(c.2017 - 2022) Poems from this series were all originally worked onto the same copy of a thrifted novel in the form of blackout poetry. these usually become the bones of larger poems, but sometimes I leave them as-is. scans of the original poems/paintings currently can be found here.
*note: many of these are in a scroll box, especially if marked with ⛅.
(background image is a screenshot from my ACNH island)
to the side where the gravel scatters my circular sodden letters ink that misspelled, ambling pleasure how long they’d sat I didn’t care
once we were a crow and his pulpit a seagull from any saltwater quorum the garish whistling how could we listen? we skim the surface like a phantom moving through I have fallen asleep in places warmed, other bodies I knew dreaming of what? of nothing but.
he held on for a long time they touched and laughed and smoked watch the stars poke through a strange you and we saw it, too, rose-sharp and gleaming I think I’ll be afraid we all knew I can’t help falling in love with you strangers clad in our voices echoing into my infinite the song ended but I did not let go praise for a gun-busted heart welcoming the lonesome mystery of love and betrayal the brutal author ripped my heart out quick! silver linings pull important things how hard it is to know what that means
It is difficult to know the truth But I am sincerely grateful that you are Already trying to pull the trigger So don’t worry about that. I didn’t expect it to come calling To follow me around All I knew was that I Cared an unswerving and compelling iteration of love; a soaring chorus of “please (don’t) come back.” listen- listen to the unforgettable longing the gravity of home this character will stay with you for a while irresistible, old, new, lost and found what a small-town lovesong it’s honesty replaced by irony. but once in a while its nice to get your eyes wet to a nostalgic tune.
I never heard of a good deed worth a goddamn check. he drank fast, eyes wet. after all, we all stood underneath the sunflower seeds listening to the rickety metal rain and tried to imagine love for each of us, just scraping by, forever
why come back? what for? we were apart from everything we’d ever known, and yet in love with it all. in love with being inside a loop Look. Look at who I am now. I came back. I’m the only one climbing those sunrises. Look. I’m the only one waiting . . . . . . . I didn’t answer him in a deadpan voice take a look the lights of the river used to tell us do you remember that? do you remember? I was afraid to admit it the last time you looked I’m confused, are you here? are you okay? look out on sumac and pine and gray and blue sky why haven’t i spent one hundred years kissing her? I still remember a pause cradled in her hand
be something? my long, long drive a canopy of cool outside I’ve always liked to feel closer to the beyond I need to get out there, I thought. . . . I set the chain of black and blue rainwater aimed their semaphores sent them away
time fusing like late night afternoons eighty, ninety years of being marooned I was never in love with any other thing seasons unspool both hands in his pockets billowing fields and fires and sandhill cranes and all the other myriads come loud and then you think maybe winter never will again
screen doors and shadows over cool dewy dawns gas station coffee of bugs and moths and wives and backyard breezes dry as paper and the soil turned over our world underneath hallucinogenic confetti now looking like old people in bed, playing chess with knives stand still, catch your breath out there
If he’d let me, I’d sink my acres of orange and drive west everything abandoned my whole life I’ve been homesick sirens and something making me listen (Where are you? at least halfway in love even before we started falling apart)
just the same the fickle rain might have been nostalgia, he explained it’s six-story shadows like passing trains overgrown with darkness as we shot away
afraid, afraid of my jaws clenching on what was coming on the porcelain of the before not wisconsin, not new york, but someplace I knew It feels like forever I said, “I’m totally fucking confused.” we don’t sleep gently I took her hand a little less firmly. maybe I don't know my own body.
I hailed the night air at a thirty-degree angle don’t worry about staying wordless soon home flashed by invisible to me just then compressing gently when we kissed what ruins of us, now and too many reasons to leave. to leave your door open and believe is that you? hardly together sitting at a picnic table so easily, it seems, doing exactly what he wants to be doing. out there.
Most of these were written in high school, but they span from ages 14 to 21.
I. it is the desire to understand terrific remnants linger in our unassuming path striving to the greater scheme in their hearts
i blew in from the east, i was autumn leaves and there the city whispered hymns to me the mountains to our west were the bottoms of the sea we tried to cast an anchor at their salty peaks but the tether always seemed to ravel free they cut short the horizon made us a bed at the bottom of the greatest basin but we were raised among pines with narrower skies and our hearts wilt out in the open all we wanted was a place to call home to stitch these singing wounds from being alone another hand decides who stays and who goes if we’d ever had a shot, would we still be full of holes? the spiritual seekers - do they linger? after lovers leave? hiding in the hollows where the smoke-swelled poets preach who would check for an SOS in the patterns of a moth’s wing? we build new cocoons around these old miseries and just go back to sleep but even in this dream, we never leave believing oily puddles are as pretty as the sea or that no one cares what happens to me can i get a breeze in here? i might be fine another day inside this place but we’re already buried inside we watch prairie dogs and golden grasses thrive but we’re invasive species, no one asks for us alive terrific remnants linger in our unassuming path i’m no longer certain what i’d give to heal the past just try to remember that deserts have formed and dissolved over thousands of years and so have you. here will be a desert where a forest grew (and deserts can be plentiful, too)
i wish i could write again write the words we used to be friends. now all i know is coffee, can stay awake and stain my hands ink is on the table my feet were in the sand. someplace else and someplace else when i had words for what i felt the small of your back and the sound your knuckles crack. but i only want to move so i guess i can’t go back.
for once the sky looks like something tangible white lined paper fringies soft drink stains the edges are rounded like a page torn from up there a mistake like ones i’ve made yeah. if only it were that easy. lots of things come unstuck like that, lately i watch him go about daily things in slow motion. my mind takes off on vacation my heart has a mind of it’s own. unlike drowning, logic is escapable for a time.
the color orange follows me, waywardly, home in the form of yellow-paged streetlights the standard issue, steelgray city sky. thoughts race my head back, hanging out of the back of my skull, across these curling streets and past shedding trees. I have one thought left swinging in my chest as this winter draws herself up close remind me that it’s time to be cold. i cannot turn inside out, or find my hands to hide my face, so i can’t breathe or see; to stifle stillborn christmas trees. tapping ratty soles against the bottom of the driver’s seat; the sound of my Chucks will always sing the past back to me.