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Archive for the ‘Poetry’ Category

Salt

He looks out over the asphalt sea below us,

The black tide dotted with colored buoy

With shiny silver brand symbols like

Ford and Dodge, Volvo and BMW on them.

He’s contemplative and his face brooded

On a thought like it was a recipe he was trying

And he couldn’t figure out why it wasn’t quite right.

“Have you ever been in love?” he asks.

Salt. It needs more salt.

I nod, trying to look sincere and serious because

It’s easier to nod than to admit the truth

Which is that I’m not really sure what that word means.

It’s too bland. Try some pepper for spice.

You see I thought that love was patient

But experience taught me that sometimes it will storm out

If dinner isn’t ready on time.

Where’s the thyme?

Someone told me that love was kind,

But there’s nothing kind about the way your lover

Will rip your heart out when they come to you and say “we need to talk.”

Love isn’t supposed to be envious

But all I can do is ache when I see how happy he is with another girl.

Try some more basil.

Love doesn’t boast,

But the only time I really felt worth anything was when he was

Bragging to his friends about how great his girl is.

Love isn’t suppose to be proud,

So maybe that’s why it fell apart anytime I felt my back straighten

At the mention of his name, knowing that everyone was aware he was mine.

Did you remember to use beef broth?

Love isn’t easily angered,

So it must not have been love if we argued and went to bed in silence.

I could say all these things,

blurt out the string of thoughts

Running through my head at a million miles an hour

While my crisis of emotion wreaks it’s havoc and makes me question

Whether or not I ever really felt love,

But I don’t.

Add some meat and make it a stew.

I nod. I try to look introspective.

I try to mirror that brooding, thoughtful, pensive face he’s making

As we watch the cars making their way in and out of the parking lot below.

I try to imagine it’s black sea water and eventually those

Christmas ornament carriages will sink down to a bed of heavy sand,

Forgotten like discarded toys from the hands of gods.

You have to stir it clockwise on high heat.

I’m focusing on that image in my mind

Because it’s easier than questioning

Whether or not I wasted years of my life

On what I thought was love, but wasn’t.

And if I’ll waste dozens more on more is but isn’ts.

Don’t forget to serve it with bread.

Because it’s easier to sit here

And pretend to be pondering the mysteries of the universe

Than to admit I’m not even sure what love is any more.

I’m preparing a meal of have and have nots, of will and will nots

Of Loves and Hates, Lies and truths.

Of brooding foreheads and thoughtful, distant stares.

Of Christmas ornament cars and pitch black waters.

I’m serving up the questions of my reality

The memories of my experiences for you to sample.

And I know what you’re going to say before the spoon reaches your mouth…

It needs more salt.  

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Tell me you love me
And tear me apart.
Then build me up slowly
From the ashes you sought.
You’re hell and high water
Everything that’s wrong.
But I can’t stop singing the melody
Of my swan song.
I’m your phoenix
And I’ll rebuild from the ashes
Again and again
While your wave crashes
Against the stone of my soul.
Love me and leave me
Leave me black and blue
Come back and tell me
It wasn’t true.
Tell me you love me
And tear me apart.
Then build me up slowly from the ashes you sought
I’ll be your phoenix
I’ll rebuild from the ashes
Again and again
While that wild wave crashes.

