Monthly Archive-February 2018

Irish Breakfast Tea
I can only make tea properly one
of every three times. When
I do, the flavor whisks me home
to the tea my mother made me.

She learned tea’s secret
on a quest, rebuilding
her heart, wandering, in Ireland.
There was no room
at the inn, but a woman
down the road offered a refuge
and maternal affection
over a cup of tea.

The key is in the way
you add the milk
and the sugar.
In balance,
the sweetness
dances with the bitterness
instead of drowning it.

Form
Let me step into a painting–
make my colors more vivid,
my lines elegant and soft,
my form frozen in time
to be gazed at now
and then.

Starchild
The stars call out
for me to return
to them. The sky
wants me to go
home.

second star to the left
drowning in coffee,
fleeting overnights,
and hold music,
i realize i
have started to
grow up.

Rough
Unwholly created,
I flee from the
well-meaning hands
that would steal
my soul from me.
They would grind
my rough edges
to nothingness
in the name
of perfection.
They don’t
understand–
my soul thrives
in ragged,
unfinished spaces.

hello
with a voice
like the summer
rain that catches
the light just so,
the summer rain
that heals my soul,
you say hello.

Antiques
If it’s passé
to search for truth
in beauty and meaning
in madness, call
me old fashioned.
Admit my words
have worth, if only
as antiques.

haze
striding through violet
dust, i am lost
in a haze.
fragments of past
and whispers
of future cloud
my ability to view
the moment
with clarity.

cranes
the android bends its programming
into a thousand paper cranes,
repeats the process threefold.
three wishes is the traditional
number of legend,
according to the databases
of myth.
this must be done properly,
the origami perfectly transformed,
the wishes free
of necromancy,
of salacious intent,
and of the multiplication
of power. Nervous, the android
speaks the words, gathering
the cranes, hoping they will
take form:
heart
soul
free will

please–and the cranes twist
free from their binary grasp
and flutter into the sky.

Tranquility 
I weave blades of grass
into webs of peace
in sun-drenched,
daydream meadows.
As long as light
lives in my heart,
I can return to this place
to find tranquility.

Beauty
Are we trying to chase
beauty or are we trying
to be erased?
Everywhere I look,
the message is the same–
here’s how to have less
body, here’s how to have
less face, here’s how
to be flawless,
until you’re gone
without a trace.

Scarlet Hour
Come to me
in the scarlet hour.
I might make sense
in the moment of flame,
in the breath between
night and day.
Come to me
in the scarlet hour,
I want you to understand
the light I can barely
contain.

Catalyst
Chasing peaceful desiderata
over alabaster moonscapes,
I know my search
for tranquility is in vain.
I will be left holding
treasure that slips from my
hands in moments.
I am volatile
by nature. Any disruption
can become a catalyst
for transformation
from peace to chaos.

Storm
Technically, it’s winter,
but the day takes form
in stark contrast,
a summer storm.
I’d worry about global
concerns like the future,
but this is the first
time I’ve felt fully
alive in a while.
I’ll stand in the rain
and soak in the thunder
and let lightning
illuminate my soul.

revive
unhaunt me
unmake me
revive and
recreate me

tide
i run from the grasp
of the waves
but the pull of the tide
compels my soul
to return to the
sea to sink
to float
to transform

Monthly Archive-January 2018

snare
i’ve never woven a snare
but i’ve read the steps a thousand
times and i think my hands
would remember how to trap
a rabbit

but maybe not a heart–
i don’t know much about hearts
but sometimes mine beats
lost and rabbit-fast

i always thought the world would fall
apart before someone gave me
their heart

even if the world remains
i might be destroyed by the snares
my mind weaves for me

did you know that rabbits
won’t sustain you for long

if you try to live
on my heart
we’ll both starve

seasons
envision me with soft hands
and flowers in my hair
and kindness on my lips

even when winter steals
my softness and frosts
the flowers and chills
my words into clouds
of ice.

mist
i am drowning in the mists
i create. i can’t see
an escape and i don’t
know how to make one.

Lonely
Call me unhaunted,
unhauntable, call me free
and unassailable,
call me invincible, call me
invulnerable,

call me lonely.

