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Don't Exist May 2014
Oh how I love wearing my sweaters
I wear then in the morning,especially at night
in the cold and summer
in the public and private places
when I fell all soo happy
and also when I'm depressed

It's like a shell
It protects from this dangerous world
the world criticism stings me
giving me a lethal dose of paranoia and sleep deprivation

Well  luckily I have my sweaters
It's my cup of Joe
my video game
my secret lover
my special listener
my doctor
my savior

Oh it saves me alright
from the world
isolating me from the world
making me lonely and cold

But it is worth it
oh this world can be dangerous
i don't want my soul to be drain

But eventually when I'm ready
I will break from this cocoon
and spread my wings so that everybody can see
my warmth and salvation

My sweaters
they are nice to have
but it is not meant to be worn for a long time.
A simple poem
FIRST DAY

1.
Who wanted me
to go to Chicago
on January 6th?
I did!

The night before,
20 below zero
Fahrenheit
with the wind chill;
as the blizzard of 99
lay in mountains
of blackening snow.

I packed two coats,
two suits,
three sweaters,
multiple sets of long johns
and heavy white socks
for a two-day stay.

I left from Newark.
**** the denseness,
it confounds!

The 2nd City to whom?
2nd ain’t bad.
It’s pretty good.
If you consider
Peking and Prague,
Tokyo and Togo,
Manchester and Moscow,
Port Au Prince and Paris,
Athens and Amsterdam,
Buenos Aries and Johannesburg;
that’s pretty good.

What’s going on here today?
It’s friggin frozen.
To the bone!

But Chi Town is still cool.
Buddy Guy’s is open.
Bartenders mixing drinks,
cabbies jamming on their breaks,
honey dew waitresses serving sugar,
buildings swerving,
fire tongued preachers are preaching
and the farmers are measuring the moon.

The lake,
unlike Ontario
is in the midst of freezing.
Bones of ice
threaten to gel
into a solid mass
over the expanse
of the Michigan Lake.
If this keeps up,
you can walk
clear to Toronto
on a silver carpet.

Along the shore
the ice is permanent.
It’s the first big frost
of winter
after a long
Indian Summer.

Thank God
I caught a cab.
Outside I hear
The Hawk
nippin hard.
It’ll get your ear,
finger or toe.
Bite you on the nose too
if you ain’t careful.

Thank God,
I’m not walking
the Wabash tonight;
but if you do cover up,
wear layers.

Chicago,
could this be
Sandburg’s City?

I’m overwhelmed
and this is my tenth time here.

It’s almost better,
sometimes it is better,
a lot of times it is better
and denser then New York.

Ask any Bull’s fan.
I’m a Knickerbocker.
Yes Nueva York,
a city that has placed last
in the standings
for many years.
Except the last two.
Yanks are # 1!

But Chicago
is a dynasty,
as big as
Sammy Sosa’s heart,
rich and wide
as Michael Jordan’s grin.

Middle of a country,
center of a continent,
smack dab in the mean
of a hemisphere,
vortex to a world,
Chicago!

Kansas City,
Nashville,
St. Louis,
Detroit,
Cleveland,
Pittsburgh,
Denver,
New Orleans,
Dallas,
Cairo,
Singapore,
Auckland,
Baghdad,
Mexico City
and Montreal
salute her.



2.
Cities,
A collection of vanities?
Engineered complex utilitarianism?
The need for community a social necessity?
Ego one with the mass?
Civilization’s latest *******?
Chicago is more then that.

Jefferson’s yeoman farmer
is long gone
but this capitol
of the Great Plains
is still democratic.

The citizen’s of this city
would vote daily,
if they could.

Chicago,
Sandburg’s Chicago,
Could it be?

The namesake river
segments the city,
canals of commerce,
all perpendicular,
is rife throughout,
still guiding barges
to the Mississippi
and St. Laurence.

Now also
tourist attractions
for a cafe society.

Chicago is really jazzy,
swanky clubs,
big steaks,
juices and drinks.

You get the best
coffee from Seattle
and the finest teas
from China.

Great restaurants
serve liquid jazz
al la carte.

Jazz Jazz Jazz
All they serve is Jazz
Rock me steady
Keep the beat
Keep it flowin
Feel the heat!

Jazz Jazz Jazz
All they is, is Jazz
Fast cars will take ya
To the show
Round bout midnight
Where’d the time go?

Flows into the Mississippi,
the mother of America’s rivers,
an empires aorta.

Great Lakes wonder of water.
Niagara Falls
still her heart gushes forth.

Buffalo connected to this holy heart.
Finger Lakes and Adirondacks
are part of this watershed,
all the way down to the
Delaware and Chesapeake.

Sandburg’s Chicago?
Oh my my,
the wonder of him.
Who captured the imagination
of the wonders of rivers.

Down stream other holy cities
from the Mississippi delta
all mapped by him.

Its mouth our Dixie Trumpet
guarded by righteous Cajun brethren.

Midwest?
Midwest from where?
It’s north of Caracas and Los Angeles,
east of Fairbanks,
west of Dublin
and south of not much.

Him,
who spoke of honest men
and loving women.
Working men and mothers
bearing citizens to build a nation.
The New World’s
precocious adolescent
caught in a stream
of endless and exciting change,
much pain and sacrifice,
dedication and loss,
pride and tribulations.

From him we know
all the people’s faces.
All their stories are told.
Never defeating the
idea of Chicago.

Sandburg had the courage to say
what was in the heart of the people, who:

Defeated the Indians,
Mapped the terrain,
Aided slavers,
Fought a terrible civil war,
Hoisted the barges,
Grew the food,
Whacked the wheat,
Sang the songs,
Fought many wars of conquest,
Cleared the land,
Erected the bridges,
Trapped the game,
Netted the fish,
Mined the coal,
Forged the steel,
Laid the tracks,
Fired the tenders,
Cut the stone,
Mixed the mortar,
Plumbed the line,
And laid the bricks
Of this nation of cities!

Pardon the Marlboro Man shtick.
It’s a poor expostulation of
crass commercial symbolism.

Like I said, I’m a
Devil Fan from Jersey
and Madison Avenue
has done its work on me.

It’s a strange alchemy
that changes
a proud Nation of Blackhawks
into a merchandising bonanza
of hometown hockey shirts,
making the native seem alien,
and the interloper at home chillin out,
warming his feet atop a block of ice,
guzzling Old Style
with clicker in hand.

Give him his beer
and other diversions.
If he bowls with his buddy’s
on Tuesday night
I hope he bowls
a perfect game.

He’s earned it.
He works hard.
Hard work and faith
built this city.

And it’s not just the faith
that fills the cities
thousand churches,
temples and
mosques on the Sabbath.

3.
There is faith in everything in Chicago!

An alcoholic broker named Bill
lives the Twelve Steps
to banish fear and loathing
for one more day.
Bill believes in sobriety.

A tug captain named Moe
waits for the spring thaw
so he can get the barges up to Duluth.
Moe believes in the seasons.

A farmer named Tom
hopes he has reaped the last
of many bitter harvests.
Tom believes in a new start.

A homeless man named Earl
wills himself a cot and a hot
at the local shelter.
Earl believes in deliverance.

A Pullman porter
named George
works overtime
to get his first born
through medical school.
George believes in opportunity.

A folk singer named Woody
sings about his
countrymen inheritance
and implores them to take it.
Woody believes in people.

A Wobbly named Joe
organizes fellow steelworkers
to fight for a workers paradise
here on earth.
Joe believes in ideals.

A bookkeeper named Edith
is certain she’ll see the Cubs
win the World Series
in her lifetime.
Edith believes in miracles.

An electrician named ****
saves money
to bring his family over from Gdansk.
**** believes in America.

A banker named Leah
knows Ditka will return
and lead the Bears
to another Super Bowl.
Leah believes in nostalgia.

A cantor named Samuel
prays for another 20 years
so he can properly train
his Temple’s replacement.

Samuel believes in tradition.
A high school girl named Sally
refuses to get an abortion.
She knows she carries
something special within her.
Sally believes in life.

A city worker named Mazie
ceaselessly prays
for her incarcerated son
doing 10 years at Cook.
Mazie believes in redemption.

A jazzer named Bix
helps to invent a new art form
out of the mist.
Bix believes in creativity.

An architect named Frank
restores the Rookery.
Frank believes in space.

A soldier named Ike
fights wars for democracy.
Ike believes in peace.

A Rabbi named Jesse
sermonizes on Moses.
Jesse believes in liberation.

Somewhere in Chicago
a kid still believes in Shoeless Joe.
The kid believes in
the integrity of the game.

An Imam named Louis
is busy building a nation
within a nation.
Louis believes in
self-determination.

A teacher named Heidi
gives all she has to her students.
She has great expectations for them all.
Heidi believes in the future.

4.
Does Chicago have a future?

This city,
full of cowboys
and wildcatters
is predicated
on a future!

Bang, bang
Shoot em up
Stake the claim
It’s your terrain
Drill the hole
Strike it rich
Top it off
You’re the boss
Take a chance
Watch it wane
Try again
Heavenly gains

Chicago
city of futures
is a Holy Mecca
to all day traders.

Their skin is gray,
hair disheveled,
loud ties and
funny coats,
thumb through
slips of paper
held by nail
chewed hands.
Selling promises
with no derivative value
for out of the money calls
and in the money puts.
Strike is not a labor action
in this city of unionists,
but a speculators mark,
a capitalist wish,
a hedgers bet,
a public debt
and a farmers
fair return.

Indexes for everything.
Quantitative models
that could burst a kazoo.

You know the measure
of everything in Chicago.
But is it truly objective?
Have mathematics banished
subjective intentions,
routing it in fair practice
of market efficiencies,
a kind of scientific absolution?

I heard that there
is a dispute brewing
over the amount of snowfall
that fell on the 1st.

The mayor’s office,
using the official city ruler
measured 22”
of snow on the ground.

The National Weather Service
says it cannot detect more
then 17” of snow.

The mayor thinks
he’ll catch less heat
for the trains that don’t run
the buses that don’t arrive
and the schools that stand empty
with the addition of 5”.

The analysts say
it’s all about capturing liquidity.

Liquidity,
can you place a great lake
into an eyedropper?

Its 20 below
and all liquid things
are solid masses
or a gooey viscosity at best.

Water is frozen everywhere.
But Chi town is still liquid,
flowing faster
then the digital blips
flashing on the walls
of the CBOT.

Dreams
are never frozen in Chicago.
The exchanges trade
without missing a beat.

