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I used to write a lot more when I was younger. I haven't written anything new in years, but I hope someday I might again. My genre is.... codependency lmao.

"We Expected Rain"

You taste like mornings
pale fog, almost-mist
you’re rainwater
and dusk
at once

me, I’m barely water
drunk, sleepy and starved,
crushed beneath the
heavy heat
I move slow
and unsteady

it started with your hands
and me, trembling
beside you in the theater
in perfect blackness

barely breathing
I concentrate hard
on how this feels:
crushing and sweeping
and real

each night
the white moon fills me
with your absence
smooth and sharp
and silver.

"Baptism"

The city where
air blooms
like poppies
from the center
of my chest:

I am Boston-sweet
growing feelers
eyelash-thin
inside I smile so wide
I fear I may break apart.

"Too Close, No Comfort"

Tonight I see you
in the trees
for once not
because I want to.
Sometimes I’m
spooked
at the shape of
your name,
the fear that
speaking it
will turn you to fog.

A thousand pulls
cannot remove me.
I resent attachment
thick like honey
perpetual bee-nectar,
sweet dew
gathering in droplets
in my sleep.

On Mondays I race
to pass you
on the highway.

I always miss.

"Stupid Love Poem"

I love the way
vowels spill
from your mouth
like milk (and)

I’d like to drape myself
across your lap
and feel your hands in my hair (so)

let’s plant dahlias
kneeling in the soil
until its scent permeates
our skin.

"Blue"

The pale blue
violets
in their dull
silk glow
make shadows
on the concrete.

The end of winter
is a myth.
I can smell
your perfume
but it doesn’t smell
the same
on me.

"On Being Drunk"

A deep dream:
A silkworm barely moving,
the ceiling flat and unrising–

I realize, with disgust
I only write about love.

It is only May, I tell myself.
It is no consolation.

"A Glass Likeness"

Boston has
an aftertaste.

It is smooth
and sharp
like glass.

Its scent clings
to the fabric folds
of your favorite dress.

You are so pretty
and I want you to know
I know.

"Hunger is a Weapon"

I steal glances at your lap
with a look
reserved for the hungry-hearted.

My mouth often forgets how
to form anything other than
apologies.

The soft edges of your company
quiet the white noise
in a drowsy shift from roar to relief.

I spend especially dark nights
regretting the empty stretch
before I knew you.

"The Faery Queen"

In my dreams you smell like salt
and your hair spreads like watercolor.

In my dreams, I lay my neck
across a chopping board.

I thought if I could see your eyes, then maybe
I could chalk your rainwater stare
up to something far removed
and save myself if I still can.

"Cruella"

Water heals
so I’ve assumed that fire
does the opposite—
but I am proven wrong
by the lioness herself.

I spend a lot of time thinking about
her full-length white mink coat
and the twinkle in her eye as she clocked me
for calling her ‘Cruella’.
All I meant is that
she meets my wildest standards
for a real-life Disney villain.

I spend too much time watching her hands,
the very quintessence of femininity
and I’ve conquered the art of melting
into that thick-honeyed voice.

I’ve read about us in astrology books,
and learned that I am ‘at once needy and overbearing’
a statement I acknowledge
in reluctance.

"Separation Anxiety"

I recall you like a dream:
in fragments, and then all at once—
as sleep recedes, you linger,
a faintly perfumed ghost.

I hoard your company
like glass candy
stacked in colored sheets;
they are footnotes to which I can refer
while you are gone.

I like to keep myself prepared
for the negative space that creeps into the air
and, like asbestos,
finds its way into the lungs.

Perched on the edge of my tongue
absence hangs heavy
prepared to drag down every syllable
I know better
not to speak.

"Boston"

It affects me like hot liquid metal
sliding into places where I’ve cracked
just short of scorching live nerves.
I want to know gray salt air and fishing nets,
sharp corners of buildings
black as tea.

"Complimentary Colors"

That pin I thought was your necklace
is sharp like crystal hail that drops in waves–
the light that settles on your face
invites me to read too much
into another half-smile.

The coffee shop table taunts
in pastels and bagel crumbs;
what remains of my omelette
offsets your lilac eyes.

"Perfume"

I could have sworn
her eyes were lavender;
maybe it was wishful thinking
or, maybe for a moment,
they were.