Conversation in a Bar
You look you’ve forgotten what your heartbeat sounds like.
You look you never learned to wish on a star. 
Can I buy you a drink?
Can I buy you a soul?
Maybe I should go.
You’re already gone. 
Am I?
You’ll be fine, I am too.
What?
Make a wish.

Flight
I believe I want to fly,
but whenever I reach
the heights
I seek, I freeze
long before I can
take to the air.

infection
feverish and flushed,
compliments fly
my way.
can’t you see
this isn’t beauty?
it’s infection
and i’m falling
apart.

Art
I wander into a museum,
hoping to replace
your image with a more
peaceful work of art.
Gazing at paintings
of ancient mysteries,
my knees start to tremble.
Ultramarine glows against
gold leaf, creating visions
of power that reach toward
the divine. Gazing at you,
I shake the same way–
your loveliness sings
from highest of stars
to the depths of my bones,
but I know we will
never touch.

Apollo
Please stop evading my vision.
For Pete’s sake, let me see you,
I’m dying, racked between day and night.
Will you ever come to me,
or will stormclouds forever obscure your
radiance from my sight? Absent Apollo,
return my heart to me.
You don’t want a sorrowful soul like mine.
Yours is a world of daydreams and gold,
and I am trapped in shadow. Give my heart back so
I can be free to love the night I live in.

Aphrodite
Love evades me
at every turn, refusing to take
on any form that I can recognize.
Aphrodite is a whirlwind
of glimpses, of sunlight
and forest and soft
cloud and the hard sting of landing
in clear water
when you haven’t gauged
your fall. She is shadow
and desert and lightning
and the gentle collapse
into bed after a day
too long. I want love
but I don’t know how
love can live in my heart
when I can’t see it
for what it is.

overdressed
i’ll find a way to dazzle
you. i can’t afford lapis
lazuli but i’ll cake my eyes
with cheap ultramarine.
rubies are beyond my reach,
so i’ll taint my lips with crushed
insects the color of blood.
i’ll become a caricature
of wealth and maybe
you’ll stare, maybe you
will at least see me

Sophistication
I hope I’m never too
sophisticated
to drink shitty coffee
in a diner at 2 am.
All that glitters is not
gold, but let me drown
in my rhinestones.
If class means I
have to love less
of life, I’ll stay
unsophisticated.

Coffee
I won’t sleep tonight.
I drank coffee too late
because I needed to escape
someone. I lied
about needing coffee
and made it true
because I felt guilty
for not walking with them.
I still care, but there are roads
I just can’t walk down.
My mind clings to paths
of destruction anyway.
The voice in my head
shouts louder than any
argument. Whose voice
does it shout in?
It tells me I need
to turn anywhere but here.
My heartbeat hits staccato
notes, like I am battling
myself but it’s just
the coffee, it’s just
the day trying to make
a wrong turn, trying
to find its way
into the night.

Another Poet
If I were one kind of poet,
I would never tell you that I have been crying
all night. I’d find some injury on my body
and focus on the mortality
of flesh, on its profound
vulnerability.
I’d hope you’d read the tears
streaming from the wound.

If I were another kind of poet,
I would tell you that I have been crying
all night, all right. I would take this chance
to cite every ancestor
who has wronged me and mine.
I’d work my way back to Adam and Eve.
They cried first, didn’t they?
I’d hope you would see the tears,
but only when I finished divorcing
them from my own eyes.

If I were yet another kind of poet,
I would tell you that I have been crying
all night–I’d paint the tears into beautiful
rivers, picturesque
and cleansing streams of sorrow
untainted by mascara or confusion.
I’d make them too pretty to sting.
I’d pour so much beauty over
my feelings that you would love
the sight of my tears.

But I am my kind of poet,
and I use misdirections
as metaphors.
Have I been crying all night?
What are tears
besides paths for discovering
new ways to speak
of sadness?

Ordinary Want Ad
lonely chaotic good seeking
a wildfire heart.
must believe that lawful
obedience is a fool’s errand,
and that evil is as pathetic
as it is cruel.
must be okay with glitter,
dying for the aesthetic,
and frequent visits
to the lake of my naiad ex.
if you are ready
for love like lightning-
struck summer honey,
meet me at the corner
of the blue moon
and the owl’s question
at midnight.

