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You sit with me
at the lip of the abyss
I gaze
so longingly
Into the  maw

Tears flow, in free fall from my face
into the pit
into embrace

Teetering  ever  forward

Body Numb
mind dull                                                Skin on fire
                                                                 Thought popping like gunfire

Teetering   ever    forward  
                                                                Half to linger
                                                                    Half rooted still

Teetering     ever      forward

I'll call on God
for reprieve                                   Then, your hand sits gently on mine

Teetering           ever           Forward

                                                            Tears still flowing, this is not your place

Teetering ever forward                  

                                                                  But, I'll let you catch me anyway

Teetering   Ever    Forward
I'm so sorry you had to catch me again
Thomas Newlove Jan 2016
It's when you're teetering on the edge of insomnia,
When every pound of your being is exhausted
To the point where you're seeing colours,
Without recognising objects, people,
Kind souls, kindred spirits,
That you soar to the most wonderful place
Of creativity and life-fulfilling happiness,
Or at least if not happiness, then
Contentment or satisfaction.

But, like insomnia, that teetering
Is the fundamental factor -
Because that same day,
In that same continuation of euphoria,
You can be waiting for a train,
And whilst you teeter at the edge
Of the cold station platform walkway,
You can plummet to the depths of depression,
Return to those comforting, suffocating clutches,
And that cry for help is stifled
By the thundering railway carriages,
And all that is left is a ****** stain -
Stained in your mind,
The knowledge that you'll never escape those clutches,
That grasp for the underneaths of railway carriages
Or the cordless bungee of tall buildings,
The comfort of the warm ground below,
And, naturally, a poem,
Flittering away in the gust of the train
Storming through the station
Like your ever-dwindling happiness...
CK Baker Oct 2017
they’re pouring out of the
those pretentious machiavellians
in ailing albino frames
eccentric masked figures
milling about the glow light
like night moths
in a london fog

lunatic gazers
with seeping moles
pinned by frogmen and twine
spider climbers
in hell fire
splitting seams
on the fading
and hideous ink

guards of the perch
stand on hades hand
while monsters and demons
with severed limbs
taunt the condemned
and wanting
souls of the ******

cauldron fire
in blood red sky
silent screams
hack and wheeze
gas lines broken
words unspoken
teetering backwards
in the dark shadows
of a phantom abyss
xoK Mar 2014
I feel like a toddler
Teetering and tottering as I take my first brave steps
Into the unknown.
We often fear what we do not understand,
But I think that instead we should try
And color our skin with hues that cannot be seen
In the standard visible spectrum.
We're making a rainbow connection,
You and I.
Can't you see the bright bridge we've built across the sky?
My shining *** of gold at the other end
Is filled to the brim with your laughter,
And I cannot wait until I can dive inside
And swim.
LDR life.
Marshal Gebbie Jul 2018
Too long this rot has run its course, too much the damage done
When men deflect acknowledged glance, they know that wrong has won.
Across this land and far afield the wrongness seeps within
And pride becomes a memory through distant halls of spin.
How can we bow to tyranny, how can we shy away
From that which causes  eyes to slide.... and coaxes will to sway?
To tolerate the bombast, the bullying, the lies
Succumbing to a hopelessness, which, both we despise.
Division in the nation, uproar in between
A man and wife’s contention-ness beyond what should be seen
Brothers loathing brothers, silence in the room
Where a word  uttered wrongly can erupt to screaming soon.
Allies left in tatters, trust is cut to shards
Tariffs injudiciously, imposed to **** the cards.
International uproar, industry in strife
Teetering disastrously when NATO flees the knife.

Putin sits and rubs his hands, hilarious the show
Disorder and disharmony to lubricate his glow.
Beijing sits inscrutably, always opportune
Manoeuvring judiciously, in place, to call the tune.

America, the isolate, sails away to sea
Blondini, at the helm, wears smirk indulgently.

The White House
12th July 2018
Stacey Handler Mar 2014
You are a flame inside me

You are far away
Yet so close
Teetering on the edge of my imagination.

The yearning is the knowing
The mere knowledge of you
That you are existing somewhere
Somewhere my reality can’t touch.

My words spill out of me
Like candy from a piñata
Pages and pages
Poems scattered about like hungry pigeons.

You make me so hungry
So eager to express
To spill my inner self onto empty pages.

You are my muse
My cruel inspiration
The tears staining my pillow.

I am dancing on a cloud
Unnoticed by you
As you live your life
Unaware of mine.

My words are endless
My thoughts knowing no bounds
As I imagine your eyes
Penetrating through me.

You are my fantasy
My never forever
My drug of choice.

You are the fuel that keeps me writing,

You are my special light
Turning on inside me
When all my creativity is turned off.

I want to ravish you
Bite the buttons off your shirt
Loosen your necktie
Drown in your eyes without a life jacket.

You are my muse crush
The smile on my face
The pain in my heart
The hello that never comes
The inevitable goodbye.

© 2014 Stacey Handler
Glenn Currier Feb 2018
Last night sitting on the edge of my bed
a bed that seemed more like a ledge
there with a burden in my head:
Should I look up or just feel the dread?

I sat longer and I think I prayed.
I knew he was a God who cared,
but lately on the verge of afraid,
my faith seemed weak and impaired.

I wondered if they were right
that the short blast of rays
won’t hurt and will **** the blight
the doctors say is in its early phase.

But why pray to a God who seemed unable
to help my aunt who died
from a disease so unstable,
so good at finding places to hide?

So here I was, teetering between trust
and its evil opposite, doubt
doubt he can alter life’s ******.
Does he have any real clout?

In this dark of mind
I came to see I really don’t know!
So why let my inner skeptic always lurking behind
reign and empower its verdict of no?

Instead I choose to lift my head
from that lonely fretting place
and embrace a Father not gone and dead -
but here, now to create and renew me with grace.