Trading wet dreams,
the crystallized vapor
of an IPO
pledging a billion points
of Internet access
or raiding the public treasuries
of a central bank’s
huge stores of gold
with currency swaps.

Using the tools
of butterfly spreads
and candlesticks
to achieve the goal.

Short the Russell
or buy the Dow,
go long the
CAC and DAX.
Are you trading in euro’s?
You better be
or soon will.
I know
you’re Chicago,
you’ll trade anything.
WEBS,
Spiders,
and Leaps
are traded here,
along with sweet crude,
North Sea Brent,
plywood and T-Bill futures;
and most importantly
the commodities,
the loam
that formed this city
of broad shoulders.

What about our wheat?
Still whacking and
breadbasket to the world.

Oil,
an important fossil fuel
denominated in
good ole greenbacks.

Porkbellies,
not just hogwash
on the Wabash,
but bacon, eggs
and flapjacks
are on the menu
of every diner in Jersey
as the “All American.”

Cotton,
our contribution
to the Golden Triangle,
once the global currency
used to enrich a
gentlemen class
of cultured
southern slavers,
now Tommy Hilfiger’s
preferred fabric.

I think he sends it
to Bangkok where
child slaves
spin it into
gold lame'.

Sorghum,
I think its hardy.

Soybeans,
the new age substitute
for hamburger
goes great with tofu lasagna.

Corn,
ADM creates ethanol,
they want us to drive cleaner cars.

Cattle,
once driven into this city’s
bloodhouses for slaughter,
now ground into
a billion Big Macs
every year.

When does a seed
become a commodity?
When does a commodity
become a future?
When does a future expire?

You can find the answers
to these questions in Chicago
and find a fortune in a hole in the floor.

Look down into the pits.
Hear the screams of anguish
and profitable delights.

Frenzied men
swarming like a mass
of epileptic ants
atop the worlds largest sugar cube
auger the worlds free markets.

The scene is
more chaotic then
100 Haymarket Square Riots
multiplied by 100
1968 Democratic Conventions.

Amidst inverted anthills,
they scurry forth and to
in distinguished
black and red coats.

Fighting each other
as counterparties
to a life and death transaction.

This is an efficient market
that crosses the globe.

Oil from the Sultan of Brunei,
Yen from the land of Hitachi,
Long Bonds from the Fed,
nickel from Quebec,
platinum and palladium
from Siberia,
FTSE’s from London
and crewel cane from Havana
circle these pits.

Tijuana,
Shanghai
and Istanbul's
best traders
are only half as good
as the average trader in Chicago.

Chicago,
this hog butcher to the world,
specializes in packaging and distribution.

Men in blood soaked smocks,
still count the heads
entering the gates of the city.

Their handiwork
is sent out on barges
and rail lines as frozen packages
of futures
waiting for delivery
to an anonymous counterparty
half a world away.

This nation’s hub
has grown into the
premier purveyor
to the world;
along all the rivers,
highways,
railways
and estuaries
it’s tentacles reach.

5.
Sandburg’s Chicago,
is a city of the world’s people.

Many striver rows compose
its many neighborhoods.

Nordic stoicism,
Eastern European orthodoxy
and Afro-American
calypso vibrations
are three of many cords
strumming the strings
of Chicago.

Sandburg’s Chicago,
if you wrote forever
you would only scratch its surface.

People wait for trains
to enter the city from O’Hare.
Frozen tears
lock their eyes
onto distant skyscrapers,
solid chunks
of snot blocks their nose
and green icicles of slime
crust mustaches.
They fight to breathe.

Sandburg’s Chicago
is The Land of Lincoln,
Savior of the Union,
protector of the Republic.
Sent armies
of sons and daughters,
barges, boxcars,
gunboats, foodstuffs,
cannon and shot
to raze the south
and stamp out succession.

Old Abe’s biography
are still unknown volumes to me.
I must see and read the great words.
You can never learn enough;
but I’ve been to Washington
and seen the man’s memorial.
The Free World’s 8th wonder,
guarded by General Grant,
who still keeps an eye on Richmond
and a hand on his sword.

Through this American winter
Abe ponders.
The vista he surveys is dire and tragic.

Our sitting President
impeached
for lying about a *******.

Party partisans
in the senate are sworn and seated.
Our Chief Justice,
adorned with golden bars
will adjudicate the proceedings.
It is the perfect counterpoint
to an ageless Abe thinking
with malice toward none
and charity towards all,
will heal the wounds
of the nation.

Abe our granite angel,
Chicago goes on,
The Union is strong!


SECOND DAY

1.
Out my window
the sun has risen.

According to
the local forecast
its minus 9
going up to
6 today.

The lake,
a golden pillow of clouds
is frozen in time.

I marvel
at the ancients ones
resourcefulness
and how
they mastered
these extreme elements.

Past, present and future
has no meaning
in the Citadel
of the Prairie today.

I set my watch
to Central Standard Time.

Stepping into
the hotel lobby
the concierge
with oil smooth hair,
perfect tie
and English lilt
impeccably asks,
“Do you know where you are going Sir?
Can I give you a map?”

He hands me one of Chicago.
I see he recently had his nails done.
He paints a green line
along Whacker Drive and says,
“turn on Jackson, LaSalle, Wabash or Madison
and you’ll get to where you want to go.”
A walk of 14 or 15 blocks from Streeterville-
(I start at The Chicago White House.
They call it that because Hillary Rodham
stays here when she’s in town.
Its’ also alleged that Stedman
eats his breakfast here
but Opra
has never been seen
on the premises.
I wonder how I gained entry
into this place of elite’s?)
-down into the center of The Loop.

Stepping out of the hotel,
The Doorman
sporting the epaulets of a colonel
on his corporate winter coat
and furry Cossack hat
swaddling his round black face
accosts me.

The skin of his face
is flaking from
the subzero windburn.

He asks me
with a gapped toothy grin,
“Can I get you a cab?”
“No I think I’ll walk,” I answer.
“Good woolen hat,
thick gloves you should be alright.”
He winks and lets me pass.

I step outside.
The Windy City
flings stabbing cold spears
flying on wings of 30-mph gusts.
My outside hardens.
I can feel the freeze
deepen
into my internalness.
I can’t be sure
but inside
my heart still feels warm.
For how long
I cannot say.

I commence
my walk
among the spires
of this great city,
the vertical leaps
that anchor the great lake,
holding its place
against the historic
frigid assault.

The buildings’ sway,
modulating to the blows
of natures wicked blasts.

It’s a hard imposition
on a city and its people.

The gloves,
skullcap,
long underwear,
sweater,
jacket
and overcoat
not enough
to keep the cold
from penetrating
the person.

Like discerning
the layers of this city,
even many layers,
still not enough
to understand
the depth of meaning
of the heart
of this heartland city.

Sandburg knew the city well.
Set amidst groves of suburbs
that extend outward in every direction.
Concentric circles
surround the city.
After the burbs come farms,
Great Plains, and mountains.
Appalachians and Rockies
are but mere molehills
in the city’s back yard.
It’s terra firma
stops only at the sea.
Pt. Barrow to the Horn,
many capes extended.

On the periphery
its appendages,
its extremities,
its outward extremes.
All connected by the idea,
blown by the incessant wind
of this great nation.
The Windy City’s message
is sent to the world’s four corners.
It is a message of power.
English the worlds
common language
is spoken here,
along with Ebonics,
Espanol,
Mandarin,
Czech,
Russian,
Korean,
Arabic,
Hindi­,
German,
French,
electronics,
steel,
cars,
cartoons,
rap,
sports­,
movies,
capital,
wheat
and more.

Always more.
Much much more
in Chicago.

2.
Sandburg
spoke all the dialects.

He heard them all,
he understood
with great precision
to the finest tolerances
of a lathe workers micrometer.

Sandburg understood
what it meant to laugh
and be happy.

He understood
the working mans day,
the learned treatises
of university chairs,
the endless tomes
of the city’s
great libraries,
the lost languages
of the ancient ones,
the secret codes
of abstract art,
the impact of architecture,
the street dialects and idioms
of everymans expression of life.

All fighting for life,
trying to build a life,
a new life
in this modern world.

Walking across
the Michigan Avenue Bridge
I see the Wrigley Building
is neatly carved,
catty cornered on the plaza.

I wonder if Old Man Wrigley
watched his barges
loaded with spearmint
and double-mint
move out onto the lake
from one of those Gothic windows
perched high above the street.

Would he open a window
and shout to the men below
to quit slaking and work harder
or would he
between the snapping sound
he made with his mouth
full of his chewing gum
offer them tickets
to a ballgame at Wrigley Field
that afternoon?

Would the men below
be able to understand
the man communing
from such a great height?

I listen to a man
and woman conversing.
They are one step behind me
as we meander along Wacker Drive.

"You are in Chicago now.”
The man states with profundity.
“If I let you go
you will soon find your level
in this city.
Do you know what I mean?”

No I don’t.
I think to myself.
What level are you I wonder?
Are you perched atop
the transmission spire
of the Hancock Tower?

I wouldn’t think so
or your ears would melt
from the windburn.

I’m thinking.
Is she a kept woman?
She is majestically clothed
in fur hat and coat.
In animal pelts
not trapped like her,
but slaughtered
from farms
I’m sure.

What level
is he speaking of?

Many levels
are evident in this city;
many layers of cobbled stone,
Pennsylvania iron,
Hoosier Granite
and vertical drops.

I wonder
if I detect
condensation
in his voice?

What is
his intention?
Is it a warning
of a broken affair?
A pending pink slip?
Advise to an addict
refusing to adhere
to a recovery regimen?

What is his level anyway?
Is he so high and mighty,
Higher and mightier
then this great city
which we are all a part of,
which we all helped to build,
which we all need
in order to keep this nation
the thriving democratic
empire it is?

This seditious talk!

3.
The Loop’s El
still courses through
the main thoroughfares of the city.

People are transported
above the din of the street,
looking down
on the common pedestrians
like me.

Super CEO’s
populating the upper floors
of Romanesque,
Greek Revivalist,
New Bauhaus,
Art Deco
and Post Nouveau
Neo-Modern
Avant-Garde towers
are too far up
to see me
shivering on the street.

The cars, busses,
trains and trucks
are all covered
with the film
of rock salt.

Salt covers
my bootless feet
and smudges
my cloths as well.

The salt,
the primal element
of the earth
covers everything
in Chicago.

It is the true level
of this city.

