29 January 2013

Teaching

The future is criminal,
tucked between procedures and blueprints,
corrupting little stories that are better
in person than on the news.

Allow me to summarize
this person's downfall
without offering more information:
all the charms in the world,
that trap and reflect
all the light and all the dreams,
can't keep her suspended in air, holding her breath.

All the dangers,
all the fears
only lend themselves to knowledge:
when she cuts herself
on broken glass, it isn't permanent,
but the fact that she decided to trespass,
to break into your little house,
is an idea that's solid,
that dries at each corner of your mouth
and won't leave your brain.

She isn't silly,
even though she speaks
in third person.
She just wants you to learn,
to glue your lamp back together,
to repair your windows
with the knowledge that these things
you took for granted
are not the same.



28 January 2013

Argosy

So glad to see
You take my hand between your knees.
And once inside,
I'll only take the things that shine.

- Catherine Wheel

You are older than the dreamer,
worn and stretched taut across solar systems,
and yet I find you as darling as a child--
either skipping stones or heartbeats,
whichever you decide in that moment.
Why can't tenderness be practical?
Why are lies like anchors,
your eyes as vast as any sea?
I would welcome you aboard my ghost ship,
cradle your wisdom between
the knobby knees of my security,
the billow of my mast, my heart in bloom.
We could watch the stars, your dreamscape, from here.


25 January 2013

January

You know when you're nicer to other people than you are to yourself, and you're depressed and don't want to get out of bed, and your clothes fit like curtains and your breath tastes like formaldehyde?

You know when you can see your formaldehyde breath and it forces you to pretend that you're smoking, and it reminds you of those times when you and your sibling pretended to smoke, using candy cigarettes? Remember the small amount of Coca-Cola in the glass that was supposed to represent whiskey? the small amount of sweat that collected between your fingers? the small amount of concern you had for childhood?

Off the grid, the coffee tastes bitter, and the favors aren't returned. Off the grid, sex comes with directions that are no longer relevant, directions that feel like an outdated, faded map. You are less optimistic, less attractive. You are less rested.

Statistics claim that men benefit from relationships while women do best existing outside of them, untethered, free to dream, to shave or not shave, to mind or not mind. You know when you're nicer to other people than you are to yourself? You learn that the spaces between sentences matter less. Relationships matter less. The roads on the map matter less; they are just arteries carrying blood from one failed organ to the next, onward, then out, formaldehyde traveling faster than silence.



23 January 2013

On Creative Writing

Journal Activity:

Briefly describe a scenario during which you are strangled to death by a dog leash, then imagine your best friend was the one to do it. OK, now that you're done, draw a circle around each error. Draw a circle around your best friend. Pretend that every circle is outlined in chalk.

Now pretend that your body is outlined in chalk. Once the outlines are finished, have your dipshit best friend take some Polaroids. You can't, because you're a ghost, and you're writing this scenario down, using the back of another ghost as a table.

Tell the other ghost that you need a drink after this. Actually, first, ask him if ghosts are able to drink. Frown when your new friend tells you that ghosts no longer have a need for nourishment. Mock him, say that whiskey doesn't fucking "nourish," asshole. Continue to scribble notes as your former best friend, the dickless murderer, sprinkles Polaroids of your hairy corpse all around the crime scene. Mock him as he cackles at your expense. Then yell at him, perfectly knowing that he can't hear you. Go ahead and ask him why he decided to kill you, and feel stupid for dying so slowly.

Suddenly, you notice that your former bestie looks in your direction, as if he heard you. Yell a little bit louder, just in case. A warm sensation passes through your body, and you realize it's another presence. You see your girlfriend in front of you; she just walked right through you. She's smiling. Take note of this, angrily, in your scribbles. The ghostfriend you're using as a table complains that he can't see what's going on, because he's been bent over this entire time. You tell him to shut up.

Your girlfriend laughs, then wraps her thick, warm arms around your murderer, kissing him full on the mouth, like some sort of tramp. You're really pissed now. You forget to circle more errors in your writing and instead crumple up your notes and toss them desperately in their direction, hoping to get their attention. Your effort was futile. Your ghostfriend stands erect, now that you are no longer using him. He's complaining to you, but you hear nothing. Your gaze is focused on the couple, and suddenly, you wish you had your dog with you to bring you comfort, even though it was her leash that took your pathetic humdrum life, you stupid turd.



22 January 2013

Trinkets

If I were beautiful, I would forget
to cover my face while laughing.
If I were beautiful, I'd be seen
as daring and loveable.
When the snow dances, frames your face, I forget
to check the fever--
I forget myself, because
I am separate, a shadow, held in your delicate gaze
like a painting. If I were beautiful,
I would forget myself.
If I were beautiful, I wouldn't be afraid.



21 January 2013

Ice

Wait for the elegance to settle--
frost on the grass, fill the vacant spaces in my chest.
I say too much--
I open my mouth, and the ice travels
from my tongue, to my stomach.

Regret is a tiny, itchy wound.
No time for scabbing, the blood crystallizes
the notion that I should be someone else,
anyone else but myself.


02 January 2013

Love

I've only been kissed by two people in my life.
There, now it's no longer a secret--
a small, cool stone in my pocket.

Maybe this year, I will find someone to love again,
someone who will love me back.