Monthly Archive-December 2017

Ink
Inscribe my ribs
with golden ink.
Adorn me
with the poetry
I wrote and the flowers
your mind created.
They might be balm
or poison,
as my words
are balm and poison,
but they will glitter
golden.
They will shine
in the daylight
with traces of us. 

Rhyme
My soft heart beats
in singsong time,
foolish and quick
as nursery rhyme,
never slowing
to let me think
unless I write
it down in ink.

Thesis
I’m eating salad
at 10:30 p.m.
because the length of time
it has been since I consumed
a vegetable
is embarrassing.

I will be up until
3am, writing about a broke
millennial who’s just
trying to afford a house
and not be swallowed whole
by the future.

I wasn’t supposed to
relate to her so much and this wasn’t
supposed to look
like a poem–it isn’t one–
but I can only think
in line breaks.

name
sing my name
like it’s a curse
word you’ve found
the courage
to give voice
to for the first
time.

fairy circles
as a child
i used to jump
into every fairy circle
and close my eyes
and wait to be taken.

i give my name
freely to anyone
who asks
and anyone who doesn’t.

it’s no wonder
i never feel real.
i must have
been trapped
between realms
somewhere along the way.

nuclear winter
piling up worries
like sheets of lead,
as if they could protect
me from the fallout,
as if i could insulate
myself in fear.

Invincible
Nothing
is invincible–
so when the darkness
comes whispering
to me that I am Nothing,
I will reply:

If I am Nothing,
you cannot defeat me.

Lost
When I was young, my parents
were clear about what I should do
if I ever got lost.

Don’t trust the person who notices
you first. Don’t wait for anyone
to see your vulnerability.
Choose someone kind and go
to them instead.

Aren’t we all lost
in life? Isn’t this the way
we should seek love?

wall
she stands, hand pressed
against the wall, Thisbe in a dystopia.

she sings to her love
through the cracks, her voice

turned to ash with despair. he is not
there. he is lost, she thinks

and then a shower of pink petals
flies over the fence. she flails

to catch them, and their voices
unite in song.

saints
carried on the ocean’s wings,
flying from highland homes,
the saints cross the water.
they do not yet know
that they are saints,
or that they will survive
this crossing. the waves will turn
to glass in their wake
and they will rebuild
the sacred.

lavender
she speaks in a clavichord voice,
swift and anachronistic,
her words half-lost
in modernity’s hustle.

she lasts nonetheless, tough
as a fossil, spelling her essence
in lavender ink, delicate and
unforgettable.

spill
i will write emotion
onto everything–
a dropped glove,
a flash of light,
a papercut,
an innocent blink,
a scuffed shoe,
a tangle of white noise,
empty algorithmic words–
i will drown
my soul and future
in the emotions
i cannot help
but spill everywhere.

Sonnet
I will not love the way great poets would.
There is something within my heart that turns
away from paradox and into good,
although my body fills with ice and burns.
The melodrama’s shine is losing light,
I can’t be happy if I have no peace.
Love should not be a neverending fight;
a lover’s battle should come to a cease.
I want a love that nurtures and creates,
a love that raises up my soul and theirs.
I don’t care to be named among the greats,
I just want love that lifts away our cares.
And yet my soul remains true to its form:
my love is flame and ice and dark and storm.

Charm
I used to wear
an unlucky charm.
I knew it would
never bring me
love,
only loss,
but I could never
let go of its shine.

Welcome Home, Ovid
the road home
has burst
like faulty lead.
your books
were transformed
to dust as time
ran its course.
latin no longer
lilts on every
tongue, but your
stories live on
and you are no longer
banished.

winter
chilled to the bone,
i bow out of the pursuit
of beauty and seek
nothing but warmth.
curled in a blanket
with a book by my side,
i am home.

 

Monthly Archive-November 2017

from the vine
i abandoned half of my love
poems in the sun.
they dried up,
sweet and lifeless as raisins.

the other half i forgot
in the dark. they dissolved
in shadows, intoxicating
and poisonous.

there is no life
in them
anymore. i never
should have cut
my love from the vine.

Boot
Your love is like the hole
in the bottom of my boot.
In the sun, all is well,
but once the rain hits,
you let the cold in.

