thoughts from four years ago

I want my stomach to be a hollow
when I lie down in bed.
my ribs and hips the mountains,
the space between a valley.
my hand a plesiosaurus
drowning in the nothing
of me.


A Poem for Myself

the color green,
singing praises,
verses slipping
past teeth
surprised by
this feeling.

a grey sweater
draped on the floor
a reminder
of nothing quite
like shame.

I almost didn’t post this because it doesn’t make sense. It’s not supposed to make sense. It’s a snapshot of thoughts/images that only have meaningful context for me. But there’s something about the idea of missing context and how difficult it is to communicate meaning that makes me want to share this poem that you will have to create your own meaning for.

There Are Two Wells Inside Me

I forget sometimes how angry I can get
this well inside me so deep no bottom
sitting at the top of my lungs pitcher attached
and on the other side a second well
one of “good will,” of cheerfulness,
kindness, compassion for my fellow man,
woman, child. I think, sometimes,
that I will reach the end of it. Hit rock,
mud, and shale. I am amazed again
and again at the depths that I can go.
I wonder, sometimes, if that’s why
I’m so angry, so bitter, so cynical.
As if there is only one lid between the two
wells that they must share. How sometimes,
in order to give my well of good will time
to restore itself, to not drain dry,
I have to uncover that anger, that rage,
that ice in the back of my throat
and that acid on my tongue that I spit
vitriol and rumbled rants. I wonder
how long I can go before the one overflows
and the other drain dries and what
I will do when it happens.

Five Steps Closer/Farther

I do not think I know yet
who I am. Sometimes,
on days like this,
a day or so away from
retail and the service industry
lost in the woods
in a house not quite mine
drinking rum-spiked chocolate,
reading stories and writing
out rhymes, I’m closer to knownig.
Later, driving home, I’m five steps closer
to the answer and five steps farther
from the anxiety, the depression,
and the disassociation of who I am.

After Reading Ellen Hopkin’s Perfect


Perfect by Ellen Hopkins
and half-poetry slipping
through my mind

trigger words
and things I thought
I left behind,

can never leave behind.

Scars remain regardless
of the years. The stitching
shows through.

The glass you pieced together
inside your psyche
still sees you,

a reflection of the past.

Borrowing someone else’s
body dysmorphia,
flirting with anorexia,

slipping in and out
of a dissociated state
we don’t have words for.

It’s not safe to have words for.

I wonder sometimes
what it is like
to be normal,

but then I remember:
there’s no such thing.
Simply chemicals and hormones,

and the pain that makes us sing

out “alleluias” to the gods
and monsters of our society
that wreck us daily

with messages overt, covert,
excessively, obsessively,
telling us to be or not to be

however they define it.

I have fought those messages,
punched the mirrors,
broken mind, cracked

to pieces I can never
quite put back together
a nervous system wrecked

by general anxiety.

Nothing specific here.
Too many things to fear.
Too many things to stress

my adrenal glands to their limit
and beyond.
A delicate, concrete, mess.

I wonder, sometimes, if you can see it.

I am moss and flowers strewn
at a grave site.
Brittle bones splitting

down the middle of a highway,
standing, waiting for a car
to hit me and be done with it.

Passively suicidal.

I am a cityscape, noise and dirt
coughing, bitter, cynical
as cyanide,

cold to the touch, “monstrous”
some say. People as experiments
to be used as needed,

like oxygen, unfortunate dependency.

I am a desiccated tower,
a hermit and a fool,
sacrificing self, time, identity,

to those who need it,
of the damage done,

can not ever be undone,

no matter how hard they try,
I will not be undone,
and oh, how They do try

to break us down to pieces,
scatter us like glitter
and dried blood,

a quiet collection of aches.

I would bleed out my lungs,
gasp out my tongue,
burn my body to the ground

if I thought for one second
it could save You.
There are always so many,

that need saving.

Too many who slice up skin,
place hot lighters to flesh,
stick fingers down

throats empty from binge-
vomiting up acid that wraps
itself around teeth

that taste too many calories.

Too much abuse and misuse
of language, hands, and words
that don’t leave scars

that can be traced back
or shown as evidence.
Invisible crimes

that bury us.

I want to save the world,
cuddle you up in my arms,
sing you lullabies,

but goddammit
I can barely save myself,
so you have to fight, darlings.

Set this world on fire.

Let it burn to the ground.
We’ll rebuild it.
Plant seeds dark and gorgeous,

green buds growing from the ash.

Impressions, Inspiration: Hannibal

I fill myself to the brim with another man’s story
think about the inside of his mind, the cracks
the filament and thread holds us together
like spiderwebs refusing to be swept aside.

Being the spider and the victim, the blood
venom holding tight to veins pulsing
with stories I cannot tell because they are
– and are not – Mine.