Without Love

a poem by Kitty Tsui

I cannot do without love
the way I make myself
do without food or sleep or sex
I cannot do without love

sometimes I rummage through
my papers
scraps of dreams
thoughts from long ago
want to throw everything out
but can’t

did my laundry
read Doris Lessing
on the stairs in the sun
the one about
a man and two women

last night in your arms
a whisper in my ear
see how your heart beats
hard like a hammer

what are you thinking about
you are so far away

pow fahn for breakfast
steaming in rice bowls
snow heavy on the trees
like icing on a cake

your lover calls every night
demanding to know
if I am still here
and why the hell am I
still here
I cannot do without love

For more by Kitty Tsui, click here.

C’est La Vie

C’est La Vie

Living a life free, c’est la vie.

Being in love glee, c’est la vie.

In the desert, in the sky, in the sun, and the sea,

Earth, wind, fire, and water are living in harmony.

A flower is nourishing a honeybee,

And a cold wind is whipping nude an old tree.

One dreaming nicely under a marquee,

One creeping under a shed with the flea.

One perfumed in bed like a potpourri,

One plunged in a bad smell alike the pee.

Some die of the hatful Fahrenheit degree,

Some live to remember the painful decree.

Some get swallowed lost in the mouth of tsunami,

Some get condemned to live orphan without mommy.

The dead have slept six feet under the debris,

The alive are mourning the dead on the knee.

A corpse is hanging in the air without ID,

Disagrees being tortured to death to agree.

One being executed by the count of one, two, three,

One being spelled the magic word of, L, O, V, E.

I am confused,

How unfair this loving life supposed to be?

A wise said: C’est la vie,

Before life, there is no he or she, you or me!

C’est la vie, c’est juste, la vie.

A poem by: Mehr

TARYN The Actual fRiend You wereN’t

Still could have been friends to this day

we made a mistake

because we connected in a way

the reason it happened

was because it was real

i tried to talk it out

and let our feelings deal

much like our minds we ran too fast

but I always thought our friendship would last

yep I know in an altered state

things were done and said and now it’s too late

i took responsibility, showed no texts and put nothing down

after all of this

here is a poem

just to let ya know why I’m gone

i tried more than you

saw the bigger picture and years

the moment you chose

is yet still to deal

im dealing still , have no fears, it’s all been BUT said ,and still some tears

but some things are better left unsaid

and leave past  lives ,

as if they’re dead.

right?

nahhhhh,,,,

just as you always said ….

my friend in life

never said wife

when you read the lines will cut like a knife

because it was real

and now we silently deal

my friend you almost were

 

 

 

 

 

Protected By The Light

You genuinely couldnt fake, half the things ive done,
Ive grabbed the middle rail, ive let the blood cells run.

Ive taken all the tablets, dangled full on thrice,
Ive swallowed all the water, not only once, but twice.

Ive tasted electricity, ive baked inside 2 tents,
it would take me quite a while to tell you all the times my life was spent…

How i am still ticking, is way beyond me,
but ive finally hit a stage in my life where I actually want to be.

Put it down to meds, put it down to fate,
but theres a path now been paved in front of me, I really just cant wait!

A message, if I may, to those who have had enough:

Ive been in your shoes sooooo so many times, so believe me when I say I feel you bro/ladybro… Reach out, cry!!! Go limp and give yourself to the universe, the powers that be dont want to see you suffer… Let it out, try, speak more as so many people suffer in silence unnecessarily. You are not alone, and You are more than enough. Now, either fix what can be, or start over, be honest, theres help there for you!!

Daragh Fleming – Honorary Member of the Poetry Cooperative

We are thrilled to welcome Poet and Mental Health Advocate Daragh Fleming to the Poetry Cooperative. Daragh writes stunning poetry and his book, Lonely Boy is changing lives as we speak. I had the privilege to sit down with him and ask him about his writing and the advise he provides to emerging poets and writers.

You can check out Daragh’s Honorary Members’ Page to find out what advice he has for emerging poets. We’ve got an interview and a selection of stunning poems. You can access the page by clicking on the photo below.

Daragh Fleming

Attila József – Celebrating Hungary’s Poets

On this day in 1905, Attila József, Hungary’s greatest poets was born. Since 1964, the nations marks the 11 April as a celebration of Hungarian poetry.

You get poetry on public transport, and Hungarians gather to share poems and celebrate its power. Poetry has been instrumental in Hungary’s quest for cultural identity. Poetry helped process its difficult history, unbreakable spirit, and rich cultural heritage. Famous Hungarian poets include the revolutionary and of course Attila József, famous for his exploration of social issues and existentialism. Here is one of his poems.