The layer
beneath
all layers,
on which
everything
rests,
is built,
grows,
thrives
then dies.
To be
returned again
to the lower
layers
where it can
take root
again
and grow
out onto
the great plains.

Splashing
the nation,
anointing
its people
with its
blessing.

A blessing,
Chicago?

All rivers
come here.

All things
found its way here
through the canals
and back bays
of the world’s
greatest lakes.

All roads,
rails and
air routes
begin and
end here.

Mrs. O’Leary’s cow
got a *** rap.
It did not start the fire,
we did.

We lit the torch
that flamed
the city to cinders.
From a pile of ash
Chicago rose again.

Forever Chicago!
Forever the lamp
that burns bright
on a Great Lake’s
western shore!

Chicago
the beacon
sends the
message to the world
with its windy blasts,
on chugging barges,
clapping trains,
flying tandems,
T1 circuits
and roaring jets.

Sandburg knew
a Chicago
I will never know.

He knew
the rhythm of life
the people walked to.
The tools they used,
the dreams they dreamed
the songs they sang,
the things they built,
the things they loved,
the pains that hurt,
the motives that grew,
the actions that destroyed
the prayers they prayed,
the food they ate
their moments of death.

Sandburg knew
the layers of the city
to the depths
and windy heights
I cannot fathom.

The Blues
came to this city,
on the wing
of a chirping bird,
on the taps
of a rickety train,
on the blast
of an angry sax
rushing on the wind,
on the Westend blitz
of Pop's brash coronet,
on the tink of
a twinkling piano
on a paddle-wheel boat
and on the strings
of a lonely man’s guitar.

Walk into the clubs,
tenements,
row houses,
speakeasies
and you’ll hear the Blues
whispered like
a quiet prayer.

Tidewater Blues
from Virginia,
Delta Blues
from the lower
Mississippi,
Boogie Woogie
from Appalachia,
Texas Blues
from some Lone Star,
Big Band Blues
from Kansas City,
Blues from
Beal Street,
Jelly Roll’s Blues
from the Latin Quarter.

Hell even Chicago
got its own brand
of Blues.

Its all here.
It ended up here
and was sent away
on the winds of westerly blows
to the ear of an eager world
on strong jet streams
of simple melodies
and hard truths.

A broad
shouldered woman,
a single mother stands
on the street
with three crying babes.
Their cloths
are covered
in salt.
She pleads
for a break,
praying
for a new start.
Poor and
under-clothed
against the torrent
of frigid weather
she begs for help.
Her blond hair
and ****** features
suggests her
Scandinavian heritage.
I wonder if
she is related to Sandburg
as I walk past
her on the street.
Her feet
are bleeding
through her
canvass sneakers.
Her babes mouths
are zipped shut
with frozen drivel
and mucous.

The Blues live
on in Chicago.

The Blues
will forever live in her.
As I turn the corner
to walk the Miracle Mile
I see her engulfed
in a funnel cloud of salt,
snow and bits
of white paper,
swirling around her
and her children
in an angry
unforgiving
maelstrom.

The family
begins to
dissolve
like a snail
sprinkled with salt;
and a mother
and her children
just disappear
into the pavement
at the corner
of Dearborn,
in Chicago.

Music:

Robert Johnson
Sweet Home Chicago


jbm
Chicago
1/7/99
Added today to commemorate the birthday of Carl Sandburg
I pulled on an oversized sweater
to stop my hands from shivering as I typed my soul out to you
I arranged the alphabet into a story
made only for you to ball up
and throw into the chute
down to the garbage pit in the back of your mind
it was thanksgiving and
you packed my things
and you left
everything the way it was
incomplete
you
left
me
standing in my room
twelve years old and confused
the grand return came
as I conquered ninth grade
and I pulled on oversized sweaters
to stop my mind from wandering towards the mirror
listening intently to my stepmother’s words
and the drunken cries to God
you wept yourself to sleep on the porch every night
and what was I to do but wonder
fourteen and impressionable
you left again
to find a better life than the bottle could supply
you wrote me letters on Tuesdays
signed with an Ichthys and a verse
and I pulled on oversized sweaters
to stop the chills that sank deep into my heart
on nights when I needed someone who wasn’t there
and found someone who
didn’t need to be there in the first place
sixteen and licentious
you came back
and stopped leaving
found contentedness in the bottom of a Bible
etsi deus non daretur
and I pulled on oversized sweaters
to silence the questions brought forth by my past.
You've read my rant from yesterday
About those Christmas Letters
But one thing just disturbs me
Those Ugly Christmas Sweaters!!!

You know the ones we love to hate
They're  all so scratchy and they itch
You can barely get the **** thing on
And to remove it...it's a *****!!

Pictures of things Christmassy
Like a reindeer all in red
Mine looks like an emaciated cow
with a candelabra on his head

Snowflakes, trees and Norway Spruce
and colours....oh my lord
They can take them back to Norway
and throw them in the fjord!!!

My nan made one for me one year
It was silver with some blue
Turns out she used old brillo pads
Because she liked the soapy hue

They itch and scratch and don't fit right
They are a cancer to my eyes
I had one in green and red
With one sleeve down past my thighs

I thought it was a jumpsuit
The kind the paratroopers wear
The pattern pages stuck together
And that sleeve....went down to there!!!

We all have one hidden away
In a box, 'neath lock and key
In a place so nicely hidden
One we've had since we were three

We never plan to wear one more
We all know that we once  did
but, if we had to wear one out
We're gonna buy one for our kids!!!

If you need to get assistance
go to uglysweaters dot o- r- g
They can help you with your wardrobe
Tell them you heard of them from me.
PMc Oct 2018
SWEATERS ON – SWEATERS OFF

Sitting board-room style for hours on end, her sweater on – sweater off
at times too cool to concentrate,
        other times not wanting to perspire
they both thought it a shame to waste such a lovely day indoors
at times staring out the window trash blustered along the street,
at times watching her, sweater on – sweater off

He was happy to buy lunch hoping they could leave office confines
      even for an hour
the sun and the brisk walk for sandwiches and tea
       would warm them sufficiently
to inevitably leave off, the sweater off that afternoon

He admired her – not just to look at - but appreciate
the nape of her neck, soft smooth shoulders giving way
        to the work-out bicepts
it was inconceivable that a man in his right mind
would cast such treasures aside
smallish ******* still-firm protruding from the blouse
        beneath the off-sweater
breathing in – breathing out

He knew so very little about female biology,
        being a man was difficult enough
curious to learn more about her “change of life”
almost apologetic about her wrestling with
         sweater on – sweater off
yet wise enough to steer clear, leaving such questions unasked.

The distraction for him was much more approval, than gawk
wondering whether she would quietly smile
during the occasional too long glare
or would she alley-slap him silly for being so brutishly insensitive
ogling while she struggled with sweater on – sweater off

Pen in hand, head down, back-to-work, such questions left unasked
                              although the appreciation continues.......
Based on a true story.  It was hard to concentrate - and not only because the woman was a lovely character.  For some reason I took notice of her struggle.  I've seen it before but never to the extent I did that day.  Lovely moments.
Mystic Hunter Jul 2015
My style says a lot about my personality,
I agree.
I love sweaters,
long sleeves.

They comfort me when the cold has no mercy on my skinny arms.
They cover up the cuts both you and I made.
It's also closed and fully covered,
like me.

Sometimes I admit it gets warm so sleeves had to be rolled up,
but then a new part of me is exposed
parts of me that I love but you don't.
So at times I take the heat,
not risking being bad
but just because you don't like it doesn't make it bad
so why then do you scold me!

"We live in a warm country so sweaters aren't seen often"
you always use the weather as an excuse for me to take off my sweaters
then make scrapes on my exposed arms.
but now it's going to take more than just the weather to stop me from wearing sweaters.

Yes, I do intend on managing what I wear
All those times you thought  wasn't listening, I heard you!
I promise you, in time I'll take it off;
but not before I heal.
The best way to deal with pain is to learn from it and grow rather than holding it all in
Like the songs on the radio
I began to love you

Like Sweaters I wear 
I wished I could hold you

This winter
I want to kiss you endlessly forever

In my deepest dreams
I want to love you forever baby

But on your Sweaters 
Blend with me tonight baby

Let’s entertain each other 
Let’s have a good time

Collecting memories 
Side by side 
I can’t do it by myself

It has to be 
You & I 
In those photo’s

Will be art 
We could create together

Morning 
Or
Night

It doesn’t matter 
Because We are at the beginning of happier days together

unlike any we’ve ever felt before
Brighter glow 
Brighter future
Places we’ve never touched 
Sounds we’ve never heard
Begins to flow again

On our chilled bones 
Makes it all okay 
To kiss on this beautiful night

favour it, romanticised it 
With your dearest dreams
Remember sweaters are there remembrance
Like flower to flower

I all makes sense to me
Every time I write this poetry 
I forget your name 
In my thoughts

winter love be sweet
Long and unending
Cuddling in sweaters
In the most beautiful ways
Travis Alston
Andrea Svanne Jun 2014
Blue is the sky on hot summer days when you're holding a cold drink in your hand,
Blue is the winter sickness with warm sweaters and hot tea,
But blue is
Loving this
Kinara Apr 2014
hoodies and sweaters, hoodies and sweaters
even in the summer, nobody questions it
a couple of times she's been caught bare armed
a couple of people have seen her scars
her secret is safe but when will it end?
when will she be able to wear short sleeves and swim?
she knows she cant keep living her life like this
but shes addicted to the beautiful pain razors give
she loves the blood, she loves the scars
she loves the pain that comes from tearing her skin apart
she loves the fresh pink scars that are new
she loves the old faded brown ones too
most people would never understand
if the knew they would think she's an alien
this is one of my most favorite poems that i've ever wrote even tho it is very negative
M Seifert M Mar 2013
I want you
I want someone to want me
but
you don't want me

please want me

don't!
I'm broken
you don't want a leaky faucet
that
self repairs
with duct tape and silly putty

I'll recite you the backs of cereal boxes
and
throw away the locks on the doors of our common places
I'll keep a smile on mine if your face feels too tired from the weight of what your mind is speaking out your eyes

Everything.
Every string
that hangs off of well worn sweaters
snags on finger nails and pealing calluses.

I'll draw the curtains
if
and ONLY
IF
you first admit that you
are
BEAUTIFUL.
and i know it.

Your doubt should drown.
We'll drink it down.
Sipping wine only to set the scene
because
WE
already ditched our inhibitions
and
we decided that what was best for each other was to feeds each other's needs with the other's body.

