Identity

What do you do
when you’re two different people?
When you’re sometimes
one thing
and other times
something else?

Romance turns my veins into fire,
the passion roiling up,
transforming my skin
into oil slicks of lust

for all-wrong
men
with all-wrong
faces,
ages,
acquaintances.

Ten minutes later,
I pretend to know

what an adult does,
what a mother does,
what a teacher does,
what a wife does.

I beg for American Dreams
and brand new dishwashers
and college funds
and lake trips
surrounded by family
built on years and work and trying.

Two people
raging beneath my skin,
vibrating through my bones,
and I don’t know
which I like better
because

one makes me feel
and the other makes me safe.

~Patience

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Addicted

Your morphine
pulses
through my veins

each time I see your name,

and I wonder how addiction
could ever be wrong
if it feels this fucking good.

Your skin is my favorite drug,
my aching need,
my want when nothing else can satisfy.

Every word drives
new needles
into my arms,

but I eat the pain
with thirsty tongues,
with devouring mouths
that only taste your lips,
the flavor you leave on my fingertips,

and I can’t let it go.

The chains bite
and I ask for more.

I beg
for your poison,
for your passion,
for your pills

that might

quench my ache,
quell these shakes

that wrack my bones
each time I come down
from this addiction to you.

~Patience

Alone

He touches me like I’m magic,
as if I might disappear
from beneath his fingers,
and I wonder if he really sees me
or just his idea of me
because I’m not
magic and beauty and desire.

I am as broken as he is.

I can see my shards
floating in between his,
and I wonder how shattered
can be so fucking exquisite,
so insanely perfect,

and all I want is to feel
his lips pressed against
every inch of my body,
and all he wants to do is hide
because we are just
a come and go
not a stay and sweet.

We are rigid pieces
looking for something
beyond imitation,
beneath fake,
and we know we are not that.

We are young and old all at once,
fixed and fishing and empty
in these shells we call skin.

I need him,
his body,
his hands,

the lips that eat my flesh like it’s candy,
but I know the pain will follow,
the vacancy will rise,
and I will be alone

just
like
I
am
now.

~Patience

All My Poems Ache the Same

Forget about
how his lips feel
pressed against your skin
and the way his fingers
move in your hair.

Forget the way his sad eyes
look down when he laughs
and how he can almost
make your heart stop
when he whispers your name.

Forget because you will never have him
under your fingers,
inside your heart,
on your body.

He lies because he needs to feel
just like you believe him so you can.

~Patience

I Forget

Sometimes I forget
the color of your eyes.

In this very moment,
I’m wondering
if they’re brown
or green
or some other color I’ve forgotten
with the taffy years stretched out
between us.

It’s in these minutes,
these seconds of forgetting
that I know it
was never,
was an ending,
not beginnings.

And I miss knowing
with every bone,
every inch of my body
that your eyes are brown,
a soft chocolate color
swirled with gold

because I can almost
never remember
if I’m right.

~Patience

Butterflies

You break me without blinking.

Words walk out of your mouth
and shoot me in the back,
but your silence beats bullets
against my heart
and all while you pretend not to notice.

Still,
I want your lips,
the smooth edges of your eyes,
the scratch of your hands
itching their way down my shoulders,
pummeling my insides
with those nostalgic butterflies
that only come with
firsts and falling.

~Patience

Space Between

Soft mouth
pressing hard
against my throat,

and I am liquid,
my limbs loose,

floating,

falling

into the space between us,
forcing away the atoms,
the air which separates our skin,

for each inch is too far,
each second too long to wait
to have your fingers twisted in my hair,

pulling,

reaching

for one more kiss,
touch,
one more moment
inside this bubble,
this room where no one watches,
no one sees,
and I can feel your lips

just one more time.

~Patience

Starved

I am hungry for you.

For your
fingers climbing
my face,
clutching
my hair,
pulling me in.

Starving.

I’m starving,
the ache blooming
in my bones,
digging pits
in my belly,
driving wooden slivers
under my nails.

The want
of your mouth
leaves a thirst,
dry and unquenchable,
unendable and deep.
My throat yearns
for a drop
of your tongue
to stop the pain,

the hunger from
eating me from
the inside,

yet I know I will never
be sated.
I will never feel you
winding your way inside me,
pumping me full of your darkness,
the heat you carry like a cross,
a pain so hard it lights up worlds.

You are gone,
vanished,
yet ever present
in your gaping absence,
and I am still hungry.
Famished for
a taste of your lips
against my tongue.

~Patience

Not Them

I’m not her,
the one you see
when you close your eyes.
My hands are
different,
older.
My eyes aren’t hers
and my lips don’t taste like
the ones you dream about
when you’re alone in the dark
crying for the want of her.

You are not him,
the one I feel
when you touch me.
Your hands are
different,
smaller.
Your mouth isn’t his
and your brown eyes
don’t look the way I need them to
when I’m searching for something,
anything to make me whole again.

We are not them,
the ones we
yearn for,
scream for.
We are different.
We are distant.
But we need just the same.

I am not her.
You are not him,

but we could be
someone
to each other
when the dark is too much
and the stars aren’t quite bright enough
to light our way,
when the silence is too quiet
and our tears waterfall around us.

We could at least be someone.
Even if it’s just pretend.

~Patience

Sad Eyes

I am wading
in the dark of you,
through your mires,
your swamps,
all the black
that makes you.

I keep knocking
on cave walls,
on cottage doors
hoping you’ll open one,
even just a crack,
a sliver of welcome,
of wanting,

because I want to know you.
I want to walk around
in your mind
and hear your heart beat
from the inside.

To hold your pieces
up to the light
and let the dark drop out.

You are so much more
than the shards you choose to see,
those tattered walls and windows,
those holes where people used to be.

You are sweet shadows
and smoky whispers,
the spaces in between the dark and light,
a beautiful sadness,

and I want to hold you,
touch you until you melt back together,
until you understand
how my world explodes
in undiscovered colors
every time you look at me
with your sad eyes.

~Patience