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Standing in the checkout line
The electric hum of florescent lights
Over my head like some kind of manufactured halo.
I don’t believe in God,
But I wish I knew what heaven is.
Because fluffy white clouds and harp music
Sounds as perfect as a half-rotten apple
Buried in the produce drawer of my fridge.
And if I got sent there
I think I’d be begging for something else.
A way out.
A way back.
A way down.
The steady beep of the register scanner is the sound of my focus on life support.
I imagine heaven is a library
So epic that there are no walls,
Just 300 foot tall bookshelves as far as the eye can see.
Jam-packed with every tome, volume, and scrap
Ever created, but where I read everything
On an e-reader because when it comes to books,
I love the smell, but hate the weight.
I imagine that in heaven,
No knowledge is restricted and all of it is sacred.
That facts are not strained through
The coffee filter of faith.
I’m loading my purchases on to the conveyer belt
Like I’m loading my hopes and dreams in to storage boxes.
Tucked away in the back most corner of my mind
To make room for the shiny new set
That surfaced the day I pushed another life in to the world.
His eyes are the color of an April sky when rain is on the horizon,
And his moods are an unstable amalgamation
Of joyful curiosity and explosive reactions.
I’m forking over cash like I’m spending time and effort
To make sure he has all the opportunities I squandered
In the hopes that he doesn’t throw them back in my face
The way I did to my mother.
I’m taking on full shopping bags
Like I’m taking on responsibilities.
Like a sinking ship takes on water,
I’m a cup full of thoughts and musings and I’m pouring myself out
On to the concrete of reality.
I’m putting my opinions and ideas on the line
And bolstering my defenses with integrity.
Fighting to stitch this patchwork quilt of
Inspirations and facts
Dreams and reality.
Because I can’t imagine a child’s future
As anything less than limitless
Any more than I can imagine
Heaven without a library.

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I Am A Tree

I am a tree.
I zero-in on the screen in front of me.
Trying to balance on unsteady feet,
I’m trying to stand on a tight rope of debits and credits
deadlines and due dates.
And they told me this would help.
Focus, breathe, center, balance.
But I can’t balance,
Because I am not a tree.
Because even while my body wobbles
Like some house of cards built on shifting sand
I know that nature is not as peaceful
As the lady on my TV says it is.
Because I know that even if my toes
Could turn in to roots and find purchase in the soil,
The tectonic plates of this turbulent life
We adults call “the real world”
Will eventually shift and physics will inevitably pull me over.
I am not a tree.
Because the truth is I’m not all that in touch with nature.
Because my heart is made of circuit boards
And my skin is a touch-screen,
Showing you the story of my life in high-definition.
I am not a tree.
Because I don’t know what it is to be impassive
Against turbulent rains and winds.
All I know is how to get thrown from branch to puddle.
Soaked through and ripped to shreds
Till all that’s left is the skeleton of what I used to be.
I am not a tree.
Because the thing I love most about the world
Is the part that only exists in digital.
Pixelated memories and dreams in text.
Short-hand love letters and irrevocable, irreplaceable
Sentiments of love, hate, joy, sadness, loss and life.
I can’t stop thinking because my world doesn’t stop expanding.
Images and sounds on the panoramic display of life.
I can’t reach for the sky the way the woman demands
Because her calm, soothing tone is like some
Fake, manufactured past-time that makes me think
She can’t be real or she must be in delusion
Because there is no serenity anymore.
I am not a tree.
And I want to scream it at her as she balances so smoothly she must be made of air.
A cellophane sculpture full of empty promises
And manufactured dreams of a “simple life”.
I am not a tree.
My veins are wires and my organs are data.
My thoughts are limited only by the bandwidth of sleep.
I am digital.
I am ever-changing.
I am shapeless.
I am timeless.
I am not a tree.

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He’s a walking contradiction

A study in opposition

He’s Bill Gates with a mohawk

And Gene Simmons in a Sunday suit.

He’s a Harley Davidson with training wheels

And a Mercedes Benz with discount tires.

He’s a computer geek with a mean throwing arm

And a quarterback reading Shakespeare on the sidelines.

He’s everything and nothing

Life and death.

He’s happiness and despair

Comedy and tragedy.

He is all

He is one.

He’s my clean little secret,

My private public lover.

He’s my most comforting nightmare

My most terrifying dream.

He’s my past and my future,

My fantasy and my reality.

He’s my knight in blood stained armor,

My paladin without a god to serve.

He’s my man of steel with silken hands

And my angel with devil’s horns.

He’s a lover marching in to battle

And a warrior wielding flowers.

He’ll love me and leave me

Tie me up and let me go.

He’ll lift me up and let me fall

Give and deny.

Love and hate.

Stay and leave.

Pray and curse.

He’s everything I am

And everything I’m not.

He’s love on the rocks.

He’s always and never.

He’s here and there.

He’s mine.

He’s my own.

He’s my muse.

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