This letter.
This note.
To you.
The long lost women of my dreams
the shape shifting goddess
who floats freely through the open windows of my memories.
Will this be enough to summon spirits to lift me to your level without being beaten to life by a trigger happy judge's gavel?

I built my prison to your specifications.
The measurements may be off
but
the bed...
The bed is warm
and cozy.
And
it fills my heart to see your cheeks turn that rosy
rosy red
that same
rosy red
that fills my heart
and
flows through yours.
Kept inside
but
peaking out in moments of vulnerability.
Shed your false
heavy
layers of security
toss them in the water and...

Flush skin of lips and finger tips
other places where my mind can only wander
wondering where in the world we will
meet again.

It's half past ten or some other hour,
I don't know and you don't mind
because
we're alive!
and our heart beats will set the pace
keeping time in place.

THE STORM IS LOUD
MY VOICE
is softer
now...

Okay--

Alright--

*
I'll give you your space{













But
YOU
BETTER FLY.
And NO MATTER HOW HIGH
NOW IS YOUR CHANCE TO SHOW
to TRULY KNOW the color of your wings.

And
I'll continue singing
because
someone else may be listening.
And
although these tears won't quench my thirst
I'm learning more about myself through my time searching
through my ***** laundry:
Bags of rags
and forgotten junior high and high school notebooks.

Failed jokes took to heart
the stinging silence of laughter kept inside.

Broken funny bones
NUMBED by repetition [repetition]
DUMBED down
COMFORTABLE BEING SUBMISSIVE

Well, I'm not sorry
NOT SORRY
to tell you
this mouse
whose mouth you shut is now stirring

Stirring the ***
Kept at temperature
All the right spices and slices and dices to enlighten you as to what the taste of life is.
.............................................................­.................................................
Please sit, here is your chair.
I love what you've done with your hair!
let me know if you would like seconds
but
that depends on if you brought your appetite.
I know I'M Hungary [hungry]
but
I won't slurp my soup if it offends you.

We'll take it slow
because
I know that
I still don't know you that well yet.
And I think we both could cool it down on the unnecessary judgement.
I'd really like to know you well, so I won't try to sell you anything that you're not buying.
And call me out if you think I'm lying, but I promise to be as honest as you want.

But it's a two way street
and I know you're probably tired from running down it so long
in which case I would gladly rub your feet
or your shoulders if you'd like to be a bit more discrete.

However, it still may be too soon for that
in which case I'll take a couple steps back.

Do you like music?
How bout dancing?
It doesn't have to be romantic
I just enjoy the feeling when I'm moving to the rhythm in time with other bodies.

Does you mind maybe feel clearer now that your body's moving free
or
are you holding back because you falsely feel that you lack the ability to let the music move

Your soul's of you feet.

Let go
and hold on to me.
I won't let you fall unless you're ready
but I'll catch you
please don't worry.

We are free
here.

Let's just be
here.

Forget fear
and see where that takes us
in a year.

Or more
Or less
Or until you decide
that your dress
is not
the most comfortable thing
you
could be wearing...

I'm just glad we can share the same air
and not care that our hair's getting messy.

But...
This...
is the best I've felt.

In a loooong while...

Spinning out of control
Lying
With you here next to me.
Cat Fiske May 2015
she owned scars,
but also owned,
the best,
sweater collection,
10w
Leo Jul 2018
Never what you were,
my retina dulled your rays.
Optics adrift in poetry, prose,
charity shop sweaters.

I spoke of dreamed ambition.
You nodded, morose.
Eyes chasing space.
Never what you were.

Bookshelves, potted plants, a bicycle bell ringing.
Coffee steam clawing New Zealand winds.
This and more flickered in our hazed tethering,
only snuffed when the tap of illusion ran cold.
samasati Nov 2012
I believe in smiling at strangers. I believe in saying hello. I believe in shyness. I believe in fear of rejection. I believe in the need of affection. I believe in the need of reminders. I believe in candles, especially those that smell of vanilla or christmas. I believe in wearing small crystals around my neck. I believe in energetic vibrations. I believe in colours - I think each person has their own colour. I believe every feeling is valid. I believe in chapstick and I believe in mascara that doesn’t clump. I believe in nail polish - every colour of nail polish. I believe that the only reason we lie is because we fear something. I believe in poetry. I believe in bluntness. I believe in the intention behind words, but I don’t necessarily believe in words. I believe in travel. I believe in travelling solo. In fact, I believe in travelling so much that it is pretty much all I want to do. I believe in music. Boy, do I believe in music. I believe any kind of musical composition can change a person. I believe music can cure depression. I also believe music can feed depression. I believe a melody can say more than lyrics and I believe that lyrics can be what someone couldn’t put together themselves to explain exactly how they are feeling. I believe anyone can create a song, even though they believe they cannot. I believe a single note can sound like the most beautiful sound in the world. I believe if someone records a song when they’re in an ugly mood, the ugliness emits to its listeners and can drain them. I believe in art. Of course I do. I believe in acrylic paint. I believe in oil paint and watercolours, but not as much as I believe in acrylic. I believe in fingerprinting. I even believe in painting with your toes. And I believe in dancing; even if it looks weird. I believe in flailing your arms even, as long as it feels good and right. I believe in dancing ‘til you sweat, though I don’t like that icky feeling too much. I believe that a babe can be a very ugly person and a physically unattractive person can be a very beautiful person. I believe that people who smile are beautiful. I believe that people who frown are beautiful too, just in a different way. I believe that there are sincere smiles and there are manipulative smiles. I believe that some people just know how to use their eyes well. I believe in eye contact. I believe in engaging. I believe in listening and dropping everything else that is going on in your mind just to listen to what a person is trying to share with you. I believe in sharing - sharing cookies and sharing love. I believe in the frosty cold. I believe that it doesn’t have to feel as cold as it really is. I believe that people complain a lot. I believe that people often have too much pride to be happy. I believe that we should embrace our discomforts and shames, that we should welcome them wholeheartedly so that we can be happy. I believe in honesty. I believe in empathy. I believe in tea. I believe in jelly donuts but only on certain occasions. I believe in quirky bow ties. I believe in knit toques and mittens and scarves. I believe in dresses. I believe in flirting. I believe in coffee in the morning. I believe in big comfy beds. I believe in walking around your empty house in your underwear or birthday suit, singing loudly. I believe in singing in the shower. I believe in singing on the street. I believe in stage fright. I believe in meditation, though I don’t really strictly set times to do it anymore. I believe mundane activities can be done in a meditative state of mind. I believe in clarity. I believe in not judging people because everyone is human. I believe every human has something very interesting about them. I believe in boring people too. I believe in christmas music - not the radio kind, the choral kind. I believe in cheap sweet wine. I believe in Billy Joel and I believe in The Beatles. I believe in Regina and Sufjan too. I believe that the ukulele is a very overrated instrument. I believe in having healthy hair. I believe in moisturizer. I believe in getting to pick a coloured toothbrush at the dentist. I believe in thick wool socks. I believe in baggy sweaters. I believe in yoga gear but I do not believe in sweatpants. I believe that yoga is one of the healthiest things for a person - ever. I believe in buying a friend drinks or dinner once in awhile. I believe in collecting shoes and scarves and rings. I believe in chords but I don’t really believe in jeans. I believe in hot chocolate with whip cream but not with marshmallows. I believe in dorky Christmas sweaters. I believe in baking cookies instead of cake. I believe in eating disorders - I do not support them, but I do believe they are much more severe and various than most people think and I believe there should be better/proper help for those who suffer instead of the usual cruel inpatient/outpatient care. I believe in trichotillomania and I believe in dermatillomania and the severity and impact it can have on its sufferers. I believe in gardens. I believe in every single flower. I believe that everyone is always doing their best. I believe that most people love to struggle. I believe in hope. I believe in having faith in yourself. I believe in iPod playlists. I believe in gym memberships in the winter, not the summer unless it’s to swim. I believe in matching underwear every day. I believe in Value Village. I believe in singing in bus shelters when you’re waiting for the bus. I believe in dressing up according to holidays. I believe in Grey’s Anatomy and I believe in Community. I believe in skirts and dresses that twirl like the ‘ol days. I believe in longboards more than skateboards. I believe in plaid like most young people do. I believe in bows in my hair, but not as much as I used to. I believe in foot massages and hand massages. I believe in reflexology and reiki and essential oils and chakras and crystals and holistic nutrition. I believe in anxiety; even crippling anxiety. I believe in awkward romances. I do not believe in flip flops. I do not believe in Beatles covers unless they are really insanely good; then my mind is blown. I believe in having long enough nails to scratch someone’s back appropriately. I also believe in biting nails. I do not believe in telephone calls unless I am extremely comfortable with the person. I believe in blogs. I believe in journals. I believe in naming special inanimate objects like journals, instruments, technology and furniture. I believe in the idea of cats more than I believe in cats. I believe in sharpies or thin pointed permanent markers. I believe in temporary tattoos. I believe in streaming movies online. I believe in royal gala apples. I believe in avocados. I believe in rice cakes. I believe in popcorn. I believe in airports but I hate the LA airport. I believe in openly talking about *** but I don’t believe in making it seem shameful and gross. I believe there should be no shame regarding sexuality. I believe in reading some great books more than once. I believe in laying on the couch under cozy blankets, watching a great suspenseful tv show or movie. I only believe in having a couple bites of cheesecake. I don’t really believe in lulu lemon. I don’t believe many people can pull off the colour yellow. I believe in buttons over zippers even though zippers are easier, they just look kind of dumb and cheap. I believe in the sun and the moon equally. I believe in closets over dressers. I believe in staring out the window for a good hour or so.
Robb Aug 2013
See the sadness in my eye, if you took the time to look
But most people believe the lie, sinker line and hook
Embarresed to talk bout the feelings in my mind
So I internalize it all, get used to it in time
But the darkness never fades, it is always on the edge
Looking at these lines, that are dropping A from read
The scars will never disappear, remind me of my past
Even though I have moved on from that, fear that they aren't last
Still plague me in my dreams, wether waking or asleep
So I try to ignore the demons creeping out of me
They escape in time alone, but surrounded I'm no better
Short sleeves it's apparent, kinda like my scarlet letter
D for depression or M misunderstood
People say they're here to help, but tell me how you could
Do you get the pain I live with? Is it something you understand?
Do you lay awake at night, with a razor grasped in hand?
Does your arm run red, when the worlds too much to bear?
Or do you have another means to get you out your head?

