your house was yellow.

my house was blue and
a ten by ten box;
me trapped,
torn between watching them
pack up their stuff
from their own pact to self,
their own inculpability,
fragile glass faces
slightly cracked and me,
stunned,dripping a
flattening virulence,

telling them about themselves,
breaking and then
pushing them out.


I really miss your hands on me.
the way you held me in
sullen incubation.
I remember the oldest incantation:
the thrust I was given,
some gleaned anticipatory luck:
      God gave you a chance and

              an unfinished smile.

we needed a spark.
I grin full tooth to show you
my new porcelain canines.
now the frame is melting
and so am I
in the cradle of tar black trees,
I fight the urge to bow
and suddenly tiptoe
all around you;
two inches taller than you remember
and my tongue hits your neck
like a quill.

hold your breath,
I say and
baby,
I’m a smokeshow, they say.
wait
for some other current to take me.
bite your skin.
let the tips of my
fingers dig in and

  there are no exits.

“chrysalis”

sharp glances.
deep in her wrinkles when
passing windows.
can’t seem to
thwart her own self persecution
and it shows in voluble shivers;
affirmations she mumbles as
she grabs the cuffs from
the table..

told me to sit down on the bed.
told me to lay face down on the bed.
told me to put my hands behind my
back. told me to
consent and
said she liked hearing stop,
the thud of impact,
prattling remorse
and doing things
slowly,
in pieces.


with repetition.

“how guys save me in their phone #11”

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”

when i see myself for the first time,
I am older.
crone, wrinkled.
I have less hair than before.
unphased but noticing
in a grave captivation:
yellow teeth,
chapped lips,
belly,
hunger that
remains unsolved.

the first time I ever saw a ghost
it was my
dead brother and I
shrieked.
I began to tape all the mirrors.
I began to suddenly feel
the inch of mortality
between me and him
become centimeter,
millimeter,
cold.

“the mirror game”

it was morosity
that ran in the family.
I sat down to the orange tablecloth,
my spanish deck set
    laberinto
every light out,
about sevcn candles it
and a roller coaster kind of
high, grief taking years to
fully form outside of me,
a birthday present for us,
Matt
and pulled the first card,
    the sun reversed

i’ll always remember that.
october 19th, 2016 and my
brother is dead.
I swallow a finger full of his
ashes from the black and
white genie bottle I
keep him in and

let the ritual begin.

“the rituals’

the skulk,
scent, need for slow chase.
salivation with a .
wide open stance,
arms spread,
lips like decanter,
trickling:
it is with love that I do this.

oh, you always say that.

*snaps* to wake
up.   tips a holy red.
I begin to grow inches and
let my long nails
trail the arms of strange
wool peacoats on my way to
the El,
or nowhere.
just circling Girard for fun.

It’s the middle of December
and I made rent.
I sort of grimace as
I sway the town, head to
toe in unbought clothes,
heeled boots,
hips flexed and
recently fucked.
let my hand hit the elbow
of an unsuspecting man,
unfucked, soon to
be turning around and
catching a flash of my
back, purple mock wool
and  hear the clack
of my shoes walk
away.
it is with love
they say.

“the honey trap”

after each meeting,
I stood awkwardly and
made small talk.
I would give almost any
woman my number and barely
kept up with what I had told
anyone but I
made efforts.


one day I got a fortune cookie
that said
“focus in on the color yellow
tomorrow for good luck.”
this meeting held
a lot of talk of God,
as it had a few catholics
and devoted disciples like
I, interested in the supernatural
themes of faith and
manifestation.
we spent many days
focusing on the third step
regardless of topic
and the passivity of that step,
being actually a willing action,
yet a passive stasis to uphold
is what kept me under spell.

made a decision to turn our will and our lives
over to the care of God
as we understood him


the carpet was blue
with yellow circles everywhere
and that’s probably why
I made it my home group
shortly after I got the fortune cookie.
after much reluctance to join
any of them, ironically,
I picked the only group
that was mixed but
mostly men.
just me and one or two others.
and these men were
not young, but old.

what they always ask me
is what my motive is.
I cannot simply say
that I looked at the carpet
and saw it was yellow
as someone spoke about the
divination of action into form.
I did not intend
to build the group,
amass it with females.

what I start, I do from
need, not forethought.
I move from depth,
a jaguar.

