guilty

you can’t recognize that happiness
you wore twelve years ago
your eyes so full of stupid hope
before it hit you, before he hit you
now you have to force the
gold into your brown
darken that kohl to match your fading hair
listen to post’s “blame it on me”
invite that pervert in
to taste your dried up lipstick
make you look away to blush
and wait for the flames to hit

dwell

I wondered why he painted the
house the color of blood
blackened the windows except
the one on the upper left side
made the door look like a mouth
so it could devour us one by one
swallow us into the ground
to choke on the dirt, beg to breathe
pray and pray for the evil to leave

I wondered why he painted the
house that awful color of red
his brain just starting to misbehave
his dark thoughts claiming him
taking us down with him
to bear the scars, the trauma
and dream of blood
choke on it even, beg to breathe
pray and pray for the evil to leave

deem

the evil ones, especially, love beauty

look at you, think a thought

then look away, but stare again

run fast baby girl, cause

it’s not too far behind you

like all our happy memories

kicking up that dust of the past

making our hearts ache, cause

they just couldn’t last and

my brain is stuck on these sorrows

I’m so fearful they they’ll sojourn

for all my tomorrows

the evil ones just love our beauty

could we persuade it, possibly

so that the good in it would take form

cast

Do you remember that place where the trees were tall, and the ground was soft? Everywhere you looked – your eyes were stained with moss. The wind was your white noise, and it hid all the screams from those bad boys. They took all the purple flowers and tore them up, then laughed and ran away. But you walked the other way when they punched you with closed man-sized fists. You are so good at what you do. 

And when the oldest one told you to, “JUST GO KILL YOURSELF!” — you couldn’t help but respond, “why would you say that!”  Only to remember that dream you had where you stopped yourself from swallowing all those small white pills. You never knew your eyes could fill with tears so fast. The oldest boy smiled, and you knew you had failed. He then proceeded to chase you while chanting, “I’m going to stab you with a knife.” You blocked all the hits of his colored pencil, cause at this — you are very skilled. 

And all the while remembering that Forest of the Too Tall Trees and wishing you had never seen those pitiful boys filled with bad thoughts and rage. For you’ve grown tired of how they latch on to you, how they revolve around you like you are their fucking lifesaver. So tired of being a lifesaver. Here, now— I remember that green. God, how I want to get lost in that moss. Taste the sunshine on my lips and be blinded. Do you remember that place?

colère

poor little baby, you bit your tongue

chewing on all that hatred.

was it horrible? did it cut your throat

when you swallowed it down?

did it try to climb its way back up, and

make you run to the bathroom to find

an empty stall?

poor little baby, you broke your finger

pointing it and flipping them the bird

that was carrying all that ill will.

did it break free and flee?

perhaps fly away somewhere quiet to

rest on a snow-capped tree or

a glowing, warm palm.

poor little baby, you failed the test.

dare

you were swimming with the sharks, Love

did you feel them when you were up above?

you minded your business and they minded theirs

lifeguard left his station but you didn’t care

you were swimming with the sharks, Love

how did all that danger feel?

not much different than your everyday?

you really are so brave, Love

astray

gave a gorilla a teacup and he crumbled it before

I could reach out, I tried my best not to cry

over that ancient porcelain

I tried again and it happened over and over until

the floor was covered with shards of my past

went to bed perplexed that my praise didn’t

motivate him enough to care to keep them

or at least to want to make me happy

rested my head upon my aged pillow

among the dust, among the plaster

dreamt of gorillas with their array of fractured teacups

and their damned gigantic buckets of laughter

play

those red butterflies take me back to the time when

those annoying crickets lulled me to sleep

dreamt I was barefoot on the gravel

running to that abandoned church

where those lost souls would be baptized

stood up high to pretend to speak

but I knew I wasn’t worthy

running back to the little, green house

the gravel biting at my soles

I whimpered and looked back –

you ran and didn’t even feel the rocks

you came laughing back,

your feet untouched