“Teetering,” Copyright © 2018 by Glenn Currier
I recently got a diagnosis that I am not obsessing about but I find it is somehow sneaking into my subconscious as fear and has caused me to reflect on my relationship with God.
Marisol Quiroz Jun 2018
ill never forget that night.
we were laying in bed,
eyes closed and half asleep,
teetering on the fence between
the world of wake
and the world of dream.

we’d been quiet for awhile now,
understandable in this hour of the night.
the room was lowly lit
by the dim glow of light
cast off computer screens,
and the air was filled
with white static sound
and your soft rhythmic breathing.

eyes closed,
i could swear you were beside me,
half convinced by the hum
of the speakers softly snoring
that i’d roll over to your body,
even though i knew
you were far away from me,
sleeping alone across the sea.
but it was something i could believe,
nearly there,
slipped into sleep.

and suddenly
you split the silence,
waking yourself up,
you called out my name with urgent pace
and i mumbled a reply
as you pulled me awake.

you spoke again,
and the words spilled from your tongue like nectar
and dripped from your lips like honey,
said with such haste
like you couldn’t get the words into the world fast enough,
as though holding it in any longer
would bring down the world burning.

it was then in that night,
one of many moments yet i’d find,
that i knew i was going to love you forever,
no matter of land or sea,
of sun, stars, or skies between,
could ever change that,
or keep you away from me.

―  “i love you more than anyone or anything i have ever loved or ever will,” 12:37 am, 10.08.17, what you said to me.
Jonathan Bell Feb 2014
I've lived a suicidal lifestyle, never worried about the consequence. I've been in this mental for a while, just teetering on the fence. On a positive note, I've already fallen off, so we may not be in the same boat and for that you may scoff. I'll shoot you a lil info, I don't give a ****, a fair one, ***** you dunno what you in for, gonna end up with your jaw wired shut. You don't wanna wit me, I don't wanna waste my time, you will flee, I'll catch another felony, at the expense of not two cents but a ****** dime.
Teetering on her baby legs
A newborn with a Solo cup
bombastic red with a few
undulating ribs
Held firmly in her hand
Is this her first or her third?
Somnambulant yet eager
And just a little out of place
In a foreign territory
On newly contested lands
She stumbles through a raucous crowd
Or was it just white noise?
She’s lost her companions
Although they could very well be close at hand

In the distance she can make out
Laughing faces
Bodies moving to and fro
Spilling forward, little messes
Throwing back cheap libation

She passes through a room and out the door
Into the out-of-doors
Someone following her unbeknownst
Watching her cautious, curious steps
And when she turns and sees the blur standing
She greets it
“Hail Fellow!”

Bouncing from variable to variable
Frequency to frequency
Confident and in command
Of a seemingly controlled chaos
He approaches smiling and holds out his hand

Having drawn her attention from the stars
That she could not find above
Leaning against the garage’s eastern wall
She takes it awkwardly
Tentative she smiles back reassured
Wobbling she returns standing alongside him
Or was she in front?
Purposeful and en route
Emboldened by his presence
And how the way was parted before her
Just by his being there.
By being so close.
She felt vaguely special
it showed in her half-smile
Cloaked in bangs
She held her head just a little bit higher

The co-conspiratorial glances
Met by boys eyes
And shes
Went unseen by the girl with the
Solo cup
One of tens upon tens upon tens
A coven would have known
It’s better not to


She was shown a seat to rest
And her cup refilled
She takes a sip and smiles again
She takes another and then a gulp
That spills
He takes the cup away
And places it on the low table
Suggests she go to the restroom upstairs and get herself

Embarrassed she is relieved for direction
Someone knows what’s going on
And his caring
Taking the time
His kind eyes
She’s usually alone
She waddles up the stairs to find
a toilet and a mirror
God she thinks
I look a mess
She tries to fix it
The hair
The eyes
The lips
The dress
The stomach
The *******
The thighs

She shrugs her shoulders at her reflection
Exhales and steps out again
To find him standing there
waiting for more.

She wants another cup.
She’s missing her cup.
I’ll get you the cup he says
In just a second.
ryn Oct 2014
Today came without it's promise

Left me teetering this precipice.
Mike T Minehan Nov 2012
Lust got hold of me
the other day.
Grabbed me by the tongue and the ear,
then moved on down.
It’s not as elegant as love,
perhaps, but
sometimes lust just
consumes me
and completely blows
my mind. And yes,
I end up teetering on the edge of
lewdness, which is a very intense place
on which to teeter. In fact,
I've found that a bit of unbridled lust
is a wonderful prelude to love,
and I don’t feel guilty in the slightest
about teetering while being unbridled.
You can always bridle yourself up later.
So there!
JR Potts Sep 2014

from worn out wipers

dented cans, plastic wrappers

the glow of a cigarette ****

lying comfortably 
in the ashtray

white knuckles tight

on a weathered wheel

empty roads

cold and black

eyes tired but open

like trucker stops

or roadside diners

with the neons

still on

I keep driving

teetering between

my existence

and a sweet dream

I’d slip into that slumber

if not for the passengers

still fast asleep
in my back seat

So I keep driving

as quiet 
and as lonely

as it may be

I keep driving


is putting
 their trust
 in me
raen Sep 2011
my scorched skin
refreshing me
my troubles sloughing off like dead skin cells

                                                         ­                                                    too much rain now, seems like I am drowning
                                                        ­                                                                 ­                                  bob up, bob down
                                                            ­                                                                 ­                                     plunging deep
                                                            ­                                                                 ­                                             breathe in
                                                              ­                                                                 ­                                                       air

    ­                                                                 ­                  life
                                                                ­                   balance
                                                                ­                hard to get
                                                             ­                 but     possible
                                                            I walk…teetering buckets of water
JDMaraccini Jul 2013
I smite her with out a flicker of remorse
so in exile I shall remain

Web caught trembling prey
blistering sadness shallow grave
Repulsive rotten ***** stench
locked box of putrid sorrow
Blood clot hidden trench
vile secretion burrow

Wolf dressed goblin *****
muttering incantations
Teetering on a broken fence
seething hatred regurgitation
Greedy, evil, spineless, *****
cunning, patient, *****

One head liar
two face succubus

Speech craft forked tongue
slithering witch, foul gargoyle
Rebuke venomous, castrate hung
stoke the funeral pyre

Incubate the serpent fetus
demon, devil, fire
Never more sinister toil
bone covered soil

Death to the succubus
Death to Venus
© JDMaraccini 2013
Heather Horner Aug 2014
With narrowed eyes
I glare out the window
by the harsh beams of light
that glare back at me.

