little things

i’m obsessed with gentle love

cardamom palms on my shoulders

and a hand on top of mine

i could eat it up like turkish delight

and write about it all day long

like a little kid, crying into a pillow

some fucked-up brand of self soothing i am too proud to exhume

’cause i’m pissed off and sad

and sometimes, looking in on happy endings from the outside

makes me want to cry

tears of anger and relief

and mostly why why why

i’m obsessed with an infinite love

that stands the test of time

a love where we listen like a symphony

and never stop changing our minds

and we’re eighty years old, and still best friends

so bury us side by side

is that normal?

i don’t really know how this stuff works

so excuse me, if i trip over my words

because my love always tended

to wither in my palms

but i like the little things about you

half-minutes where i just want to believe

that we could stay like this for the rest of eternity

make dinner, and go on a walk

and watch tv

and all this bullshit would be worth it

if i had you, and you had me

and maybe we’d never be each others’ everythings

but you’d be my anchor

and the wind that blows me out to sea

you’d be my lilac spring bloom

and my rose-petal certainty

you’d be soft, and clear like the shore

and i’ll catch you if you catch me

You can interpret this to be about love, but it doesn’t have to be! I feel like we put way too much focus on romantic love, when, like, there are so many other interesting bonds to write about, so I left this piece purposefully ambiguous.

dear romantic subplot

ok. you win. you melted me down into a ball of hope for the things i may never have and the dreams i can’t stop dreaming and the hope. the hope that keeps unfolding through my mind like one of those. foldable fortune tellers we used to make in elementary school when the future was small enough we could fit it on a single piece of paper tossing away moments, mostly so we could laugh as they hit the water. ok. you win. because you have melted me down into tears that come on quiet and silently. tears, it takes me a moment to find the reason for i just didn’t realize how empty i was for the kind of love that’s enough until i met the absence of it. so you win. against all my doubts, you win. so that means you get to wear the quiet medal that you made me miss something i’ve never really touched only stared at from a distance watching the horizon grow further and further away from me. ok. you win. that means you get to say that  for a second, even if it was only a second, your flaws didn’t matter; the lip gloss and the cliches twisted into pretty new outfits the too-neat endings didn’t matter because i can feel a small, small, remnant of something deeper. something like inside jokes and buried treasure. like not laughing to hide the angry and everything being okay again. like all the bruises of today and the scratches of tomorrow and the screaming matches of yesterday are gone, not even in a romantic way, and for a second i can breathe. like for a second there’s enough of me left to forgive you. enough of me left to hold this small part of the world together.  and i still am not the kind of person who knows the encouraging thing to say, but if i just say hello, will you say, hey?

yay! a spoken word recording! if you have any requests for more audio recordings for poems that have already appeared on this blog, please drop me a comment with your request, and i’ll consider it. (note: CONSIDER does not mean i will do your bidding on demand. i will CONSIDER it. after all, i still have a ferocious poet mystique to deal with.)

big hug and deep breath,




just clumps of people. drifting through space and time together. mouths trying to jump across the void between us, trying to breathe in time with each other’s unsteady lungs. eyes: hoping any of this matters. hearts: leaning into each other.

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all the scenery

a true story of love loss heartbreak whatever-fancy-words-you-want-to-call it etc.

