are but raging within me;
scratching and tearing
t'is faith of mine so badly
Behind t'ese livid; and torpid
Dull afternoon airs.
Ah, stupid reasons, please go away-
and stun thy own flimsy day
But leave every one of thy bright promise
about thee;
Oh, just here-yet eternally-
everything t'at is as superb
as t'is often-hated hysterical world.
But only th' ones with humbleness!
And before thou retreat-imbue my soul
with silky greatness once more;
As I shalt salute thy carelessness
No matter what shalt happen
But steal not my love out of me;
let him stay like t'at and sleep by me
Until our tales come and greet
Unmarred evenness
And I; dare to spread my sore heart lazily
Under yon distant umbrella
of our oblivious heavens.

I hath the volition to touch th' stars,
And perhaps dream, dream highly
all over again
Of regaining thy love,
and rolling suspiciously
about and into thy waiting arms,
under our liberated celestial blankets
of clouds and its surfaceless haze.
Which might now and then smirk at us;
But before our ignorance rigidly
retreat away; and vanish pallidly into
its own threads
of prim; but unforgivable vanity.
Ah! I shalt but forever dream again
of all yon awesomeness,
and insist on devouring th' tasteful
Ye' immortal madness of thy princedom.
I imagine thy touches-and t'ose feverish scents
of thy fingers, and lavish hands
Free of boredom, but tainted with wisdom
And being sunk deeply in thy justice
Which insofar as it hath been enabled-
been hovering deafeningly in and about me.
Ah! I shalt be th' first one, and maiden
Who maketh thy irresoluteness decisive,
and turneth thy doubtful precisions
once more submissive!
I shalt become thy torch, and lips,
and guiding star!
I shalt bear thy ******,
and be thy own earthly phantom;
Be with me shalt be thy candlelight;
which is as strong as envious daylight
and by whom I shalt remove thy fright
As far as my dreams go with th' night
And visit and fend for thee
In thy portrait
and thy invigorating dreams.
I shalt be thy surprise;
and be a companion to thy delight
As how I shalt seek
and glory in thy pleasure;
Be lost in thy pride
and feel merciful to be thy treasure
I shalt deprave thy greed of its life
and make to thy grave,
one most beloved, and conspicuous wife.
Ah, thou art too striking!
Thy stunning voice fills me with madness-
and shakes my spines from head to toe,
But kills my sorrow and burns my sadness,
cleanses up my sins and blesses me anew.
Thou befriendeth my pride;
and my atrocious passion;
thou listeneth to my heart
and rinseth tears off its horizon.

Ah! So no wonder now
My madness loses its pride-
Overriding pride, t'at at times
becomes pregnant with such arrogance
So t'at despised it is, even by divine spies
sent down to t'is earth by majestic Lord.
What a delight within me it is to see thee-
and watch another brimful
of thy laughter-ah; thou art as captivating
as a little red-cheeked boy
Who sanguinely greeted me
Down th' farms
With a flow of madly auburn hair,
and smiles as agreeable
as t'at morn's bashful sunny air.
Ah, thou, who art even more adorable
than t'is lurid poem of mine;
stained with th' red colour-as it is,
of my own madness-and a tenacious judgment
of my senses,
T'ese merry dreams of thee are but too vicious
As they make me sweet-unbearably sweet,
in th' entire course
Of yon upcoming flirtatious night;
and tease me most whenst I'm awake
with loving chills so painstakingly crafted
about my face.
O, my lover!
My equanimious, long-sought, and
Sagitarius lover!
Thy naive, but sweet-spirited soul,
is as cheerful and frank;
but troublesome and scanty still
And within one terrific; yet ubiquitous
blink of th' hungered eye
Thou shalt sweep and slay away again;
my rigid; whilst disconcerted, charms.
And so how is at heart I am dreamily-
ye' desperately dedicated to thee;
Though far I am from thee-
as how thou defiantly-from me;
And so never may we sing-or argue in unison;
To utter neither choruses; nor grouped ballads
of marriage;
Dreams are but our sole tower and maze;
And morns all over th' earth, our single haste.

And such! Such a gaze of thine
Is addictive to me like white whine
For 'tis forever my melancholy tyranny;
In my selfish world-full of picturesque indignation
And its dearest remorse
and tranquil superfluity.
Birds t'at never fly;
And lilies t'at might not die-
ah, so after all cautious,
but in every way immortal-like thee;
Snoring and aging in thy deathless foreverness;
In which there art profoundly thou and I-
And I with my repentant dead soul
Unfreed yet of its cherry-like buds
Reeking of fascinated; yet disheartened
Longings; and horrors t'at
Unrevealed love canst soullessly take
Out its mortal mouth and sunless tongue-
From which my dissatisfied spirit
ain't bound ever to jump and awake.

Ah, but after all-all t'is suffering
and disruptive madness,
My corrupted freedom all along
shalt find justice
And whole confidentiality
In thy soul;
So t'at let me feel lethargic on thy shoulder
And rest my dishevelled mind for a while.
Perhaps, thou could let me sing t'at silent song
Whilst our dear God fixes everything
t'at hath gone wrong;
and imaginations and joy
t'at have been thrown away
shalt find every single way back of theirs
Into th' secure cage of love, within our souls.
Ah, and betwixt thy indolence
Shalt I laugh again;
For th' at length victories and images
so startling,
and pictures I am thankful of;
for they were formed so adequately
by thy stupendous name.
Ah, and immortality-yes, so which
shalt always be thy name;
With such frame and glory
trapped so idly within whose frame-
Like an odd; but fruitful summer game;
Within which I shalt ever thrive,
and civilly flourish;
Just like in thy love I shalt grow and live
And to our very last breath, rejoice.
Asma Shatwan Dec 2015
I speak in two tongues and they both hiss at each other like snakes.
Tripping over my own words as my mouth becomes a battle ground.
I stand on the side-lines looking in. Waiting for the opportunity to announce my presence.
A foreigner in my motherland and a foreigner in a sea of white faces,
And I do not fit the colour scheme.

I’m a stranger, an alien, something to be prodded and poked at and made to squirm.
A minority not to be distinguished from a sea of cloth draped women.
An epitome of the strange lands of deserts and spice.
And hung above my head is a dark cloud of stereotypes and misconceptions.

The Western woman wants to fight for the freedom of the daughters of Eve,
Not understanding that her view of liberation tastes different on my tongue.
So I’m left helpless to the hot iron lens of the media, examining me like a specimen on a petri dish.