Paper
I will write a book to hold
your heart
whole
in soft paper hands.
I may never reach you,
but my book
will give you infinitely
more than I
can ever give.

fire
i used to be a fighter,
i used to be ready to light
the world on fire.
now i can’t remember
where i put my matches,
and the flame in my heart
is barely an ember.

Babel
The day Babel fell,
no one could see the tower.
Who could care about rubble
when the words
had been ripped
from their chests?
A visceral divide
grew between soul and soul
and soul. New words,
unfamiliar, dropped from tongues
and dripped from pens,
written in vain.
Pantomimes failed, fights
broke out, each faction
found their own
and scattered. Humanity
itself was damaged.
The rocks meant nothing.

Fierce
She was fierce, some nights,
but her fierceness flickered
like a star– never going out
but sometimes seeming
to fade. Some nights,
when the darkness stung
like a needle, she thought
of home, of the cinnamon
warmth her mother’s
baking created, of light
glimmering in the garden,
of arms embracing, and
for a moment, she was soft,
so soft no dystopia
could hold her.

Maelstrom 
There are nights when a maelstrom
is more comfortable than a cradle.
Only chaos can be comfortable when
your mind spins out of control.
Stare at the chaos and let it calm
you, strut through the gale
like you are the strongest of storms,
brandish the rotary steering wheel
torn from your ship and laugh
in the face of the rain.

owl
the fire is humming
a haunting tune–my heart
can never find the home
of this song.
i am an owl,
seemingly wise,
unable to know
the home
of my own heart.
i land in the desert
and it rains,
i fly over the sea
and the waves
run from me.

broken
Love is the stepped on
candy heart that I’m tempted
to fight the ants for.
It may be dirty and it may
be crushed, but its colors
are so bright and it looks
so sweet.
I’m dissolving in loneliness
and it’s the only sweet
thing I can see.

Anew
The sky teeters on the edge of dawn
and sleep, longing to create
a sunrise, to paint the sky in gold
and to inspire the world’s
music to wake and rise,
longing for another moment
of rest.

Enraptured
Spring arrives. The desolate
snowless world arrives and holds
us in its grasp before it blooms
to life. The lilac’s boughs are bent
to capacity, the birds create
a daylight cacaphony of sound.
It’s easy to feel enraptured
when the world dies
and awakes again.

home
an angel
landed here, hellbent
on drowning in sorrow,
on feeling the lash
of fury. in this desolate
world they almost lost
their halo, until
bluebells, sky-bright,
reminded them of home
and called them home.

false
the words of a corrupted archangel
promise that the world is collapsing.
they crystallize into false prophecy
and masquerade as truth.
the days may seem dark, but
there is hope in the future yet.

Laurels
Let the muse sing symphonies
of starlight. Let your glass
overflow with inspiration.
Be content in a crown
woven of golden laurels.

Snow
Winter is decided, not when a chosen
day arrives, but when the snow
sticks. The light glimmers on transfigured
mirror lakes, and the land is blanketed
in icy puffs of cotton. When winter
decides to arrive, it is time to chase
the thrills of nature and the warmth
of home.

chimes
my butterfly earrings
clank and echo,
haunting as wind chimes
or the crystalline chains
of memory.
they sing of the way
we took flight.

song
was she ever
truly singing,
or were her cries
for help so pretty
the world desired
more and threw
stones to keep
her song
from ending?

faithful
if i could find a lover
half as faithful
as the static that clouds
my mind
i’d never be lonely.

Self-Compassion
I am trying to care for myself with
the gentleness I would give
anyone else this hurt,
to brush the cobwebs
from my own eyes without blaming
myself for letting them build up.

wings
winged arms
wrap around my heart,
holding the shards
together.

driftwood
she searches
the shore
for driftwood
and shadows,
never shells.

november
i have a november
heart. a few days full of radiant
blue sky and glimpses of blue
sky through breaks in the clouds
are all that give it beauty.
the light dims too fast
and the snow falls
and yields to mud and
it will be spring one day
but for now the sky
is grey.

