Saturday, June 24, 2017

We’re back in the snow and I wish I could see the sky right now because I’m pretty sure night has fallen. I’m pretty sure the world knows where we are but they’re just afraid to walk out this far — afraid to leave their cabin, their firewood cavern which chimney smokes hope halos in the night.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

The Restructuring of the World


I am fashioned full of rhymes
and half forgotten things.
You are staccato bass beats
and immortalized memory.

And in the temporal symphony
of clicking heels and west tornados
all the dichotomies congregate
find marriage in harmony.

Luck likes the taste of us in her mouth.
We linger —
like mushroom smoke in the aftermath
haunting the rivers
and coloring the winds,
having an era named after us
be it a coronation of destruction
or majesty.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

No Man's Land

I.
In all the hollow stadiums
never did I imagine it would be us by the vending machine,
cranking out old war stories,
eating expired skittles and drinking cold coffee,
our bodies silhouetted under the bleachers.


It was a sweet nectar, black rose kind of evening
and the fog made it seem like everything wasn't in focus.
It made it easier stumble into sinkholes
pretending that we were all along
puddle jumping.

II.
I could've told you then
and there were so many things.
But to you, I suspect they would sound like nothing but a sordid tale
spoken only to lull youngsters into shaky oblivion.
You'd take it for nothing more than folklore
and from my lips, even more fraudulent.
Not to mention the lack of trust I had for words during moments like these.


Because all that you have said, all that I have done -
nothing but wild reflections throwing cast iron heat in the daylight.
Through the breaks in the bleachers,
the sky looks down,
a tender gaze, a knowing smile,
the constellations spelling sin like G-I-F-T.

III.
You propped yourself up on your elbows
held the can to your mouth,
wincing as the cold aluminum paled your lips.
You planted a coffee stained kiss at my jugular
and pulled back only for me to lock my arms around your neck
and fasten my lips to yours, cold and warm,
a thermostat romance we knew too well.

IV.
I dread the lightening of the sky; in truth I do.
It becomes the dispelling of illusion,
the bottoming out of sleep deprived drunkenness into harsh sobriety.


The glass pieces now we use
to make picturesque iridescent tinted windows
will open cuts on our fingertips only when the sun rises,
only when your head hits the pillow,
only when you forget that ours is just a temporary world.


Like most things,
you can only start getting hurt when you start waking up.
Maybe that's why we're still here.
Maybe that's why we're hiding in abandoned stadiums
underneath bleachers that creak in the slightest gust of wind.

V.
I haven't slept in three days and counting.
It is such a cruel trade off.
It is in your presence that I feel the most at peace -
thoughts barely any energy to run free.
How rare it is for me to find someone I can fall asleep with.
And yet it is with you that I cannot waste the hours with.
You and I - we are already a dream. If I close my eyes,
the world will wake up with me.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Regarding the Overflowing Trashcan and the Ever Empty Page


I long for the day
when I hold fear by its beating heart,
feel its breath come and go
in the racing pulse below its neck,
when its legs are two stumps
finally incapable of pursuing me.

I will crush its windpipe,
pulverize its voice box
for all the lies it spewed
that I believed to be truth.
And as its vitality slips through my fingers,
the eviction will be official.

And in the extra space I will plant my ego.
and I will water it daily,
trim it should become overgrown.
I will have conquered one demon.



Sunday, January 8, 2017

Drawbridge


At the end of it all,
you can have the door cracked open
time and time again,
expose the world inside for a minute second,
wear your outsider heart on your sleeve.

But it is never truly open
until the hinges break
and the wood falls to you feet,
breaking free of the frame and all.
There,
an open drawbridge
an open world
slowly blending into yours.

They do not belong to themselves any more.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

You — 1.48am



It was all I could do —
holding onto your barbed wire fingertips,
your candy cane arms
beguiling yet, humane.
For all the agony that ensued,
it was all I could do
to swallow every burning bite,
force-fed and bloated,
metal crunching — bits and bobs
grinding my pearly whites
till every gate
was golden.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Booking It

She is picking up the tattered paperback book. The spine has a million wrinkles in it, the white jagged unbroken lines strongest at the center. It has been cracked hundreds of times. She understands because this story is a heavy one to carry on anyone’s back. Her fingertips trail tenderly over the cover, the colors now faded. The sky blue has become paler, less vibrant — a couple shades away from being grey. The baby pink has become beige. As she opens it carefully, it makes a protesting creak. Perplexed, she examines the front page again, seeing that it has come right off its spine, only hanging on by the back cover. She traces the exposed spine to feel the remains of glue. It seems as though it will not be righted despite how many times it has been fixed down.

Despite the newer copies staring out from the glass cages, despite how destroyed this one is, it always seems to receive the most care.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Izora


It was the scarlet rebellion
of a young woman.
Blooming she had an expiration date,
and plucking destroyed any further extensions.


And they negect to mention
rebellion simply means
not taking death with a smile.
And young is just a synonym
of descending into hell
with sweet heaven still
on the tip of your tongue.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Beyond the Breakage

I am the way glass shards try to make music
as what was once whole
falls so hard it leaves no mark
but shatters irreparably apart.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

This is What it is to Live on the Edge

For as long as I have known,
I’ve been on a precipice,
too far back to be called the edge
but too near to be just nameless woods.