I wasn’t imagining the
sweet smell of crème anglaise
that hung around her
like electricity.
I thought it felt almost
nostalgic.

It’s funny how sometimes
best intentions trump
good sense–
I felt so beside myself
hot cheeks under pink lights
as I purchased something tangible
and lingering;
sometimes
the feeling hits like the ocean
where even the roughest stones smooth
against better judgment.

"Aftermath"

Last night I pulled
the five of cups
for the second time
in the same position.

There is something about the past
the way it slides down your throat
like cheap wine that might as well be vinegar.

Is there a word for
the gathering of feral clauses
at the base of one’s throat?

People speak of the things
they’d never said,
but what about the things they had:
bilious words soaked
in salmon tides
hot with intention.

"Mayday"

Raw wilderness
the glimmer of
tree bark
a swan neck in
a black lagoon–
a yard sale jigsaw,
missing too many pieces

vs.

the shifting of tectonic plates
within my bones,
the distant crumble of
a natural disaster
a white-hot glow
roaring on the tips
of my nerves.

A grey sea
expands like yeast inside my body,
pushing aside vital organs
creating too much empty space
to fill.

"The Tower"

Oleander tongues,
poison milk veins,
and space:
stretching, ever-expanding,
a deep starless purple.

With upheaval
comes a glass catharsis
silver sharp–
just two cold hands
reaching
in the violet gloam.

"You Are"

an abrupt wave;

a throatful
of seawater;

Disney World
on the hottest
day of the year;

the electricity
between awake
and asleep;

October morning
windshield dew;

a flash flood;

cheap gum that has lost
its flavor
which one keeps chewing

out of habit.

"Afternoon Delight"

You left it to me
to imagine the dirty things you did
in the backseat of his mother’s car
parked in a lot outside
a retail outlet.

The distance between us
is equal to a thousand
football fields
but I was willing
to try and make it work.

There’s only so much
a glowing screen can illuminate:
the white burn of my face
the night I wore a purple peignoir
and looked into a flat black lens.

With every storm that came in summer,
each roar of thunder was a kiss
to which I was not invited
although I was led to believe
otherwise.

"Mermaid"

I find her
washed up
stagnant
on a sandbar
littered with
oyster shells
and driftwood.

Her translucent
jellyfish skin
echoes defeat
a kind of
sticky sea-phlegm.

Sand clings to her fins
like glitter
and blue lips
shimmer saliva
pearly sheen.

"To the Boy who Eats Alone at Red Robin"

In this culture
it says so much
about a person
who they do
or do not
eat with.

Writing about
the color of eyes
is cliché
so I’ll write
about the leather
jacket
bunched up in
that space between
your back and
the padding of
the booth-seat.

I guess what I’m trying
to say is,
I admire your
choice
because, seriously,
fuck friends.

They would have probably
blown you off
anyway.

"Polyacrimony"

It turns out
love
is finite after all.

I realize
far too late,
there is a clear

reason why
English
has no plural form

of “you.”
Ghosts were
nesting in my hair

in threes
when I felt a seed,
a fierce resentment,

begin to sprout.
In a moment, you slipped
through my fists

like bathwater.
I, snake-haired
and blind

turned you
to stone,
a feat my breasts

used to achieve.
Back then, I’d
fantasize

about trailing
fingernails
across your lap

instead of across
your throat.
You cry, “monster!”

at every silhouette
and shape
that echoes me,

at the sea’s edge
which shares my name.
And I say, for the millionth time,

teeth exposed, throat exposed,
we can start over
hitotsu ni wa narenai

we can’t be as one.
A bubble bursts
like gum

sticky and wet and pink
webbed between fingers
in warm pungence.

The deafening cotton-quiet
of regret
is like the dripping of honey,

of morphine,
the slow drip of

the inevitable.

"Hyacinth Boy"

I know
a lamb-tongued boy
whose fawn-like lashes
beat his cheeks
like moth wings.

He sings
in a voice
softer than
hyacinths,
ankle deep
in the
silver lake.

His sky
is a bruise
and the sandbank
shivers, cold.