My identity, a crumbling church still worthy of all the worship.
I memorized my history books then forgot all the verses.
I grew up haunted by my ancestor’s curses.
I’ve shed so many layers of my skin attempting to fit in, now I no longer recognize myself.
I gaze into the mirror and my reflection looks away, too afraid to make eye contact with a stranger.

I am a human split in two by borders that require passports and stamps of approval.
One half of my bleeds in red, white and blue, and the other the ashes of a burning nation.
I soak up every atom in my body with a culture that isn’t mine,
And speak words that feel heavy on my mother’s broken tongue.

Embedded in the arms of parents who are too afraid to let me go, because the world is cruel to women who don’t belong.
I am like glass that has been shattered into a million pieces, and then painstakingly put back together again.
Delicate to the touch, quivering beneath broken knuckles and clenched fists.

In the back of my mind lie vague recollections of the hot marble floors of a childhood home,
Of crevices etched into unfamiliar smiling faces,
And a country which my roots have been uplifted from.

I am a kaleidoscope. A kaleidoscope of clashing colours but you, you only view me in black and shades of grey.
I question how to belong without jumping into a skin suit that’s too baggy at the sleeves, because one size does not fit all.
I don’t want to lose my morals, values and system of beliefs.
A whirlwind of obstacles surrounding me, closing in on all sides…it’s hard to breathe.

But even after multiple blows I’m still holding onto this thread of hope…and pulling.
Unravelling what’s beneath.
And when I raise my firm hands to the sky I pray,
That my wandering soul finds a place to call home one day.
www.mypoeticcatharsis.wordpress.com
Mishka Jan 2014
We are the stars that you ignore in search for brighter lights to guide you home
Safe and warm and ignorant you stay
We were the children born from orchids, into a meadow
and our lives have dried up, weeds thriving on our desperate longing for home
The only music we hear are the sounds of death: gunshots and screams
the genre that only people who have a warm smile to come home to can listen to at a music store
We are the people of Palestine, Syria, Egypt, Libya, The Congo, Haiti, India, Bangladesh, North Korea
The diaspora who no longer have roots anywhere on earth
we have been dug up and shat out by the soil that we sprung from
Our kin have scratched blood from our skin
We are the forgotten, the avoidees, the people who make you uncomfortable
who force you to leave your little world so painstakingly built for you to live in and die as a result of
Go, live the lives you were destined for while we dream of them
Go, have the freedom you think you have and we think we will get
We are goldfish in a bowl that has never been cleaned
We will never escape
Ramona Argo Aug 2014
I know we may never be one of the dream people
who make their faces and words, world symbols.

writer, actor, 
filmmaker, photographer:
These are things we say we are. You and me.
We need no one to define us. 
our minds keep and align us 
cozy in our deception like wigged-out mothers. 
But we need others to believe that we are what we are
in order to make us reality.

An artist without proof is an empty box.

And we go unfed, 
though we ache like ***-hungry puppies.
Unable
to do a **** thing, but weep,
yearning to **** on a whopping heap of the good-life.
But we go
unfed.

Early twenties, and we're burnouts already, you and me, 
about the meaning of life and the government and *******.

We met in college
my adorable Humanities degree
cupped in hand with his.
We found solace 
in our disappointment because when we kiss
our sadnesses take root into each other.
So our rough, restless, god-angry loving
never stops
metaphorically, that is.

His desire puts me in a box, and he comes in with, 
and we talk.
My desire sets his box full of flames
so he can climb out, and get free again.
But he knows life puts us all in a box 
and you have to do things people want
in order to win the green paper you got just to keep
that box. One day
I hope to live in the same box as him.

Until then 
I'll be in a foreign land, passing out the alphabet and bandages
and ignoring the world of green paper, 
as I live in a box without a lid.
And, as the hot rain drops, my brain makes a fist
and I picture him.

We are now becoming quite a beautiful film, you and me
as he keeps his longing fastened up to mine 
like a pair of overalls.

All the books I needed to write since I was seven years old will,
kills to say, 
never happen, quite possibly.
But still
I am attempting this thing, this poem 
for you and me,
because
of the feeling inside to throw buckets of paint at the door.

The feeling I get at 2am 
to cut holes into my fingertips
in order to string out an art piece from them.

The feeling that long, sunny Sundays give
to drink tea and wine and go canoeing while
a novel ***** out of me like a bleeding baby.

The feeling I always forget to jot down
after being ***** or mugged or misjudged or beaten to bruises 
when everything is as painstakingly raw and red as poems 
are wired to be.

The feeling that comes when it's just us, 
he does things to my body that makes it crack into smiles
fantastic enough, it can't help but shatter like a mirror
all across the floor. You and me.

We exchange our hearts like gifts, and they are 
empty boxes.
And it's all

I've ever wanted.
JeanlBouwer Feb 2012
Two sparkle at xciting find.
Joy, relief, wishes flood our mind.
Reality numbed by ecstasy of find
Hardship, struggle, desires for now behind

Rightfulness of find, reality’s duality
Realization of self, fighting morality
The opportunity loss creates uncertainty.
The opportunity gain, creates possibility

How to capitalize on this potential
Designed improvements appear preferential
Decided, we proceed unconventional
We proceed like natural

Blades of diamonds remove the rough
Painstakingly disregarding, unwanted stuff
Transformation, tough
Mindful, not to lose a bough

Rough turn sparkle, every time
Faceted gem’s birth, sublime  
Artistry creates, perfect rhyme
This treasure set in time

Most beautiful combination
This magnificent creation
Testament of devotion
Evokes amazing emotion  

Bestowed, this incredible treasure
Brings about untold pleasure
Value, without measure
Diamond forever, ours to treasure
Vidya Sep 2012
I. introitus

you join the procession of the
weeping daughters of jerusalem
but you
arent sure what theyre
weeping about.

perhaps they weep because they saw you
shipwrecked on the shores of
my body—
the fishermen howl, their painstakingly
hewn vessel
lost to the south wind.

or perhaps because you
charted my topography climbed up
my ******* and never came back

perhaps someone has died,
possibly you.

at your own funeral, you shed no tears.

II. kyrie eleison

at 8:56 am on judgment day

the cicadas start to
scrape against my skull

roaring like the lionesses that
rip open your chest in the tall grass they
lick your blood from their fur, pick
your bones from between their teeth and
recede, sated, into the
shade

the hyenas arrive at sun-
set and leave only
the weeds to glut
themselves
on your carcass.


