Answer Me

Q: are you in love.

The lady in the chair
smiles big like it is her birthday
when I say my head feels like a balloon
that can’t explode.
“cool,” she says.

I am stuck in a maze,
the smallest mouse searching for the cheese,
the ring of the bell, the skinner box, ivan and frederic have conned us both.
I am misled by the 8-ball,
our horoscope has lied to me again, you should not be mine.

I grab out my heart and tell her
my lady, I am so sorry. She doesn’t hurt,
but she is too occupied with me, buzzing
like something other than a bee, not hibernating like a bear,
swimming like a toucan, submerged like our mouse – my mouse.
We’re going to have to lose her, too.

*

I have cut the tip of my finger off
with the longest blade over an onion,
the blood drops on mom’s white floor
and it is the rain that had fallen
on Tuesday.

My finger eats cotton. I put cotton in my mouth to hear the rain.
The black cat is not afraid of the rain, but she runs off the porch when I call her
here, kitty, do you know what it means, the Tuesday rain?

I tell the lady with the chair that it rained
on Tuesday, they said it wouldn’t.

“You are a hard worker, too hard, too much, too fast” she says.

I say, unfortunately, it feels as if I am inside of a soup can.
Ha-ha. I want to make her laugh because it is
the one thing I have left that I haven’t thrown
in the garbage, out the window, in the fire, under the bed,
with the ghosts, with the rain. What do we think about trying
for an exorcism?

Her smile would look best upside down, I think, the knife.
why aren’t you sad, lady on the chair.

Art smells like an oven upside down, out of the ash,
the end of a rope, the fish line broke, the spring, the hammer,
the catch, the holding bar —
the lady on top of the chair
is The best when she is suffering.

 

Q: are you in love
with the way someone makes you feel
about yourself

a bad ass sonnet

The head warns the insides
that flowers grow, too
when his teeth and tongue settle on petals.

Terrified stars put on their jackets
when the moon shows her face,
the eyelashes of light are dishonest with excuses
to reschedule Our rest.

Swallowed ghosts fall asleep
in their cribs as the shudders of fur
command recognition when he sighs into ear canals.

The insides remind the head
of the flicker of sun’s nosebleed
when the ambiguity of incompetent love
was altogether silent.

Where

You said you had me figured out,
that I wasn’t good, that your mother couldn’t like me.

Freedom, you said,
you would feel freer without me
where your memory ignores the spasms of me.

but it is now –
and I remember the grey,
the in-between before the end,

the pull of your skin against
your eyes.

Your hair is two years longer
now,
you continue to cut off
the ends
in disconnect from me

where the strands of your hair
hit the bottom of your sink,
where you doubt
you have buried me.

here/where

you
pick
up your phone

to call
her

and I laugh

here I am

I still
let you
fuck me.

her voice

sounds
like a
previous
me

before

I cut
my hair
off

before

I tried
to sleep
off
you sleeping
with her.

you tell her
i’m here

you laugh

roll your eyes

I get dressed.

you tell me
not
to leave,

i’m putting
my shoes on

you check
your phone
again
to see
if it’s her.

where am I

Repeat

I. 

you remember
the terrible
things
i’ve done
to you.

I pull
my hair up,
I cut
it off.

you fuck
someone else,
I’m ok with it.

I start
to resent
the curl
of your
hair.

you can’t
look at
me right
anymore.

II. 

I park
my car
on a street
named
after you,

I repeat
your name,

but you’ve
stopped
responding.

Flicker

He was a
flicker
against
my
long days,
but
I kept
weaving
words
into bad luck.

he kept
telling me
to let it go,
but the only thing
we agreed on
was how
stubborn
I was.

I should’ve
stopped
talking
to ghosts
long before
him,
but I was
consumed
and restless
with affection.

he was only
as good
as his last
mistake,
I said
I was forgetful
when it came
to apologies.

he said
he would have
loved me
through
seasons,
but
the sun
was hot
against
my skin
when my name
wore off
his tongue.

Things Happen

The heat of the summer
got on my bad side,
I was one wrong
word away from
making some haphazard
attempt at ending it all.

And your friends are friends
until you start talking
like you might
drive your car into something.

2 years with him,
neither of us holding our tongues
anymore.
he was growing tired of me
and my off-color remarks
about his fucking around
with somebody else.

