It wasn’t nice calling me silly

just because
You can’t figure me out
how I could be so hot in your ear
then give you a chill every time you rub me the wrong way
weren’t you the one clinging to your teddy bear
every time the wind changed
If I am to die in the summer
pick me up in your truck
and take me fly fishing
because I never learned to fish
and I will feel I have failed at this life
if I never bait a hook
beyond the figurative
the one I carry with me everywhere
a smirky mouth all painted up red
watching the vampires
that come around during the day
eating up everything holy
they can stuff into the pot- pie
grabbing at something pink and wholesome
and smashing it to bits
taking my pretty little lips
to the dark side of town near the freeway
where love is cheap and
no one is thirsty
and they stand in line for hours
to get a glimpse of the king
I heard was still alive and well
and scalping tickets on Sundays
in front of Our Lady of perpetual coping

Fractures

You are infuriating, he said
(I try, I said)
You drive me wild
(I am wild)
You forget to call
(my heart was calling
I hoped, you had
heard it)

Let’s get away, you said
(I am afraid to fly)
Let’s remember what we
wanted when we started
(I adore you)
I need a break, you say
(you broke me)

You are loud in public
(I wanted you to see me)
You keep to yourself
(it is safer that way)
I adore you
(I feel adored)
I want you
(I wanted you first)

Caught

The screen door is open and I walk in. Jeremy likes it open so I don’t nag anymore. I smell spaghetti. He cooked? I hear his voice and call out to him. He walks out of the den as if he has not heard me, his hand resting at the small of the back of a blonde who looks familiar. Is she Jack’s teacher? I duck around the corner. I want to catch him in the act. I am furious when I see my favourite red pumps dangling from her fingers, as they walk through the kitchen and out the door. He closes and locks it and I run out the side way to watch from around the garage. They take off in -presumably-<em> her</em> burgundy BMW and I grab my bike and hop on, hurrying to keep abreast of where they are headed. They don’t go far, turning off the side entrance of the old arboretum where we used to walk. I am crushed. Why would Jeremy cheat on me?

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Twisted candy

I saw us
as chocolate and cherry
but over time
we are
Lemonheads and black licorice
sour and bitter
just enough sweet
to keep you on my mind

and every time it rains
we melt a little more
hold on baby
it is going to get
slippery
each dream
a place to get traction
if we do not let go

The white rose

White rose.png

It did not surprise him, hearing them call her ‘White Rose’ seeing
how quickly she wilted under scrutiny. Her tender petals dewy
in the morning, soft as a hare’s ear, then out in the heavy sun
with an interlude of rain, finding some of them upon the grass-
others curled up on the edges, worn and finished. This rose,
this damsel he kept his eye upon when she would allow it, without
turning him away from her door, said, ‘it is you, ’tis you’ and smiled
knowing somehow by the next rising of the sun, her time
would be finished, and her usefulness, gone

I loved you at the station

and to consider you anywhere else
whether it be glade or glen
or the food court at a mall
would tarnish our veneer

your backdrop of rail yard and crowds
a pillar of smoke rising
from your corner of the shelter
as you waited and I was late

was worthy of being painted
would it be possible to capture
all of you and the trains and the depot
in the brush strokes

our love is abandoned baggage now
left at the side of the tracks
waiting for its master, as we have gone
two separate ways

Ticking

 

Every day I open another door
watching an old one close
turning my head for that moment
hearing the click of the lock
my soul in chains and it is He
who unlocks them-one by one
reminding me I am here
for a greater purpose
everyone hurting – everyone needing
and I have something still to give away

Getting to know my own heart
hiding it even from myself
I get surprised – appalled – scared-
by what oozes out of this organ
the hate and bitterness
the color of death
leaving me now
and I do not look away
at the horror of the decay to my heart
once pulsing and new

So many doors – I get
so easily twisted ’round –
a face from the past
darkening a threshold
confounding me –
what do I really want-
which to choose
and which to board up-
pain when the cells reweave themselves
new life where once was merely debris

It is safe to come out now
as the thunder is less
and the ticking is behind me –
the further I travel down this path
the more I have to learn yet
and I find myself astonished
as I become reacquainted with myself-
loins girded – helmet fastened tight
that others should know me better now
yet you know me less

Puddles

Can you hear me?
My voice is quieter
after the storm
the windows shut tight
to keep the rain out

When the blue gets in
in spite of my weather-proof house
I pull up the memory of a day
when the rain felt good

We splashed and danced
and thumbed our noses
at the soaking wet
knowing we could take it

wearing our
falling-in-love-again macs

Insufficient

I have said nothing to anyone about Brussels. I am
silent, as I was after Paris. (I should have said something)
(anything)

What is there to say-how much is enough?
(Mumbai, Istanbul, Cameroon, Boston, Ouagadougou, Jakarta,
San Bernardino, Chicago, Oklahoma City,
Egypt, New York City, London-
do you have time for a complete listing)

I know that anything I say will be insufficient and vague
in comparison (to the truth)
[put up next to what they need
more than words]

If it were me, if I was there, I imagine I would be as silent as now, wanting to
scream
but instead- zombielike- tidying up, walking through what is mundane and useful
and cleaning up the atrocity of violation.
[(This is not yours. Why
do you insist on breaking it to pieces)
is as close as I have come to words]

Are you not tired of the raging?
I weary of the anger, the pure hate
that does not end
always simmering, sometimes boiling over
yet constantly being refilled, that tank-

What can I say? Who am I? I am your neighbor, weeping for you.
My words feel small. My anger does not feel
sufficient