III. sequentia

its all just flashes of course: the whys and wherewereyous and the
wildness in your eyes that said if someone snapped your neck i mean wrung it like a spring hen
you would still
be staring into some vision only you could
see.

sometimes it is not enough to eat humble pie.
we have to chew our cud and spit it back out and i am a
fool, a ruminant lying in the pastures waiting
to be taken one thousand seventy-four miles
home:

when you kissed me flowers bloomed from my
navel as if to say—
Yes yes yes yes yes.
blood rising behind my
lips pumping in all its holy majesty
burning metallic against my skin and i thought let me be branded by
you.

you, gift-wrapped in linen and old
spice, sunlight peeking
out through your smile lines
the surprise the perfect
O of your lips as we
made love amid the skyscrapers of cardboard
boxes as we
leapt across your mattress like buzz
aldrin like
children;

i take your hand and you lead me out the
window for a cigarette and a
better view of the moon

both are made of
paper

IV. offertorium

a.
a thousand
miles of orchard—
fruit laced with one point
oh seven four kg of powdered
kisses i havent yet given you

if you crave their nectarblood dont
blame me if you must
drink up the sea to quench
your thirst

b.   
I will sink into you like
a warm bath I will
lie back and eat mangoes and
let the juice drip
down my chin from my
fingers into you

V. sanctus

a.
i come in the name of
the woman inside whose body you were
sewn;
inside my body your seams
will be ripped.

b.
i come in the name of
the woman inside whose body you were
sown;
inside my body your harvest
will be reaped.


VI. agnus dei

the bridegroom lies
in tatters at the
altar,
reaching out to the
bloodied lamb beside him.

we cover him in
wool and
pull it over his eyes,
kissing his hand as we lower
him into the ground,
hoping to be blessed by his
blood. some of us get
drunk instead.

VII. communio

i dont know but Ive been told
that good bread and wine is
the best meal but
no bread breaks better than
your flesh no liquor goes down smoother than
your blood no
light shines brighter than your eyes
(blue moons in a scleral
sky) and when they spark like flint
and ignite my soul will you
remember to scatter my ashes into
whatever poison you drink
AM Feb 2014
I'll painstakingly
Translate the mysteries
Written on your skin
With my fingertips
And I will
Uncover you
raen Sep 2011
Am I the only one to think
that a kite is such a sad thing?

Flimsy...frail...
never really free,
forever tied to a string

Yes, it can soar indeed,
so high, with the wind taking it places,
almost making it forget,
just enjoying the wind rushing through,
lighthearted

The wind drops,
then it gets snared
among tree branches maybe,
or perhaps stuck on a roof or elsewhere

with its string all tangled and knotted,
almost impossible to untangle

if made with paper,
it should be lucky to still be intact,
with nary a tear

more often than not,
it gets ditched in the trash,
the price to pay for
its momentary freedom

Sometimes, though
perhaps a rarity these days,
there is that boy who makes
that kite from scratch,
whittles the sticks himself,
painstakingly forming that frame,
creating that kite with love

So when it does get all tangled up,
that boy still tries so hard to fix it,
to make it new...
never minding the cuts
he gets in the process--

That string not meant to tie down
that kite,
but a lifeline to the boy

But like I said,
that must be a rare thing these days...

For I am one to think
that a kite is such a sad thing...
Flimsy...frail...
never really free,
forever tied to a string
08172011
b for short Aug 2013
Let me be frank.
For once this poem is not about you.
It's about me.  

I was born nine days late
& I've been trying to make up for lost time ever since.
But I've never felt the need to rush
anything
or anywhere—or anyone.
I went through more band-aids than Barbies growing up
& I used to love to climb trees—
until I fell out of one.
I've got about seventeen different favorite colors
including cerulean, yellow ochre, & ******’s green—
They all exist, I swear.
I used to stock oil paints in the college bookstore.
I think I told you that before, right?

Crap.
Me.
This poem is about me.


I knew I wanted to write every since my
stubby, five-year old fingers
punched the keys on my mom’s old college typewriter.
I would take naps beside it, listening to the hums & whirrs
of that beautiful blue machine.
I think I've been in a dreamy state of mind ever since.
I’m almost positive it's stunted my growth.
I've never been taller than 5’3”—
but I like that my feet never touch the floor
when we sit in restaurant booths.
& I like that my head falls on your heart
whenever I hug you.
I try so hard to hear your heart murmur—
though I can never seem to find it.

****.

Swedish Fish are my kryptonite,
& love sinking my teeth into fresh cantaloupe.
I enjoy slowly peeling the labels off of my beer bottles.
Some say that means I’m sexually frustrated.
I don’t really buy it.
I say I just like to constantly be doing something
with my little hands.
I’m happiest when I’m in the water & when I’m singing—
which makes my shower one of my favorite places
in the world.

I used to be a sucker for drummers,
before I was a sucker for guitarists.
Now I’m just a sucker for anything
with a sense of humor & good high five.
I’m good at picking out people’s quirks
& putting them into words.
I observe more than I speak—
& sometimes, I think that bothers you.
You know me— you can tell
that I’m not divulging the entirety of my thoughts.

**** it.

I have to see the ocean every year
& marvel its size—
if only to remind me how small my problems really are.
It's painstakingly obvious that I'm a Scorpio
& I don't necessarily think that's a good thing,
but I try to own it as best as I can.
I love the smell of extinguished candles, warm lighting,
& adding the “and many more” every time I sing “Happy Birthday.”

I like a lot of things.
I am a lot of things.
I can do a lot of things—
like sing all fifty states in alphabetical order,
make roses out of paper napkins,
& play “Oh Susanna” flawlessly on my harmonica.

But one thing I can't do lately—
one thing I have clearly failed to do on the whole
is write anything
without a piece of you in it.
© Bitsy Sanders, August 2013
Samuel Oct 2011
I didn't know

     after all those band-aids we so
    painstakingly crafted for each other years
       years ago
                           yours had fallen off

    I wish you I wish you
      I wish you had told me sooner it's
not
     the best time to get a call like that in
            a sunny dog park
          
            but I will be there for you if you're here
                there for you when you leave
             there for you PERIOD.

                    nothing will change that

  It's funny, no matter
            how long I rub my eyes, I can't seem to
      catch my breath catch it maybe nope

             I will be there tomorrow
                and we will talk about our past

and your future
Ashley Dec 2013
Dearest,

This thing is claiming me again. I write only to express a great need to see you, or call you, or maybe even crank up the engine of this beat up junker I'm sitting in now. I'd very much like to see you again, or once more, even if it were just your eyes. It's been three years. Three years since I last heard your voice, or laugh, or saw you smile. ****, do I miss that smile. It's been three years since you left without a decent goodbye, you ***. You never had a ******* clue - but, anyway. That's not why I'm here.