I have scrubbed boilers, I have cut seedlings,
On rotting straw mattresses I've found sleep;
Judges have sentenced me, fools have mocked me,
My glitter poured forth from cellars deep.
I've kissed a girl who sang even as
she was baking someone else's bread,
I was given clothes and I gave books
to peasants and to workers instead.
I was in love with a well-to-do girl
but her own class wrested her from me;
I ate but once every other day
and I got an ulcer finally.
I've felt that the world, too, was a turning
inflamed stomach and that slimy thing,
our dyspeptic love was our mind, while war
was nothing but bloody vomiting.
Since sourish silence has filled our mouth,
I kicked my heart that it might shout with rage.
How could my active mind content itself
with lulling songs composed for a wage.
They offered money for my great vengeance;
Priests have said: trust in the Lord, my son.
And I knew, he who returned empty-handed,
with axes and hoes and stones would come.
I have flashing eyes and the will to win,
and I must have the willingness, the means
to do justice and so to take sides
with these severest of memories.
But what concern are memories to me?
Rather, I lay my worthless pencil down
and start grinding the scythe's edge instead,
for time is ripening in our land
with a silent, threatening sound.

Translated by John Székely

TryingAndRelyingYetNothingmakesence

Is what it is

No one can say

However

Your actions

Have consequences to this day

It is what it is

Should’ve just left it that way

You would have been better off

I’m a survivor,

So why the attention that day?

That you brought,,,,,

When you know my heart

One of few

But

Now it’s done

And

Though

Threw

Could have been friends still

What’s done is done

Yet it exists

Till

TARYN OREOS

Hey listen,,,,

I’m not so certain you understand ,,,,

I FELL IN LOVE

like almost no one can

So there you are

And here

I am,,,,

So do what tho wilt-

Hurt some more-

I just work is some fkn store

Simple it seems

So it will be

I know you just toyed with me

And

To be dead ass

Yea

It hurt

So painfully

I deal with you

And

I’m dealing with me

I never expected this

Or experienced love…

So when I did, I couldn’t understand

It came all at once

I realize was fooled

You,,, very

Much wiser …

So let that candle burn

I do the same every night

Same reflections

Although I know you don’t give a damn

I was just a foolish man

The WONDER;

Of it all,,, (( hmmmm)))

Is I hit a brick ;WALL

So here’s back to you

Feel great

And wish you well

We shared a moment ,,at least ,,,that was

Where few dwell

Wonder wall

/I was not/

But

wtf

You dropped a lot

I kept it all

And did

Not

When mind’s connect

It’s rare,,,,

So

Fair

ThEE

Well

Poetry Cooperative Silver Membership

The Poetry Cooperative provides poets with tips and publishing opportunities. You can publish poems on our poetry feed and promote your poetry across the platform and the Poetry Cooperative social media channels. We also encourage our members to support one another with comments and feedback.

If you’re serious about writing and promoting your poetry and making money, the Poetry Cooperative Silver Membership is worth considering. The membership level offers many opportunities to its members, focusing on supporting them in their efforts to publish, share, and promote their poetry.

Apart from providing publishing opportunities on the Poetry Cooperative website and in the Poetry Cooperative Magazine, Silver Member contests award winners prize money.

Driving traffic to your poetry website and building a strong social media following is also important for poets. For that reason, we run comment, like and share exchanges.

We encourage members to collaborate and help increase traffic to their websites and social media profiles while the promotional team at the Poetry Cooperative promotes the work of featured poets across all social media platforms. Your poetry will reach a whole new audience whose members will further share your work.

Submit Poetry Online, Publish, Promote

To submit poetry online, you can join the Poetry Cooperative and start publishing your poetry. If you become a Silver Member, you can submit your work for publication in the Poetry Cooperative Magazine. 

The quarterly Poetry Cooperative Magazine features the best new poetry.  We also pay contest winners, plus winning poems appear in the quarterly magazine too.

So, you see, Poetry Cooperative Silver Members enjoy lots of money-making and promotional opportunities.

The focus of what we do is on poets helping poets spread beautiful poetry across the globe.

Become a Poetry Cooperative Silver Member Now!

Here’s a recap of all the wonderful Poetry Cooperative Silver Membership features:

  • Paid Contests
  • Build Website Traffic
  • Promote Your Poetry Collection
  • Publish Your Poem and Get Paid
  • Find Out About the Latest Submission Calls

Poetry Cooperative 30-Day Poetry Challenge

To celebrate spring and redouble our writing efforts, we are running a 30-Poetry Challenge. To succeed, you need to publish ten poems here within 30 days. We will share the poems across social media, and if you fulfil the task, you get one-month of Poetry Cooperative Silver membership free of charge with all its perks. The Poetry Cooperative 30-Day Poetry Challenge is designed to help you build consistency while providing you with feedback and comments.

Click on the image below to sign up and register.

A Breath.

A breath.

So much can happen

In that one breath.

 

That breath is a moment.

A moment of calm,

A moment of clarity.

 

In that moment,

Breathe in life

Exhale worry.

 

Or an eternity.

Everything happens

In that eternity.

 

That breath is an eternity.

