The End of the World

I’m so sad today and I can’t stop it and tears won’t come and neither will screams and I just want to jump on a plane and visit you because I need to see your face or hear your voice or anything just to be near you. I want to talk but I have no words and no one will listen anyway and it’s terrible to think about all the broken hearts in the world and that I am just one of many. There are fields of bloody hearts just waiting to be stitched up but there’s no one there to do it. And I just can’t make a decision based on the fact that I love you when you won’t talk to me. You’re too noble for that and I’m too stupid to forget your hands in my hair. I have to do something besides write these poems drowning in woe but there is no solution so I guess I’ll wait until the end of the world like everyone else does. I’ll wait til the asteroid is upon us, until the hurricanes won’t cease their vendetta against the earth. Maybe then you and I will have enough courage to hold on and not let go.

We Are

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Photo Credit: aheartnote.com

If we are what we don’t throw away,
then I am boxes of old bills
and shelves of dusty but loved novels.
I am high school yearbooks
and inherited china plates,
jars of colorful beads
and ancient photo albums
with yellowed pages.
If we are what we don’t throw away,
then I am made
from pieces of you
and him
and all those in between.
My skin is stitched
from words you spoke
and songs you played.
Your blood pumps
through my veins
while my letters float through yours.
You can’t throw me away
any more than I can delete your image
from my brain.
We are built,
bone and muscle,
from the things we can’t throw away.
I am you
and you are me.
We made each other,
shaping our hearts
with our own four hands.
I keep you tied to my heart.
I am those boxes of trinkets
but I am also everything I am
because you are in every piece of me.

Summer Rain

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Photo Credit: Patience

There’s something about
summer rain.
Hot.
Sticky.
Wet.
Tropical beaches
and rain showers
twice a day.
Not long ones,
but brief
bursting
floods
of skin-drenching showers
that make you sweat
instead of cool.
Steam billowing
from wet bodies
standing in puddles
of humid drops.
Air sticking to skin,
making fish of us all.
Rain
where people get caught up
and run
and kiss
under the torrential spray
of liquid romance.
And then rays of sunlight,
clouds shot through
with heavenly light
to dry up the sticky drops.
Left breathless
by the suddenness of it all,
the sheer surprise
of hot kisses
beneath thundering skies
crying hot tears.

Same Moon

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Photo Credit : Emily stauring at fineartamerica.com

The moon
hangs low in the sky,
its luminous face
staring at the earth,
all of her inhabitants
sleeping and dreaming.
Beams of moonlight
cast liquid rays
that hover in the gloaming,
and I wonder if you see it too.
If you yearn
to unlock her secrets?
She is all that we share now,
all that we are,
because when I look up,
I know that you can see her too.
Under the same bright moon,
I wait for you
to see her revelations.
She is yours
but she is mine too.
Same moon.
Same hearts below,
beckoning for answers.

The Red Balloon

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Photo Credit: whsvisualarts.org

I wrote you a story
about a red balloon
that escaped
from a carnival show.
It had always imagined
a life on the road,
twisting and tumbling
through a world
made of wishes,
but it could never escape
the clutches of the clowns,
their white painted faces
and dirt painted hands
gripping and curling his string.
Around and around in their car,
they would circle,
performing
for the awe-faced crowd until–
poof blink done–
the lights would go out
and the red balloon
would be left alone
under the giant tent
that obscured
the blue of the sky.

One day,
a passing thunderstorm
whisked the red balloon away
on wind and weather
fit for a monster,
but he had never been happier.
He glided
and floated
and flew through
the clean blue sky
and saw the magic
in the world.

He traveled
until he met a beautiful rose
in his same bright shade of red.
She sat by a river
that gleamed in the sun
and he couldn’t help
but find his string
twisted in her leaves.
He fell in love with her beauty
and her sharp thorny edges
that would never let him get too close.
He watched her bloom
and open
and show off her spirit
but she never said a word.
She whispered
on the wind instead
and he couldn’t bear to leave.

So he stayed
by her side,
never leaving the river’s edge,
because,
although her roots meant
she could never leave,
her love had given him
a reason to not float away.

That is my story
about a red balloon
who spent his life searching
for freedom
only to find it in the thorns
of an earth-bound flower
who could never leave her home.