I was thinking of you today, as I have every single one before and will continue to until my breathing ceases. Did you know it's the anniversary of when I realized I was hopelessly in love with you? Of course you don't. I never told you about that moment, or how I really felt. I swore I might, before you were gone, but it's been three years and I never did. So that's that, I guess. This is such a waste, writing to you. Yet here I am, painstakingly scrawling these thoughts whirling around in my brain on to a sheet of loose leaf paper. The best part is knowing I'll never send this to you. This is going to sit here in my pocket until I wash it, or burn it when I'm searching for the cigarettes I don't smoke, or even lose it on my walk through the city.

I walk every day, and not just to and from places. I walk to think. I walk to clear my head. Instead, I will pass somewhere you've been -- somewhere we've been -- and I will be right where I started again, plagued by the ghost of you on every new corner, in the middle of the crowds, and at the foot of the subway stairs. You are everywhere, darling.

You'd be laughing at this point, probably. You'd be thinking that I ramble like I used to and still don't manage to say enough to ever convince you that I'm true. Or maybe you'd be thinking how wasteful this is to this sheet of paper. How unfair that this piece of paper gets to carry this nonsensical message to you -- or not, actually -- and how unfair that it gets to sit in my pocket, close enough to be lost. Or maybe you wouldn't think that at all, and you'd be just blankly reading all of this and wondering whether I'm just bullshitting around the truth, like I've always done oh-so-well.

Or maybe you'd just be thinking that this is so typical of me, keeping things I'll never do anything with for the sake of keeping them. You always thought I liked the act of keeping things rather than the things themselves. Perhaps you're right, because I've always wished I could both keep you and be rid of you and the toxicity you bring.

But at the end of the day, I'm the one writing you. Maybe my feelings learn towards the former of those two extremes.

Anyway, you would have been right about the bullshitting thing. I'm really writing because the emptiness is back, eating me out and wringing my guts inside out, and it isn't even pleasurable. I wrote because I haven't done so in some time, and it's been a long time since I wrote one of these one-sided letters to you. I used to write more; I used to have dozens, even, though I never wrote those on loose leaf paper in an old junker, heat off in the middle of winter. Really, I'm freezing right now. This is ridiculous. And I've got to stop bullshitting to you, I do.

You know, I can almost hear you responding to this. I can hear your voice somewhere in the back of my mind, answering me. And maybe that makes me more insane than I ever was. Maybe this hollowed out body has finally been done in, and I'm just beginning my descent into the clutches of insanity... or maybe I just can't tell you the truth.  You know me well, you do.

The truth is that I ******* miss you so much, it hurts to breathe. It physically causes my chest to ache, for pain to shoot through my entire body with each pump of my heart. Unfortunately, my heart is beating ceaselessly and my breathing has yet to stop by choice, so it hurts every day, every single second. I am always missing you. There is no other truth but that.

I think that, by allowing myself to write this, I'm hoping this idea of you can save me. I know already that this is the dumbest thing I've let myself hope for, more stupid than letting myself hope for you and for change and for happiness. The point is, letting myself do this at all is stupid, But I can't stop myself. You are worse than any drug I've ever known, and I pity those whose lives you have touched only because I know what it's like to be cut off from you. God forbid you leave them, someday, and they end up like me. Or a few shades less crazy than me.

I haven't even eaten because of this emptiness. I can't eat, actually. If I feed the monster, it erupts and soaks me with self hatred. I'm afraid of it. I'm afraid to do anything to infuriate it, and it's always angry. It's always whispering to me, sexily and sweet, asking me to do things that are so wrong. I'm not listening, and I'm staying clean, but it's hard, dearest. It's so hard when you've got nothing to cling to, nothing to even dream about hoping for.

This emptiness takes and takes, and it does not give back anything but empty caverns and the memory of what it was to feel. It takes everything I've got and it dumps it on the ground, spreads it around and sullies it. And when it's tattered and worn and filthy and unrecognizable, it crumbles it between its fingers like it's nothing but ash. I hate this behemoth more than I hate living through it. It's never-ending, the terrors it brings, and it pounds against me when I trap it away. It is invincible though, and it will always win. It's invincible in the way I believed we once had been, a long time in the past. Like us, I am not as invincible as I dreamed.

I'm sorry if I've worried you. I didn't mean to tell you, not truly. But now that the words are out, I seem to be a bit less empty than I was. Maybe I'll find my way out of this... maybe. I hope you are well, and smiling, and the world treats you kindly. I hope the night sky is beautiful where you are, and the lights glimmer in the distance exactly as you've imagined them. You deserve it a thousand times over me.