"Girls Pt. II"

We mourn
the amber eyes
of lions with paws
bigger than
our fathers’ feet.
We hoard
memories like jewels
in the yawning mouths
of dragon caves.
Seaweed lines
the bloody shores
of violet eyes
as we swallow words
the size of
pomegranates
that catch in our
throats
like flies.

"Like Attracts Like"

There’s something
about
the wet decay
of wood;
you can smell
its softness
in the air.

The grass went up
to our knees
yellow-green
in August heat
and through
an open window,
I saw curtains.

A busdriver sat
in an empty bus
eating bologna on rye.

We frowned at
marble statues
smashed against pavement
in an empty lot.

"Moon Rites"

My star, my temperance,
I’m tethered to the lunar world,
the sinews of the starlight,
in dumb awe of the hyaline moon.

Like a child, I gawk
wide-eyed at Diana,
at Artemis, the moon-eyed mother
for whom I, with highest respect
light one ivory candle.

In lamblike earnest,
I ask in the gauze of a blue moon,
the goddess of damiana, of amaranth
of hazel and willow,
to reveal herself to me.

In the webbed quiescence of
amber candlelight
I feel, well, something.

Among the closed-eye
late-night haze
in the grey kitchen light
stands not Diana,
but Brigid–
honey-red braids coiffed with serifs,
patron saint
of smithcraft,
healing,
and, with a euphoric swelling,
I realize…
poetry.

"811.52 WIL"

I present you with
these globes of fruit
to accompany the browning
of leaves with veins
like city streets.
I present you with
your own words
in a voice
as thick and as seedy
as jam.
I know you can’t properly
appreciate the folds
of carnations that aren’t
even real
while you’re six feet
in the golden earth
but maybe somehow
you’ll find a way.

"Poetry"

Poetry is
hungry mouths
a dead moth in your margarita
the smell of a department store
(or your bedroom)
that phrase in your mother tongue
highly colloquial
the desire to clean my messy room
so you won’t know
I’m a slob

"Wilde"

There exists a garden,
full with cloves and bells
beebalm and belladonna
where airbourne pollen
clings, sticky, to my thighs.

Each image springs from the words
of an Irish-hearted boy,
a prince of a thousand orchards
in silk stockings.

To be Madonna Mia,
the white-throated lily-girl,
the long limbed Aphrodite,
your silver Faun…
Stoker, the jerk, didn’t have your eyes
or your words, your “sweetest ambergris”
your “lover’s crown of myrtle.”

To walk barefoot
through the loam
beneath which you reside
among the creeping grey
of Père-Lachaise
would be in vain,
for even in death
you only have eyes for men.

"Sitting in a Chinese Restaurant that Smells of Pesticide on a Saturday Night"

The tables and chairs are
pink and red respectively;
they create a sad-valentine atmosphere.

There is a fluorescent bowl of noodles,
flashing purples, pinks, and greens
in the window.

The lights in here are so bright
they hurt my eyes.

Behind me, a very young couple
shares a table and talks quietly.

The front door does not chime
when it opens.

A faded sticker
on the wall says,
“No hope in dope.”

It is late Saturday night
and the air still
smells of pesticide.

"To the Girls whose Boyfriends won't Read their Poetry"

Do not spill your silken words
only to waste them, diluted against glassy eyes
that only long for the hills and the valleys of your body.
The lips that trail your pink skin
know nothing of the way you arrange letters
like dewdrops on the morning paper.
Do not hold back your loaded words
and seal them inside of you
left to gather like shavings
until you’re as full and as blue as the moon.

Do not lie to yourself and deny
that he sees through you like a ghost
and the words you utter only in your sleep
float idly out the bedside window like balloons
while he dreams of a fullness that he thinks
only he can make you feel.

To the girls whose boyfriends won’t read their poetry,
insist–do not ask–that he leave.

"Skies"

The sky drips marmalade
and the foaming cream ocean
laps slow onto the crystal bay.
The yolk sun reminds me
of an expression you wore
beneath the smoke veil
of a cigarette.

Somewhere, another sky
drops its silver moon low
upon the violet water which
heaves a thousand pink shells
onto the shore.
I think of you
not once.

"Succubus"

There is
a unique sweetness
in pinning you to a board
like an insect
and watching you squirm.

You told me
when we first met
that you loved my hips
and now that’s what I use
to hold you down
while I spit accusations
down your
throat.