Hope
I wanted to tame
my wild side. I thought
there was no sin
in seeking peace
from myself, in pursuing
soft intentions.
She took insult
and being wild
determined to destroy
the one who would
destroy her.
With gleeful
promises, she led
me into the darkness
and sealed me here
stone by stone,
howling that we
would never be tame.
Separated from half
her soul,
she grew quietly
wilder, slowly maddened
into melancholy.
Soon she will wish
to dance in the moonlight
and find her steps stayed.
She will descend
into the earth,
dig me free
stone by stone
and we will howl
together
at the moon,
whole again.

 

Monthly Archive-October 2017

Drown
The rain will come
no matter what. I can only
decide whether to stay
in this ditch
and drown
or to rise
and watch the rain
water my fields.

Daylight
The sun sets earlier
than it should,
and I start sinking
with it.

ghosts
people keep trying
to steal my ghosts,
to banish them. i’m
not sure residual
energy really cares
where it is, but I won’t
let it be exiled and
i certainly won’t let
you invite anything
into my home to
consume it. these
are only shadows
and they will remain
untouched.

Sunbeam
I want to be held
like a sunbeam:
illuminating, warming,
healing,
never
contained.

bones
what if there are words
inscribed on my bones,
a delicate filigree
of everything I shape
myself into? what if
my magnum opus
is being written
by me, unknowing,
and what if it would
be bleached away
by any light
that touched it?

Daedalus
Daedalus once solved
an impossible puzzle:
thread a shell. He found
an ant to carry the thread,
but ants have no concept
of loyalty– honey
led the ant through
the maze. Genius
is nothing without
sweetness.

Heart
I’ll redecorate the heart
on my sleeve in darker
colors. Let it recede
into the background.
My soul is not meant
to be a spectacle.

Anopheles
Toasting in the sun, plagued
by swarms of mosquitoes,
I lay my hand against an I-beam
covered in spray-painted colloquialisms.
My hands are corrosive.
The effects of my touch
might be seen in decades
to come, the pillar crumbling
into rust, the epicenter
of the destruction lying
where it met me.

Monstrous
Hyde is back–

she slithers from within my pores,
ignores my desperate banging
at the walls
of my mind, obscures
the light from my eyes.

Hyde steals the color
and the sweetness from my lips.
Her words taste like wormwood,
and I do not want to hear
them spilling from my mouth
but my hands are
bound. She halts my pen
and delights in waving blank
pages in my face.

Hyde shutters the windows
of my apartment
and turns off the lights,
leaves me to cry facedown
on the floor as she writes
the names of my loved ones
in venom. She hisses
Happy Halloween
at everyone who shies from
this uncanny figure
in my shape.

I did not get a chance
to dress up this year,
but that doesn’t matter–

the monster is back.

Banshee
I sing the song of a doomed
girl, one who stared
too long in the eyes
of a banshee.
Already my voice
is tainted by
her cry.

Monthly Archive-September 2017

Battle Cry
I was not born
with a battle cry in my heart
to be satisfied
with a stalemate.

The Moon

I begged the moon
for love.

                                                               I cannot love you.
Because I am human
and you are made of light?

                                                         Because you are human
and I am made
of stone
.

 

lifeline
reaching out
for a lifeline
is strength,
not surrender.

ichor
her lipstick glimmers
with hints of gold,
as if she kissed
and bit
a god
and let the ichor
linger
as adornment.

Lightning
I desire peace
the way I desire lightning
when clouds
darken the sky.
I wait for the strike
of lucidity
that will burn through
this melancholy haze.
I need light
or love
or maybe just
touch.

Chase
I can’t discern whether
I seek adventure or escape.
I wish to chase
unfathomable beauty,
but does everything seem
beautiful in the absence
of duty? Do I seek
tranquility or
a dream?

song
sing me an undine song
of whispering waves.
make me forget
that your heart
is a reliquary,
full of dead sacred
beloved bones,
a stagnant muskeg
that i’ll drown in.
ensorcell me until
i dream of us
wrapped in blankets
and picket fences,
until i imagine
the mundane as glory
and breathe
your magic
as air.

Latin
loving you
was like learning
Latin–

we permitted
too much disorder,
we skipped
weather and coffee

for eternity and blood,
loyalty and honor.