-A.C.
anmey Aug 2014
it smelled like musty news and
clairvoyant spines and
so maybe you
were behind the seaweed and sea
of pages all this time.
it sounded like breaks in the index
so painstakingly prefix that
i wish you had
please called before venice.
it tasted like wrinkles but
not for sale
the ones that take ages
of glass and ink to retail.
please rid the library of myself
bleh Dec 2014
'i've only ever really read one poem. i, i have to admit.*  
You know, that, that one poem that everyone’s read, whatsit,
Howl by Ginsberg, 'best-minds-of-my-generation-destroyed-by-madness,-starving-hyste­rical-naked,' , yeah, that one;'
'It's just, I identify with it so strongly.' she says,
'That poem is soo me.'
It's funny how commentary on a generation 60 odd years ago come across as timeless insights..
how we learn that true spirit of rebellion and counterculture three generations ago,
  as it is taught to us by two generation ago countercounterculture academics.
but I guess, inevitably
                                         we
                                                  return,
  to those half drowned pontifications inevitably decried into transcendental truth by the onward spilling ratchet of cultural recognition;
  that sense of universal oneness generated by the unwashed ramblings of beat-generation hipsters dense innuendo in run on sentences running, running from their upper-lower-middle-class New York homes and their privilege of true vacant meaninglessness and despair,
   to those nervous tucked in shirted clean shaven scholars swooning over the same seme drugged, melancholic bearded men profussing the deepest of opaque truths only found up the furthest reaches of their own *****.
  As we push through to our lectures, the mosaic in motion of blazer wearing mac-users and mac-pac wearing blazers,
  As we hysterically interpret the formatting conditions for our reports, which could hang in the balance of whether the dreams we once had will ever be actualised,
  As we felt lost and found and found and lost at those park benches under the stars, where occasional strangers strolled by offering sessions and life-stories,
  As we paid exorbitantly to get out of our parents homes, and into tin-can flats with broken windows, absentee landlords and cracked paint only held together by all the moss, (the empowerment that is wage slavery,) for in our youth, poverty is not an ever-present pejorative, but the rite of passage to show that we are alive,
  As rituals of manhood are defined by two things and two things only; how much insomnia one can accumulate to meet insane and inane deadlines, and how much one can illuminate the walls in ***** from all the beers, spirits, cheap wines and questionable home-brews,
  As the government dismantles the human-rights commission, and we nervously attend the rallies initiated by the radicals, and the man on the megaphone calls on the crowd to chant and we can only mumble and laugh nervously at ourselves,
  And when the next speaker runs onto stage feeling the need to plead to this already nervous, placid mass that this is in-fact a PEACEFUL PROTEST, and that we are all true patriots and they insist everyone start singing the national anthem and we all look down and we again mumble, or pretend somehow not to hear them,
  and when, in this biggest independent rally around a unified cause our generation's ever seen, we have never felt so alone ,
  and isolated,  
                                  we
                                             remember,
                                                                    those earlier days,
  When we'd bleach our hair; we'd poison ourselves white, in the vain mystic hope that this was just the transition period to the time when we'd get true colour into our lives,
  Remember our wonder at the Eurocentric Asiatic television representations of the Abrahamic faiths, given transubstantiated holy revival by the medium of Saturday morning digital pastel pasture; when we were children staring excited and wide eyed into the Metatrons Fire of Sinai 'Random Almighty Mega Damage'; as Dante and the seraph class Tyrant-infused-Michael inevitably made battle with YHWH, -in the one True End,- as we grinded within the monolithic emerald obsidian halls, Mystical wonderment spilling forth from our reddened hollow eyes, at the beautiful unlimited expansive world contained within our console/consoling digital unit discs; conformally mapped and etched into the convex hull of our minds,
  Where we were gods, doing battle with every possible creature in morphospace, filleted into overpriced cards and cartridges, for which our strategies meant so much to us though none of us really understood the game,
  When we could quote verbatim every piece of dialogue in GTA2, and get concerned glances from our parents as we conjured veiled imagery of bukake-ladled innuendo which we didn't really understand until six or seven years later,
  When sexuality was a special secret club our elders and the kids in the years above came across so wise for being a member of, rather than an anti-turing test; a farcical ritual where everyone tries their best to imitate the hyper-reality of MTV while hiding the nervous feelings that this whole thing was really meant for someone other than us,
  When creating a whole new lexicon for our self-hood (be it artistic, ******, political or philosophical) felt like existential emancipation; a transcendental rebellion against the normalising identities and semantics of old, rather than an impenetrable circle-**** taxonomy,
  When one day we'd unveil a new term in some text, and it would completely change our outlook on every corner of our lives,
  Or, the next day, when we'd give up and just sit back on rolling banks, and look out at a veil of stars,
  Or the next day, when we'd wonder desperate and painfully, which of the last two was the real pursuit and which was wasted time? (Or was it this day, the day spent building an illusory dialectic between them?)
  Remember when we were in kindergarden, and you had to pass through the kitchen, -the adults zone,- to get to the toilet, and you'd feel both shame and wonderment listening in of the snippets of conversation muttered by these titanic figures; discussing abstruse issues from the newspaper in foreign yet noble tongues?
  Remember when we were teens, and every form-checking observation and question from these same adults was so painstakingly pedantically banal and asinine, that one could only respond with monosyllabic grunts and silent hysterics?
  And remember as 'young adults', when we'd inevitably entered this same dull Aristotelian world of forms, how we'd ask the same adults for advice on filling these paperworks, at once still asemic gibberish, and at once the fine-print that contained and predicted our lives?
  Remember when our dreams for the future were not bounded by the economy of our grade point averages and just how much debt we were willing to incur
                                …
I've seen the best minds of my generation climb into pre-packaged little boxes; and pay through the teeth for the privilege of doing so.  
  Akin to a 'Howl' they call it? Our cry for selfhood? What a scream.
It's not even a cry. Barely a whimper.
More of a zombified groan, completely aware our intrepid Journey of Self is just a pricey guided tour. (Tv Ad's static commodified existential emancipatory platitudes; 'your place in the world' / 'well it's my place and it's my time' urgh.)
And so we march asleep; all lame all blind.
  Trudging through the mind-fields; arguing, unravelling the semantic distinctions between the empty boundaries and the boundaries of emptiness.
  Transcribed down for essay deadlines,  /  assessing our lives trajectory as dead lines,
Becoming increasingly aware,
  We are not the living beings, the dasein, the Übermenschen being actualised; we are the machinery through which the institutions, the factories, the markets and education facilities actualise themselves.
  (While the only acceptable language we can breathe in opposition to these ratcheting pedagogical machines is the lexicon they provide us..
  ('oh, you hate systemic neoliberal alienation; the deestablishment of ontological anthropocentrism? Tell me more about the esoteric uselessness of academic culture.') bluh.)

But

       the more we follow those phantom images we built of ourselves,
the more we become aware they are but sirens; hypnotic dreamlike figures luring us to our doom,
  and as this awareness dawns; and the cognitive dissonances and schizophrenia grows,
       We


                                just try to keep calm and carry on regardless.

Can we really claim the arrogance of having a better path?
The conceit that there's a better cliff we should be guiding ourselves to to top ourselves off?
I don't know,
I reaally
really
just don't know.
..i think i started out with a theme here, but it mostly devolved into venting.
      i finished another year of university recently. i'm not really sure to what extent higher education's given me perspective on life, and what extent it's simply annihilated what little i had.
   from my experiences of student culture, i feel our generation views itself as abandoned by the world, but to good for it anyway. We aren't the bohemians or beatniks or hippies or punks; our drinking and drugging ourselves to death isn't a counter-cultural high-minded rebellion. It's more a prideful self destructive egotism, a self derisive narcissism.   or something. i dunno.
  whether it's from cowardice or a more genuine scepticism, i certainly have no idea what i am (or ought to be) doing in/with/about this world.
Gabrielle H Jun 2013
Definition # 1: Being wanted, but not necessarily needed.
I was born on the coldest day of '93,
three months too early
and
three pounds too small.

That sounds like a death sentence,
but it's not – it was more of a:
“Here's what life is like,
now earn the right to live it.”

And I passed the test.
Oh, I passed with flying colors
and surprised everyone,
especially my parents.

They didn't allow themselves
to be too optimistic, see;
If they were pessimistic and wrong,
it was a pleasant surprise in the end.

