“Afflicted”

Crossing the abyss,

where my heart sits,

waiting.

She’s weeping,

ugly,

her thick legs stretched in front of her.

Stabbed with pins,

arms behind her back.

She’s surrounded.

No beauty, just a beast.

Her eyes won’t leave my face.

She won’t give up.

I know that, because she’s mine.

What should I do?

Her eyes implore me.

Now I’m the one crying

diseased tears,

ruining,

running.

She doesn’t understand:

I can’t.

I can’t free her.

I’m not enough,

I never will be.

Can I learn to love,

the way I see?

A tightrope walk of shame,

to be vulnerable.

Her ugliness is a feat of pure strength.

I wish I was that sharp.

“A Notorious Headache”

Loneliness of your own making,

your eyes are open,

and you find yourself in grips with it.

This fucking venom,

chronic and life-giving,

killing my ability to react.

Reflective, terrible,

it sits inside my chest,

and rests against my pulse.

Sometimes I can’t speak.

But I can see.

I can see the leaves,

and the way the sun dotes on them.

It’s beautiful and has its uses.

But it hurts.

Because I’m alone,

by choice, though.

Right?

“A Match Made in Blue”

Dreams are vain, vile creatures,

blind to everything that is not of their own making.

Strutting around, piled high with foolish nonsense and glittering promises.

But we love them anyway.

Orphaned from birth, they spend their lives searching for someone to nurture them.

We just so happen to be equipped for the job.

We ourselves are born with holes in our hearts and ghosts in our heads.

We as a species, are naturals at brave and blind perseverance.

So who is better to dream?

We don’t have much of a choice in the matter, it is what we were born to do.

We are also orphans, in a way.

Created out of sand,

so they say.

A grainy mannequin,

in the image of what we “should” be.

Fuck that.

I’d rather just dream.

“Coffee Stains”

I wish I knew how to look at you,

because then I may understand why your eyes never smile.

They find my face,

but can’t bring themselves to answer my questions.

It breaks me,

because I never learned your language.

So I can’t ever be one of you.

The eyes that you gave me,

aren’t lasting out here.

I’m losing you,

I fear.

Is this an addiction?

Am I suffering in silence or is this how you teach?

It seems you set me up for failure,

when I met you.

I hope you enjoy the taste.

“Paul’s Case”

He dabbed a sprig of liquid lavender on one wrist.

Then the other.

His mirror gawked at him,

at her,

struck blind by such brazen behavior.

The crystal bottle shook as his hands did,

which made replacing the cap difficult.

His father didn’t know.

His father didn’t know about the silk scarves stuffed into a small slit in the upstairs mattress. His father didn’t know about the trips to the theatre district, and the lace costumes she had tried on.

Was there no mercy? No understanding?

Of course not,

this was a man’s world.

 

“Momentis Prose”

There stands time, not as a grandfather, but as a threadbare coat. Thrown on the bed, or the vertebrae of a chair, waiting. Time waits for no man, but birthed patience in the stead of something greater. This coat, a needy thing, rejects all who wear it, particular to a fault. And whose fault is it? Is it he, worrying at the dregs of his morning coffee? Is it she, plucking mournfully at the whiskers of her cello? Or is it the unfinished manuscript, curled against the banister, forgotten? This coat, with ears upturned, eyes tarnished, and smeary skin, it neglects to mention who it waits for. The thing retains glorious roots and an empty tongue. This vain supposition lies misbegotten, its birth not of the womb but of the mind. Can you feel it now, tugging at your sleeves with its dull teeth? Chipping away at your eyesight, a malignant Michelangelo. Immortality is a broken sewing machine, pinned to the eyes of the beholder. I think you’ll understand when you’re older.