Persephone
What people forget about the tale
of Hades and Persephone
is that regardless
of whether or not she loved,
she was betrayed.

Whether or not Zeus noticed
a glimmer in her eyes
when she looked at Hades,
he gave her away without a thought.
Her own grandmother, Gaia, grew
the flower that tempted her to fall.

And Demeter? Her mother missed
her and burned the world in grief
and then found herself a replacement child,
a boy, to forge into a god
who could not be sold.

Maybe the Underworld is not so gloomy
when this is all the love Olympus
has to offer.
Maybe she sings spring to life
with tears when she returns
to a mercurial world.

Arachne
call me Arachne.
watch
my words spit
in the unholy faces
of pallid statues
watch
me weave
dazzling
traps.
watch
me stumble
in my own
shimmering
net.

robotic
we are humans
flattening and glittering
our voices,
trying to imitate
the strange and charm
of robots.

The Lake
The leaves spill topaz
into the lake, but
the mist creates spectral
shades where the
trees interrupt the light.
An owl calls out
from the shadows
and I begin
to doubt the owl’s
existence, to wonder
whether the sound
is made by some
flightless shadow.

Rose
The rose hedge was dead,
cut down in an instant as if
by a faerie’s curse.
I thought of theft,
of stealing rose blooms or rosehips,
each time I passed.
I never stole a rose,
never drew a faerie’s ire.
I half wish I had.

Monthly Archive–August 2017

all you need to know about me
when i was a child
i thought the ringing
in my ears was
the music of the stars.

i thought that at night
the universe sang to me
and only me.

everyone assumed
it was childish dreaming,
precocious metaphor,

but i was sure
that the stars
were singing me
awake.

myth
sing me
into myth.
make me
unfeeling.
make me
invincible.

sip
you sip my soul
like a sommelier
and spit it out
like sweet, sweet
wine.

Thorns
In my daydreams
our story is
written in roses
instead of thorns,
in ink
instead of blood.

discord
discord tastes
like dead leaves.
there is nothing bright
or substantial about
this flat collection
of nothingness,
this noise stuffed
where it does not belong.

cake
i think that anyone
i stole
a kiss from

would taste like 3am
mug cake,
something to reach for when

i need to taste
sweetness
and not tears

Held
You hold me like
a daydream
which is to say
you don’t hold
me at all.

Ambrosia
You taste like persimmons–
(I’ve only tasted persimmons in my dreams)–
sweet, hinted with the bright bitterness
of hope, of ambrosia
and lampglow and sunset and home.
Imagine if we were drawn together
like passenger pigeons to home.
United, I would immortalize your
magnetic sweetness,
I would love
you like a sunset storm.

tea
you drink from the same
mug every time you
come to my house

hot tea steeped in
the bard’s most
potent insults

next time i might
hand you a mug
of dreams or flowers

instead.

amber
my heart bleeds
amber
like a tree
attacked

my heart seeps
amber
like a tree
growing

so i gather up
the drops
and i string them
together
to capture
the light.

eclipse
the light filters
desaturated
as a dystopian film.

the world looks
unreal, like the
story’s arc

is about to shift,
like a mystic hero
will emerge

and bring the
sun back to us
again.

 

Monthly Archive-July 2017

retrospect
why can’t i
move on?

memory
catches only the sunlight
in its facets,
leaving the shadows
behind in time.

why can’t i
move on?

in retrospect
every word lands
softly as honey,
sweetened by
absence and time

why can’t i
move on?

because
you do not want
to cling to shadows
and bitterness,
because
your heart prefers light

but do not be
afraid
time will
sweeten away
this pain

Downfall
If my muse did not
love making me
sing songs of you
at every turn

I would have been
over you
years ago. She
was my only
downfall.

Crush
My heart beats
rabbit fast

My eyes flutter
foolishly

Certainly we
have met

before?

oblivion
you imagined it picturesque
and smooth as cinema

kisses in the rain

but it ended up a beautiful
mess, pure oblivion

entropy
the cogs of my mind
turn in slow
motion,
a steam powered
machine
giving way to
existence, to
entropy,
to rust

sweetener
you are sweet as sugar
(your history cruel
beyond measure,
sparking generations
of sorrow)

but you mimic
the qualities of
goodness, and
people call you good.