My ankles fidget
Shoulders lean forward
to see the unknowing plane
fly innocently overhead
and my bike
leaning unforgotten
against the rotting fence.

I stumble back
In a whirring machine
that screeches and shudders
and thumps on the door
Can I come in?

Worried eyes flit my way
Take it easy
Like a fragile possession
Teetering on the edge
Crowds gather to catch
My faults

With walls binding me
I take comfort in darkness
It soothes my body
and warms my tears
but nourishes my fears
Marshal Gebbie Mar 2019
I gaze into my crystal ball, discern amidst the haze
A world so far removed from that of now, it would amaze,
Where catapulting incidents collide like billiard *****
And sense defies belief as renaissance makes the calls.

Blueprints fresh from Internet supply the suitcase blast
Where the terrorist’s, simultaneously, ignite in cities cast
From Moscow to New York, Beijing to Berlin
Gay Paree to London town then way out east again,
Budapest, Jerusalem Calcutta burning all
And Tokyo is levelled in a ghastly nuclear pall.

Kneejerk reaction triggers contrails in the blue
Crisscrossing all the continents obliterating through
An overkill so vicious that in seconds it is past
And the living cling in horror, bearing witness… aghast.

Restraints are erased as the opportunists dash
Flotillas from the Spratleys sprint to occupy and cash
In on the minerals, oil and potential food supplies
Of uncontaminated nations found beneath Pacific skies.
Hindi, Jew and Muslim settle scores bereft with years
Of resentment accrued in a flood of blood and tears.

A sudden realisation of immensity of loss
Curtails the destruction in retrenchment across
The habitable outposts, the dearth of supply
And the daunting prospects of a nuclear winter sky.
Global collapse of all electronic gear
No power, no phones, and no cars now…for years.
Electromagnetic impulse put paid to all that
And the day is as dark as the cold night is black.

And here all we sit, in the here and the now
On the verge of catastrophes’ teetering tower,
With a fools pudgy finger just inches above
The nuclear button…and all that we love.
……You fear the insanity, sense the insane
Knowing that people like this are holding the reign?
Knowing that volatility strikes
Like the shot of a gun and the ****** of a knife.

I don’t have the answers to hand
But someone out there, knows how…and can.
The sands of time are running out


Planet Earth
6 March 2019
Roberta Day Jan 2012
All of a sudden,
something is aloof
The air becomes stale,
like the bread of sourdough;
you refuse to walk through
the garden overgrown, infested with
insecurities and a plethora of doubt
           I  believed you to be
           a recipe I figured out
I'm left teetering on my toes
as vehemence in me grows
and the mystery within you
is unfortunately never shown

Riddle me your chivalry's
whereabouts as of late
You're good at concealing
all that you're feeling
I remember when you were sweet,
     like the aura we would create
           like the donuts you brought me;
           a dozen sugar-coated holes and
           one lone blueberry
My insides have been fried
in a hot mess called love,
and a dozen-sugar coated holes
from you my dear, was
considerably enough
Part three.
Robert C Howard Aug 2013
Shall we pause to consider
the shudder of a butterfly's wings
that sets the hurricane spinning
or the descent of the final raindrop
that breaches the groaning levy?

Shall we ponder the moment before
a chorus of "maybe's" morphs
into the vain eloquence of history?

Roiling in the broth of chaos
a cluster of causes startles the surface -
unfurling a queue of effects
that dot the timescape
like rows of teetering dominoes.

Typhoons twist villages to ruins,
armies rise to victory or
succumb to the despair of defeat,
or a medical miracle is born
from the agile mind of a doctor
conceived in a Chevy's back seat.

So here we stand on the ridge of time
ourselves both caused and causing,
cradling the sphere of chaos in our hands -
uncertain what effect will be our being
after all our causes are enumerated.

Time will surely tell - as soon
as we tell time exactly what to say.

*August, 2013
Included in Unity Tree, published by Create Space available from in both book and Kindle formats.
Sarah Spang Nov 2015
The sun tipping over the horizon
Lifts my lids each revolution of this Shady green sphere...
And for a few brief seconds
The fingers of sleep
Drag me back.

Warm pressure on my eyes,
Pooling, (re)opening them to the last
The only oasis where your eyes are not closed
And your bones are not dust somewhere
Mingling with the soil in Pittsburgh.

Just the same, I know you're the product now
Of some hypnagogic state;
Of the last traces of theoretical DMT swirling in my brain
As is leaves Morpheus behind in the shadows.

You're just the most beautiful hallucination
The truth in the chaos of dreams
Cluing me into what I've been denying
For 13 years.

Impossible that I've preserved you better
Than any mortician could have
In the recesses of my mind
You are a perfect replica
An unholy copy of the original
All creamy skin
And ocean eyes,
Full-lipped smile tipping somewhere between
Arrogance and joy.

"I'm gone," you say. "I'm dead."
Repeating what I already know
"I'm dead, I'm not coming back."
On repeat like the worst kind of ear worm;
A carousel of sound that dips and weaves through every filament of Unconsciousness.

Denial; like reaching out my hands
I shove against the reality, against the unreality
Against the prison sleep has woven
And crash forth
Damp and gasping
Like breaking the surface once more
Teetering over the horizon with the sun
Into the waking hell of another day.