Close enough to the end
to imagine rushing it to feel the rush
but far enough to feel like standing with you,
withstanding brash wind is even rougher.

Monday, September 19, 2016

The Cost of Content Creation


There are only so many notes, so many octaves in the frequency we can hear. There are only so many words created, so many words you can fit into a dictionary. Everything has been made, has been done. Sometimes every note has been sung to its finale that when you open your mouth, nothing comes out. Sometimes every word has been written to epilogues that when you pick up a pencil, no letters form. It’s hard to come up with things people have never seen before. It’s even harder to make things that you have never seen before — almost altogether impossible.

Feeding your muse is easy when she is around. The tricky thing is what happens when she is lost somewhere out in the world, holding the keys to your inspiration. So you walk around, kicking pebbles into drain holes as your hamstrings start to wear but you don’t stop there. Inspiration, it’s like the weather. You can plan for it. You can forecast it based on what you have to work with today. But it always reserves the right to shut you in, freeze you or tear you to pieces.

This is the cost of constant creation, of creativity. It is also why the arts are shunned in the world of profit. For priceless work to make profit, the creator covers a greater cost and pays a greater price.

Waiting out every dry spell.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

All The Time in the World

10 minutes

The man in the black hoodie stuffs his hands in the pockets of his jeans. He'd exhale into his cupped hands but he writes that off as being less than masculine. Not that it matters. No one is paying attention to him. He kicks a tin can across the sidewalk periodically. He has been kicking it for 7 blocks now.

The young woman is putting on her face for the day. She's highlighting her cheekbones, coloring in her dark circles and lining her lips. Outside her one bedroom, ground floor apartment unit, the world is waking up.

The toddler in the car is smiling wildly at her mother as she points to the world outside. It is sunny — just the way she likes it. The sun's rays piercing through the tinted windows take kindly to her frizzy, red hair.

The construction worker is a quarter way through his shift for the day. His muscles burn with every weight he lifts and yet with every weight he sets down, a little of the weight on his shoulders falls off.  Because he is making an earning, he is going to put his son through to college even if his muscles rupture.

5 minutes 

The man in the black hoodie realizes there's some gravel stuck on the back of his shirt and the bottom of his jeans. He brushes it off carelessly, still kicking the can. The clanging noise it makes on the pavement shakes him out of his abstraction every time he reenters it. He doesn't want to think about the night before. About the reason for his black eye. 

The young woman exits the apartment, a half eaten cereal bar in her hand. She puts earphones on and selects her current favorite album, Coldplay's A Head Full of Dreams. She puts in on shuffle and it skips right to her favorite, Everglow. After finishing the bar, she hops onto her bicycle, heading to work. She is an affordable tutor for elementary school kids.

The toddler asks her mother to change the radio station. She wants happy songs, the kind that summer would waltz to if it were a person. 

The construction worker claps a co-worker on his back. It's going to be a great day.

The last minute

The man in the black hoodie walks in a straight line. Funny how he walks straight but everything else about him isn't. Funny how drunk people who can't see straight are the ones who decide the penance for being deviant. He kicks the can with a ludicrous amount of force, it sails into the street.

The young woman hears construction happening a block away. She turns the volume of her music up. As she is doing that, something shiny flies into the street, right into her path. She loses control of the bicycle. The tires hook onto the aluminum and she is thrown onto the asphalt. 

The toddler covers her mother's eyes, thinking she can convince her mom to play peekaboo with her. The ride becomes bumpy. Her mother reflexively wrenches her little hands away. She sees a girl with an overturned bicycle lying in the middle of the street. The toddler begins to cry as her mother slams on the brake, instinctively turning the wheel to avoid the obstacle.

The construction worker hears tires squealing against gravel. He is on the top floor. He takes off his hardhat and squints into the distance, trying to discern the reason for the noise. Then a car turns abruptly onto the compound, out of control. Men in hardhats have dived out of the way. The car swerves and hits the unsteady foundation of the building. A shudder runs through the entire structure and the construction worker loses his footing. His closest co-worker grabs his wrist then buckles and slides under his weight. The hold lasts an eternity, both pairs of irises colored with desperation. 

An hour later

The man takes off his hoodie and places it around the shaking woman. He crosses his arms around his chest. 

The young woman thanks the kind gentleman for walking her home. She received a call from the child she was supposed to tutor today. The 8 year old's father has died in a tragic accident. He cannot think about school now. She can barely think about anything herself. Three deaths before noon. She feels like she has aged a century. 

Saturday, August 27, 2016

The High Road Does Not Call for Tall Egos

Listen, tell them you are going to take the high road. 
They, with strings of pearls around their necks 
blood red lipliner and candy coated whistles, 
they will nudge each other in anticipation, 
thinking you will give them a show
thinking you will give them something to cackle about 
over cold tea and finger sandwiches. 
Tell them you are going to take the high road 
and as they are watching the trails for your footprints,
break right through the mountain. 

You don't have to scale with your nose to the air. 
Tunnels work just as well as modesty.