Lavender
I find myself
huddled in the corner

of my own life,
sniffing lavender
like glue,

desperately avoiding
the lesson
I’m meant
to learn.

mirror
maybe the silver
mirror was too tarnished
to reveal my face clearly

maybe i have become
unholy and the silver
refuses to bear my image

Fall
Let the fall return swiftly.
If the clouds must swirl
low and heavy as cream,
let the leaves dance
a saffron and scarlet
masterpiece,
let cinnamon air
and soft wool embrace
my soul until
it wakes.

home
my soul lives
in a room windowed
with stained glass,

a room of murals,
the flowers’ paint
chipped and cracked,

and sometimes she
arranges the paint
chips into mosaics

and sometimes she
files the glass shards
into beads

to adorn and give
away.

Victory
I declare victory.
I have lost battle after
battle, I have left
fragments of self
behind in the dust,
and I am still
claiming victory
because it is mine to claim.
I will take back
every territory the shadows
in my mind have stolen
from me.
I will not live my life
battle to battle,
shadow to shadow,
wondering when I will
stumble into the next
valley. I will carry
the light within me
with me and I will not need
to fear valleys anymore.
I am putting down my shield
and picking up the sword
that has been waiting
for me to wield it.

soup
giving up on my fight
to salvage my burnt soup,
I remember lost love,

the sweetness in the air
just before the smoke.

dreams of warmth poured,
still smoking,
down the drain.

Dreamer
Give poor Icarus
a parachute.
Let him try to
kiss the sun
as many times
as he likes.

Monthly Archive–June 2017

Siren
They say sirens
should stay away from the docks,
from the homes that line
the shores, peaceful, serene, soft
as sand. They say the world
of land has its own temptations,
crueler than mellifluous voices.

They say we should stay
away from the docks, but the shore
was flooded and the cellar
door was open, the darkness cool
and soft, the waves a path
away from safety.

You were there, sitting on the steps,
pouring wine, rich, dark,
and stinging from a crystal decanter,
offering me a glass. You did not seem
surprised by me, you did not
seem afraid that I would
sing.

Your words, it turned out,
had more power than song.
I found myself spilling secrets to you,
sharing my magic
freely as wine, your soft voice
luring me to land.

False Conceit
I would like to say that poison
is not prominent in northern lands,
intoning wisely that
the cold does not brook competition

but I would make
myself a liar
for the sake of a conceit.

I doubt that the
copperheads, black widows, belladonnas
of the world
would take kindly to my denial
of their nature.

Gathering Moss
If I met Medusa
in the forest,
I could rest
and gather moss
and make a home
among the trees,
my stone heart
impervious to
sorrow.

flowers
you can’t eat
any of the flowers

that were at
the shop today

no roses, no violets,
but that is not

the question.
can i eat my words?

Stone Walls
I stacked up stones
to guard my
soft heart, but
the wall collapsed
and left my heart
broken and bruised.

?
Is it you?
Are you the divide
in me separating the chaos
from the rest of my heart,
keeping me from feeling
at all?

Monochrome
Who stole the colors
from my eyes, who plunged
my world into
monochrome
black and white?
Was it humanity?
Was it lost love?
Was it me?

Burned
Burned in the pursuit
of sweetness,
I sulk alone and tend
to my wounds.

The Sun
Call me the sun-
my rays can kiss
your face from afar,
but if you come
too close, you will
burn. If you come
too close, I have
no power to save you.

Cold
I shiver, blue-lipped
and blue-hearted, hoping for
summer to reach me.

Flight
I used to pluck
words from the wind
with the talons of a falcon.
My wings
will mend and I will take
to the wind again.

Haiku
Let me find the strength
I so admire. Let me learn
to breathe love like air.

shards
break me into
shards

build a mosaic
with my colors
sharp edges secured
in cement

tear me into
tatters

unravel me
to threads and
weave infinite
images

Everyone Lived
A truck crashed
outside my window
The ambulance
vanished without a single
stretcher
being drawn,
without a wounded
or felled body
being carted off.

The sky is pouring
and the lightning
shines brighter
than the police lights
and everyone
lived.

The sky and rain are
lit up gold and silver
and everyone
lived.