I’m not even close to sorry
as I compare your eyes to
chemical burns
and the acrid stench
of bleach.

I wasn’t serious
when I pressed my lips to you–
it was a sorry attempt
to suck the life
from your sad, pale
skin.

"Fourteen Days"

I will never forget the dead-black
the never-whirring humlessness
of that frozen stinging naught.

Even my laptop
couldn’t save us,
straining its nine-cell battery
to get six episodes of True Blood
at most.

When we left the house
to assess the damage,
power lines hung low like hungry snakes
and splintered tree trunks littered the roads
in thousand-ton casualties.

I will not miss
the stink of rotting meat
seeping from the freezer
(which incidentally was warmer
than the rest of the house),
the crackling of the old radio
with a bent antennae
running on six ’D’ batteries,
or the white vapor that clung to the air
mocking us with our own breath.

Nighttime had never frightened me so much
its dry ice air howling through the mousseline walls
every night spent longing
for the return
of the bumbling yellow glow.

"The Art of Taking"

It started with fat white candles from the detergent aisle
with which you taught me to fill my pockets,
candles to be burned for the sake of ritual.
We, both sixteen, snuck behind the local Pathmark
into a small clearing among the tall yellow grasses
that stretched toward the violet sky.

I shook you like training wheels and took to diet pills
tiny encapsulated neon signs going for sixty bucks a bottle.
An entire paycheck on a good week.
I called you one night at three in the morning
when it felt like my heart was beating out of my chest
and quick breaths came in tiny violent gasps.
You googled ‘Hydroxycut,'
and after twenty minutes of hearing you list the side-effects,
I decided not to take anymore.

Instead, I learned to snatch the words from your mouth,
still hot with your breath, gnarled like an old tree,
and send them soaring back into your face with fierce intensity.
Afterward, I’d pluck from you unearned apologies
half-sincere and melting like the last snow of the season.

"IM Logs"

They’re
birds-eye views
frightening in their accuracy,
a one-way mirror
to a former self
that stumbles over words
like jagged rocks in the driveway
while barefoot.

Like a patient
pumped with anesthesia
still conscious,
you can feel the prod of every needle,
every scalpel’s edge,
but your body can’t even
flinch.

Even CRT monitors
entertained the idea
of a tiny, tangible world
inside a yellowing box
but flatscreens serve to substantiate
the two-dimensional
invulnerability
of the digital age.

Our ancestors,
stony and unmoving
(as we like to imagine)
predicted chrome hovercrafts,
maybe jetpacks Jetson-style–
but never this:
a long-standing reminder
that the past
best remains idealized,
in that stubborn way we convince ourselves
that those were the good times.

"Moleskine"

so much exists
within

a moleskine of
poems

fat with black
ink

in the dull light of a
diner

"Santa's Barn"

I never understood
what you liked about Christmas
until that day.

It was the peak of summer
when we crouched beneath a low door
disguised as a fireplace,
and there it was:
a dim hall
where papier-mâché snowmen
smiled among a sea of cotton batting snow.
PVC Christmas trees
stood in dismal splendor
alight in reds and blues and greens.
Plastic blank-faced reindeer
glowed and glowed and glowed.

Afterward, we sat
at a greasy pizza parlor table
where I held white napkins against my waffle cone
that dripped vanilla ice cream down my hand anyway.

In that moment
I believed in the magic
of Christmas.

"Cemetary Psalms Pt. II"

Can you recall
that afternoon
before thick regret
hung low
in the late-summer air?

Can you remember
with nothing but the blue-grey tombstones
reflected in your eyes
you asked me to write about
a time when I was truly
happy?

I’m sorry it’s taken me so long.

"A Hundred Thousand Cats"

Nothing else
could make me
happier.

"Disillusionment in Baltimore at 4:47am"

There was a time when,
in the backseat of your dad’s Windstar,
there was only luggage
separating our bodies.
I pretended to sleep,
bent toward you
so my cheek
just barely grazed
your shoulder.
A few hours later,
on the moon-white sheets
of a Marriott,
you kissed me
awake.

"A Dream of Sleep"

There is
a milk-sweet stirring
inside me.
Beside you,
the wrenching, still-dormant hysteria
is thick, sluggish honey.
It settles
within me.

