Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Strange Creature

Am I grown a strange creature to you now?
Is that why you chase me down with your eyes?
Is that the reason for your beating of my mind
With what you don't think are misguided intentions
They burn me!
Am I grown a strange creature to you yet?
As you are to me?
We used to be parent and child
We are now stranger to stranger
We've fallen so far
I couldn't tell you the track of our separation
Am I grown a strange creature to you?

Summer Storm

            The clouds are on one side a soft, sweet dark gray and a low blue. On the other, a dull rose that fades to yellow-pearly dimness, like a sheet of faded newspaper. Our yard is all dead, and prickly, spiky, unkempt, except for the harshly pruned lilac and the sturdy Rose of Sharon. There are seven seconds between the lightning flashes and the rolling, rumbling thunder that ricochets so willingly off of the mountains. The rain started soft, gentle, cold. Now it’s coming down faster, colder, but just as easily.
            The man inside my family’s house, sitting at my family’s table – he looks lost and a little sad. I surprised him with my urgent errand-running as I scrambled to find this notebook and this pen, the blue one with ink that isn’t miserly. He looks lost, and I hope to him I look like spring, like fresh air and summer rain and the clean feel of just-washed linen. I can’t see into my family’s house, I just get a snapshot of the yellow-lit window, the fringy orange curtains hanging 1/5 of the way down. A wilting houseplant. An embroidered square hanging pink against the cupboard-side.
            The mountains look hazy behind me, lost to a pale ocher mist. I’m sitting on the very edge of the trampoline, the water pouring to a pool in the small dimple that I create. There’s this large rainbow umbrella above my head, only because I don’t want this paper to get too wet. If I hadn’t struck this writing mood, I know where I would be.
Spread-eagled or curled fetal on the trampoline, frozen to the bone and feeling in tune, feeling like I belong with this tiny, tame, and quite suburban square of nature, and not just that, but the whole of it. The wind and the miniature pellets of moisture, the brief, purposeful flashes of lightning, the jagged teeth-of-giants mountains, the barely bending trees and the tall grass along the edge of the backyard fence, reminding me of safaris I have never been on.
My right foot has been pricked by some dead, disgruntled grass blade. I don’t care. I don’t care. The air smells like ozone and damp dirt, and I feel like heaven. I feel like someone small and enthralled who has not learned to love walls and sterile air and hasn’t learned to fear the world, the filthy, throbbing, gritty, wonderful, natural, living world.
My breath is short, shallow, happy, and rather shabby. Eventually I’ll go inside. I wouldn’t want to catch some six-syllabled, racking cold. It would be worth it. But my father is calling my inside to pray. I’ll have to go, and I am sorrier for it.


Hold those words out
Eject them form hibernation
Toss them, set them
Let them hang in the air

Watch to see if they sparkle
           Or dart or cut or
                     Just hang
Watch to see if they lash back

Did you chew them seven times before you spoke them?
Seven and seven again before you woke them?

Heed history's dark edges
Clever words lead to high ledges
And revelry will flee
Without two glances back

   Hold them close up to you
      Cultivate them, flowing through you
          Hang them in the air like stars
To see if they will sparkle


I love the smell of gasoline
Blue flowers, and green neon lettering
Embarrassing-honest people
The words nocturnal, cavalier, and arable
Reading, reading is my second-best to humans,
Greek mythology, all mythology
Solving math equations, being surprised
The soft waves of my mother’s hair
All kinds of clouds and rain
Smooth fabrics, sharpened-pointy pencil-tips
Gravelly voices
      and exploring

Monday, December 26, 2011

With and without
  Hush now, don't pout
Running my hands through my hair
Quantum mechanics
And butterfly feet
  I can't tell you why
Elephants, the only mammals unable to jump
Bats, with bones too thin to walk
  Just hold on tight
We are all the children of nine
With and without

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Telling someone not to listen to the jibes
Helps no one
And I can tolerate and forgive
Your shredding of me to pieces
I can let it slide with peace in mind
But you keep your filthy darts away from him

You watch your words and keep them high
You watch your conduct, tone, and airs
You watch your thoughts and deeds' intent
Or I will mind them for you

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

(Based on The Death of Marat)


Cold, tilted
Despite the blood and the parchment
And the warm, dry tint
His eyes are closed,
He’s sleeping?