So don't tell me you get it, sympathy for me's no good
Rather when you see me with my headphones on and hood
Don't tell me that it's nothing and don't think that you know better
Cause chances are there's reason behind wearin long sleeved sweaters
I don't mean to be scarin kids or give the wrong impression
It's just the more you know, the more you'll understand depression

It's sad how no one gets it, get judges it's so offensive
Like an expletive instead of answering a question
It's me, my scars my life
Not you, your kid your wife
Your ******* a bit too tight
Try to loosen up inside
Cause it's not your life that's ******
Not your problem you're in luck
Never wish this **** on anybody, no ifs ands or buts
Tormented by day, live with terror in the night
Cause the shade envelopes me no matter how I fight
Just gave up, my wall collapsed
Defenses didn't last
So I caved in let the darkness have a blast
Say it's just phase, **** I wish that **** were true
But it disappears then returners stronger in a day or two
The numbness creeps up higher, reaching for my brain
Then finally it's became part of every nerve and vein
Encompasses my body and it takes over control
Until the days fade together, looking like a blur
This is not a joke, you just probably don't know
Ive been dealin with this it's begun to take a toll

So don't tell me you get it, sympathy for me's no good
Rather when you see me with my headphones on and hood
Don't tell me that it's nothing and don't think that you know better
Cause chances are there's reason behind wearin long sleeved sweaters
I don't mean to be scarin kids or give the wrong impression
It's just the more you know, the more you'll understand depression

I get so **** frustrated when I hear these people hate
About how weird those scars look, they don't take a second or wait
Try to figure out the meaning, or the reasoning behind
All the anger or the sadness that could cause the kind of drive
That would force the decision to drag across your skin
A razor or a knife or a lit cigarette end
But to me that **** means something that to you it never could
Because livin it myself has brought me closer to
The truth that lies beyond what these people have forgot
It's not your place to judge anyone who's cut
Cause chances are your wrong, and you probably make worse
Cause from experience that won't make them think first
It's just another reason to be done with your surroundings
To disappear inside and become hard as granite
To live to die to choose
Some alleviate with *****
While others turn to pills or *** to get them out the mood

So don't tell me you get it, sympathy for me's no good
Rather when you see me with my headphones on and hood
Don't tell me that it's nothing and don't think that you know better
Cause chances are there's reason behind wearin long sleeved sweaters
I don't mean to be scarin kids or give the wrong impression
It's just the more you know, the more you'll understand depression
Song lyrics
beth winters Nov 2010
broken glass and christmas lights that don't light up anymore, i hung you about with glitter and gold, called you art, kissed your face. there were tattered things on our clothes, i spit words into the gutter and they ran down the stream into the ocean where the letters got tangled with a sting-ray, a clown fishes fins. tiny fawns painted themselves across your palms, they sung me to sleep at night, wandering down my back and across my nose when i couldn't breathe because there was something knotting my veins into pretty patterns, stopping the bloodflow and shutting down my liver slowly. ric-rac danced two-steps and alcohol-drenched cakes infiltrated tea parties where lace was all the rage and ladies always wore gloves, *** was a thing never spoken about. the fifth most dangerous city in the us took me under its wing, tucked me into train station corners while paedophilia took hold of the government and shook us soundly. people held candles into the night sky when the family was killed, when the police asked if they were involved with drugs, when tiny bodies littered the basement because they were old enough to identify the killer. notebooks and traced fingerprints hung on the walls like christmas decorations before thanksgiving, pictures of you taken in secrecy, dipped in fluid that looks black in the dark room.

i knit sweaters. they have rabbits and bears and deer on the front.
Quinn Pascal Jul 2013
'Sweaters are hugs you can wear'
I heard someone say
   So if you were a sweater, Id wear you all day
simple but it makes me happy
Antino Art Apr 2018
We wear this city on our feet
Planting our roots with each step
Our shadows

cast shapes of ancient oak trees stretching out over old squares at daybreak
We grow here

with the spirit of buildings past,
present and rising like a staircase to heaven in the distance,
the plumes of white smoke from their rooftops as burnt offerings for incense,
spires for steeples,
the bundled masses of people moving beneath as the calloused soles
of our feet pounding the pavement,
Our congregation

seated in reverant silence on the R-Line hissing to a stop
Their hushed prayers filing out from within to bring the reclaimed sidewalks of Fayetville Street back to life to join this pilgramage
They march

downtown toward Capitol
holding signs for disarmament
They bar-hop through Glenwood toasting to deliverance
They move in a blur of faces that become us,
Rush at all hours through our veins
Cross our hearts and keep us breathing,
Moving
wearing the city on our minds
like the greyest pieces of their winter sky and the way it caps the peaks of Mount PNC, BB&T and Wells Fargo like hoodies over our heads
We assume monk-like appearances
in robes color-coded by season- from blue collar sweaters to cold hard sweat
We'll wear their city until we're worn out and wet,

We'll wear their dreams at night
like streetlamps flickering on beneath wired telephone poles carrying conversations about each one as far south as Florida, fears unspoken, made visible
on iron park benches too cold to sit on at this hour
We'll keep walking

and wear this city like backpacks over our shoulders

under the watch of their heavens,
the skyline
a glowing testament
of every step taken
toward someplace higher.
MeanAileen Dec 2017
Oh how I hate
this time of year,
with the stupid songs
and holiday cheer...
Annoying bell ringers
outside the store,
and the tacky wreaths
hanging on the door.
Cardboard calendars
filled with waxy treats,
ice and snow making
death traps of streets.
Frazzled parents
spending more then they should
on ungrateful kids
who are far from good.
Fake smiles & wishes
in the "spirit" of it all,
the blow-out sales-
the crowds at the mall.
The hour long line
to see Santa the phony
who falsely promises
an x-box or a pony.
Having to gather
with family who annoy,
gifting another cheap
Chinese-made toy.
Fire hazards
strung with tinsel and lights,
tensions leading
to fun Christmas fights!
Secret Santas-
holiday parties for work-
ugly sweaters
making you look like a ****.
The stress of having
an enormous list
and a tiny budget
just makes me ******!
No, nothing seems jolly
or merry or bright...
Oh how I can't wait
till post-Christmas night!
My ode to the holidays!!
And no, I'm not a TOTAL Grinch, I just play one in November and December!!
Black Love May 2019
What are these emotions?
woolen sweaters that smell of moth *****

Do you know how moth ***** smell?
the reek of self-pity
indulgence
shame
an aroma so strong
everyone can smell it radiating from me

Do you know how the wool scratches?
wrapped around my insides
their hot embrace
itching without cease
an intensity growing until it burns
if I could see the irritation
those ugly red raised bumps
I would see hundreds
covering every inch these sweaters touch

Why is it so hot in here?
I’M BURNING
oh
because I’m wearing so many sweaters
a salmon sweater
a teal sweater
a lavender, marigold, and beige sweater
so many sweaters I can’t count
colors all horribly ugly
covering up the pure black inside
if I could just see it untainted
it would be beautiful
black so deep and endless
to lose myself inside of
I WANT to lose myself inside of it

these ******* sweaters

Why don’t I just take them off?
a lovely black box
right over there
small
takes up such little space
YES
take them all off
cram them into this too small box
shove them in fast
FASTER
now wrinkled
and a little damaged
not that I care

Why should I care?
wait
I don’t
I don’t care much about anything anymore
and it’s lovely
Kyle John Somer Oct 2012
We are all so very fragile.
Our sun kissed porcelain faces
are freckled with Achilles heel fault lines and chipped paint.
Shining through to our nervous nervous system and our tendency to over think things.
We hide so much inside of us.
Behind dance less masquerades
Our bodies held together only by cages of ivory bones
cages that cradle the thin winged heart beats of our chest
nervous moths stumbling around inside
knocking books off of shelves and
eating the sweaters that we use to keep our hearts from freezing over.

The autumn wind is cold like sad glaciers
and it's easy to break down at times like these.
Our bones ache and shriek like boiling tea kettles.
Making it hard not to shatter.

We are all so fragile.
Burnt out light bulb fragile.
Frozen lake fragile.
Defibrillated heartbeat fragile.
We are broken branch fragile
chronic alcoholics sobriety fragile.
The middles school girls reaction to the word “fat” fragile
We are the kind of fragile that set off big bangs.
We are, paranoid breakable.
And its got to the point where
we have begun taping up our light leak vulnerabilities
with perceptions of perfection and thoughts of rejection
spending our time in dark rooms as our minds just keep reeling
and trying to shut off feelings and unwind
but we have been over exposed to such ****.
To slides and slides of negative negatives

we used to burst apart with so much light.

but the sun isn't shining honest, the night sky is black
and its raining in all the wrong ways.
We're out of season.
sewing up the holes in our personality
with floods of insecurities and droughts of identity.
damning what matters.

****, its hard to know what matters.

But I am still trying to figure that one out
And the moths are still here
as the pendulum clocks keep ticking
eating the sweaters that we used
to keep our hearts from freezing over.

But we are freezing to the core.
The atoms inside of us splinting into half lives;
we haven't even lived half of our lives
yet we feel so ancient.
The dust piles growing on our slanted bookshelves shoulders
Our bright idea light bulbs flickering,
getting covered up by snowdrifts.

We are gas giants wrapping ourselves into open space darkness
hiding from the bright side of the moon.
Like a black cat superstition we are running from our own precondition
of lying about being ourselves
We pull dark black-hole hoods over our eyes
wincing at the light trails of shooting stars
though we, too, want to be brilliant.
We try to orbit the sun hoping that humanity is a symphony;
that being popular and having the most friends is what matters.
and we can be where the grass is always greener by fitting in and by being mirrors
Even though not being yourself is nauseating.

We can be nauseating, we can be mirrors.

Because we are scared that if we don't
hide who we really are
we may end up like Pluto.
Ostracized for existing.
floating around in space having stare downs with wormholes
A shivering rock entity with a complete loss of identity.

We already are so lost.
Our souls waning and waxing
Rocking back and forth
on wood beams and porches.
like an ADD moonbeam rocking chair.

But now its time to stop in one place and readjust our backbones.

Because I know that we are fragile, I know that.
I know that its hard filling in the cracks that have found their way down our back-stabbed spines
we all have our histories with being dropped and rejected.
But we weren't made to be cardboard box people,
packing tape and labels wrapped in all of the wrong places.
we are boxes full of wormholes into other dimensions
we are full of life and blood and bones,
full of oceans and stardust and daggers
There is so much more to us than our brown paper complexions.
So climb out of those kangaroo pouch caves that you have called home for the last few years
There's no need hiding anymore.
You can be safe in your own skin.
You can climb the Himalayas and scream out as many lightning rods as you want
we will all be listening as you burst apart into thunder claps.
As you bleed yourself into infinity

So, dim the lights

Throw your self at the world
and crash like waves into existence
you are perfect when you are yourself.
Grab that porcelain off of your face
and let your smile super nova fracture into a cosmic grin of constellations.