I am an anchor
deep-set and sweetly drugged,
its weight
an enticement too inviting
to refuse.

A thousand trees
possess me.
Languid black branches
stretch toward the fertile earth
its thousand hungry taproots.

I turn and breathe your
poppy scent,
a singular, sinking wanting
and it’s then that I succumb.

Sleep engulfs my senses
like a poison dust
and I forget
to ask
your name.

"The Opposite of Letting Go"

Arc over me,
leaning
just so the
tips of your hair
trace wispy roads
on my body
like a map.
Blink
your moon-eyes
translucent as seawater
cupped and salty in my palms,
but don’t stop,
whatever you do.
Don’t stop.

Although it’s been months,
there exists
a recess in my mattress
of which only I’m aware.
Like the dull grey-green
glow of the jungle,
at the memory of your white throat
I mist.

"The Wanting"

The blue glow
of my room
settles
like ash
and my pitted chest,
like the shell of a nut,
is a profound chasm
beyond comfort.

I swear I can see
the outline of your body
on my sheets
like a sterile shrine,
a celestial
crime scene.

I lament:
a ripple
of shallow gasps,
blood-orange
spiderwebs my eyes.

Your name is,
perched
on my tongue,
a polysyllabic plea;
with each recitation
a lesser worth:
a flower’s transformation
to a weed.

"Lipstick"

I’ve memorized
every shade;
each pigment
a piece of you
I cannot waste.

From the branches
of a black tree
hangs a shell
of a former self
and neatly, just below the clavicle
I’ve written
your name.

"Quality Over Quantity"

There are a thousand reasons
not to forgive;
reasons why
you should turn away
and never,
under any circumstances,
look back.

And then there are
a few other reasons:

eggshell-delicate
tiny bird bones,

a solitary eyelash
resting on your cheek

a dull pulsing,
barely there,
behind the fold of your ear,

and then,
the subtle turning-up
of the corners of your mouth;

our eyes meet, eight years back
across a crowded chatroom -
no, a Myspace inbox …

A choice remains.

"Sourpuss"

I hate
everyone you find attractive
on principle alone.

For every celebrity
you add to your
‘would-fuck’ list,
I find more and more
to hate about
myself.

"Quantum Physics"

In an alternate reality,
my phone rings:
It’s you.

In another universe,
you still come by
and I sit shotgun.
Our laughter fills the air
the way your absence
fills my lungs,
slowly replacing the air.

You take your eyes off the road
long enough to glance at me.
In your eyes I see
everything but disgust.

In this universe,
I can feel your scowl from
approximately 63 miles away
and every single time
it hits me like a gunshot.

"Four Business Hours"

The letters catch in my throat like bones
and seem to swell.
That day I held my phone,
trembling.

Your voice is like tea leaves,
but the warmth only reminds me
of its absence in my life
and like a trauma victim
I’m on my hands and knees
disarmed
and heaving.

"Girls"

Girls with messy hair
and doe eyes
adorn the insides of my eyelids
like lace and ribbon.

In another world
I yearn to be your mermaid queen
but for now
I will settle to be
the last sigh
to leave your lips
before you fall asleep.

"Sirens' Song"

“You spend
too much time
in your head,”
you complain.

It seems you’ve inevitably
caught on

to how I
consume myself
with such thirsty desperation
first with vacant eyes
and then, quick breaths.

Bind my wrists and ankles
plug my ears with beeswax
if you please,

but still I’ll hear
the sirens’ song
coax me into a
melancholy
sweet as nectar.

"Thief"

It isn’t really
stealing
if you wear it well enough,

but no amount of theft
can conceal the hatred
that rings your eyes
like bruises.

You wear it like a crown
or, like an albatross.

"Things that Course Through my Veins"

A velvet melancholy,

idealism
cheap as fake pearls,

the raw pulp of aspiration,

pieces of others I have hoarded
with jealousy
but without permission,

contempt as thick
and as sour
as cough medicine,

a thousand midnights,

traces of a fire
that once blazed,

and oceans
and oceans
of doubt.

"Girls"

i.

There was the girl with burning eyes and
slicing words that found their way into my deepest chasms.
She never really looked at me
and although I wanted to feel her arms and smell her hair
she refused me her clavicles.

ii.

