Give

He is broken.
I can see it in his eyes,
and I want to hold that pain,
soothe it with my lips,
fold it up inside my skin.

He is shattered.
I can see it in his eyes.
I want to taste his agony,
run my tongue against its insides,
bleed it til it runs like he does
when it hurts too much.

He is beautiful.
He can see it in my eyes,
and I wonder if he knows I mean it
when I hold myself under his water,
drink his tears,
drown in his slippery silence.

I want to kiss his jaw,
touch his mouth with my edges,
and whisper how much I understand.

~Patience

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Locked

Your desire
flashes
behind locked words
held tight
in tight places.
The mastery
of these ghost-like
embraces
only tempered
by windows
and miles
and timing

but it was gone
before the first word
hit the page,
before touches and kisses,
before sucking and fucking,

it was over
before it happened

because eyes turn
into screens
hiding our truths,
our glances,
our indelible selves,

the ones we can’t change or show
lest our worlds
come floating down
in ashes around us.

Desire only matters
when it doesn’t,
when it’s pieces
and wanting.
When it’s asked
and unanswered.

When it’s you and not me.

Desire only exists
behind glass,
plain and lucid
yet covered,
blackened,
polluted
with longing and fear.
Our pain bleeding
into more pain
held up with craving,

to see her there,
legs open and waiting,
to almost feel
his lips on her skin.

But never to actually be there.
It’s all just longing
turned into zeroes and ones.

~Patience

Trying to Forget

That feeling,
the one where your stomach
gets all warm and jumpy,
and flames wrap around your face
the moment his chilly fingers
touch your cheek.

That feeling
of new and possible
that races from your head
all the way out your fingertips,
and feels like you could
paint the night
with the sparks flying out
of your hands.

That’s what I need to forget.

The feel of his lips on my neck,
his hands on my skin.

I need to forget his dark eyes,
the brown so deep
it feels like I might fall forever.
How it feels when he catches me
on the edge and kisses me harder
to make sure I know where I am,
that I’m with him.

And we watch the sun rise
from purple to bright gold.

That’s what I should forget.

Wanting to watch
the sun come up
in his eyes.

~Patience

The Leaving

I’m tired of broken hearts,
shattered reflections
of empty vessels
we used to call
family, friends, kin.

I watch their ghostly images
float by on notes echoing
from tinny speakers
playing memories
across a full room
filled with strangers
pretending to know each other,

and I am lost amongst
these curtains,
these holes
where my heart used
to pump real blood
instead of this clear substance
I once called love,
where my lungs grew flowers
instead of weeds
suffocating any life,
any air that’s left.

There’s nothing I can do.
The leaving has begun.
Again.

~Patience

Who Am I?

Tick
tock,

the time clicks by
on wooden stilts,
soaking up the hours
like thirsty tongues
submerged
in frozen ponds.

Each step aches your bones,
they crack in time with the clock
whose hands reach forward
and drag you into the future,
one you don’t recognize
because now you aren’t you.

Now you are what they say,
what they label,
what they preach.

You are amidst
cracks in time,
broken places
you used to call home,

minutes tap tap
on your skin
and suddenly
you aren’t you.

Your eyes look the same
but your cheeks are filled
with caverns
where hours used to be,
where freedom used to be,

so you touch your face,
hold your pieces
up to the light
and picture what it might look like
to be whole
instead of chunks
left on the floor,
forgotten in your useless facade,
the one you stapled to your lips
so that they might see some value
in the parts.

To be together again
instead of strewn about–
that’s what you wonder about now.

Not love and missing.
Not hard work and learning.

No.

Now you just braid
all the strings together
and hope you can keep holding on.

~Patience

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Existing

The stars keep blinking out,
shuddering and shuttering
in their wounded worlds,
wrapping unseen landscapes
in black,
shimmering once
and exploding into
a nothing so vast
it exists only in
not existing.
Each breath
folds against the next
and small pieces
fracture into atoms,
particles of
sadness and blackness
and it runs into floors,
full speed
instead of faltering,
braking.

No.

Collisions bloom
and master your refrigerated stares,
your empty gazes
that lie
and fuck
and destroy
my skin,
my arms,
my heart,
all the images
reflected in your eyes,
those memories
ricocheting against
pain and joy and loss and contentment.

Who are we but fractions
built upon halves,
upon chunks of nostalgia
raining from our
silver-plated eyes?

Who are we but slivers
turned into wholes?

~Patience

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Bad Choices Meet Anxiety

It’s pulling me,
dragging me,
yanking my skin
from my bones
in tiny tremors,

and I can’t stop
doing things
to make it worse.

Each step ignites
even more aching shudders,
ones that drive spikes
into my eyes
until I scream out,
knowing that each bite
is my own,
each sour drop of pain
began with me,
with the steps
I can’t stop making.

I’m about to destroy myself.
Fuck it.
I already have.

I am only shattered bits,
tiny tendrils of something
that used to be,
someone who once was
strong,
bold,
good.

Now, I am pieces.

And I have no one to blame but myself.

~Patience

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Done

What the fuck is the point? I mean, really. Why keep trying, keep going when we’re all going to end up in boxes under piles of dirt anyway? I honestly don’t care anymore. It’s all too much. I feel hated by everyone but I fucking hate myself anyway, so does it really matter? Nah. It doesn’t. Nothing does. No one listens to me and no one cares which is bullshit but reality all at once. I just want to get in my car and fucking go. Just drive until familiar fades into the past, the distance piling up on top of the miles between here and there. I’m so over it. So done. I can’t be saved. I don’t want to be.

Dust

I wonder
if I’ve run out
of words,

if my tongue
spews only dust,
my fingers
write smoke
through lonely air
all rigid with loss.

Am I empty of lines,
whispers I long to scream?

Am I only vast nothingness,
a cavern without a floor?

I feel different,
false in a frozen fuege,
faltering with each step,
your fingers feeling
further away than yesterday.

Gone.
That’s me.
Distant.
Absent.
Empty.

~Patience

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Just Write

“Just write,” they say.
I say, for god’s sake.

I tell my students every day,
“Just put your pen on the paper
and write something,
even if you don’t know
what to say.
Say that.
Say anything
to get your brain going,”

but I don’t follow that advice.

It’s been months or weeks
or I don’t even know how long
since I’ve written,
since words have come,
and they still haven’t.

They are broken
or gone
or shattered
or absent.

And I am so full,
so overflowing
with stuff,
with things
about life
and death
and love,
what it means
to love a child
like he’s your very own
when you know he never will be.

So full.
So buried
that the words suffocate
beneath the heavy.

So I write about
not knowing what to write,
and I cry every day
because I’m consumed
by confusion
and impending death
and a love so complete
it scares me.

~Patience

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