“God”

when we met, I was
inching my way back
to my robust self  having
established myself as a
case manager. having
scraped my savings to
buy an oil leaking car
that almost caught on fire
in the first week of work
back in August.
I then borrowed money
to buy a car that didn’t.
I had paid rent for three months
without much to do.
I was high on repayments,
seeing I could repay,
in fact,  and

adding cookies back into my diet,
unworried about my teeth
for seconds at a time.
the party had vegan brownies and
I made sure to get plenty.
still I  could touch my ribs
and almost wrap my hands
completely around my waist.
a measure of security.
I often squeeze my ribs to
see if I’m still thin.

when we met,
I had freshly chopped
pixie hair and clear skin,
green eyeshadow to make my
brown eyes pop.
limited eyeliner and a shy
way about scooting next to
you, feeling contagious.

when we met, I had a wardrobe
that consisted of colorful
and flowy items,
hand me downs,
and a reticent entrance.
I was seeking incorporeal
thrills via touch and
you were
(too tired to change seats)
freshly
out of love. 

“the rebound”

I am thinking of culpability
as it relates to
feelings towards me.
I am thinking
you’re thinking
what’s the probability
I still hold grudges and
what’s the likelihood
I save a thing that any
man has given or said to
me, but we also have to examine
formula so you
reverse and see the way

I move at night first.
foremost, you have to
ask yourself whether my stasis
is truth or lie, and if all
perpetrators love getting
caught what does that mean for
us? and starting to feel myself
dissolve into the walls,
I become
first so large I cannot be unseen,
and then with a snap of
my fingers, a panel
blending in like camouflage
with the cracks along my walks.
I could not stop myself
from seeking; even in
chill, I could go from one
end of town
to the other.
like a slow exhale.

when the city closed the
streets for the pope,
I walked from Frankford and
Allegheny to 30th and Market,
having also biked it first.
even though we lacked the
snow capped hills,
something about spending an
entire two months
watching for black ice and cars
even at red lights,
hearing them skid,
thrilled like the slipping
over jagged rocks.
and being watched daily
by a nemesis and every man in this
town really made it feel much
more weighted
and at such a shifting
ponderance. there were
glades of icicles
to wade through,
my hamstrings so strong
towards the end of
February, my fingers
like wrinkled rulers
measuring the space
between neighbors,
the circumference of
baseball sized holes in
windows, the sting of
locked knobs,
and

crippled by the straws
I clutched ungloved.

“February/February/July”

I am thinking of culpability
as it relates to
feelings towards me.
I am thinking
you’re thinking
what’s the probability
I still hold grudges and
what’s the likelihood
I save a thing that any
man has given or said to
me, but we also have to examine
formula so you
reverse and see the way

I move at night first.
foremost, you have to
ask yourself whether my stasis
is truth or lie, and if all
perpetrators love getting
caught what does that mean for
us? and starting to feel myself
dissolve into the walls,
I become
first so large I cannot be unseen,
and then with a snap of
my fingers, a panel
blending in like camouflage
with the cracks along my walks.
I could not stop myself
from seeking; even in
chill, I could go from one
end of town
to the other.
like a slow exhale.

when the city closed the
streets for the pope,
I walked from Frankford and
Allegheny to 30th and Market,
having also biked it first.
even though we lacked the
snow capped hills,
something about spending an
entire two months
watching for black ice and cars
even at red lights,
hearing them skid,
thrilled like the slipping
over jagged rocks.
and being watched daily
by a nemesis and every man in this
town really made it feel much
more weighted
and at such a shifting
ponderance. there were
glades of icicles
to wade through,
my hamstrings so strong
towards the end of
February, my fingers
like wrinkled rulers
measuring the space
between neighbors,
the circumference of
baseball sized holes in
windows, the sting of
locked knobs,
and

crippled by the straws
I clutched ungloved.

“February/February/July”

“We have, I think, great terror of pain, and consequent resistance to what it can teach.”

–Louise Gluck

freedom is a cage
of smudged windows,
or it is a knot
in my stomach,
wriggling.


I dream of white frogs
at night in pools
covered in tea lights
and women swimming ahead
to cavern and I
feel caterpillars
washed in symbol,
incubated, sliding through
my gut, inching
their way from corporeal
packages when the day is
warm and facing them,
unbridled.
when the wind is favorable

my unimpeded exodus
through speech
prevails;
from chrysalis to
window, cracking
pane and tracing spit
like slug on glass
to mark the gust
that carries.
from gut to
chest to
windpipe:
carved.  how screams are
rushed when pushed,
or just when they finally
meet the Earth
as voluble flutter
that maims itself
to form.



“Arachne”

************
quick rage confession throwing the can at bryans face

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