There was the girl with a white throat and
a voice like snowfall: sharp and cold, but delicate.
but she didn’t want me to meet her mother -
I was left with a mulberry fragrance
and a sad look.

iii.

There was the girl who was untouchable,
elusive as moonbeams with eyes of juniper.
I shrank away, but it was she
who taught me of love through mauve ink
and milk tea.

iv.

There was the girl with sharp bones
and features like nighttime.
She was anything but a poet, yet
I found myself on her doorstep
singing my throat raw.

"The Blackness"

There is a blackness
inside me
I cannot tame -
and it swallows me whole
again.

I stand
among the blackness
with a basket of
orchids
unsent, they wilt.

The blackness recedes
and my empty eyes
grow full
with color and light
but my gifts to you
have perished.

The worst part
is the fear in your eyes
when you look at me.
The way your hands
tremble
when they touch mine.

Suddenly,
I can hear the apology
in your fading
footsteps:

I’m sorry,
I can’t love your poison,
but I will think
kindly
of you.

"The Consequences of Knowing Your Name"

A thinly-veiled punishment
looms like a thousand evergreens
towering in the still night:
a name -
yours.

Long, foul strokes stretching outward,
seven spiders -
seven deafening blows
pounding like a drum throughout my body.

Followed by
a heavy, saturated sadness
the kind that swells in your throat
and like an anchor,
drags you to the
ocean floor.

"Wallflower"

I am a fleck
in the gold of your eye,
the yellow glow of florescent bulbs
humming dimly
in the arid room.

Even the walls
stand to silence me:
dull, blunt monsters
still, eyeless
drowning my intentions
in a grey, foaming sea.

Even the buttons on your sweater
scream louder than I.

Your soft cheek cut me
like glass
and my wounds
bled
a greyscale catharsis.

"Artificia"

She always had been
the type of girl
to step softly
upon cotton candy spores,
wringing her
cold hands
as crystal eyes
bore into her,
buzzing
like bees.

Her fingers
snarled
around the Polaroid
desperate
like spiderwebs and

two thousand photographs
of pouting,
frosted lips
and a bright,
empty stare

spilled onto the
floor
in a barren, black-eyed attempt
to prove to the world
and herself
that she truly
- exists.

"A Christmas to think kindly of"

Clumsy days
hang over
my head
like a mistletoe.

That night, you didn’t
kiss me;
your voice was hot
with wine
and adolescence.

The spice of your
gingerbread hair
blinded
my senses
with a longing
as thick and as sweet
as eggnog -

a folly
that lent beauty
to the
white,
dead
snow.

"Something Nice"

Cold tiles redefined
a fire beneath my feet
to light up my skies -
slate black desks
and cool apprehension
licking my thighs.

In your eyes I saw myself
as fresh as a March breeze.
In my eyes, you saw yourself
as everything.

As the July grass grew in your backyard,
our feet blazed upon your rooftop
and in that moment
there was possibility.

"An Acetic Afternoon"

Tonight I am
unamused.
I scowl at your compliments,
and roll my eyes at your smile
your filthy, naive smile.
I think I hate you
for every good reason or
no good reason
at all.

Want to know a smart idea
to drive someone away?
Talk about yourself.

When life deals you fish bones
crush them to dust,
then blow it in the eyes
of your enemies.

Tonight I will
drag my feet
as I walk
and my eyes, downcast
will see only
in greyscale.

To cut you out
like a paper doll
would be absurd
after all, what could snip through
your sunshine skin?

"Cemetary Psalms"

Tonight it rained upon your grave
for the first time.
The gardenias I placed upon it
are damp
and withering.

A greyscale of loss amongst the crisp air
prisms of light cast upon
what remains of you.

You withered in December,
but rose again from
April treetops:
petals shed upon the moist soil
onto the
monochrome earth.

The evergreen looms tall
as you once did;
hardened, crackling branches
sway with the wind.

I want to stop
the world
for you
so not a bug may crawl
and not a stem may quiver.

If only the world may be as silent as you,
the sky still -
in a salutation to your once-skin.

Your greying skin
is outlasted
by stone shapes
cold as the greyest blue.