Being pessimistic and right
always felt like a well earned stroke
to their over-inflated egos,
and they liked that more.

Still, they brought me home
and welcomed me – I was the first,
the only, the most important;
I was the VIP in the household.

My grandmother, a staunch Catholic,
came to see me, her first grandson,
and kissed me soundly on the forehead.
She proclaimed a prayer over me, then:

“Ah! Our Father who art in Heaven,
This baby is truly a blessing from You,
and may You bless him ever
more!
Amen!”

Grandmother, my only words to you now
are these:
I wish you had prayed more fervently for me,
and stuck that blessing on me more firmly.

Definition # 2: Crippling kindness through actions.
Her name was Katy.
She was eighteen when I was six,
and she crossed the gap between us
as easily as Jesus passed over the waters.

She claimed she was my babysitter -
3 to 9 PM, Mondays through Fridays -
for three incredibly long years,
but don't they take *care
of the kids they watch?

It's almost shocking to think of how
she peeled me apart back then
with fingers pale as my face
and a smile sweet as a tangerine.

(I thought it was love. I was wrong.)

I was misguided by her gentleness,
the way she held me in her arms
and gave me baths when I had played outside.
My mother never did that, after all.

But her fingers strayed too far
and she snatched something from me
that I have never recovered,
and now never will.

I would say it was my innocence,
but that's not true.
That went to rot long ago,
and I do not miss it.

No, it felt more tangible than that,
a feeling I had, one of trust,
one that only disappeared
after I realized what had happened.

Now I am left to side-eye people
and wonder about their true intentions;
all because someone named Katy
kissed me on the cheek, then went a little farther.

Definition # 3: Absolutely nothing at all.
It's amazing how one experience
affects the rest of your life,
but it does. Irrevocably,
each happening is a dropped pebble in water.

I wish it wasn't that way,
because there are things I want to erase
in order to move forward,
things that require moving backwards first.

That's never easy, going back to the things
that are in the past for a reason,
when facing them is a task you're not sure
you're really up to.

I know how that is,
how the moving forward feels like stumbling,
like stepping blindly in the darkness
and missing a step.

You fumble for something to hold onto,
and your heart panics,
gasping desperately while you flail;
I know. I know.

That's how I ended up kissing little Ann
in fourth grade – Katy was gone from my life by then
and I thought this other girl could give me back
that vital something I was lacking.

She gave it her all, truly, with that plucky mouth of hers;
from the warm depths of her trembling heart came a kiss,
but I defied the laws of physics then which state that heat
is energy transferred from one interacting object to another –

I felt nothing.

Definition # 4: Keeping painfully close.
Therapy should have been the option
when I told my parents that ‘Katy’ and ‘molester’
were the same thing, after I looked it up.
But it wasn’t.

My parents opted for isolation and
careful watching; if they could keep
an eye on me at all times,
they could keep me safe.

This was their pessimism talking,
leading them to think that a therapist would
**** them dry of their money and do absolutely
nothing.

Maybe they were scared of something else, too -
of molesters and rapists sitting outside,
just waiting to get their grubby hands on me
and take me away, to a place they couldn't follow.

Either way, their decision wasn't a cure,
it didn't help. Home-schooled at eleven, I lost sight
of how the world moved around me,
and all I knew was the inside of my house.

What kept me grounded were the little things:
snow days, which spoke of beauty and temporary freedom,
books, which promised a world away from the one I knew,
and the goodnight kisses from my parents.

Definition # 5: The right to take what you want.
I escaped homeschooling
when I entered ninth grade,
and the freedom I found there
was intoxicating. Addicting, even.

I’d been so out of touch with the world
that I decided the whole world
was now my friend – I fell in love
with everyone I met, at least once.

Opening myself up was surprisingly easy;
then again the only things I really opened
were my pants zipper and the pubescent hearts
of girls, always readily available.

There was the first girl, Caroline –
she kissed me everywhere, and all I did
was take everything in return – and then
there were a hundred others like her.

I knew Amys and Rachels and Sarahs,
but I never knew another Katy.
There was only one of those in my mind,
and she pushed all the others away in the end.

By eleventh grade I was in pieces,
dragging myself through each day
for no reason other than
to find another girl to claim as mine.

Definition # 6: Wrong, wrong, all wrong.
In the end,
I had it coming –
and though I don’t remember it all,
I remember enough –
rough beard pulled across skin
in a horrible mockery of kisses;
all the messy memories of Katy torn out,
like tangles pulled out with a boar hair’s brush;
the sound of something breaking,
though that might have just been me;
a ragged whisper of “Your uncle loves you, you
know that, right? This is me showing you how much.”
and finally, a piece of me I never
offered, flung far, far
                         a
                      w
                  a
                     y.
That’s all I remember,
and that’s more than I ever want to remember.

Definition # 7: Saving grace kisses.
Silence became my hiding place
in the year that followed,
along with a deep darkness
that I drowned in every night.

Where I was once confident
and a “ladies man,”
I was no longer; some experiences
ruin all the ones following.

This is how I suffered –
quietly, painstakingly, always.
I let no one in and no one out,
not even myself.

That is, until I was found out.
He was the same age as me,
but it felt like he was years
ahead of me, experience-wise.

That's how he knew -
from one sufferer to another,
we found something in common -
and that's how I redefined love, one last time.

It took three years of high school for me to step up
to the podium, clear my throat, shuffle some papers,
and mutter into the microphone, barely above a whisper:
“You know, maybe I was wrong about love.”

And maybe God did show up in the end,
in between his eyelashes and the gap in his teeth,
there to be the saving grace for a poor sinner
like me, who messed up love for far too long.

Definition # 8: Absolutely everything at once.
Recovery is a long, winding road,
one that I wanted to leave a long time ago –
if you must know, I’m still on it, though
I almost succeeded in leaving it once.

But there are almost always people
who will make you reconsider,
and decide that maybe jumping off the roof
is an act for another day, a better day.

And there are people who know how important
listening is, and that’s all they do: just listen.
I underestimated how powerful it is,
knowing someone cares enough to do that.

And there are other people who know where
a kiss goes, and where a hand should be placed,
and how to make the kiss a band-aid,
and the hand a life saver thrown out in churning waters.

There are others still that know what to say,
even when you don't. The words come easy,
and they reassure, they heal, they put you back together -
maybe not in the same way, but it's still good.

I know there will be scars, and there will be reminders
that all is not right in the world, of course,
but if you find a person who can listen,
or who can save lives with their mouth,
or who can find the right words,
you’ll probably do just fine in the end.