It wasn’t his fault
that I couldn’t keep my shit together
but he wasn’t making it
any easier on me either
when he said to me,
I can’t believe I wasted so much of my fucking life on you.

Well,
I spent a lot of my life
letting whoever say
whatever the fuck
they wanted to me,
because I was bad with
confrontation.
but he had kept
threatening to leave
everyday anyway,
so I figured
I would make it easy
on him,
he doesn’t
have to be the “bad guy,”
as he called it.

So I told him to fuck off,
and I guess he did.
I stopped answering his calls,
and not even 24 hours,
he stopped
calling
all together.

It must have been easy
for him
to forget my name,
because boys like him
can do a lot better than a kid like me,
just takes them a little while to realize it.

but for me,
I say a lot of things
I don’t mean,
then deal with the fallout later.
I just needed
to tell some guy to fuck off
to realize that I probably
couldn’t keep on
living my life
the way I was doing it,
in some fucking constant
state of disarray.

Any Type Of Answer

I let you sleep next to me,
keeping you close
only when I wanted you
to be near,
but not letting you
undress a fragment
of my being.

Depraved
in the sense
that I wanted
you crave me –
give into my
carnal desires,
but leave
once the sun touches
my bedroom window.

let my voice
pulsate throughout
your mind, as a reminder
of my absence.

but I wanted
to be unrestricted
from obligations,
like your cousin’s wedding,
“I told you
I didn’t want to meet your family,
listen to me next time.”
and from defining terminology
between you and I,
it’s easier
(for me)
if we don’t,
you know.

Selfishly
taking any offerings of
good intention you dealt out,
only to decide that
this time,
it wasn’t good enough,
try harder next time,
kid.

Clarity
in the most
ironic form
when I begged
for you
to come back.
saying
that I couldn’t do this without you,
you know you’ll regret it
if you go,

but you
knew me better than that,
knowing I wasn’t good at being alone,
just a pathetic kid
who didn’t know
how to take ‘no’
for any type of answer.

Hair

Tied my hair up,
and cut it all off
you said how
fucking dumb of an idea
it was
in the middle of January.

so I said
I’ll let it grow back,
and I did
Uneven,
Unkept.

We had said
that this time
It was different,
but I kept my sweaters on,
pulling them over my head
closing my eyes,
and going to bed alone.

Realized
You
And mostly me
weren’t any different
and I slammed my hands
against the white
plastic table,
Saying
I could’ve sworn
I was trying,
But your words
and the silence between them
dug into me
until I
stayed up until the sun
peaked
thinking how I wasn’t much
of myself anymore,
somebody or something
I thought you wanted.

You didn’t call me
for hours,
saying I ate up too much of your time
Or how my name tasted sour and hers was new and she was funny,
and you didn’t think that I was.

Then you would draw me back,
For a week
Or two
because you thought you loved me,
but thinking wasn’t easy
for me,
So I let you sleep
In my bed
wanting to forget
how cyclic
you and I
had became.

And my insides began to unravel,
realizing how much longer my hair had gotten,
and we hadn’t gotten anywhere
and you slept so easily
through the night
and it seemed nothing bothered you
much at all.

A Younger Me

A younger me was unable let another person feel parts of me that I myself couldn’t get a grip on. I had considered myself timid, but swiftly, I began to realize that I was characteristically selfish with my love, and how I wanted to feel love. I wanted to cling onto something, anything – It did not have to be real, because unreal, intangible love somehow began to make more sense to me. My thoughts were unruly, untamed, as I wanted to hear him tell me things that would make his head swell. It was a craving to know – to feel another being so deeply and whole. But I did not want to give the same back to him.

I held back parts of me and fabricated details, minuscule to magnitudes. I latched onto ideas, motifs of different people or ideas I knew or had simply heard of. I was feral and hungry with projecting an unreal me, letting my senses flood with exhilaration each time I let my mouth consume any fragment of honesty I possessed. I pushed thoughts of the glaring wreckage that lie ahead aside whenever those thoughts arouse. We were writhing with passion, a demented form of love that was real, and yet felt false and codependent. I had hid behind a facade but also felt somehow, I was utterly honest in every aspect as I truly began to trust each lie I weaved in between the two of us. It went on until I was sure that he loved me, and he did. He told me through months that became years, and behind different backdrops of our lives, he loved me.
I can guarantee that he does not as much as mutter my name under his breath any longer.