Wednesday, November 28, 2012

another shore

how freely we think we are immortals,
our word most certainly each the last.
today we threw out love
and instead rode our high horses ably
into the jester's parade.

i'd like not to be thought of like that;
i held my wary tongue, wavering.

i know the limits of this, and i've received
every bit of it on another shore:
the piercing of a well-timed heart,
the assassination of a beat-bitten soul.
so i need a sort of puerile grace now,
something delicate to counteract the
greed of knowing what's best for everyone
(you only ever know what's best for you
and that's a fortunate science).

i fold in threes, triangle faces and fingers
keeping me from lashing out.
this isn't my desire, to mudsling, to steal the throne.
i cried yesterday so i'm not a martyr now.


Thursday, November 22, 2012

a girl with a heart

i'm caught in you,
being tossed amongst your melée,
and i used to think it might be healthy for me --
i'm convinced
it's so good for my soul to love you.

should my soul, then,
be splitting itself down the center
in what can only be called a civil tug-of-war,
shredding me
in a juvenile game of
a tragedy at best
written for only your benefit.
and suddenly here i am,
naked in the glare of a rogue headlight,
and i really wish you'd run me over,
slam into me head-on
and be done with it.
it would be less painful
than this.

i'd even venture to say
that i wish you could hate me
or that i could hate you
even though i know
it's not really in me
to ever harbor such emotions
or to let you know.

so could you please just sever this thread
that binds me so readily to you
so that i can be free of all this?
i'm coming undone at your feet
and i'm losing myself
over the pieces of us...

i can't be the done-up doll
the pill-popping priss
the mascara-smeared Marilyn
you chase
you drool over
you claim will complete you;
it's me,
this, just a girl with a heart,
or nothing.
that is all i can offer,
now or ever,
and so i must request to be
put out of my misery
or else risk
making a mockery of us both;
be attentive and real
or be done with me.


Sunday, November 18, 2012


world -- struck blind and deaf,
no sense left to make some sense --
judged me anyway.


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

only ours

you're not sure when you stopped
meaning something.

well, since you asked,
yes, i do miss the things
that were once only ours.

our favorite place to be
was in the front seats of your car,
you at unsteady wheel
and me picking up your misses on the road.
Matt Nathanson would happily serenade us
and you and i would serenade him right back
as if he could hear us through a one-sided stereo,
but we always did him one better
by harmonizing --
you so loved those harmonies
we shared.
they brought his music to life for us,
the too-true lyrics
resonating long after the songs had ended.
it was like
this guy
had taken our own lives,
read every page
and written about them,
spreading experience, emotion
across radio waves
and bedrooms
and iPods
and hearts
like the tastiest butter.

i still recall fondly
the concert he gave at our school;
at five bucks per head
it was a fucking steal
but he must have known
we were broke college kids
who'd wasted our parents' money
on beer the week before.
he asked what we wanted to hear
and we told him
and he listened and played it all
into perfection.
you got it all on camera
and sent me the videos;
i watch them now
and as amazing as Matt was that night
all i can think of
is you
because he was ours.

the best day i had last summer
was my 23rd birthday
when you visited me in Florida
and we spent it in Walt Disney World,
a place that had seemed only mine
for weeks
and then opened up to accommodate you
there in the midst of my dream.

we rode Mission: Space together
and Zach got so excited
to be a part of the journey
that he dubbed us Team Awesome
and there we were,
a cluster of young adults
who'd been transformed by the magic
into invincible kids.
we had a superhero stance and everything.

we rode it five times in a row
so we'd all have a turn at each role,
and that day
all of it --
the buttons on the inside that we couldn't wait to push,
Gary Sinise as our trusty flight director,
going to space and back in four minutes,
all of it
was ours.

the night before you left
in the hotel
we were in bed
talking about life
and i cried
because i'd been lonely and homesick,
because it had meant the world to have visitors,
because i didn't want you
to go.
you held me
and cried with me
and told me that you loved me
and that at last
you understood what i felt for you.

it pains my heart to know
how often you think of that moment now;
i remember it like yesterday

but somewhere in between the beginning and the end
i got hurt
and in turn you got hurt
and the things that had been only ours
disintegrated back into
facts of life
for everyone.

i'm not sure when you stopped
meaning something;
i don't think you've stopped
meaning something.
but if we've lost
those things that were ours,
much of the meaning
has gotten lost, too,
all that ever defined you and me
has gotten lost, too.

yes, i do miss the things
that were once only ours.