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day 17she dreams of the pink swing set under a canopy
of leaves, shoes brushing colours of autumn
of mud slicked steps, rusted spoons and clear
plastic forks turned opaque from grimy hands
of lard-filled jars and broken glass,
glittering teeth hidden beneath tree shadows
of scratchy hay poking ankles and, below, sharp
metal just peeking through faded itchy yellow:
day 3you said: there is just
something about myths.
i thought there's just
something about your lips.
tell me the myths of
your sleepy hometown
and the truths of hands
held proud in public.
i'd like to learn the
stories of your skin,
the loud silence of
heartbeats and bed sheets.
you don't sit beside me in class anymoreyou look like oversized sweaters waiting for
mr darcy vapid vanilla shows up late to
class with coffee cheeks flushed from cold
(but there's more than meets the eye. i like
the flush of your cheeks and last week i
wondered if you bite lips or lick them; if
you'd change my mind on holding hands)
gone is your floral perfume soft breathing
arm brushing mine proximity pulsing legs
crossing blurry profile in peripheral
(but now i almost like it better this way. it's
easier to follow concentration as it moves
along your features and i have always been
more comfortable with distance anyway)
lost in space1
there were words once, listen:
quiet, soft, like fingers brushing over the fabric of a sweater, tickling your ear, warming, small gusts of heat that spread to your toes, a glinting eye, a curved mouth, a promise.
there were words once, listen:
hard, rough, like metal scraping over concrete, bruising, marking your arms, legs, ribs, even your spine, purple and black blossoming on dark skin, yellowing until silence, an apology.
there were words once, listen:
now there are no words, only the deafening roar of silence.
there are words now, listen:
the old stars whisper to each other. they have discovered the secret of patience, a conversation lasting the ages. a single word may take years upon years to travel and you have to know which way to send it. careful, precise, or you may tell a stranger you miss them.
you can hear the sound of these words, like fast cars on a track, restless and enduring. the faster they travel, the slower time moves, slowing rapidly until it sto
sharp nailsthere is a pattern of
veins on my right thigh
that looks like the long,
blue bones of a hand
sometimes these thin,
spindly fingers crawl
up my veins and
arteries to clasp around
my heart, tug on the
back of my eyes,
dotting and blacking
they scrape the nervous
system and i think i
used to pray to settle
from 3429 ft.two years ago from paris, saskatoon looked like a small solar system, hazy with rain and cold. three days ago from toronto, it is midday and foggy, a thick blanket of grey masking tiny grey buildings cut by a tiny grey river. but the feeling is the same and i want to reach across the aisle to hold my sister's hand much the same as two years ago, russell reaching for my hand, any hand, two changed souls unprepared to face the sameness of home.
but the feeling is not the same. we are not two changed souls: we are just happy ones, 'satisfied with the trip' ones, and i do not hold hands when i am happy.
may 3i press tissue paper to the skin
above my ankle, apply pressure,
try not to think about the red and
searing and the itch in my hand.
i decide i want to cover my body in
ink, beautiful and expensive.
my grandmother asks me why i
want a tattoo.
i tell her, "i think they're
five years of thinking pass.
birds fly across my wrist and i trap
beautiful and expensive.
reverberationshey skinny boy, you walk like you know where you're going
and when you kiss me, i don't know what to say
( and it sort of
reverberates between us, doesn't it? )
parenting 101when our children wake up screaming in the middle of the night
or crawl into our beds, we have a list of reassurances:
"it was just a nightmare" and
"it was just the shadows" and
"it was just your imagination"
until they, too, are desensitized and locked in a cage,
condition themselves to be blind and sane like the rest of us
Path of lifeLife is a dangerous path
Full of twists and traps
A path we're forced to walk
Without turning back
We may regret the past
We may regret the mistakes
But we must learn from them
And keep moving on
We may predict the future
And even fear it
But we never know
What happens next
The only thing we have
Is the present, here and now
So let's live it
And forget about the rest
The mistakes of the past
The mysteries of the future
All part of life
This path we all walk
We Have No TimeAll we have
Is a sliver
Everything we will
Do in life
We all die before we know it
Its a fact of life
And I am already dying
A slow painful death
One year at a time
One month at a time
One week at a time
One day at a time
Then we flatline
On a metal sheet
Buried in the dirt
To think we were born yesterday
Only to die tomorrow
wordless they succumbAnd they fell -
just like that.
Just like the act of breathing;
soundless and inevitable.
Like an eager girl slipping
straps from her shoulders,
the soft crush of silk at her feet.
Winter's GirlI was winter's girl,
frozen under a thick layer of ice.
People tried to break it with their ice picks, but to no avail.
They eventually left me cold and in pieces in my frozen abyss.
You're thawing me out, slowly but surely.
"Summer girls aren't for me, "you say.
"Too full of sick strawberry sweetness."
That was just said to comfort me, but it oddly worked.
Maybe time with you will make me a summer girl,
no more need for thawing,skating with you above my ice.
WonderlandWhen I was little, I knew Wonderland.
Logic was faulty and rules were no more.
Up was down; down was up.
That was how it constantly was.
Fish swam in the air and drowned in water.
Worries were small and dreams were big.
One fell up until they reached the clouds,
Which were then used for soft beds and pillows.
Gender was an unnoticed trait.
Everyone was blind.
Everyone could see.
There were no expectations to uphold.
I was happy.
Then I woke up-or fell asleep-
Into a world with war and prejudice and plague.
I wondered then, and I do now…
Was Wonderland not the real world?
The Answer is Noneplease excuse the crushing
of this conversation
and i'll forgive the wheeze
as my mind's
pinch your windpipe
all but shut
watch my fading blur
as i step like god
and your heels drag
now you're the one
whose able is unned
dissed and nonned
your ghostlungs, my balloon
floating and bumping
and the whether
of pressure differentials
feels true, against
to the girl with the razors in her back pocket,stop. turn around. i understand you,
and i understand the sadness
entrenched in your bones. i understand
the late nights spent in anxious prayer
to the towels, to the creaky floorboard
just outside your parents' room, to the sink
that stains too easily. i understand
the catastrophic glances that people throw you
when you open your mouth and try
to belong. i understand the intense moments
spent in dressing rooms splicing together outfits
that will gracefully sweep past tally-marked wrists and ankles
and hopefully make sense in the dead of summer.
i understand the nights that you carve the emptiness
onto the razor and wonder if it wouldn't be better
to just die tonight instead. no one can be angry...
or disappointed...or judgmental...or sympathetic (because
sometimes forced empathy is the worst)...when you
no longer exist. it just stops. and anything
has to be better than this.
well, you're right about one thing. it does
get better. and not in that corny way
people tell you. you won't se
day one, part oneyour voice grates on my nerves like the old dependable classics,
like nails screeching down a chalkboard and utensils scraping across a plate
it grates like:
stepping in dog shit while looking for a towel,
a pickaxe lifting the back of my skull,
coconut shavings in desert;
like that feeling of moss growing on the back of my teeth and
the breakdown of language and i can't remember words or letters or ...
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