the last poem

pipeline in flood

at the end,
i don’t know that we are any better off.

the rains have stopped
and everything green
is growing, but we still don’t
have travel plans,
and tomorrow is anyone’s guess.

the squirrels got the first
strawberries, and the red
rose is set
to open its first blooms
any day now.

i got through without owing in taxes.
i can hear church bells
with the front door open.
sometimes you return my texts.
some nights we sleep like lovers.

it is the first of May,
and the river calls.
you told me yesterday: three
cars tumbled in, spilling
crude somewhere

upstream. i don’t know
if it was a result
of the storms, or
our negligence.
it will reach here,

they say, but not when.

why i write poetry

canal, drained

 

(because)

there are too many pine-sown miles
down sixty-four east between here
and the coast,
not enough syllables
in a night.

because the lightning flash is silent

and the cobblestones too loud,
chattering away our past
over slip-slick mouths.

because they pull
fewer bodies
from the dark of this water
than one might think

and our image
is a birdcage that goes
blood-deep,
is reduced to matchsticks
and catches flame,
sinks again.

the lightning, as i have said,
is silent.

because some suns
were born broken
and some days
destined to break and
once not many ago
i found an ant
in the sugar jar, drowning.

because (i
am not worth loving, sad, though)
some afternoons
there is a july morning
with open windows
and no thunder but
tucked in the space
where it should be
stands a poem.

just another suicide poem

you don’t want to read this.
untethered and still in tangles, some words
should only ever be sung at song’s end.
for some hurts, there are no words.
here. put your finger just…
here. where it pulses.

feel the slow.
red-black, it giggles
as it drips from skin to
brick-l(e)aden sheets.
you don’t want (anyone)
to read this.

they’ll take away your shoelaces,
your plastic knives.
but then, what’s a razorblade
when all you need
is the will to stop
breathing?

for some pain,
there is no air.
i know these things,
the giddiness of a dripping
pulse. trust me, i’m
a doctor.

here. they’ll take away
your shoelaces
and you’ll walk barefoot,
without dignity.
but they won’t let you
leave. you’ll walk hobbled,

in small circles,
barefoot,
broken.
like poetry.
your story
on some stage far from here,

another bleeder.
here. as it gushes.
trust me, i’m
a poet. feel the slow,
the red-black breath
of forever

a single, beaten tomorrow
that will never
be yours again.
read barefoot,
untangled,
how it gushed

(in the end),
how they wouldn’t
let you leave.
broken, the whole world
will applaud, crying in the end (;)
you don’t want to read this.