stratosphere

i. i don’t know how to not write poems / like they’re stories / and i don’t know how to stop seeing the world from a first person point of view / cause i have been drifting for so long / charting up pathways and possibilities, and now i think it’s time to figure out what the hell i’m gonna do / when i can’t feel the gravity in my stomach / or snap out of a daze before midafternoon / i don’t know how to write poems unless i’m exhausted / the words slipping from my mouth like a death rattle / a trickle in a drought / a long walk home / cause i’ve been drifting for long / and they cheered me on, told me anything was possible / and then they sat me down / and told me vague ideas can’t make money / and they were right, of course / their love dripping down my throat like honey

ii. i let my muscles get sore / bones grow brittle like they’re breaking / i sit alone with my thoughts / but only if i’m watching tv / i look out at the skyline, and wish it could be me / let the rain come down and wash away the city / i don’t remember my dreams / or think for too long about how the world used to be / hold my breath, and bathe in secondhand smoke / cast myself in stainless steel, and plastic / hold myself kind, and slow / cast-iron fingers cold to the touch / i wash the dishes ’til they’re try / and i turn on the blender ’til it’s hollow / i let the drone of it all consume me / i don’t take off my headphones for anybody

lull

there’s fog along the highway / and the lights carry me home / and it’s raining in august / warm on my skin, clay bones / so why don’t you hold me / why don’t you tell me you miss me too / cause no one’s ever told me that before / and god knows, i miss you / and there’s lights up in the sky / there’s a monster in my home / he lives under the bed / eats dust bunnies for lunch, and cries all night long / ’cause he misses how he used to be / all the little moth-holes gnawed into his memory / he is lonely and scared, and there’s a pit in his gut every time they ask what he’s gonna do / a thousand platitudes to kiss him off to sleep / you know how it goes / you know how you postpone, and make yourself those empty promises / you’ll forget about next morning / when you wake up exhausted / listen to ads on spotify as you root through rotten drawers in your mind / searching for something new / but all you’ll find is worn our t-shirts from 2017 / day-old tea / and dust settled on the pages / you swore you’d make anew

sweet tea

content warning: discussion of disordered eating

love poetry / and sweet tea / honey sticks to my throat / in the summer heat but / i think that if heaven is out there, then this is what it would be / it would be pretty dresses and the colour pink it would be / sugar and cream / because maybe we weren’t put here to suffer / to push the boulder up the hill / over and over again / to punish soft baby skin / and go hungry because of a post you saw online / about how gorgeous it is to feel sick / and weak / and sad all the time / how healthy definitely looks like crying at mealtimes / and your body doesn’t care about your feelings / trust me, it’s not true / trust me, you deserve rainbows in the mist of a garden hose / like it’s the first time / dewdrops on the morning leaves, catching the light / to hold yourself like the child you didn’t get to be at night / to sing lullabies to someone you really love / and spin around in the mirror, cause you look so fucking pretty / so i’ll tuck flowers behind your ear and hold your hand / and let petal-soft words crawl out of my throat / they’ve been hiding there for a while / so they’re probably gonna be a little awkward, and clumsy at first / but in time, i think i’ll learn


I spent a really long time punishing myself for wanting nice things–I’m honestly still kind of in the habit. But, although this year has been pretty horrible–I think I did finally learn how important it is, to listen to yourself, and be soft, and kind. How much of a difference the smallest nice things can make–like a vase of flowers on your desk, or a snack you really like, when you’re deprived yourself of those things your entire life, out of some strange mix of self loathing and pride.

It doesn’t have to cost a ton of money, or any at all. It doesn’t have to be fancy, or dramatic. But sometimes, just taking a bath after a long day to relax, or making yourself a mug cake feels really, really good. Like a quiet, peaceful surrender.

I’m still figuring it out. I’m still clumsy, and confused, but… I think I am, very slowly, getting somewhere.

fuck you, healthline.com (but not really)

fuck you healthline.com

for encouraging me to take care of myself

and get that checked out by a doctor

or that a sliver could get infected?

or that salmonella poisoning exists?

did you know that you are dying? like, every single day?

and eventually, you’re gonna find yourself

lying on a hospital bed, watching the lights go out?

and maybe they’ll mourn you

maybe they’ll remember

and does it even matter, in the end?

so now, i am staring at myself in the bathroom mirror

and i’m starting to hyperventilate

while i furiously wash my skin

’cause the world is a dangerous place

full of monsters and pathogens

and you stupid bitch, you broken hard drive

shutting down at the slightest inconvenience

why do you think that you’re above it all?

it’s not healthy

it’s not good

and maybe so far, you’ve made it through life

with a wind-up flashlight

hazard lights on in knee-high water

you can sleep when you’ve made it

you can always catch up later

it’s not healthy

and it’s not good

but i did what i had to do

but it’s out of my control

but this is just the way

so fuck you healthline.com

for telling me to take time off

and get some sleep

’cause my body’s just a delicate little thing, really

flower petals and marrow

yearning oozing from my throat

and for the rest of my life, i will be learning how to cope

so fuck you heathline.com

for kissing my forehead

and promising that if i just get some rest

i’ll feel better in the morning

cry it out

smash some glass

cut your hair

do what you have to do to ease the pain

even just a little

pragma

god, i can’t wait to be the kind of friends

who know all of each other’s stories

who’ve seen the sun rise and fall

and don’t fear the end

i can’t wait to figure my shit out

some day, soon

look in the mirror, and feel just a little stronger than i did the day before

i can’t wait to build myself up, slowly

can’t wait to feel like i’m okay

when i wake up in the morning

i can’t wait to count off wrinkles in the mirror

like the rings of a tree

i hope you’re there with me

i hope your laugh sounds like a symphony

i hope our bellies hurt

i hope the light catches your hair

i hope you get what you deserve

i hope your life is fair, and just, and wise

i hope you tell them what you think

bare your teeth, and fight for the things you beleive in

i hope we’re not afraid to live our lives

god, i can’t wait

to know you like the back of my hand

to haul your regrets up the hill next to mine

to stay, and stay, and stay

until we’re nothing but dust

in the hands of time


I’m not sure where this piece came from, exactly–I think it’s mostly fictional? But there are definitely some grains of truth in there was well. I was reading (through some internet rabbit hole) about the different kinds of greek love. Pragma is supposed to be longstanding and practical love, like that between a couple who’s been married for a really long time. I don’t know, this is definitely a case of me romanticizing the future, but it’s nice to think about getting to have that kind of bond (whether romantic or platonic) with someone some day.