The carousel makes another revolution.
See you on the other side tonight.
It's all a flurry
All I see is blurry,
The lights are streaming
Sparkles in her eyes are gleaming,
The music is pulsating
Through my skin,
Deep within my soul
I feel it overpowering,
I have no control
Who does?
Not I
I'm teetering on the brink,
I'm going to fall
From the rhythm,
This beat is sick
It makes my heart tick
She laughs; I smile
This is going to be a hit,
I jump
My heart is lit
What is my next move?
I am feeling this groove
She dances close to me
I will seize this moment, I will not flee...
© okpoet
“I may be grown up but I’m only seventeen.”
The faded blue chairs were in rows, as could be expected. The building was old and the air was littered with dust; just like you would expect. The light shimmied through the draperies and tapestries and slithered across the floor in tiny slits that cut the room into pieces. The dark worn floors boasted years of scuffs and scratches. They were no longer mahogany for they were nearly black with age and dirt. The whole place was frozen in time. Even the air was reminiscent of years gone by. When you walked in you could expect to find memories nestled in corners or peeping out from one of the many books strewn around. The place breathed nostalgic fumes. Some might have called it “stale,” but many others would prefer to call it “alluring” or “curious.”

This was not her case. The door ****** the life out of the place as it slammed shut. The reverberations could be felt throughout the entire structure. Her anger fueled her along at a violent pace, sending chills up the drapes and swirling the dust into tornadoes of chaos. The floorboards rumbled and squealed in sheer terror under her feet. If you were here you would likely have tread softly and listened carefully just because you hoped the place was talking to you. But since this is her story and not yours, that is not the case.
She threw her body into the nearest chair and the force almost sent her backwards. The girl and the chair hung in time for a single moment, teetering on the edge of balance, but nothing happened. She kicked her feet up on to the chair in front of her out of utter disrespect.

Each breath that she blew carried venomous thought. Every air molecule expelled from her nose was laced with despise until it fell to the floor, devoid of life. You could feel the place shuddering with every breath. Or maybe she was shuddering. But it wasn’t important.
The girl let one lonesome anguished tear roll off her face, but since she was too strong for crying, she ****** her body out of the chair with every ounce of hatred she had inside. In one swift motion she swathed her face with her shirt to obscure and erase the tear. She stood there, filtering the air through her shirt, refusing to acknowledge everything the place had to offer. She dropped the weight of her head into her palms and bit her lip against the pain. She pulled her face back only to check the shirt. She knew it would be stained. She knew because every other time before it had been stained. She listened for a moment before she glided across the floor toward the nearest window.
When she finally came to a moment of rest, the place sighed in relief. The dust rested and the floorboards managed to quiet themselves. The drapes relaxed and everything paused again, settling back into a time of long ago. The place embraced her like the wind embraces a leaf. It helped her along gently as she was carried away.

Not wanting to be discovered, and not wanting to overstay her welcome, the girl carefully hid her soul behind the heaviest drape and emptily marched towards the door. She traced her finger along the scorch marks that marred the wood. The scars ran deep, evidencing a strong fire that had ravaged the place years before. The door oozed sympathy as the young girl shared her pain. Her heartbeat pounded out her sadness and resounded through the door and back to her. She clutched the **** in her hand and pushed it open. She slid through to the outside. She did not look over her shoulder. She did not carry a glimpse of hope within her. The flame in her heart was extinguished with the closing click of the door. She was outside. She watched as the place got smaller as she walked away.

His name was Devlin. “Dev” for short. It could’ve been “Devil.” It should have been “Devil.” He was the one who called the shots. This was his game; his rules. She was just a player who could be benched at any minute; suspended from the league in the blink of an eye. He knew the world. He had been learning it for years. As if the world was something that could be learned; that could be acquired. He missed the most important lesson for he never learned how to love. He had mastered affection and words spilled off his lips like honey. But love was not yet something he had come to possess.

Regardless of his material possessions, Dev knew he was missing something. He didn’t know what it was or how it could be acquired, or if it could be acquired. He only knew that the gaping black hole inside him was consuming him. There was no fulfilling this insatiable hunger. There seemed to be no solution. Only temporary fixes could easy the longing but with every dose the hole grew deeper.

           She too, knew that beneath his smile there was blackness. Not emptiness. Just blackness. There was no value, no gradation. No. There was nothing to hold on to, nothing to hope for. She would have enough black to cover the entire world if she had wanted to paint. But she was honestly looking to survive.

                Time had gone by, but only by the measure of light. Time had not elapsed to heal her wounds. She had covered miles on the feet of one thought. She had traversed only into one idea during her journey and yet she had already reached her destination. It was easy to fall to your subconscious when your body was tattered. When she stepped through the threshold she almost imagined the place. But she stopped herself because she didn’t want to take the chance of contaminating it.

                Her eyes were closing and the soft carpet looking appealing in all its graying and deterioration. The couch and bed looked inviting but that was suicide. She was fighting the urge. She had too. She had tried to purge her mind but one insignificant monstrous thought plagued her. “Don’t go to sleep until I get back.” Her eyes lingered closed for a moment. How beautiful and welcoming this blackness was. It was gentle and comforting. Her eyes jumped open. How long had they been closed? Surely no more than a few minutes. Fate laughed in her face once again. “I told you: Don’t get to sleep until I get back.”
                The first one was the most painful. Even though her eyes were blurred from pain she could still see the look in his eyes. She had to look. The simple thought of closing her eyes would earn her several more. She clutched the threadbare carpet with all the dignity she could muster and stood like a soldier before a firing squad. Every wince squeezed the tears in her eyes closer and closer to escape, but she held on through the miserable pain. It wasn’t even his hands that hurt anymore. No, it was the iron, or the bat, or even the brick that hurt. When it was his hands, he sympathized with the contortions of her body. He felt her pain. When it was some other object, there was distance between them. Six, five, four, three, two… She could time the blows. When he wasn’t so angry they came faster, just to put the girl in her place. When he was enraged, they came slower. Each hit was followed by an explanation or justification. “You have to learn the hard way.” or “How dare you get blood on your clothes?” The indignation in his voice made her sick. “Don’t look at me like that!” “I love you.” Over time she had learned to smile over time. To lessen the pain.