Written in response to the Weekly Writing Challenge–Noun List Twist

Find Me

I wish you would
find my words,
bump into them
in between searches
for guitars and Pearl Jam.
I can see you reading one
and then another,
all the time hearing
my voice as you read.
Your fingers will
click, fumble, click
through each letter
and wonder
if the Johnny is you
and if the E is me.
Then your heart
will ache a bit
more than usual
and you’ll wonder
just how many I wrote.
I can picture
your features drawn down
in anger
as you scan
through my hot words
of spite.
And I can imagine
your lips curling up
into smiles
as you read my passion
on the page.
You would reach
for the phone
and dial my number
because you won’t
be able to stand
one more moment of silence
when I have spoken
a world’s worth of words
into space.
I hear your thready breaths
as I answer the call
and I wonder if it’s finally you.
But the line goes dead
because you can’t seem to find
the words to answer my poetry,
every line feels like sand
in your mouth.
How can you give me
something so beautiful
when I have turned the world
into my audience?

I wish you would read
my words
so you could know how much
I love you.
I can’t do it and
it won’t happen on accident.
I wish someone
would show you my words.
It would be so much easier.

Collisions

I don’t know
if I had expectations
for who you were
or who you are.
But I do know you follow me,
every nuance
that makes you
who you are,
you follow me,
haunt me,
collide with everything I know
and twist into every open space.
I don’t know what I should expect
except nothing
because that’s
what you started giving
long ago.
Your finite messages
that told me
your heart still bleeds my name,
this is what you gave
and tore away
as my fingers splashed crimson
on your already wounded words.
Do I have final lines
that will end this haunting,
this hovering of your ghost?
I have so many
that none seem final.
Can people see you there
in my eyes?
No one asks
so maybe I hide you well,
but I feel you stuck to me
like blackberry brambles
in the middle of summer,
hot and
sharp and
painful.
But no one notices
that you follow me,
that your memory
tangles through my daily movements
the way tree roots
rupture aged concrete,
bold and
brash and
with no regard for the present.
No one looks into my eyes and says,
“I can see your agony pooling
on the floor,
making puddles of lost love
for all of us to walk around.”
You are invisible,
a phantom of lost chances
and missed meetings,
and I feel you waiting
behind my eyes
for the big reveal,
for the moment I forget
you are a ghost
and scream your name
for all to hear.

Wasted Wishes

I make wishes
on stars
that don’t look
like stars.
I pick shapes
with odd colors
or moving lights instead.
This way
I’m not pinning my hopes
to something that died
a millenia ago.
How can I have faith
in something made
of beautiful lies?
So I wish on planets
or satellites
or airplanes
because they are real
and there and honest.
They don’t trick me
into believing
they’re magic.
Those heavenly objects
carry hope for future,
for life instead
of ancient death,
in the ocean of stars
that swim in the sky,
begging for wasted wishes.

Masquerade

I fell in love with you
between the ordinary moments
of living.
I watched how your muscles flexed
as you picked out a song
on your guitar
and how your eyes flashed
when you held
your ferocity for justice
at bay.
These are the times,
in the middle of the night,
when I awake
realizing that I love you.
It wasn’t a big fall
or some height-defying leap
from a cliff into unknown waters.
It was slow
and easy
and held between your fingers
the way my hands curled into yours.
The way your laugh
pierced the fog of my sadness
and the way you kissed me–
as if my lips were water to a dying man.
The tiny moments
of magic
when you taught me
how to play dominoes
or when you bought me
that styrofoam cup,
all the time knowing
it would be the last thing
we both touched.
All these little pieces
add up to big love,
the kind you swallow fire
or win battles for.
And I am ablaze
for those tiny pieces
like your bare torso,
bright with freckles
in starry constellations.
You have enkindled all
that I ever dreamed love could be
by allowing the big moments
to masquerade as small ones
and letting me love all the parts
sitting in the space
between living and life.

Impermanence

This insane
and illogical longing
for something
that doesn’t exist, 
that never existed
outside of phone lines
and bus tickets.
Like you died
or something.
People ask me that–
if you died
because this loss
is the permanent kind,
the kind that lingers
long after the whispers
in the dark
have ceased,
long after the funeral pyre
has turned to ash.
It’s like your heart
has stopped beating
but you live on
in this vacuum of denial
and tethers
and beauty
that only I can see.
This harness
that traps your being,
ties it down
without hope
for escape,
it is my anchor
that holds me to this reality
I’ve created
where I write about wanting you
to miss me,
and you actually do.