A warning, a memorial
A testimony
A revolution’s star,

I do not know what his secrets are
I always wonder at funerals
My money’s on a hidden love
For Charlotte Corday
People tend to love their murderers

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

I guess the words we spoke were yellow
Like the pages of a book, an old book
An old book
with love notes and
mysterious comments
and one angry, scratchy, slant-scribbled sentence
etched into the corner of page 65
mixed in with the usual and beautiful words
and the familiar, dog-eared, faded-print treasures
and those authors' names jumbling in the background
I guess the words we spoke were yellow
Like the pages of a book

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Our estimations are plasmic
Distorted, nebulous, and through it all, intoxicating
We all like to think we have that tragic hero
Did we lose our wings?
Or did we just stop believing that we had them?
Hush, you say, and chalk it up to the situation
Minstrel is such a beautiful word
Why would you abuse it?
I don't need you to know who I am
You should look out your window
If you will let the world rush past,
You should at least watch
Don't drop your dignity like a flag
Stop fidgeting
Is that what you call toeing the line?
If there are boundaries you're testing
Don't just nudge them
If you have reason to test
You may as well take a running leap, 
Headfirst, arms extended,
Thrilled echoes of battle cries
Ricocheting through your mind
It would be better than standing there as you are
Nervously peering across lines that only exist in your head

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

This is why none of my English assignments get turned in

Supposing I told
My story in a haiku
Wouldn't that be strange?

Maybe two or three?
Would more syllables help me?
I don't believe so.

To think your story
Must fit into seventeen
Syllables. That's mad.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

You make me think of melting ice cream
And vague gold-dusted evenings
And the absence of you leaks sorrow into my blood and bones
Don't leave
Pack me into your suitcase and we'll go
Cold sunshine and the smell of your bedroom
The cheap imitation of your voice locked into my memory
Nonesense words and nonsensical ideas
High-larry-us conversations
Sometimes I laugh so hard that my face hurts
And I can't see through the tears
And I sit there like a broken clapper monkey
And sometimes I laugh so hard that I nearly pass out
And my face turns red
And my diaphragm burns
And it aches to breathe for a day after
Dear, pack me in your suitcase and we'll go

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Wind and
Negative space and

And how do you know,
how could you know
Or they

And now look what's
Been done
And now look what's

And I can't save you
And I can't see you
And I am blind
And I am just wishing

I am so tired
Of this upside-down routine
At least darkness is a constant
Light's the flighty one

Negative space
All stars go out
All bulbs die out
All fires burn down
And I am far away from
Any place where I could reach
To save you

When the sun comes
Where the sun shines
That's no place to be
Not for such heavy burdens

How I miss the kiss of sun

Sunday, October 2, 2011

I am having fits of Emily Dickinson

And thus, this poem by her.

They might not need me, but they might
I'll let my head be just in sight
A smile as small as mine might be
Precisely their necessity

I have it on a card somewhere.

Monday, September 19, 2011

You can bring me flowers
And I can rest when I'm dead
And salt over the shoulder never hurt anyone
Talk ill of me when I die
Talk angry like you never have to my face
Blame me for it, I'll be laughing
Don't you know I love Queen Anne's Lace
And you with a strawberry smile
When we hold hands I feel safe and pretty
But we never had our matador Minotaur marathon,
Never had our Olympic gladiatorial precision-measured full-scale mission of rescue
Bring me flowers when I die,
I'll go first and you can follow shortly
So that I can protect you from the surprises waiting for you
Talk angry and expire, I'll catch you as you're falling
Bring me flowers,
I will smile with you,
We'll dance

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Mix it, mash it, read it

I'm just going to drop a bunch of poems. Don't mind me. They're from my other poem-hideaway. And they are pretty old. I shouldn't really let them build up like this.

American Anathema
Here it is,
here's your plan
there's nothing beyond it,
it makes me sad to see you reach low like this

You want a fancy car
A fancy house
A fancy woman
  (who only says
 the right things,
 at the right times)
A large salary
No problems
Miniature models of yourself
         well-behaved and clean

You want a stable, antiseptic love
Something static and sterile

Here's news,
If ever I was in tune with
Hermes and his speed and unashamedness,
(He was ever proud of being the God of Thieves)
His partnership with Iris as messengers
It is in speaking to you, now

My dream is not your 'American'
Because if it was,
It would be neat and profitable
Copyrighted to unnamed sources
I don't want that

I want, chiefly,
something frenetic,
Nothing tidy about it,
Cluttered with memories both wondrous and awful

A proudly imperfect man
To share flaws with
To say "You too? I thought I was the only one!"