After all,
love is not just an action – it’s an experience.
I am simultaneously displeased with this and overjoyed at the place that it has ended up at, finally. I hope you find something to enjoy about it.
Sarah Riordan Feb 2012
You’re special, but not much more than most.
You just happened to be in the right place at the right time.
I poured my heart out to you and leaned on your strong shoulders,
Even while you took advantage of my pain and asked for things you shouldn’t have.
We go through a cycle of me leaving you,
Going through withdrawal and finding other people to be my pillars.
But then you come in with kind words and gestures and I melt all over again,
Crumbling into your embrace.
My heart seems to constantly be full of pain to the point of overflowing,
But I always manage to widen it and make room for you.
Love is a tricky emotion and is as finicky as water,
Changing phases under different pressure and temperatures.
And yet I can honestly say that I have and do love you,
With your rough exterior and warm words that heat me up from the inside out.
Just like everything else in the world, there is an equal and opposite reaction to this love.
A hate that burns so hot that it can evaporate my stomach and dissolve me into tears.
I could easily be described as a responsible, intelligent, levelheaded girl,
The one all the parents used to hope would rub off on their children like fairy dust.
But this Tinkerbell turns into Dumbo when you show affection,
And misplaces her brain in the depths of her passion.
I offer myself up to you time and time again like a painstakingly prepared meal,
But you devour me, and spit me back out to move onto another feast.
Your words, which have kept me sane, can drive me to insanity.
I spend days, weeks, months analyzing the phrase, “I’m actually looking for a girlfriend now”.
I’d love to know what your qualifications for a girlfriend are because I must have met them once.
Has the bar been raised, do you think, “been there done that”, or are there just better options?
We always reconnect when gravity shifts and my world comes crashing down on me,
But I can’t help but feel it’s unhealthy for both of us if I rely on you excessively.
I don’t want to become the next girl who puts you into a depressed funk,
Ruining memories of a holiday for you along with any chance of a relationship.
But how do you expect me to act when the attention from you that I crave
Is only rewarded when I’m spiraling out of control, or just downward?
How upset do I need to be for you to give me a smile, comforting words, a hug?
How hopeless do I need to be for you to understand that I’m barely holding myself together?
And why do my thoughts and feet carry me to you whenever I find myself back in a dark place?
I mean you’re special, but not much more than most.
I guess you just happened to be in the right place at the right time.
Rapunzoll Aug 2016
i was the type not to get scared,
when i was seven, i climbed to the roof of the house,
and danced, not like a bird that could fly,
but like a chick barely just hatched,
ready to throw itself from the nest.

i used to dive into the deep end of the pool,
to sink until my lungs would burst and
i felt like there was no greater joy than living.

i hated few things except the dark
maybe because i thought of monsters,
but now i just think of death.
i despised routine and any type of
cage i could be put in,
i wanted to live as though each day
was my first and last.

when i was seventeen, i thought i found
my soul in a boy that loved everybody.
i held onto memories, like he held on
to grudges and his ex lovers.
and he never made any promises,
but i hoped i would never live to see
him become a broken one.

i fell in love with the thorns, but not the rose,
sometimes bad attention,
is worse than no attention,
i used to think i could withstand a hurricane,
but now the slightest gust can send me away,
i think painstakingly of the girl i could be,
and the girl i am, and it's been a while,
but i wish i was still as good
at sharing how i feel as i am at hiding it.
© copyright
maria Sep 2018
i hope one day you learn to look into the corners and see that the webs were not cobwebs brought about by the lengthy days we had. they are strings painstakingly spun through the tough yet beautiful years that we have, all of those keeping me tethered to you. i hope you learn to read between the letters and the lines, that each one was made as a puzzle for you. i hope that one day you will learn that i cared about you as much as you cared about me. now that it's all over, i hope that you learn that my love does not lie in the open. you know how secretive i am. i would not leave the thing i value the most out in the open, just for people to try and take it from me. no, this is why you thought i never cared. i hope you bothered looking under your pillow or in the books i lent to you. it is in the ruffled sheets of our nights and mornings together. i slipped my smile for you in every single one of the pages i dog-eared for you. i hope you found it at 2 am, in the mornings with me. it was in my sleepy kisses and the way i huddled close against you. i hope you felt it in the way i ran back to you, every single time, when my rain poured only for you. i hope you hear it in all of my playlists about you that i never told you about. i hope you heard it in my giggling to the silliest things you said, and i hope you unraveled it in the way every single night i hugged you good-bye. i hope you felt it in our goofy dancing under the stars, eighteen kilometers apart. not far, but not close enough. i hope you realized it was in my tears, till the very last time i tried to fight for us. i hope you felt it in the way i gripped your hand as we walked a moon-lit street, and i hope you remember it in the way i asked for your embrace for the last time. to be perfectly candid, i was so nervous that night, but the way you held me, as it always did, calmed me down. i will always remember how you smelled that night, like sunshine, and you walked like it too. you brought me home that day, and i asked you one last time if you still loved me. i hope you heard it in my silence, anxious yet relieved, when only nothingness filled the car on the way to my front porch. i wondered why the silence was deafening even when there were no words uttered, even though my world was crumbling down under the tires of your car.
Mateuš Conrad Jan 2017
it's not that i'm writing this: because i didn't have an analogy looking at me... it's not that i'm writing when it's too late... it's that the simplest answers always come too available over a period of time, and with that come too many vulnerable circumstances: because so much was invested in the supposed "truth" affair... maybe i needed a Heidegger or a Kant to complicate me enough, to write out the analogy? and that's putting it mildly: to avoid the Einstein bubble and a return to Newton... yes, big names, but am i to be apprehensive about using them, am i asking them to be my mules? it's when you hear too much that you begin to filter the well-wishers... and want to hear the bare minimum... i wrote what i wrote away from the umbrella of subjectivity, as a non-patriot... if you want objectivity, this is how it sounds... when everyone's damning subjectivity i can see nothing but patriotic demands... and when no one is asking for objectivity, i see lacklustre in teaching a carnation's worth of being a citizen... because i also think your dog ******* on my lawn is gagging for a shotgun's tongue should you not clean it up. that's the basics, my friend. it's not too late that i should i have said these words... it's that you didn't do anything prior to that, that shouldn't have delaid me saying such things as i have said, in the skeleton of analogy... i say them now, because all emotions have been numbed... from someone without any thought for a patriotism... i can express in the simplest way... because after the fact: i didn't see anything worth a noble maintenance to be made a standard for 21st living... disagreeing with me is a futile as telling me that a stone thrown will not sink, over a body of water when upon it it's thrown. you can write as much spaghetti as you want within the framework of quantum physics... but when simple physics comes your way... i'm bemused why you're startled at a punch, and the pouch-clot of blood smitten into your cheek to denotate a bruise... it's almost as if you were expecting deviation from being prone to gravity, endowed with wings... no wonder the event was sober... try repeating the bohemian liberation of the 1950s and 60s... impossible! i didn't do anything too late... the analogy comes when it so chooses... because too many ignoble demands were met and satiated... that this one noble simplification... is so painstakingly unsatisfying!