"Inadequacies"

Like a cat,
I drop dead rodents
at your feet.
I flick my tail,
taking pride in
this bounty-gift
for my favorite person.

Like an impatient human,
with no time for cats
you scowl
and reprimand me
for making
a mess.

"Cranberry Juice"

My favorite photograph of you
was ruined today
by a quick current
of cranberry juice.
Its blooming, rosy streams
bled right through
your face
and then you were
indistinguishable.

I merely sighed
not because I wasn’t sad
but because I have convinced myself
to expect such accidents
and accept them
as a part of us.

"Mirage"

Poolside eyes,
up to my knees in
iris, mint,
azure hues:
I cannot do them justice
but neither could she.

In the fall,
she’d change with the leaves:
green to gold,
clumsily.
Cool air hazed the space between
fact and illusion.

"Refusal, or Helplessness"

I could not
stop my trembling hands
I am slave
to sorrow
my bruised knees are going numb
I am dumb for you.

I have not
known sleep since you left,
I am blind
to solace
my swollen eyes are throbbing
I am ill with grief.

I will not
rinse you from my bones
I am deaf
to reason
my foolish heart is stubborn
I am yours alone.

"Earth Bride"

She was the wilderness
in kind, earthy tones
and thick, lavish air
hanging heavy in the white
afternoon.

I was the ocean,
in heaving, sickish hues of green
and soapy, feverish fits
swelling onto the bay,
clumsily.

Her sunkissed stare,
and oleander skin
could bruise the freshest fruit
and so she left me with her
mark.

I spent August nights
dizzied by her spell
but encompassed in my sadness
I became
a ghost.

Even now, I drop apologies
like petals at her feet
and watch mournfully
as the yawning earth
flaunts her as its bride.

"Evergreen"

He had a charm like the forest,
wet and murky
it could pull you under
like quicksand.

And like a simple reed,
I was part of him
not wholly insignificant
but expendable.

I would look on shyly,
as kaleidoscopes of grey-green mist
filtered through his underbrush
and finally encompassed me.

To fill one’s lungs
with his marsh-water
would be foolish,
yet divine.

"Viscid Me"

I’d like to be your lungs,
a necessity,
forever expanding and contracting
always a place for me
inside of you.

Again I crack,
crumble
and settle at your feet.

Looking up at you,
you’re closer to the sun
than anyone should be.

I dampen my heels
in pools of nostalgia:
elixir of the heart
and a simultaneous poison.

Even the pale tree-leaves,
in a conspiracy
allude to you.

I tell myself
these circumstances
are beyond my control.

Sitting patiently,
I practice not thinking
of you.

"Humid Nights"

She spent her days in love
and I spent mine asleep

Me, I have no constant.
I speak in symbols and run-ons.
Disheveled prose streams
from my lashes
and burns onto the page:
a ritual.

This is not for you
or for him
or for her.

In the summer I would tremble
at the sound of rainfall.
This discourse sears its way
throughout my throat upon recollection.

Huddled close on humid nights,
we lit candles
and whispered of spirits
and auras
and the key to releasing the sky.

Her skilled fingers found the piano keys
and struck a sad, summer melody
that stretched throughout the house.
Like dust, I could only see her
in a band of daylight.

She looked ghostly at night;
her wispy, indistinct shape
moved and bent like a willow
alongside the lights
pinned to my wall.

By and by the morning would betray us,
and that’s as far as I can recall
for the summer days quickly fade
and the ruins that remain
are far too parallel to dreams.

She was real, to me.

"Heat"

It was the heat.
That is the only conclusion I’ve come to.

It was far from
exclusively physical, in fact
it was primarily an inner-warmth.

I found myself persistently pressing
myself against his chest,
as if curling into him
would have an incubator-like effect.

I could be covered in a film of sweat
but beneath my skin I was frozen.
Not in the emotionless, stoic way
but in the starved for touch, anyone’s touch way.

I wondered if everyone else
stayed as warm as him
all the time
or if it was just my own perception
which had a habit of being warped anyhow.

I was content with not knowing.
I didn’t need to know everything,
or anything for that matter.

I filled my own gaps with
the consuming, wolfish ache
for that same warmth,
the only thing that could thaw my skin
and whatever lies beneath.