                …Her face was burning. Every fiber in her body wrenched with pain. Every breath brought tears to her eyes. The shaking was uncontrollable. She never should
have fallen asleep…

                You see on the inside he was just a child who never knew love. But that was her job. To love him. He was one of those “monsters,” or rather a vortex, something to be awed and feared. A display of powerful destruction. But that was the point. He was ******* up everything good while furthering his own self-destruction. He would eventually collapse in on himself. It was inevitable. It was not a matter of time. It was not some probability that fate would determine. It was not plausible to think, no matter what length of time you were thinking for, that time could, and would, heal all wounds. This was not something that would fade into the background and blend into a dull gray. This was not something that could be fixed by a miracle of God. There was no twelve step program with guaranteed results. The only thing that could happen was the elimination of time. If this happened, then there could be change.  

                She had figured it out some time ago. A long while back before she knew the place. The only answer was destruction. You might even call it ******. But since it involved no bloodshed or munitions or hatred, it seemed to be a good idea. Even the victim was ultimately willing to go through with it. The only factor stopping the girl was love. Her love for him. She did love him. She truly and justly loved him. She loved everything about him. She loved him for chaos and instability. The only solution was to destroy time. Without time, there is no way to measure. There is no structure. There are no rules. The only structure is what you make in your mind. That was the easiest way to escape, the easiest way to ignore the pain, to ignore the love.        

                  However much she thought about it, she never thought about it enough. The hours she spent on the floor in utter stillness were useless. When her breath was shallow enough, she nearly died. Her shirt was stained with blood. It was severed from her hip to her elbow. Her face was swollen purple and blue. Four of her ribs were shattered. Her left ankle was swollen. Her eyes were sealed shut by dried tears. Her lips were pale and chapped. She could not breathe out of her nose. It was filled with blood. Her pants were a rolled in a crumpled ****** mess several feet away from her. Her legs were patched with bruises. Her fingernails had blood under them.

This was love.

Eventually. Not relative to time. Not relative to the beating, but relative to her. She crawled over to her pants and began to restore her dignity until a foot crashed down upon her hand, jarring her body into a fetal position on the floor. She forced her eyes to stare at her hand turning from pink to white to purple. She hung her head in shame and hoped for mercy or forgiveness. The crushing weight of the foot began to ease the slightest bit. “You didn’t learn. You never do.” She stood perfectly still, waiting. The foot lifted. He pulled her to her feet and bestowed a kiss upon her forehead. “That’s why I am here: To teach you.” He took the crumpled pants from the floor and removed her bloodied shirt. Then with **** of his head he motioned to the floor. “You will learn the meaning of humble today.” She lay back down and tried to glean warmth from the carpet. She was cold. Desperately cold.
Michael P Todd Sep 2010
A deep breath—I fill my lungs and close the airway. Submerge my face in a pillow and resolve myself to wait until my lungs burn—I await the pain. My senses screaming, my lungs driving me to let them have the oxygen they so desire—I decline. Funny how I chose that which offers peace to the weary, an item that invites comfort to rob myself of that most archaic means of surviving. I find it interesting how calm I feel while denying myself that which I know I cannot live without. Isn’t it odd how we only become aware of the subtle currents of air that tickle our skin, raising chill bumps where it finds us bare when we deny ourselves its luxury? Luxury. That’s an interesting way to phrase it really—Breathing as a luxury. A gift of power, smug in our abuse and neglect we fail to see what we loose when we breathe. Lying here refusing to give myself life—for that’s what air is really, and breathing is living. I laugh. Oh yes, I find it funny. I catch myself readying to breathe again and I still that notion. Shove it down; subdue it until it is nothing but a stinging memory in my chest. It takes a lot of strength to deny yourself to breathe. But somehow that only drives me to test that strength.
I wonder if I will forget how? Could the muscle memory that pilots such a necessary involuntary act be forgotten? No, of course not. But perhaps the feeling of fresh air full of life could be. Could it? Perhaps not. For even as these words find themselves onto this page I find myself remembering what it feels like to expand my lungs, for the blood to cool as it gathers its fill with oxygen as it travels on its wending cyclical way. I laugh again. The burn begins to spread and I feel my muscles atrophy. Yet they tighten and tense as if under assault, screaming at the atrocity wrought upon them. Though still I refuse to breathe.
I roll away from the pillow, open my face to the still air and feel it tickle as it tries to find a weakness. Denying my lungs for so long I begin to feel my skin breathing. Absorbing oxygen as cellular mitosis continues in spite of my flirtatious dance. Maybe I am just dreaming. I feel the fire subside. As if my body accepts its doom. “No breath for you,” I say. “No easy outs.” And resolve continues.
Amazing how long a person can go without breathing, pushing ever closer to that most primal fear—that of not being able to breathe. But I can. I feel my chest involuntarily expand, demanding the very thing I strenuously withhold. I know by that alone that I can breathe, I can live. But still not once do I begin to inhale the sweetness that I need. I want it now, but the primal is so enticing. After all, it is when we fear that we truly know what it is to live. That’s when we feel life. As if it were a tangible being that we’ve strapped to ourselves so that it won’t escape. I’ve set mine free. I’ve let go. Maybe it will return to me. Maybe it will leave me in my vain attempts to deny myself to continue fickly on to another. But which do it want--Perhaps neither, perhaps something more. Beyond breathing, beyond mere muscle memory, beyond what I cling to. The Pain returns.
I want to breathe. I want to live. I want to feel the rush as all my body awakens and revels in new existence--Rebirth. Its odd how something so ordinary can redefine a person, how something so obviously taken for granted and ignored can make us anew—a Renaissance of living, giving new life to life, helping life live. That’s just funny to say. My chest chuckles--I can’t laugh. I can’t breathe so how could I anyway? I smile. Vanity is alluring. I am vain. I deny that which defines life just to feel alive. Vanity, Luxury, Rebirth, Pain—such is the nature of my breathing, the archaic nature of involuntarily driven muscle memory.
Would I even know how to breathe if it wasn’t burned into the most ancient quadrants of my brain? I don’t even know the part that drives the muscle memory. Perhaps when people die there are a few lingering moments where their lungs contract like the twitching mouth of a decapitated fish, gulping at air to fill dead lungs. Maybe breathing is so primal that it doesn’t end with the rest of the body.
The burn has come. I can feel the fire inside my chest. I welcome its warmth, rubbing my hands over the radiating inferno as if I just came from the dead winter cold without the weathering to block out the chill. The warmth permeates through me. Would breathing feel better than this? Could it? I doubt. Only at the razor edge of life while teetering upon the precipice stealing insecure glances to the other side on the off chance that we may glimpse a greener field do we know what living really is.  So aren’t I living now more so than ever before? Whilst denying myself a breath, aren’t I more aware of what it means to be alive? I laugh. Denying yourself air only leads to an end. No, the end--Death. Yet I appreciate life more so dying than living. I deserve to die. Taking for granted that which is stolen from innocents daily. Innocent? Now that’s a peculiar ideal. They are the same. I wonder if they are aware that they breathe. That’s absurd, of course they are. How could they not be? ******* life, ******* air, but do they know what it means?
I feel my lungs contract again—Pain. That’s all it is now, but why? I know I can breathe, yet I choose not to. Is it the act of forcing myself not to take a fresh breath, or the fact that I have yet to do so that hurts? Maybe it’s because I now know what I’ve been doing all these years. At the brink I realize what it means to live. Was I living before? Yes, but I wasn’t alive. Interesting that, to live without being alive—sounds as if I’m hooked to a load of machines keeping me from decay. That’s all they do really. Awareness, that’s living. Breathing is merely the means. The end is being aware, awakened to the fact that an action which you can’t control is the only thing keeping your head above ground. After all, even when drowning the body wants to breathe.
I open my mouth. I lie to my body. I still fill my lungs with nothing but stubborn desire, desire to delay my breathing. I imagine what it will feel like to take that first breath—a Renaissance of living. I can feel the blood in my veins bubble in anticipation. My body wants to be alive. My heart can’t beat fast enough. Striking a furious pace it pumps my blood through my body spreading life and oxygen to every limb making me light headed and delirious with its purity.
I’ve decided. I’m going to breathe again. I’m going to live. And what’s more, I’m going to be alive.
My mouth still open, my lungs still closed, still screaming, still burning, still tightening in their involuntary way—breathing air that isn’t there, air that they know is there, available to them at their whim. I open my lungs.
I exhale. Now that is interesting. I’ve denied myself the life of breath until my lungs begin to pump out of sheer memory and longing for that which gives them purpose. Denied that which defines life, that which I want—that I need. And I exhale?!? Further delaying what my instinct has told me to take? How is that logical?
Air rushes into my lungs. Funny, I scarce expanded them at all. I feel the life rushing to my fingertips, to my toes, to my ears and eyes—to my kidneys even. I am alive. It’s funny though. Part of me feels like I’ve just died, like I’ve ceased to live. I laugh long and hard, throaty and merry and so brim full of life. I began to live again, became alive at the very instant I ceased to exist. And it is so funny.
KA Mar 2014
I   think    
                                     she holds all happiness