People will look up to you and be inspired.
A cardboard box rookie sprawled out in the stars.
Lighting up all of our faces with E.T. fingertips.
No longer hiding being reflective eclipses
There's only one person who can tell you who you are.
Only you can speak for yourself.

I know that your fragile
I know that.

We all are..,
Josie Patterson Feb 2015
I’ve been conditioned
like freshly washed hair
for years
do not offend
unless the end of the sentence is “im sorry”
let the shoes and boots and heels of many make indents on you
like blueprints of demurity swaddled in insecurity
kept alive by the blurry ideas i once held about femininity
because i couldn't be a girl if the words that flew from my chords
were anything but rosy
ring around the Josie, pockets full of suppose he was to compliment your ****
when walking down a thorough-fair
busy people back and forth and grandmas with wrinkled sweaters
thank you
muttered from chapped lips and an even more chapped psyche
why must i keep my wits about to not risk making him angry
that was not complimentary but i am fearful he might spit my words back onto me
in the form of fists and slurs and honestly
im tired
of being the sidewalk beneath the feet of creeps
i am the sky and the trees and the moon
but i do not speak with the wisdom of travelling seeds
i speak with the warmth and subtlty of freshly microwaved milk
like soft silk i wish i could tatter
i wish venom soaked words could be spit in response to your “compliments”
but i would rather let you diminish me for the few moments it takes to objectify me
than to risk angering your inner beast and suffering the consequences of meninism or masculinism
whatever the word is this week
i will not be another number
ink soaked paper red with the monthly bloodshed of the sisters
every second is another unspeakable act
i see women
with tongues as round and large as planets
and tonsils the size of solar systems
birthing new galaxies in the words they speak
and shooting comets like fiery ***** of comebacks
when that slack-jawed fool sat and wished and drooled
into his monthly issue of mens rights magazine
she tore down the even minuscule belief he could have had that he had the right to comment on her body
in three seconds his pride, and entitlement
shifted into shame
and embarrassment
and i envy these women
because the only time i can take back my power
is when i am standing in front of a room
speaking rhymes and metaphors preaching independence and strength
to a group of people who now think i am a hero
i am not a hero
i put my shoes on one foot at a time
and i still manage to forget a couple days of birth control here and there
and i cant stand up for myself
in the moments after an attack i retreat into my latte and pray today will not be the day the male dominated society takes my power away
because i am small
and though i am growing every day
i still can only pray
that one way or another
i will be able to be as strong a woman as my sisters
my mother
and take back my power
and speak not with the beauty of a flower
but with the sharpness of a bumblebees sting
and one more thing
your compliments
are not complimentary
michael capozzi May 2014
and now we’re standing in a dark room full

of colors and we left our morals in the bowl

with our only means of leaving. we started 

singing lyrics to songs we didn’t know,

but we got lost in the beat so nothing

else really mattered; we became our own beat

and you couldn’t help but smile at my

mistakes because i laughed at yours.

and when you leave, you couldn’t help

but care for my safety and i couldn’t 

even make you smile but mine was sufficient

enough. i can give you heaven, darling.

and it’s just so hard to think when my brain

is full of making pictures about how the sky

would look in your eyes

and how the ocean smells

on your breathe and how the sun looks 

when it alters your hair. tell me

when it’s appropriate that i hold your skin

without wandering wallowing away with

nowhere to head but the top of mine.

play with my words and pick out each syllable

you hate and throw it in the ocean, i need to

hear the waves speak to me at least once.

hold on to my memories because

i want your dna on them, i want to know what it

feels like to intertwine you within my brain.
summer 2011. **** i thought you were the best thing that ever happened to me. what a gem
barely audible, like the leaves falling at night
the trees shed their autumn sweaters
as we shed ours for each other
and it was the sound of
two bodies breathing together
in the sanctity of solitude

and they are solemnly at peace
one for convenience,
one for the love
she quivers like the breeze
he misses the love he can no longer see.

we are just two broken phantoms
left hollow by the beginnings and ends.
it all bleeds together
after a while

so we go grabbing,
struggling for that release
from some love that made its way free
wont you reach with me, darling?

waiting for you to open your eyes
and see me in a different light
is like me trying to find
the courage for the demons i have to fight.

so maybe it's time
for me to open my mind
to learn how to look you in the eye
without falling for you
every
****
time.
Danny Z Sep 2018
As Autumn approaches,
my mind drifts to the decaying leaves,
Halloween,
the cool, crisp breeze...
The communal understanding that eternal heaven comes only with
death—
that Summer must always go.
And that beloved Autumn must always usher in bitter Winter who lays the foundations
for an exalted Spring.
Oh hell...I hope for a long Autumn, I want to make it stay—
like a host who lectures his party guest for too long
so he won't look at his watch.
Oh how I need the frumpy sweaters and pumpkin heads on window sills!
Oh how I need the billowing steam from milky beige cocoa,
the misty light rain in the gray of the morning,
the high canopy of fleshy red flakes!
And echoes of children laughing as they eat candy on their way home from trick-or-treating—reminding me that life can be enjoyed
with sacred rituals and good company.
I need Autumn personified—
a cool-headed, crackling-fireplace-girl.
A quilt-maker, cloud-gazer, two-dogs-and-a-cat bookworm.
Someone comforting like oatmeal.
Someone surprising like the first day of school.
I need Autumn.
I need Autumn but it never seems to need me too.
Forty Days

A Season of Grief, a Season of Rejoicing

November 9-December 20, 2014

For Barbara Beach Alter 
It is Christmas morning in Saco, Maine, where today Bett, Aaron, Emily, Thomasin and our beloved cousin Marie find ourselves gathered to celebrate our first Christmas without dadima (our name for Barbara Beach Alter).  Brother Tom writes that already in India he and Carol with Jamie, Meha and Cayden (the only of her seven greatgrandchildren Barry never held) have celebrated.  Today Marty and Lincoln join us in Maine.

This gathering of documents—notes, drafts of memorial services, poems, homilies—is my christmas present to each of you.  It is a record, certainly subjective, of grief and rejoicing.

John Copley Alter
1:14 a.m.
Saco, Maine 
November 9

Loved ones,
Barbara Beach Alter died peacefully at 2:55 Sunday morning (today).  Bett and I had the good fortune to be there for the final beating of her good strong heart.  She murmured charcoal.  The nurse who was bathing her afterwards noted how few wrinkles there were, and it is true.
For those of you nearby you may if you want visit Mom in her room at hospice this morning (until noon).  Visit? Darshan? Paying respects?
Bett and I plan to be there around 11:00.
Much love to all. A blessed occasion.
John


November 10

Matthew 5:13-19
Jesus said, "You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot.
"You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.
"Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets; I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not one letter, not one stroke of a letter, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, will be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven."

yesterday in the early hours my mother died her saltiness
restored all that had through the months of her old
age and convalescence obscured the lens of her life cleaned
away so that for us now more and more clearly
as we hear about her through the memory and love
of so many people her good works shine forth in
their glory but it is to the days of her
convalescence the days of her dementia I would turn our
minds those of us who spent time with her at
Wingate long-term care facility remember that Barbara Beach Alter became
at times fierce in her commanding us that ‘not one
letter, not one stroke of a letter’ of the commandments
should be altered do you remember that those of you
and us who were given the work and gift of
spending time with Barry in those days in that condition

remember for instance how fussy she became about the sequence
of food on her tray how impatient with us for
our trespasses and violations how adamant that we look forward
for instance and not back at her how she would
say stop holding my hand and saying you love me
you have work to do o she was almost impossible
and certainly incoherent and demented in her obsession with law
and procedure fussy impatient imperious I do not forget being
scolded reamed out put in my place for having somehow
failed to do what the ‘law and the prophets’ demand

Barbara beach alter in the days before hospice in the
nursing home and hospital and even if we are honest
in the final years of her life found herself caught
up in the rigidity of her anxious desire to be
faithful to the laws and commandments of her life and
that made her at times extremely demanding to be with

amen and the epistemological confusion of course the clash between
her reality and ours it was all an ordeal for
her and for those of us who kept her company

and yet and yet through it all and now as
that ordeal for her is no longer paramount as she
dances in heaven all the wrinkles and discomfort of her
life removed and forgiven Barbara Beach Alter kept the faith
living in the midst such that those who cared for
her most intimately the strangers all professed your mother blessed
us


Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
9 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.



So, brother and sister, here are my thoughts about the memorial service(s).
Let’s find a time when we three can be present; that’s the most important thing.  My life is currently the least constrained by agenda and schedule.  And then the grandchildren, recognizing that Jamie may not be able to come.  So, our work is to find our when our kids are able to come. Bett and I are exploring that with our three, each of whom has some constraint: Emily, the cost; Thomasin, the piebaking demands, Aaron school.  But we are flexible.

Much love.