Problems to muddle through
And be caught in
And solve, with a happy crow of triumph

A small garden, which I will probably end up killing anyway

Loud, clambering children
Who will not be afraid to challenge me
Whom I will teach to argue intelligently
Raised to be civil and
Above all, to be curious

I will not mind the mud
And the blood
And the pain
So much at the end

Because I will be able to die
Without shame for the life I lived

What I am trying to say,
with the hope you are not injured,
is that I don't want a part of your envisioned future
I don't want such sweet synthetic sterility
I supremely enjoy the whole of the mess

We stole our moments unwisely
Escaping our own unhappiness 
When we were caught out
You stretched a hand to me sadly
I went away unwillingly
Oh, believe me when I say!
That day I went unwillingly

Daisies for Ophelia
Delicate as thin, cold glass
I cannot give you what you ask
Why can't I have my time to be
Alone and growing, healthy, free

Where is my bright future now
The silver lining to this cloud
The golden horizon I shaped is dead
Traded for the daisies about my head

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

There is a quiet that I crave
Away from the screaming inside me
Awash with weariness
Can I not have simple silence
Put a hand to slide over your eyelids,
 down your face regretfully
I won't stare at you
 because I've been there

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


He kept looking over his shoulder at her, as if to check that she had not flown, like a small bluebird, away from him. The gesture was reminiscent of a young boy who, after having secured a toad or a lame crow to one end of a string, must look back every so often in order to assure himself that it had not yet escaped. In fact, what little more was he than the young boy he cast echoes back to so carelessly? Did he not care to pause and consider how the real boychild of his past might feel about such an unprecedented intrusion? Was he afraid to truly think about him and thus invoke the nightmares -- and worse, the dreams -- that they had shared?
A wanting list to haunt
During your day
A wanting

Blue rains
To drizzle into my hair
While the neighbors refuse to go inside

glitzy-glamour red-hot nails

And here is our earth!
What have we done?

I want a haunting of
that peace
I felt sometime
Late last forever

Was it this morning
Or a year ago?

Blue rain
Red nails
Black thoughts
And no peace

Friday, July 8, 2011

When I have children

If I have children

If I find someone to trust enough to hold my children

If I find I want children all
   without some strange man whom I have met and given my heart

If I discover that by the strangest chances,
   some one of my friends
 has died
   and left me theirs
   and they want me to be there

If I don't slip away from myself before I hit
 that streak

Then I will ask them not to call me Mother,
 except for on occasions when there are ancient, visiting Aunts and Grandmeres
 Not to call me mama, unless they speak in an impeccable accent
 Not to call me mom, unless they have broken a bone, or a treasured possession, or a heart,

But to call me mum

It seems almost as if you can
  wrap yourself up in that word
 almost as if it were a blanket
  or somebody's arms

Utah Nights

It is the long, hot summer nights like these
that leave me transfixed,
So hot, it feels as if my skin is glowing, as if
I could simply
burn up,
wasted by fire from
a deep within.

The water, cold tap, does little
but the
is enough.

How can it be that I am so feverish?
Am I delicate?!
made of paper?!
to be consumed?!

I have always
been a warm sleeper,
my body raising the temperature
of a room,
and even
I take care to kick away my covers
to get them away
that would so dare to cause my discomfort.

Yet this heat serves a purpose,
as, inflamed,
my brain quiets all distractions
and I am gifted
a blind,
deaf, intense

Often it keeps me up,
during the hot
desert summer.

Nearly always, this
eerie focus
is aimed wistfully, agonizingly
on cooling down, on twisting, on cold and lovely thoughts.
Icy, unattainable dreams
billow like plasma
through my mind

But they
and it is a kind of torture.

And I loathe to think of it,
but when the nights
grow chill
and I grow
will not I be
glad of this heat?
I wanted nothing more than to kick it away
Throw it as far into the sea
As I could

Tuesday, May 31, 2011


I just wanna say
How unlikely  you are
Hey, boy, but I like you
And the stretch from truth ain't far

Multicolored lights
Dancing on the wall
Hey boy, but you fascinate
And that's just overall

How about you and me
Take a waltzy twirl
Hey boy, but it's wonderful
And I love the way you whirl

Moving Day

You held my hand and said goodbye
We laughed until we couldn't cry
You held my hand and said goodbye to me

I'm sure I'll miss you anyway
Don't make me be the one to say
I'm sure I'll miss you anyway, my dear

We'll always be the best of friends
No matter how our stories end
We'll always be the best of friends through all

Our lives have been so full of sights
And sounds and tastes and new delights
Our lives have been so full of sights and love

So farewell to you, if just for now
Fondest goodbyes, lowest bow
'Farewell to you, just for now,' you say


Pacing danger streets at night
   Looking for you
   (Looking to fight)

Little girl lost

Dropped down into dirt
      You make me feel high
But I wanna hurt


I.  Attributes
She's quiet,
she smells good
People don't notice her
She loves like it's something to be guilty for
She's willing to let you go
In exchange for just a few seconds,
Even a passing glance
It would be pathetic
Except for the tragedy
She drips sorrow
It's painful to even watch
She's elegant,
reminds me of silk
And expensive lace
A whiff of jasmine perfume
She's leaking at the edges 
With unrequited everythings

II.  As I Watch
You turn away and
With your back toward her
You don't see
or appreciate
The fragile smile she assumes for you
or how
It  breaks
In the fall
halfway between the floor 
And her lips.