Runaways
Let’s just flee – call us
runaways, vagabonds, call
us completely free.

Love
Love floods me;
love drowns the sides
of me that were
sheltered in the storm
drains

even as love
revives the blooms
and strengthens the roots
of the trees
growing in my
soul.

kindness
be more cynical.
the advice was given with kindness,
every time. cynics, like everyone else,
believe they see the world
rightly.

but there is no
protection in cynicism.
and i

am no naive child who
believes the world will
greet me with kindness
at every turn.

i have seen goodness
warped into cruelty and i
have seen betrayals you cannot
fathom and i have stood by
suffering people

and i have comforted
those who did not deserve
my compassion.

this does not matter.

i will sow seeds of
compassion until the day i die because i
know that these tiny gestures
are infinite, that they carry power
that i cannot fathom

and because i like to see
people smile.

Monthly Archive-May 2017

Intentions
The road to hell
is paved with
bad
intentions,’
I insist,
littering the ground
with good
intentions
everywhere
I go,
leaving the world
burning
in my wake.

Hestia
I’ll be Hestia and keep
the hearthfire burning in our
hometown. I’ll be the one
who lights the way home
for you wanderers. I’ll fill
with longing and loneliness,
perform no deeds and dream
every dream. I’ll stay here
and write and burn and burn.

Amber
I did not burn for you,
I pined–
liquid amber seeping
from within,
ready to trap
you as you flew.

Attempting a Fool’s Quest out of Necessity
The most respectful
way to write
about Ulysses
is within a single
day, right? Morning
confusion, midday
meanderings, late
night hallucinations,
recoveries,
an excess of reason,
and a return to bed…
Isn’t this how
it should be?

Cloudlight
The rain beats
down on the tulips,
but they glow
too brightly for words
in the cloudlight.

Statue
Confiding in you was like
speaking to a statue
of a saint- you seemed
beautiful and compassionate,
but at your core was
nothing but stone.

artificial
the scent
i leave in my wake,
travelling, is not
mine… the hint
of summer, delicious
on the air, has
nothing to do
with me,
the bottle is just
easy to carry. the
scent i leave is
not mine; i leave
no piece of me
behind in hostile,
glittering cities,
just falsified data,
just artificial raspberries.

Minefield
I dig through
the past,
foolish,
curious,
frantic.
I could be
destroyed, but
I have to be
sure: was it
treasure
that was buried
here, or am
I standing in
a minefield?

Sugar
Even with all the sugar
you poured into
the cookies for the party,
our friendship
managed to be
sweeter.

Haiku
Wearily I step
from the path. I’ll continue
my journey soon, healed.

Fig Trees
You say I should write about
the fig trees, but how can I
focus on fig trees when goodbye
is whispered as quickly as
hello is said, when friends are
leaving for cities that sound
like they should have fig
trees but don’t, when friends
are returning to cities
where stars are invisible,
when the future flickers
like torches in the rain?

The Watch
At first, she refused to pick up the phone,
stepped into her home,
a ghost in the shattered glass,
her hair disheveled, eyes haunted.

Lamp on its side, radio broken,
hats and coats scattered on the ground–
nothing was missing,
nothing but the gold watch.

In its place was a note:
“It meant nothing to you.”
The watch? She had found it in
an antique store, gleaming, forgotten.

She picked up the phone,
unsure of who to call,
unsure of how to make peace
with such a mystery.

Grief
Grief bloomed and died
in her heart, flower-swift
and powerful as dragonflame,
outshining the summer stars.

I Love You
The words flew from your lips
too quickly, full of romantic
imperfection.
I cherished the memory,
though I could not capture
the energy in your eyes
when you first said the words.

October
Pure as Artemis, free
as a dolphin flying
through the waves,

(until that Friday)

she saw no reason to let love
encircle her mind
like Saturn’s rings,
to let love turn her heart scarlet
like the kiss of an October
breeze on a leaf.

Shoes
Try walking in my shoes,”
I muttered, when
I didn’t have the
strength
to tie the laces.

Worth
I am worth
only as much
as you can get
out of me.
I am worthless.
I am worth the world.

Haiku
Hypnotic winds in
rainstorms create a sense of
peace or something close.