John



Walking in my mother’s wake today some trees
a gentle breeze some dogs a little boy
the neighborhood and I took joy from interaction

we are at best a fraction in love’s
calculation after all heaven I realize is not
above or below cannot be taught comes naturally

as death does walking in my mother’s wake
I found new allies learned yet again not
to take myself too seriously to be caught

off guard as a matter of principle and
not to insist that I understand but live
in the midst of forgiveness


in my mother’s wake I am reading these books for
some way to continue to knock on her door Wendell
Berry he can tell me some things and William Blake
he can take me closer and I remember she described
me once as an unused Jewish liberal so I am
reading about protestant liberalism but ham that I am also
reading Carl Hiassen’s Bad Monkey and Quo Vadimus that my
daughter left behind and mythologically Reflections from yale divinity school
no fooling Denise Levertov David Sobel Galway Kinnell’s translation of
Rilke some wake

November 11

Matthew 25:1-13
Jesus said, "Then the kingdom of heaven will be like this. Ten bridesmaids took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. When the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them; but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. As the bridegroom was delayed, all of them became drowsy and slept. But at midnight there was a shout, 'Look! Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.' Then all those bridesmaids got up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish said to the wise, 'Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.' But the wise replied, 'No! there will not be enough for you and for us; you had better go to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.' And while they went to buy it, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went with him into the wedding banquet; and the door was shut. Later the other bridesmaids came also, saying, 'Lord, lord, open to us.' But he replied, 'Truly I tell you, I do not know you.' Keep awake therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour."

this morning in the wee hours my mother died one
of the wise bridesmaids whose lamp to the end was
full she carried always the flask of oil that is
joy that is the love of the kingdom of heaven
and of the bridegroom a flask always replenished by prayer
by devotion by a humble courageous living in the midst

she expected every day the bridegroom to come in other
words and she was also one who would never refuse
to share even the last drop with somebody in need

and at the end it is so clear the door
into the banquet hall was not closed to her as
it is not closed to any one of us foolishness
is to believe otherwise to believe that the bridegroom will
not come today in the early morning in the wee
hours that is when he comes in the midst of
other plans is when he comes even when we are
doing what we assume to be good work when we
are doing what gives us pleasure our duty joy comes
then unsummoned unpredictable random even according to all our best
laid plans my mother loved so many things her pleasure
included dancing late in her life terminally unsteady she invented
what we loved to urge her to do namely the
sitting jig and we grew up with images of her
Isadora Duncan dancing with white scarves in an enchanted forest

Barbara Beach Alter aka Barry aka dadima bari nani aunt
and daughter wife missionary is now I know dancing a
rollicking boisterous jig on the shores of a lake that
is as her grandson once confided to her god in
liquid form spilly Beach of course also dyslexic executive function
compromised she was but one who loved to be always
in the midst surrounded by loved ones some of them
absolute strangers she shared her oil because for her it
came welling up from an inexhaustible source a deep eternal
well of such illumination and laughter such giddy divine chuckles

for her there was to be no exclusion she would
not find the awful idea of being one of the
foolish applicable to anybody but happily she welcomed into her
midst so many it is hard to imagine how many

so there she is now a bridesmaid dancing for joy
in such elegant clothing with such perpetual brightness

amen hallelujah rejoice


sometimes I think she pulled us all out of the
magic hat sometimes I think she knit us all into
one of her theologically impossible sweaters and then with a
wink she passes through the eye of the needle and
is gone and we are left to play in her
honor endless hands of solitaire sometimes I think we are
no more than the hermeneutics of her life the epistemology
artless she was not her heart like one of those
magical meals for her then a doxology praise then praise
she knows salvation

what is a life’s work it is like a landscape
dotted with oases and gardens for the thirsty and the
lost it is like scraping through dry barren ground and
finding there suddenly not only the theology of paradise but
such seeds your hands ache to begin the planting what
is a life’s work what has been shut for too
long opens what has been shut for too long opens

a life’s work renews itself then with death the kernel
of hope that dies in springtime sprouting is what a
life’s work becomes

November 12

John 21:15-17
When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?" He said to him, "Yes, Lord; you know that I love you." Jesus said to him, "Feed my lambs." A second time he said to him, "Simon son of John, do you love me?" He said to him, "Yes, Lord; you know that I love you." Jesus said to him, "Tend my sheep." He said to him the third time, "Simon son of John, do you love me?" Peter felt hurt because he said to him the third time, "Do you love me?" And he said to him, "Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you." Jesus said to him, "Feed my sheep.

I know my mother very much enjoyed having breakfast with
god and that the meals of her nursing home drove
her nearly crazy and that when at last she found
hospice o she again could imagine the feast of heaven
at which Jesus breaks bread with us and speaks with
such clarity do you love me more than these I
know it was questions as simple and overwhelming as this
that dominated her final days do you love me love
being  one of the last five words she attempted to
speak do you love me she wrestled in her last
months with epistemology and psychology and theology and all had
to do with whether she could answer unequivocally you know
that I love you and that she could say of
her life that she had broken bread with god we
all remember in her life those moments when there was
a great gladness an innocent acceptance of what lay immediately
in her presence now those months in the nursing home
tormented her in precisely this fashion that it was hard
to accept to be in the midst of such mediocrity
and woe to be innocent and accepting but now praise
god there she is a happy guest at the great
feast and we left behind bereft can acknowledge that she
loved god in her own fashion as best she possibly
could and do you remember being with her there in
hospital or nursing home and she commanding us to move
beyond holding her hand and saying we loved her and
to feed the sheep to do that work which will
make of this earth this here and now an outstation
of heaven Barbara Beach Alter loved god in her own
fashion as best she possibly could we remember that and
that memory is today like a great network a web
of love and inspiration o we would gladly one more
time hold her hand and say I love you but
we know also clearly I think today what the work
is to love our neighbor as ourselves to work for
peace and justice I think of my sister with her
colleagues in WEIGO and how her sisters have understood her
grief  let us break our fast together then glad for
the worldwide web that in these days is reading the
gospel of the life of Barbara Beach Alter praise god


feed
tend
feed
in exchange for his three denials Peter is given three imperative verbs
feed
tend
feed
this is the commission Jesus after breakfast on the shore of the sea of Galilee gives to Peter
twice he says feed
in the commonwealth of Massachusetts 700,000 people are hungry
1 in 6 americans are hungry
living in uncertainty about their daily bread
more than 18,000,000 in Africa
842,000,000 around the world go to bed hungry


Marty and Tom
The thinking about the memorial service is taking this slow and cautious turn, namely that we have three services (at least), one in Sudbury, one in New Haven (allowing Stan and Chuck and others to come) at First Presbyterian (with Blair Moffett we hope), and of course one in India.
The date frame appears to be somewhere between December 17 and 20, unless you have other thoughts.
The actual cremation happens tomorrow.  Lincoln, Bett, Alexis and I will attend, and then of course there is In the Midst on Friday.
Love you more than tongue can tell.
John


the thing with a life well lived is that many
people have partaken the way let’s say a river moves
down through any number of different lives all the time
sedulously seeking the shortest path to the sea to steal
a line from somebody or other meandering a watershed within
which so many of us find a way to live
our own lives nourished and for each of us the
river distinct and different white water the slow fertile meander
the delta and we say to each other this is
the composite river


sometimes I feel like a sleepwalker trying to run a
marathon sometimes I feel like a speedbump in a blizzard

an arrow in a wind tunnel sometimes I feel like

a hazard sign in an old age home sometimes I
feel like a tyrannosaurus rex trying to ride a tricycle

and sometimes those are the good days when identity is
strong like an icicle in a heat wave is strong

I try to read wisdom literature at happy hour scotch
and Solomon can’t go wrong I think and sometimes I

feel like crying

November 13

four days ago we were left alone there with your
body after your breathing ceased and the proud stubborn beating
of your heart and in those four days beloved mother
so much I would love to say to you and
share the antics of the squirrel late leaves on the
neighborhood trees music Orion the network the atlas of love
your life has left behind and all the words we
are the gospel of today and I would sit with
you there then in silence as I sit now four
days later vigilant insomniac aware that the kingdom of heaven
is not more complicated than singing than love than dancing

we are all dancing the dance lord siva teaches and
the s
A haze of smoke
Blurs the picture
Lipstick stains the
Cigarette that flickers
Red painted nails
Tap the frozen rails
Champagne bottle,
Dating back to Versailles
Blacked out eyes, matching skin
Bruise alike
**** it with a shot of gin
Little white flowers
Shot with a polaroid
Symbolize my paranoia
Pastel colors litter my eyes
Watching the rain fall
As time flies by
Twinkling Lights of the city skyline
Closed eyes, sip of wine
Hot coffee, big sweaters
Take a sip, enjoy the weather
Old book
Faded maps
And worn out ball caps
Gold jewelry flashed about
Parties thrown in nthe underground
Now I begin, haven't you heard?
Aesthetic is in, what a beautiful word.
Tyler Loeslein Nov 2012
I think I’ll name this scar after you.
Not because you put it there,
or had anything to do with it at all,
but because I like it.
I like the way it makes me feel
or, I suppose,
the way it helped me
to not feel.
Kind of he way that you
make everything else,
especially the bad
feelings and thoughts,
Just disappear.

I think it’s kind of pretty.
Even if everyone else
pulls on my wrist,
yanking my arm to better their view,
and with disgusted looks
tell me how ugly it is.
They lecture me
on how I could do better,
how I AM better
than this scar,
than you.

I put that scar there,
on the delicate skin,
of the inside of my arm.
Its a place kept warm
with obnoxious sweaters
at Christmas parties.
You’re my plus one,
but no one knows,
because you’re tucked
safely inside my sleeve.
It’s an intimate place,
soft and innocent,
that, excluding my “art”,
is unblemished.
It isn’t touched by the evil
that fills the world
and follows me home
after class at night.
Which reminds me
of that one time
that you walked me home.

I’m naming it after you,
because despite the ignorant
thoughts of people
that refuse to even try
and understand me,
skipping the handshake
that accompanies introductions
and the exchange of names,
skip straight to judgment,
and voiced opinions
of how bad this scar is,
how bad you are for me.
I can’t help but disagree.

I name it after you,
because this scar is part of me,
and it always will be.
So I don’t really care
if you’re temporary,
like the scars that fade,
because unlike them,
you won’t really ever go away.
I’m naming it after you
to show just how serious I am
about how you’ve affected me.
Critiques and suggestions are always welcome :)
samasati Oct 2013
big sweaters, ghibli, acrylic paint, cafes, knit blankets and unplanned afternoon naps on the couch, gardens, bananas, vanilla almond milk, soft yarn to crochet into ****** scarves, candles after midnight, the big trees with bulky roots, patio furniture, pianos in random buildings, the internet, manatees, the boundless colours of nail polish, peanut butter & honey, rubber boots, pens that write well, fresh new notebooks, skylights, american netflix, mothers that understand, tête à têtes, one glass of sweet white wine, awkward eye contact that turns into comfortable kissing, airplanes, fresh air, baseball caps, the female collective, the really good dark chocolate, flowers, pumpkin spice lattes and ***** chai lattes, candid laughter, yoga, oceans, high waisted shorts, striped t-shirts, docile cats, playful pups, french presses, integrity, sunscreen, meerkats, penguins, chameleons, autumn leaves, fall fashion, ruby woo mac lipstick, osho, dynamic meditation, compassion, siblings, scrambled eggs, smart phones, garageband, metronomes, hot glue guns, quinoa, ferry boats, soft hands, bicycles, real people, fat snowflakes in ample, graceful *******, backpacks that don't hurt your shoulders, hair conditioner, multi-vitamins, soft sand under bare feet, people that own up to lies, clarity, samsara, satori, samasati, visions, echinacea, lavender oil and frankincense, ambrosia apples and ripe avocados, authenticity, Morgan Freeman's voice, good kissers, *******, iced tea on a hot day, curtains, the smell of beeswax, art galleries, hand massages and foot massages, reiki, plums, mild thunderstorms, soccer *****, good surprises, when birds don't **** on your head.
I wrote this with my momma one fine morning!
there is always so much more to add.
magnoliajelly Jun 2013
She needs him more.
She has never needed someone.
It scares her to feel herself functioning off of someone else.
She wonders if he loves her.
Her mother tells her that they need to love her more.