III.  Objections
Can you be so cruel?
You don't even notice her!
She's a person!
She's more real than you
How can you be so inconsiderate?
You should be concerned
As if your life depended on it!
Because hers might
And you are stuck

So ignorant


Do you remember Mexico?
How old were we then, twelve?
That place was so loved
It smelled like dust and slow-cooked beans
We caught a toad
We painted dorms
El Sauzal, the willow, the willow
A beaten-up concrete playground
Bright, yellow sun
Red, sticky Fanta
Worn-in smiles adjusting to the smell of strangers
I fell in love with a Mexican boy
We didn't even play soccer together
Watched a movie in a language neither of us spoke
Climbed trees with leaves that needed a rake
Cleaned a nursery room
Told scary stories around a red campfire
Letting the world seep into our veins
Saw the dolphins when we camped at the beach
Named and re-named the tick-ridden dogs
The water was wetter
The air was headier
The sun shined more unrelentingly, more heavenly
The blisters harder-won
The rain more of a blessing
The life so much more tangible and delicious 

Don't Choke

I fought
I caught
I tried
I lied
It didn't work out
Try a new thing
Your scent
Not meant
To steal
My feel
Away, the birds flew away
Dear Austin,
Don't throw
Yourself in front of trains
Your smile
Cuts wheat
From all the lit-up fields
The flow
The show
The things we hang from walls
You know
The drills 
The chills
The thrills
Don't sweat
The things
That we stole from the sea
Your threat
The bet
Why don't they just see for themselves
We whiled
Our time
To things, things, things, things, things
You get
Your kicks
From novelty and svelte foreigners
I like to spy
On people in the library

Deadly Seductive

What if,
Pause, consider
(Can you see the glittering of my eyes?)
Deadly seductive
Because I can feel it
Fire pulsing through my mind
(Cycling though, trapped in my spine)
Deadly Seductive
The temptation
Ever more irresistible 
'Stop clinging to life'
The softest whisperNot just letting go
Not just relinquishing
But jumping
Madly flying
Through the empty space out there
How close can you get
Playing chicken with fate
Deadly Seductive
Flirting with the darkest kind of bogeyman 
(I will not lie and say
That it does not lurk in all of us)

Simeon Sampling Singers

( I don't know if I've already posted this, because I refuse to check)

we're tip tip tipping
tap tap tapping out a rhythm for our breath
sweet ladles laden lady leaden candles
sticks candlesticks
lime sweet ricky baby
rolling rolling heavy cajoling
you want to know you want to know
greens orange peach and parkas
time with only embers
smelling sweet of sand glass green
lightning what a pretty king

The Two of You

I like 
The way I smell like you
When I wear your clothes

The inconvenient plant on Tess' table
And the haunted laundry room at Jess'
(The ghost, we've named him Steve)

I can always be safe, if I want to
When I'm around the two of you

And Tess is always catching me from just around the bend of sanity
When I think that I don't know why I'm slipping
Because I think she knows much more than she lets on
About losing to your dark psychoses

But Jess keeps me in touch,
And I really love her for it,
With her dreams and wishes and driving lessons
And her bold vegan ways in a place that is so unfriendly

Sometimes when I'm alone at home and 
Cabin fever is much too catching
I'll talk to them and it dissipates so easily 
(like gentle mist)

Aside from their assistance, they are beautiful
Their minds are whirling marvels,

And they make me laugh
At awkward intervals 
When everyone else in the room is trying
Oh-so-hard to wear austerity
But I am never ashamed

Hazy Morning

We were content
And the world rushed by us
And wondered at our state
I delighted you somehow
And you'd struck just the right fancy
We laughed, and did not care
For the trite sentiment
They tried to peddle 
And as we sat together
I would watch your words
Slip from your mouth and fall
To the ground
I gathered them up like jewels
And understood, but did not need to 
Enthralled by the light reflecting off of them
Making stained glass patterns
To dance across the air
We filled the holes torn into us
With each others' silences
You were precious to me
I was an addicting distraction for you
Beach-sand, sea-shells
Cherry-blossom paintings
Upon paper umbrellas
You do not complete me
I do not need you, but
You let me complete myself
Unashamed and wild and whole
And what more could we do
This is not love, or ever will be
Not as the majority defines
This is just the essence 
Of the hazy morning
A catalyst for our 
Lifeblood to mingle in