the problem / with beautiful / is that it always ends / & i’m standing here after you closed the door  behind you / said you were going to work / waiting for a chance to say goodbye / my fingers brushing against the white enamel / waiting for a chance to continue the storyline / the problem is eventually everything you love / is going to stop / eventually all these records / are going to rot into the ground / all these books / won’t be remembered / all our skeletons / will be beyond / preservation / eventually / nothing will  be forever / eventually / all these houses we called home / will turn to dust / & i know / that’s a trillion years away / i know how long we have before the sun explodes / i know it’s not something i have to worry about / but it / will / happen / think about that don’t / think about that. // i know when you interview me / you act like / you’re trying to sort my personality into neat little columns / so i can see myself but in a different font with the contrast / up / i know when i talk about it it makes so much sense to say three words / it’s always three words / i / am / sad / i / am / angry / i / am / in / love / i / am / happy / but it’s not that simple / there are scabs / scattered across my face / even though i can’t / get / it / perfect / even though / saying hello makes me cringe / at this mess of a person i’ve become & / by mess / i mean i feel like a rearrangement of / broken mirrors / i feel like / a kind of rearrangement of / dead plants / got pulled up by the roots  / when you look into the mirror really / really close / all the flaws appear / all the skin / keeps turning into a monster’s / i mean i’m not perfect / i mean my cheeks are the battlefields my anxiety likes to have its bloodbath skirmishes across i mean / if i were younger / or a boy / or just / prouder / happier / confident-er / didn’t care / didn’t yearn for love like rapunzel / wants to know / what dirt / feels like / like the little mermaid / wants to walk on the beaches / rather than swimming in the water / & i went to school with hair that makes me look like a wild thing with battlefields on my forehead / it would probably seem a lot better / a lot easier / a lot better / a lot easier / a lot prettier / prettier / prettier / when i look in the mirror / all the flaws circle themselves in red pen / & then in highlighter / it’s a sunny day / & the misshapen leaves have this way of glowing green after the snow / & i’m only feeling somewhat unexhausted / because i drank coffee /  i am like a textbook case of / how anger / drives you crazy / like living with your own torturer / she / had a point here / i feel like one of those dancers / getting raised up in the air / spin around / spin around little / pretty bird / i mean / even if i gave you / half my effort / like effort was water / i could bathe you in / i don’t feel like it would matter / not really / i want to talk / with you / except / i don’t think anyone else wants / me to / i feel so / aimless / sometimes / & by aimless i don’t mean / i didn’t know / where to fire i mean / i fired / & now i’m sort of floating in the air / wondering / if i could go back / scared of the posters on the doors / i run out of the building sometimes / & it feels like / there were these wings / folded up / on my back /  i never noticed before / never felt before / i’m wondering how to distinguish between / hungry / & fed up / how to distinguish between / exhausted / & burnt out / wondering / if sleeping / really makes anything better anyway wondering / why / i can’t / treat myself / any better knowing / the answer / what i really mean / is i’m like a little kid asking their parents why / they have to eat / this stupid asparagus / asking their parents / why they have to do this / knowing that talking to you is like talking into a wall of concrete & expecting it to understand you you / knowing / it won’t make a difference / the problem with this book / is i open it when it’s 3a.m. in my heart & i’m screaming at myself for being like this thinking it’s an effective gardening technique / to kill all your weeds / to kill all your plants / & now your backyard is this wasteland you don’t know how to navigate / & it’s starting to rain / & now you’re stranded in the middle of your own website / except you’re not really stranded / you know how to swim across the ocean / you just wish / that yelling it made people more inclined / to listen / & / hanging my head like / a hemlock / in the process of falling / telling you / this battle is over / is like / dipping your toes into / melting hot water / moving / inch by inch / struggling to believe / those inches will someday turn into kilometres / the problem / with beautiful / is that i’m reading this book / falling in love with you / crying inside every time / you do / i’m reading this book remembering / what peace / is remembering / what love is remembering / what it looks like to have dreams / that we learned how to cup in our hands / like bathwater / for years without a single drop / slipping away / & then / i sort of flip / to part three / & now i’m starting to cry / because i just pulled up a bunch of dead kale / & chard / & lettuce / & then called this / march / called it / marching / called it making way for the new / called it springtime / but really what i mean / is every / pretty thing seems / to have bloodstains / on its / fingertips  / & really what i mean / is i’m at part 3 / & i’m considering / not reading any further / because i know how this ends / because i know / that i’m like a moth / flying into a housefire / watching you / make flowers / only to rip them apart / petal / by / petal / falling onto the gravel / why is it / that some people / don’t deserve a happily ever after?

pretty / nice / beautiful

so yesterday there were contractor people at my house. literally, not poetically.