when i listen to the music of my
youth... dunno... just get stiff-*******...
winter air helps make this
phenomenon acute...
i mean music from the year 1997
through to 2001 -
   the years preceding American
undermining and the narrative
of paranoia...
call it what you like, i call it a
feeling of stiff-******* when i hear it
down the years...
it's not even a nostalgia...
    it's a sort of embarrassing clue...
i am actually embarrassed
at having such tastes...
    it's not the kind of music you'd
be happy about, nostalgic about
the 1980s...
              the embarrassment?
probably because i now realise i was
an incubator for so much delayed
teenage-angst in the artists who
reigned this period...
       the clue is in: mostly rock orientated.
i remember that chubby kid
donning his baggy jeans and black
t-shirts with bands' prints on them...
but i find unquestionable is
the indentation of representing
that call for vogue...
                i remember wearing
a t-shirt with the slogan: *******
is not a crime
          on non-uniform days in
a catholic school...
           and not being touched or told to
take it off...
             it's like i've become father:
or simply memory - to the person i
am today...
           because i can't imagine anything
beyond this day-to-day...
       but whenever i put on the mind
that was influenced by those bribes back then,
i remember the Ilford shopping centre,
and the colours of Gants Hill's park
with those bird cages...
           getting the bus to Ilford,
then a one-stop trip to Seven Kings
wearing the guilty-as-seen uniform...
   i can't see any nostalgia behind,
given my music taste: i get stiff-*******,
a feeling of cold shivers and
embarrassment...
      but it happened before the invulnerable
essence of america died...
      once upon a time people dreamed
of wanting to move to america...
   these days the narrative is a bit like:
and succumb to that paranoia narrative?
i think i'll pass...
       i can get the escapism of
conspiracy theorists... i too thought about
the later mentions of why those buildings
fell down as if someone ticked-off
a domino effect implosion...
    it really did slightly unnatural -
   those twins really did seem like a domino
effect...
       so you hear those stories of very sloppy
murderers...
who forget to shave off their fingerprints with
razors, and shave off their crop of hair
and eye-brows...
                           by writing this i can't
make the situation worse...
                      it just seems like even though
the plain did hit the buildings,
the actual downfall of the buildings seemed
too staccato... i mean that: a stacked tower...
but if you play a game of *jenga
,
doesn't the jenga tower fall to the side?
                           it doesn't fall-onto-itself, does it?
i'm sure the same physics principles has
to apply to that fateful event of 2001...
     you'd expect the upper half of the twins
to break-away and fall off...
rather than the whole building literally
cascading and imploding on itself...
folding...
                               you attack a jenga tower
in the middle, and the top bit falls off...
the tower doesn't implode vertically...
      a bit like chopping a tree in the middle
of the trunk... you'll still get a stump,
even if you chop at the root of the stump...
               satan in zeitgeist...
only then dawkin's the god delusion was
published years later, did i read that, apparently,
satan's face donned one of the burning towers...
   me thinks: spot satan and read the *******...
the easiest thing is to now claim that we
are insane... but it's still about the jenga tower
magnified... a jenga tower unravels and the top
bit falls to the side... a jenga tower doesn't fall apart
from top to bottom...
                it falls apart like a lumberjack hacked tree:
to the side...
              i really could write about some
other nieche topic... but it's hard not to write
about the abomination of physics...
     the fact that there was an implosion -
  and that the towers folded vertically,
means that even if a horizontal agitation occured,
the towers couldn't have behaved as they did:
(vertically) folding...
                                 but since the agitation came
from a horizontal perspective, and the fact
that the towers folded vertically,
      the agitation came on a horizontal perspective,
a jenga tower would fall off to the side...
                        yet the towers folded vertically...
   i don't know if that's really only about
writing a + b = c, given b + c = d,
  or whether it already is 1 + 1 = 2...
             **** me, if this isn't the opening bewilderment
we all feel about the 21st century,
no war in iraq or afghanistan can help us...
    attack a jenga tower in the middle:
it doesn't fold vertically! a jenga tower attacked
   horizontally will only ask for you to shout:
timber! who need the bewilderment of quantum
physics, when you have the physics of 2001
to look-up your *** at and muse.
patti Nov 2012
last night scraped painstakingly
from the fissures in my brain
scraped like ink from wood-latch boxes with
fancy carved roses on the top

chewing apart memories with
your nails clenched into my hand
I am falling out of love all over again

clicking keys and snapping wrists
ripped strings and fractured minds
slipping into different facades
of distances that felt closer
six trembling months so
long

touching your palm
with a face that isn't real anymore
pillow cased fingertips touching cheeks
bumping elbows ripple through ponds of
tension seething just under the skin and
details throb in my temples

I have vanished from the city skyline
I am taking back my couch, I am stepping on dried roses
pilfering paint from butterfly wings
frankly darling sweet pea
there were these picnic baskets and sunflowers

bitterly lamenting to everyone but printed on both sides
of your business card it says "heartbreaker"
and printed on both sides of the fortune cookie it said
"not your business, move on move on"

stitching holes in my cheekbones, I
haven't got the heart to put up walls
haven't got the nerve to break them down
still painting you into my sunflowers and I am
so wary when I scrape elbows
Enigmuse Mar 2014
I lit a match and swallowed the flame
the taught, warm light allowing me to glow
a distant orange, and you watched me.
Yet, your stare provided me with more heat

than I could ask, and I found myself wanting you
more and more again, but you didn't realize what you
had done; that you, for a brief second, illuminated me.
And you pressed your fingers to the glass,

your hands were shaking, your mind a mess , and I cried out
at the heat from your touch, but the indirect contact,
it wasn't enough. Not enough for you to luminate me.
You remain behind the wall you've painstakingly constructed.

You reside behind truths and life and love, and
I should not have to swallow a flame
to feel the warmth from your resounding gaze
in the night, please take me in. Even, if only for a moment,

I need it. I need you. And
I beg of you, illuminate me.
bleh, so many innuendos

— The End —