her thighs feet arms lips

                                     my life on a dime

waiting for the fulfillment teetering

                                   her hand wrapped around me pulling me in

happy for now...
Logan Robertson Mar 2019
The eye of the hurricane
Swept through a country side
Not batting an eye
All those in it's path perish
A mosque, a person, a Muslin
Another, another, another
Until 49 were gunned down
And many more injured
Scarred forever
A finger on a trigger
Held steady
Picking targets
To cries and screams
With no regard for life
Only for the shooter
To make a name for himself
His message board
His manifesto
His hate of immigrants
Leaving in it's path
A country's darkest day
His infamy
Who is this individual
The eye of the hurricane
Sitting in the middle
Teetering to the right
An extremist
Category of the worst kind
A patch of ******
Sitting in his landscape
Of his sunken mind
Laughing, laughing, laughing
Today, today, today
And this was his trigger
His devil
His dialogue
Today he spoke
Another, another, another
To cries
That echo
Long after the hurricane
Loses its tail
This makes me sick
I look up in the sky and ask why

Logan Robertson

My heart goes out to the victims, a group of Muslims, at a prayer service and to all those affected. It's worst than the darkest day when seeds of this disgrace keep replanting and soiling the good landscape, Earth and Mankind.
Marshal Gebbie Feb 2013
Balanced on the cusp of reason
Teetering in rationale,
Gyroscopic permutations
Take the leap or stay and snarl.

Reason fights with high confusion
Torn between the yae and nay,
Gyroscopic permutations
Pack the case and leave or stay.

Screaming taunts in ragged order
Torment in saliva mist,
Gyroscopic permutations
Cut the throat or slit the wrist.

Standing on the lonely cliff top
Way below the surging tide
Gyroscopic permutations
Take the leap or run and hide.

Balanced on the cusp of reason
Teetering on right or wrong,
Gyroscopic permutations
Join the dead or sing a song.

Walking up the baking highway
Soaking up the streaming sun
Gyroscopic permutations
Laugh or cry... today I won.*

Throwing the dice.
22 February 2013

© 2013 Marshal Gebbie
ms reluctance Apr 2015
There is a certain thrill when you are
teetering on the very brink.
An intense, almost perverse
curiosity to
see whether you will
continue to
stand tall or
will you
NaPoWriMo Day #12
Poetry form: Nonet
Emerald Proctor Mar 2013
It is not so painful as to experience physical grief --
I wonder what it is like to feel.
Numbness is an aphrodisiac to the ones who experience far to much --
to me it is but the metaphorical hell.
So many people that pass me by,
on hectic evenings in the city;
They are happy--
I smile.
Envy reigns and I act like an adult.
Cné May 2017
I know it's out there somewhere
the elusive balm of sleep.
I've tried an evening toddy
and I'm running out of sheep.