More than what?
More than you love them.

His eyes write love letters inside her body,
His hands smooth all creases,
All lines.

When he kisses her she feels like she'll never stop.
When he asks her to stay,
When he holds her in his bed,
She feels like she'll never leave.

She closes her eyes against his shoulder
And she cries because she believes that
She would never find him.

He smells like home and old books.
Like warmth and dust.
Like he had been waiting so long.
honey Dec 2016
i wear your sweaters when you're asleep & i wear them when your not home to remind me of who i am;
your girlfriend, your fantasy, the love of your life;
but suddenly my mind wonders who am i without you?
i've lost myself inside of you, i've buried myself deep beneath your ribcages & made home inside your chest;
but then i remember i never existed to begin with because i've always been a shapeshifter.
twisting & morphing into what everyone else wants me to be, forgetting that i have a body, a mind & a soul all of my own;
feeling guilty for taking a second to breathe through the bars on this jail cell window.
i've been laying on the floor like a carpet,
letting everyone walk on me & pretending that it's completely acceptable;
& i've always hosted the parties to give myself a sense of control when in reality all i'm doing is serving people.
but please, my love, don't misunderstand me;
my love for you is always here inside of me even if it's gone into hiding;
this illness clouding my brain has been growing from a pinprick into a wrecking ball;
turning everything into black & white as if i'm living on a zebras skin.
you always loved the yin & yang symbol, well that's how my mind self-destructs;
for anyone who doesn't know, the yin & yang symbolizes the good & the bad, with a little good in the bad & a little bad in the good;
a small light in the dark & a hint of shadow in the light;
except the way my mind works, there is no flicker of a flame in the darkness & darkness does not exist in the light;
at least that's how my mind perceives things...
when i'm treated with love & adoration, my heart suddenly beats & you are an angelic being i am undeserving of;
but then again i never deserved any form of happiness, according to my thoughts;
when i am treated with abuse & neglect (or what my brain tells me is abuse & neglect), i shut down my emotions & once again become a ghost to my own body;
but then again this hollow numbness is the home i grew up in...
i don't remember much of my childhood & sometimes i wonder if that's a good thing;
was it to protect myself from the horrors that i'm not sure even existed,
or was it really a wonderful childhood that i purposefully forgot so i could give all the blame to my family?
i don't remember much of my childhood but i know i forgot it to relieve myself of some of this pressure;
some of this pressure that pushes down on me every minute of every day;
how do you expect me to feel when every feeling i ever expressed was shoved back down my throat because it was too inconvenient for someone else;
how do you expect me to speak when i was trained to bite my tongue because i was always too intelligent for anyone else's comfort;
how do you expect me to live when all i've lived for was to satisfy the needs of those around me so i could feel worthy of the air in my lungs;
& when i say "you", i don't mean you, just you as one sole being, i mean everyone;
everyone i've ever met has expected something of me;
whether it be my body, my mind, my skills or my words,
my heart, my thoughts, my possessions or me;
& you my love, you are everything to me despite my contradictive actions,
because you're the only one who has ever taken a moment to look at me dead in the eyes & ask me with pure love & selflessness
well what do*  you  want...?
*...i wear your sweaters when you're asleep & i wear them when you're not home to remind me that you love me as much as i love you.
& you may be the only person that could truly know who i am.
Sarah Michelle Oct 2016
Sweaters may be bad for
lonesome people. Mind you, they don't
make up for a lack of

caresses. They heat the soul;
loose ones make it flirty. But no
cashmere can kiss your neck.
Diane Jan 2014
From whence this identity comes
Malts, hops, father’s approval  
What he holds in his arms
Is of no surprise
‘Just missing’ each other
Not likely coincidental
Star couplings, mishap earthlings
Persons never to be known
Crossed streets to  
Strange neighborhoods
Lawn games… how odd
In quiet hours on the highway
Gripping, understood, elusive and all wrong
Remembering, but more forgotten
Ring passed over luminescent waters
Love, not enigmatically magical
Autumn hues in baby fine hair
Righting the nightmares
Nothing mattered more than this.
CR Jan 2013
Lo
heartbroken, housebroken
I lost your nuance, pray remind me
redness across my chest, heat and too many voices at once

heartwarmed, housewarmed
big sweaters, his sweaters on your shoulders, no makeup
the basement with gray fabric trees, and baby kisses, and baby steps.

the milk-foam and the let’s-meet-again espresso hiding untouched posited tomorrow
among banana peels and pearls and tissue

and after, cranberry stains on teacups piled in the kitchen
(a very narrow human interval between two tiger heartbeats)
and tight sweaters, grown-up make-up
that same basement, blank before morning

and the Philosophe, my favorite couched villain over us
too many voices discussing horticulture or eternity
I Do Not Recognize Eternity, is what I told you

tigers slow down for the night, sometimes
--the quickest change of heart, is what you thought

and I, again, chose the stars.
Robert C Howard Sep 2018
Prophesies of impending fall
     creep stealthily over the Great Divide.
Gold-green Aspens shiver in the breeze
     like leagues of fibrous wind chimes
serenading the mountain slopes
     with aires of shimmering gold.

A few distant bugle calls echo
     across the Big Thompson valley
as bull elks warm up for the autumn rut.
     Sudden early gusts of frigid wind
bring waves of sleet and snow -
     in tune with the turning polar axis.

The greater chill is soon to come.
     The animals know it as do we.
Bears bulk up on grasses, roots and berries.
     Elk and deer drift down from the heights
To show their young the ways
      of the plains and river valleys.

We pull our sweaters on
     and toss another log on the flames
and greet the harbingers of approaching fall
    creeping stealthily over the Great Divide.

September, 2018
Kara R Aug 2012
The first thing you unwrapped
was a sweater.
It was covered in brown paper.
It was Christmas.
You looked it over and nodded,
threw it over the sofa's arm rest.

The last thing you unwrapped
was a Power Ranger.
It was still in its original box,
shiny and new.
You ripped it open immediately,
and played with it all through dinner.

You wore the sweater every night that winter
and many nights after.
You stretched its wool
and laundered its stripes
until it became unrecognizable.

You slept with that Power Ranger every night that winter.
You put it away after your birthday.
The paint's still crisp
and there's barely a scratch
except for that one time you accidentally dropped it down the stairs.

When you threw away the Power Ranger,
nobody was surprised.
Put it in a bag,
you didn't even bat an eye.

When you threw away the sweater,
and I asked you why,
you said, no reason,
you'd outgrown it
even though it fit you just fine.

You told me you were having problems,
and when you dumped her,
nobody was surprised.

You told me things were changing,
and I asked you why.
You said no reason, you'd just outgrown somethings,
we'd be fine.
And I believed you.


Looking back,
I always thought I was the Power Ranger
and she was the sweater.

I guess I was wrong about that, too.
The emus formed a football team
Up Walgett way;
Their dark-brown sweaters were a dream
But kangaroos would sit and scream
To watch them play.

"Now, butterfingers," they would call,
And such-like names;
The emus couldn't hold the ball
- They had no hands - but hands aren't all
In football games.

A match against the kangaroos
They played one day.
The kangaroos were forced to choose
Some wallabies and wallaroos
That played in grey.

The rules that in the West prevail
Would shock the town;
For when a kangaroo set sail
An emu jumped upon his tail
And fetched him down.

A whistler duck as referee
Was not admired.
He whistled so incessantly
The teams rebelled, and up a tree
He soon retired.

The old marsupial captain said,
"It's do or die!"
So down the ground like fire he fled
And leaped above an emu's head
And scored a try.

Then shouting, "Keep it on the toes!"
The emus came.
Fierce as the flooded Bogan flows
They laid their foemen out in rows
And saved the game.

On native pear and Darling pea
They dined that night:
But one man was an absentee:
The whistler duck - their referee -
Had taken flight.
Claire Elizabeth Nov 2013
Sweater weather*
Is
Better weather
And these big glasses
Don't hide much more than eyes
Guess I'm just a hipster.
Coral Estelle Dec 2012
Today you wear a black sweater.
Standing in the marshy December atmosphere
With a cigarette between your two most learned fingers
You do not take shame in such a habit
But you make it so appealing.

That day you wore a beige knitted number
I saw you at dinner, and recognized you right away
Your distinctive ****** features peeking out
Over the loosely woven yarn that hugs your torso
That face I still cannot quite figure out.

I watched that beige collared cloth
Hang down your back and angle at your neck
As you danced behind that girl I didn’t know
And then I watched that same sweater
Stumble on over to me, ecstatic to be there
I had no reason not to indulge you.

And when you wear your school’s sweater
I know you need to belong, and play a part
You’re a rugby star, a lettered fraternal success
But I also know that grey cotton crew neck
Clings closer to you, than I ever will.
Tim Russel May 2015
I love *****, big and small, I love *****, best of all.

I think ***** are lots of fun, I think ***** are number one.

I think ***** are really neat, they make me want to beat my meat.

I love ***** covered in lace, I love ***** rubbing my face.

I love ***** in leather black, those are huge, do they hurt your back?

I love ***** in bras of silk, make me want to say "got milk"?

I love ***** in a college dorm, and in a nurse's uniform.

I love ***** in tight red sweaters, or stretching against a t-shirt's letters.

I love ***** in t-shirts wet, hey you with the nice *****, have we met?

I love ***** in skimpy swim wear, I'm sorry, I can't help but stare.

I saw your cleavage from above, with your ***** I am in love.

Your ***** are giving me a ******, I'll have my pants off in a jiffy.

Your ***** have given me an *******, I want to do them without protection.

Your ***** have made me want to **** them. I even want to *****-**** them.
I had to write this....

i had to get it off my chest
Sarah Dec 2015
Old and stained,
ragged and worn,
with holes and even
unraveled and torn.
Love is like your favorite sweater,
well used and seen all kinds of weather.
After a few years
and several loose threads,
there may be holes that need mending.
Don't get too worried my dear,
as long as the time that you're spending
is carefully piecing the threads back together.
Love is like your favorite sweater.

— The End —