daughter

if an angel were with skin, this is the skin she’d be in

and it gladdens my heart that he was there

with his red plaid falling in love with you

when you were tired of running

you thought we’d be abandoned

but, look at us dear, we’re still standing

I admire your spirit, your laughter

your view on this entire situation gone mad

the way you send prayers to stop me feeling sad

so sad, which confirms my thinking

that if an angel were with skin

it’s your skin she’d be in

mannequin

she was like a moodier jennifer lawrence,

so many freckles i couldn’t even tell her tone,

but i liked her face.

never saw her flip a smile but noticed

her gasping every once in a while,

and she never moved, even when that

fly landed right on her eye.

she was skilled at wearing her tattoo

as a watch. mastered walking in stilettos

near the water on the rocks.

she had cheekbones that would make your

ancestors drool green

and

she lit up the page with a gaze,

eyes cold and mean.

interlude

this must be what the seas of Greece look like, 

so blue it looks white 

the water so deceiving 

this must be what normal feels like, 

so chill it’s like sleep

the peace I hear it leaving 

this must be what perfection tastes like, 

so fake it seems real 

the day it leaves me grieving  

led

brown tipped moth led the way 

past the swamp, the marsh, the murk.

away from the swarm of ink

waiting to envelop me.

it led the way past the squished 

garnet worms beneath my 

cardboard sneakers, me 

whispering sorry

past the house with the 

flamingos in their pool, 

past the party, the envy, the fools. 

brown tipped moth led the way 

and I followed, inhaling its dust 

past the chatter, the damage, the lies. 

away from this flock of fear 

and

away from thinking there

must be better than here. 

water

her skirt blowing in the wind,

next to the cliff, next to the ocean

her gnarled foot making the rocks,

the sand trickle down

flashbacks of her ballet time

her foot against the edge

and

the crows flew sideways that day

she looking out with eyes closed

wondering if tomorrow she’d be so brave

flashbacks of her walking away

creep

the demon he carried was larger than him

he was unaware but I saw it

and I was just a little girl

this man who smelled of cigars and aging skin

barely spoke, but he had all the baby dolls lined up

and I’m sure he touched them all

including me, innocent and small

this man who crept in with the shadows

when he thought I was asleep, didn’t have a clue

 I could turn into a statue and not make a peep

this man was naught, this man who was a creep.

keepsake

let my eyes stay here and play awhile

before you go away. let me marvel at how

your light shifts shape, your amber haze so

addicting. let my eyes stay here and

play awhile, before you fly right out the

door. leaving your golden smile, your aura,

your everything – helpless on the floor

waken

had a dream that I was playing the violin last night.

their scrolls were bobbing in the ice, the vapor was

freezing on the strings.

made me want to reach for my rosin,

but instead I felt your hand pulling me

out of my dream.

hear the static voices screaming, SHEILA!

cry out as the spirits jump on top of me,

causing me to fly much like her blossoms

that blew in our yard last night.

the flowers looked like paper mâché hearts,

the white and pink on them torn.

much like my far-gone heart, beaten and worn.

watched the wind make them scatter and I’m

wondering how I let myself even

care that they mattered.