i have this habit
of uncomfortable truths,
wear it over my day clothes
with a crown of cactus blooms so
as with the desert or a novice no
one can get close
enough to discover
the possibility of my
risk of heat
stroke or eternal
these insatiate old thoughts
demand justice for their restlessness;
they are the demons i keep lashed tight
inside my fists and the early-morning dreams
i refuse to voice on paper;
an unbridled verse
wrapped up inside all the pretty words;
for all that ever died quietly
but was not at peace.
running nearly barefoot through the semidarkness,
they clamor in my chest
out of time with my heartbeat,
stumble over roots as they dig down deep,
truths as they reach skyward.
goosefleshed and bitten, their heels as they fly
are soaked through with dew or
something more sinister;
like you, they desire only that i would be more clear.
words the color of frozen blood
fall from my fingers and onto
a blank page, breaking its indifference
with a cracked smile:
like the rise of empires,
lucid and prepossessed,
my every truth is only transient.
here the brickwork is old, its mortar
sunken, depleted veins where
i stumble in my grownup heels.
i’m hesitant, afraid of becoming dead
like my mother; her ghost drowning daily
in self-loathing and cheap beer,
calling twice a week to
remind me to eat.
all i want
is to write, but
to write, i need to rip
out the nerve endings of hardened tongue
and fingertips which grope
blindly with validations
instead of undressing my soul.
A hollow-eyed Sisyphus heaving senseless longings
defined but unsung for a decade,
yearning for the sake of yearning,
I, trapped inside the skin of fantasy,
a starving child on a floor of dust,
a dying woman they will bury in mud
dry-eyed, knowing that
tomorrow will come.
Speak of this to no one.
It is my soul they stab–
or, what I think is my soul
when no one else is looking,
foolish shadow the color of blood-tinged clouds
rising again and again to its knees,
sexless and fluid
–without even knowing, hearing
me liplessly plead only
with the idea of you,
never a whisper of desire out loud
to a bitter world, no
not even to you,
to you, strange subjunctive phantom
of my present’s damp sweet dreams;
your cuts will be no less
for their ignorance
and this gets too near the subjectivity
of my own truth,
littoral point of no return.