Prescriptions drugs and sedatives
placebos, they must be.
Because my eyelids won't stay shut
there's far to much to see.

The REM my body craves
is like a hidden itch.
I know I need to scratch it
but can't FIND that *******!

And so I lie in darkness
and stare up at the fan.
I try to count rotations
while making up a plan.

The Sandman's on vacation.
I guess i'll read a book.
I listen to some sound effects
a breeze and babbling brook.

I may just have the answer.  
A hammer is the cure.
But such a headache I would get!
That has no real allure.

Desperation beckons.  
I'm teetering on the brink.
I'd give a lot for just a bit
( ten dollars for a wink?)

My eyes are red and swollen.  
My jaw is sore and raw.
The yawns are coming faster now
there oughta be a law.

I'll see you in the morning.  
Sweet dreams if sleep you can.
For me...I'll just go meditate
and watch that ceiling fan.
What else can I say... I can't sleep
traces of being Mar 2017
Once I had a friend
    and soulmate,
we were dreamin’
we could fly away
    with the wind;
    but knowing
wings are for angels,
we stood transfixed
  beneath the light
  a sky full of stars

hanging onto a dream      
we clutched so tightly,
      perched high
      on the edge
      of the world,
wondering how far
     and how high
the great wide open
     sky blue skies

believing the power
  of kept promises ―
you said you’d forever
   catch me if I fall ―
letting go of the fears,
 blindfolded hope
clinched so deeply,
    hanging onto
a wing and a prayer

I guess I wanted it
     far too much
     reaching out
  like a thirsty fool
grasping for a mirage ―
teetering on the brink
    unspoken love,
   a vast unknown
  threshold beyond

with eyes wide open
throwing caution afar ―
   in a leap of faith
I reached ― out of reach
   into the mystic wind ―
    believing in dreams,
      in destiny's tease:
       I’d learn to fly
         before I hit
        the ground

but now I’m perpetually
          free fallin’
  I see the empty space
   all around me pass
a fleeting lifetime lost ―
   still  you’re nowhere
       to be found ―
    and I remember
what’s been forgotten:

       how far down
  rock bottom befalls
  when your spinning
    round and round
      like dust eddies
        in a fog bank
      lost in the wind                             .
March 31st 2017 — words in the wind

"And I see losing love
Is like a window in your heart
Everybody sees you're blown apart
Everybody sees the wind blow"
― Paul Simon
sparkjams Oct 2012
Here we have knives
here we have a garlic clove
pass it on to the next target and mentor
perhaps it is turnip's turn
possibly a dreamcoat

you know
I haven't eaten you in weeks
this last decibel from my banjo-guitar is joyous and ruggedly pleasing to my pear ears!
and I don't feed on mortals

steep is an overshot
this cliff will knock you backwards, refreshingly
teetering on the edges of my fingernails
where aren't you headed, anyway?

Walking and pondering along
questing to the hindering goal
march march for words
tell me a heart
tear out apart

get to the ice creed! This will be cruel
cautious yellow fondling off-white egg beater
he sneezed for me, please
thanks, I mean!

troubadours dance lightly in my mind
feet, feet, focus on their feet
that's a loudest saxophone. that' s a loudest horn
heavens no I don't smoke cigarettes!
We do this for a living.
Nadia Liana Jan 2015
A mutant dog chases me
Up the stairs, around the corner, into the room.
It backs me up against the wall
Into the scream.
But it isnt really that awkward painting that hangs above my bed, its
Only a balcony.
Up against the edge I go, teetering.
Out he sticks, a giant paw.
Up against me he pushes, I fall.
Into the depths, as low as Atlantis.
Everything fades to black…
I wake up screaming and sweat soaked.
Another fake in my life.
I don't think I want to know no more
I've had enough of knowing stuff that filled my brain with grains of this and strands of that,stats and rats that chew the fur on ***** cats and bats no *****,Niagara falls and if it does why did it fell?,Tenses, tense that make me sick,Michael Miles and 'take your pick'
I can,not tin but aloo mini im or if you're Yankee alloo minum,oh what fun.I'm going round the twist,just spiraling not really ****** and reading down the list I see,
Her Majesty is having tea or as we say,a spot of tiffin,jolly good and splendid,spiffing,what a beezer that geezer is,Philip I mean and not the Queen,she's a lass I think and don't want to think no more.
ALY Jan 2013
how does a dreamcatcher know which
    dreams to catch?
what if it
swallows the good ones
and sneaks them off to another
what if it
holds the bad hostage
to share at the most dreadful
           what is time to a dream?
but just look at how it twists
and ties itself in knots so
a community of individuality
cinching simplicity together to form
a spiderweb of spirit trapped between threads
strung tight like the ties of
showing me reality
far beyond
what we blindly
absorbing the vibes reflecting off
questions of whether a second
                         is time to a dream?
unrecognized reality
mind outside of body
a breath of fresh
a taste of foreign
the touch of a
music note
and a vision of
trickling quiet
tears down the
face of
          a dream
can dance on the
    edge of reality
so when i wake up screaming open my eyes and
my mind momentarily remains
tangled in a realm of
    reality once removed
feathers floating softly
through worlds yet to be
but shadows through breezy windows left ajar
blow my thoughts back to
and the sounds
and sliences
and the colors
and expressions
of my mind
are altered
by a bombardment
of influences
out of control
can be difficult to
now and
we must
                 to a dream
to contemplate the
intertwined strings of
and through
tossing and
turning new leaves
as the seasons cycle
time remains immeasurable
lest by our mere
      thoughts and ideas
so we
a geometrically
stunning display
of unspoken hope
to catch
                      a dream
and it hangs by the window
and if  the
teetering on a tightrope
between worlds
could speak it
would tell of
and there is
no such thing as
Kara Rose Trojan Dec 2014
What’s the difference between hate and love
When they are two sides of the same blade.

