“Live! And have your blooming in the noise of the whirlwind.”

-gwendolyn brooks

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made me walk to her house
collecting stones along the way.
said she was building something.
my pockets and fingers were dirty
and when I arrived,
she was sitting, arms crossed
and
throw that conch shell away
is how she greeted me.
I feigned my deference
and regret it now.
she never wanted me to kneel
but to toil for her favor.

she didn’t greet me with any body part
but squared me.
when I asked about the stones,
she looked perplexed.
gestured to the kitchen where the
trash sat and said
throw those away too.

“sisyphus” or “how guys save me in their phone 4”

if you shrunk her to the
size of a pine needle;
remember her
previous stature–
platformed boots,
four inches taller than she really
was and towering some men,
not just in height but in
arrogant loquaciousness,
abrasiveness,
wealth.
but if you shrunk her and
hid her in the bunk of
a barn underneath the bales,
I don’t know,
he waves his hands,
for revenge.
you could even tape her mouth
shut, quell the
squawking

I bet
she would shine
like a comet;
self immolate,
ignite herself and
begin to set the barn on fire
so you could find her.
I bet

yes every time
that even hidden like a penny
in a cornfield
she’d grow vowels, legs,
a scream.
made sure you would
find her.

“how guys save me in their phone #3”

I haven’t said a word to anyone
in weeks about the theory I could
fly because we were all dead.
this is me trying to wake up
to that fact.
I sat on the edge of my bed
staring at my face
in the oval, mahogany mirror:
warped, ashen,
melting
this is purgatory.

I was going to prove I
could fly. plus
I knew they were
watching me.

“the angels”

the first thought of the morning is always
today is the day I jump off the bridge.
I have a frenzied compulsion
to walk to it, sometimes
  cross it
but there are days I can’t.
I can’t  face the ice-tinged railing.
the dirty sidewalk filled with
discarded straws I want to touch,
put in my mouth.
begin to spin the happy thought of us.
take another route to nowhere.I’m high by 8 am.
pull my boots up,
hat, double tights.
it’s gray. no sun and
today is the day I jump off the bridge,
I declare.
it’s January 25th, 2017.
I haven’t said a word to you yet.
just holding it in,
clenched, clasped
to my throat,
pushing
like my blue plume
of breath.

“the bridge”

start the day at dawn.
this begins soon after the new year,
I start the day at dawn.
drink a whole french press.
make meaning of Spotify friend feed.
write my dreams.
scrawl a divined theory.
walk miles in the snow,
no gloves.
begin to touch them.

begin to mark my hands with notes.
begin to brush them as I pass.
begin to order from the local
coffee shops;
sixteen ounces plus croissant
to nibble on all day.
begin to trudge two miles back.
begin to stare them down.
begin to spin the happy thought of us
into some landing, or
monumental ache.
always waiting.
begin waiting.
begin waiting.

begin to send you my thoughts
about it, first,
via mind
then via dream
then begins the texts.

“the walks”

one time I came home
and the youngest cat was missing.
keep it together.
I assumed she had evaporated
into the ceiling at the request of
my eldest.
YOU DID THIS.

keep it together.

my youngest cat cannot
meow, she squeaks,
I call her squeaks.
and I sat silent in that house
waiting til I heard her
stuck behind a crate in the
closet.

keep it together.

I almost texted you to
tell you that my cat had
vanished but there was still an
ounce of self preservation,
I’ll admit,
no more than that.

“the texts”

began to float.
began to line the bed with geranium.
began to place black rocks
at every entrance.
someone suggested I call on
Mother Mary.
that felt defiant.
I am Lilith’s favorite daughter.
began to hold the rosaries.
began to look over my shoulder.
sat for an hour straight
staring up at a drone
outside to assert my
flex. began to line the house
with brick dust
then salt
then tea lights
then the menstrual blood
on dark moon nights.

what I said out loud
is anyone’s guess but
I know I said
give it to me,
God
, palms
out and tied with
cross.
both submitting to the
reverent light and
immersing myself
in black.
I am elemental.
this is my third life.
there is no time.

spent winter thinking there must
be an explanation for everything.
began to watch the clock
all day.
my new boss mentioned
she thought I was the reason the
power kept going out.
began to watch my
friend’s songs change on
Spotify all day.
took two hour walks in the snow.
began to watch birds outside
my window all day.
nothing will stop me.
I did not eat often.
coffee fueled me.
there was no need for water.

invincible.

“the manic episode”

one day I came home
to my eldest cat’s ear looking like
it had been cut off and I turned to
the youngest and said 

YOU DID THIS

took a walk to relax.
you’re high.
assumed the cats were eating
themselves.
get it together.
be practical.
thwarting demons.

at the emergency vet,
I continued to draw her and
I wrote in a notebook;
I am elemental.

keep it together.

“The ear mites”

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