when i say this / i mean it / all the feelings / in my throat / go down tasting like / ink & plastic / ink & plastic / i / smell like / honey i / told myself this time i / was gonna be / worth it but / this time / is right now / and / it feels like / there’s a tsunami / rising up in my throat / i want to escape / i want to escape / i want to / close the door / behind me / when i say this / i mean it when / i talked to you / i didn’t mean it / the panic is a windstorm / kicking up the dust in my throat / the shadows / under my eyes look like / cotton-candy clouds / but i can feel myself / skidding / but i am / working too quickly to consider / stopping / my stomach / stops / spinning / i can’t / the taste of / parchment & / plastic / paper lanterns / i have no right / to be pretty  / i have no right / to laugh / i have no right / to clip in flowers to my / hair i have no right / to stand here / i have no right / to close my eyes & dream the dreams you never got / i have no right to close the door / but there’s a sheen of seran wrap / covering my mouth / i’m tangled up like / a butterfly in a spider’s web / in my throat / but i / don’t / know / who / i / am / i can hear the news anchor voices now / i was supposed to come / to be interviewed / i was supposed to / come / out / come / out / my stomach feels like / a metal cage / i will live out / my days in / there’s echoes / trailing around / my basement / there’s / echoes / when i say this / i mean there are people / drilling holes into the walls / i mean there are people / with their trucks / parked in my driveway / i mean i could really use the / waterfalls in your eyes / & the smile like sunlight / on your cheeks / i mean / everything smells / like / metal  i mean i / forgot how to say hello i forgot / how to say you’re welcome / i forgot how to sing without feeling the notes choke like there’s a traffic jam in my throat / my hands are / shaking i / didn’t ask / you / the questions i wanted to / the ink is settling / burning tattoos onto my / palms / when will you be gone / when will you be gone / when will you be gone / i close my eyes  / i lean against the mattress / sounds of hammers at the floor / stitch myself together / carefully / music / just listen to music / & it’ll be okay / just start to cry / maybe tomorrow / it’ll hurt / a little less / air feels too / warm air / leaks into my / chest / if only you / talked like this / every single day / if only there was / proof / i was worth / this / worth / anything / bittersweet taste of / fennel on my / lips / i don’t / know how to / talk / & i wanted / to be your friend / but i guess the issue with / meeting someone on a professional basis / is that / it doesn’t last / is that / it doesn’t / stick around / forever & / i feel like i’m / choking / on myself / i feel like maybe i / said something wrong i feel / like / maybe wearing sunglasses / so i could look into your eyes without you noticing / was the wrong decision / my lungs feel like pillows / that got accidentally torn up in a battle / & i know / there are people who keep trying to drill pilot holes / in my skull just to tell me you are worthy you are worthy you are worthy / i know there are people who call me up / when it snows / to have a snowball fight / i know there are people who don’t want me to go / i know i practically framed your praise on the wall / i know i’ll hear all the things you said / in my head / but the monsters / the claptrap-clang-bang-ricocheting bullets / always seem louder / i always feel like / i said something / wrong feel like my mouth is one of those filters / they use to purify water / except instead i make sure / nothing beautiful / comes out the other end / there are / ghost sounds / echoing from the / floor / there’s a wall / between us. // there’s a wall / between / you & me / & your voice / sounds like a pillow / sounds like all the  edges are / grey & smudged / there’s a bouquet of happy / all around me / but everything / smells like metal / but even this stupid bottle of celebrity / perfume / you gave me / couldn’t / make me feel pretty / couldn’t / make you / love / me / love / me / when i say / love me / i mean / i’m lonely  / when i say / i’m lonely / i don’t mean / desperately / i don’t mean it / like / i need your charity / i mean it like / i’m lonely because i hate myself especially / when it seems like you’re telling me to / i mean it like / what if i got / dirt / under my fingernails / what if i wrote you / a rainstorm / why is the only place i feel safe / inside my skin / inside my room with the door closed / why do i wear clothes that make me look as much like nothing / as possible / why don’t you come home / why don’t flower clips in my hair / make you / love / me / why can’t / i stop / trying / to make you / love me… // you know / those positive / affirmations / you can pull up on the internet? // yeah. // they feel / like pieces of thread / tied to my / fingers / feel like / pieces of thread / with no one / behind them / form a / tapestry / & / i scrabble / at the rock / & let go / & they / form a / rainbow / they / fall / with me / then / would you stay / then / would i be your everything / no one is anyone’s everything / no one is anyone’s everything / now / am i / beautiful