I must have only been able to endure
that frenzy for so long,
because now I discard the notion altogether;
hot or cold, it can’t be helped.

"It's not me, it's you"

I wade in milky bathwater of half-truths and falsities
until my fingers prune with spite toward the pale truth:
It’s not me, it’s you.
I’d like a thousand stags to trample on your vanity, crushing every ounce of you to dust.
I anticipate the anguish, sweeter than the vanilla-whites of your ugly eyes.
To say I thrive on your unhappiness is cold, but you’re so pretty when you cry.

"Heavy with Anticipation"

I stand in your queue
but my legs give out.
I land, instead, on my knees.

A tempest or a lullaby –
a fierce roulette
of which I am the quarry.
I creep across the minefield
and receive my consequence.

This waiting room
its blinding lights
intensify my thoughts.
Time has nearly stopped;
your face hangs crooked
on every wall.

My skin
it weighs me to the ground
heavy with anticipation.
Hysteria hovers idly in my mind
finally settling
and I succumb to infinite madness
where I will wait no longer.

I place my doubts even in the hat that proves your existence;
the sun burns out and people change
there is no space for me.

"Fits of Purple-Blacks"

Her white-hot beauty was the tool with which I carved your name behind my eyes - in sleep I will remember you in fits of purple-blacks.

By the time the humming in my throat pushed past my lips, I could no longer drain the bile coursing through this hollow chest of mine.

I can’t find it in me to be sorry.

"Fragmented"

It is almost cruel
how the scent that your skin left
on my sheets
still finds a way to charm my dreams.

The fragments of you
with which I shamelessly decorate my conscience
and everything in-between
have found their way to my center.

They rise up in my throat
and I try to force them down
but it is always too late at night
to find the strength.

As I bury myself
in all the words I wish you’d say
I feel as if
my bones might turn to dust.

The entire world
might have dissolved around me;
if it has,
I haven’t noticed.

The only time I’m sure
that I exist
is when I see my reflection
in your eyes.

"Insomniac"

I pass the time counting sheep
there is nothing I do better
sixty-six, sixty-seven
nights since I’ve slept.

"Fool"

Handprints stain my heart.
They’re yours.

I am plagued; comatose,
a ritualistic rebirth
I claw my way out by morning.

Steady, inescapable,
and raw, colorless thoughts
I wake, a hollow shell
a crescent.

Crumbs of my Eden remain
they linger as you linger
burlesque, a temptress
stepping softly.

I’ll not let the words crawl across my lips
I’d rather let them form brief, violent hailstorms
than risk it all again.

Wrists heavenward,
breathless, I submit.

"Seafoam"

I couldn’t tell your skin from sadness on the dryest, darkest nights.
I refused to acknowledge the rising tides that licked my ankles, threatening to fill my lungs with seafoam. I threw my head back and laughed, instead.
I, born of Neptune, am no different from the hungry tides. I want to wash you ashore and squeeze the water from your milky skin. You’ll be as translucent as a jellyfish.
And I will smile, disgusted and aroused.

"The Monster in Me"

I was in it for the way you looked at him.
This lavender-green sunset will swallow me whole tonight.
My body hurts but I won’t break my bones for you tonight.
This summer sickness weighs so heavy, heavy, heavy on my heart.
Your eyes will haunt the monster in me tonight.
This heavy fog will drag me down, will swallow me whole tonight.

"Spent"

Time is spent
unfolded,
melting into itself.
Roots, like an oak,
extend from me,
a tired stretch.
They coil themselves
around you,
catching your skin.
A sluggish act
of self-preservation.

Prose is spent;
each letter fluxes and fuses —
shaping nonsense.
Words hang in the air,
dangle and drop;
my serifs and cross strokes
litter the floor.
They soften,
and you’re ankle-deep in verse.

Comfort is spent.
Restless nights ensue,
doubled over in mourning
for nothing;
to rather curl into you,
like a shell
a beautiful,
disastrous fit.

The future is spent
spread before me,
a rich expanse of black.
I feel the desperate longing
for constellations
nothing to name after you
but a slow, dull ache.

I am spent.
Vacuous at last
I’ve bled dry.
Like dust,
you have absorbed me.
Press on, press on.
And like everything else,
the tar on my lungs
looks suspiciously like you.