Sharpened brandished waving wildly in ghost columns
against the disfigured, burning-white face of abrasion.
march home with square, taut shoulders – slightly bony –
Body swelled and puffed with
the blood-red energy of something desperate to naked pairs
ramming themselves against each other in an effort to
These colorless concepts, abstract words
that hang in the air the same as
smoke-rings – ghost columns.

Could it give You a religion;
a belief that there is some guiding force in the universe
binding the two of you together by
touch, smell, scratching, grinding --
And he and You quelled
each other’s pleading prayers within
the folds of each muscles
the steeple of each elbow,
the hollow of each throat.

Some spiritualists call this the Kundalini – feel this world through a material base
A Love religion – fixing body and body together
because it’s the one thing that seems to make sense in this crude moment
when the ashes settled to fossilize inside
His and Yours brains.

“My God. His chest, his belly,
the riding and the falling, the moans.
How he clung to me, how he struggled --
Life and death! Life and death!”

The circle of arms is the gateway
to some emotional dry-heave:
the swelling, purging, and crashing
of grief, rage, love, and comfort
those same abstract, colorless concepts
teetering on the edge of a beaten-down slave gospel.

We can give our vegetables a gender:
Female onions. Peel only when ripe then
ferment in a closed plastic bottle.
Color sensations that can only pass between illuminated palms on an
angry evening.
Shakespeare’s Gloucester could only see this world feelingly, woman:
How will you cope after being blinded by his tears?
And when the ream is spent, write a poem on the back.

After your limbs searched for each other after years gone, searched underneath the covers for a comforting hand that could save the loneliness from shaking your souls out of your bodies?
When limbs stretched forward to hold both bodies together,
the backbones that ****** you both pressed against the skin --
The very skin that ****** you, too.
That dream baby bearing the handprint of his ghost --
his skin on your skin on baby skin
Against undifferentiated dark, it may glow beneath the cradle’s mobile.
“Another illegitimate black baby.” Let’s call it Smoke and Mirrors for maybe just a second.
Don’t pay attention to the swerve of small-town eyes.
Then, we can see the light through the parenthesis.
Call it the ghost of his Love. The ghost of meat love. Delirious brilliance.

Ghost of mouth-on-the-screen-door Love.
The same taste of nickels, of iron, of blood --
Leave the porchlight on if you want him to find his way back.
Hang the water-filled jar from the tree to ward away the evil ghosts.
Light it, love it, leave it. Light it, love it, leave it.
Who’s going to guide the insect-feelers
to the light
on the nights
When words split, scatter, and sift
into labor-streaked pyramids between these fingers?

Now do you know where you are? We see a little farther now, a little farther still.
Staked in fury, can we recognize red ants on a red ant hill, now?
Shrouded in a glory-cloud, at least you knew you fit somewhere.

As Women, We know the gospel well. A little farther now and a little farther still.
The maddening dances around *** and Song – it is possible for the rest of Us to understand
and know how You’ve been bleeding.
*The quotations applied in the poem are drawn from James Baldwin's play Blues for Mister Charlie in order to expound on the ambiguously defined struggle that Juanita, one of the Black students, encounters after Richard Henry leaves the bedroom in Act 2 and during the courtroom proceedings in Act 3. Faced with Richard Henry's impending doom, she mulls over how the lives of all the characters begin to intertwine and, ultimately, demonstrate the lyrical quality of grief individuals voiced during during and after the ****** of Emmett Till -- each with its own score, tone, and measure.

Blues for Mister Charlie is James Baldwin’s second play, a tragedy in three acts. It was first produced and published in 1964. It is dedicated to the memory of Medgar Evers, and his widow and his children, and to the memory of the dead children of Birmingham.“ The play is loosely based on the Emmett Till ****** that occurred in Money, Mississippi, before the Civil Rights Movement began.

While they’re out and dancing, Richard confides in Juanita about his time up North and how he became a ****** after encountering the jazz scene. Juanita and Richard share an intimate moment full of innocent nostalgia for their romantic history and cathartic awakening to the tumultuous circumstances for Black individuals in society.

After Richard is killed, Juanita testifies to Richard’s character in court. However, since Juanita has been to jail (for non-violent protest) and has had *** before marriage (with someone she loves), the racist white townspeople defending Lyle suggest her testimony is of no importance.
Doug Potter Sep 2016
Don't talk to the old man
on the ladder he's likely
cleaning eavestroughs

end to end full of leaves
kite string & black

He may mumble
teetering on the rungs
but don’t interrupt work

he has enough to handle.
Hayley Neininger Oct 2012
My muse for writing is hatred
I hate this and I hate that
I hate you.
My right hand seems perpetually pressed
Against paper
And the pressure from my left
Comes from a clenched fist
My fingers wrapped around
Some crumpled scribble of a thought
Most times my body feels like the vertical pole
Balancing opposing weight systems
Constantly pushing for power only to lose it
Again every single time.
And I hate that I rhyme
Because I am too off set to stand straight
On my own two feet
I am meek and I must teeter between
Who I am and what I write
When what I am in a ball of hate
Writing about how I wish it was love
And how nice cool metal would feel on my left hand
Compared to the hot blood
That seeps under my finger nails
From constantly clenching back cascades
Of callous conscious thoughts of hate.
That I hate I wished was love.
Matt Jul 2015
America is doing so well
And everything is normal

Just ask the people
I live with

They'll watch the news
And follow the candidates

Like it matters

On The Edge
Of A Cliff

But they act
Like everything
Is normal

I guess
They'll act that way
Up to the very second
There is a collapse

No future for America

— The End —