An eternity of fear,

An eternity of confusion.

 

In that eternity,

Absence of oxygen,

Thoughts are clouded.

 

That instant of two extremes

Becomes my freedom,

Becomes my prison. 

 

In that second,

Will I find calm and clarity?

Will I find fear and confusion?

 

In a breath, indecision decides.

After the Wind

After the Wind

Having quietly come into a bit of money,

which might sound a bit sticky but was

not enough to cause over-excitement,

he didn’t buy a splendid new vehicle.

Nor did he snore to Dubai or cruise Hawaii.

He did buy a winter coat of a quality not

previously considered. Not even on sale.

He wondered if he should seize such a rare

opportunity to change his life then laughed

out loud as he walked along a silty canal

then stopped for fruit toast and coffee

at the cafe where they would burn toast

just how he liked it. He had lived simply

by necessity while managing to feel

fortunate before his wee windfall.

Didn’t have any debilitating maladies;

did have a writing desk, food in fridge,

enough clothes and books in rows.

Travel by TV meant no delayed flights,

no lugging of worn luggage

[which even sounds Heavy].

In still sound mind, it was settled.

Egg for breakfast, morning stroll,

lunch of spuds, greens, mix of beans,

perhaps a chop, the habitual siesta

before kite flying or haiku hunting.

So, not much – but enough – was new.

He’d continue to be just what he was,

a quiet neighbour in the land of Aus-

tralia.

Always Ever You

 

I measured time in heartbeats by seeking my life

while stumbling through the lives of others;

The ones I preyed would test, would dare

that my memories of you were imagined, and through.

For more than fifty long years my desperate theft

was their lives whose ties I craved would be true,

but they never knew–how could they, those few?

It was always ever you.

They became almost real, across decades, those someones

who I begged into my nights to rip my psalms of you away,

to pitch those prayers into cold grey winds of change

That would soar to the skies then fall,

and roar in pain, slashed by shards of rain,

Realized not as cries, but sighs; they survive, are alive–

my memories of you, not imagined, are true.

It was always ever you.

WALL2tee wall

Hey listen,,,,

I’m not so certain you understand ,,,,

I FELL IN LOVE

like almost no one can

So there you are

And here

I am,,,,

So do what tho wilt-

Hurt some more-

I just work is some fkn store

Simple it seems

So it will be

I know you just toyed with me

And

To be dead ass

Yea

It hurt

So painfully

I deal with you

And

I’m dealing with me

I never expected this

Or experienced love…

So when I did, I couldn’t understand

It came all at once

I realize was fooled

You,,, very

Much wiser …

So let that candle burn

I do the same every night

Same reflections

Although I know you don’t give a damn

I was just a foolish man

The WONDER;

Of it all,,, (( hmmmm)))

Is I hit a brick ;WALL

So here’s back to you

Feel great

And wish you well

We shared a moment ,,at least ,,,that was

Where few dwell

Wonder wall

/I was not/

But

wtf

You dropped a lot

I kept it all

And did

Not

When mind’s connect

It’s rare,,,,

So

Fair

ThEE

Well

The Candle

The candle on my desk is all hope, a small flame, struggling,

Singing its faint song to the dark ceiling and walls,

It will burn on till the end, faintly, believing,

As the evening builds to infinities of night, 

And creatures emerge to scour the darkening alleys,

And drunk women lean against brick walls and remember

And cold winds slide among the tombs of the dead.

 

The dark night will summon the strange faiths of the world,

As day’s weapons slide from our hands a great sigh rises,

Intentions die and give rise to a landscape of souls

That linger by trees, watching with soft white eyes,

Passive, curious, cloying nixie hands of light

Aflame in manifold burstings betwixt the impatternings

Of stars, and looming branches dark as shadow’s soul,

The grass a cool ocean sighing for an ecstatic reality.

 

But there is no reality in night’s soft paradox, and the candle,

Burns with sweet confidence, in defiance of it all,

Knowing that life at its core is that imperturbable hopefulness

And a few slender strands of light thrown prayerfully

To the wall.

 

The Santa Fuzz

The Santa Fuzz

 

It was peculiar; Santa was

There at the mirror, trimming fuzz;

“I have to look just right, you know,”

He said, “no stray hairs in this show!”

 

I asked, “Isn’t the wild beard style

The way folks like you, with your smile?”

He paused; “You know, you have a point –

‘Wild hairs’ is the theme of this joint!”

 

He proceeded to show me all

The goings in each room and hall,

A flurry of activity

And smiling productivity

 

“Look at all of the crazy toys!

Elves innovating; hear that noise?”

Santa then put his clippers down;

“My son, you have saved Santatown!”

 

The moral of this story goes:

Let your hair flow how e’er it grows;

And when you see the Bearded Man,

Tell him you’re a wild whisker fan

 

Today the elves have long beards, too –

Except the lady elves, mind you;

Their joy in toymaking is real,

Thanks to Santa’s wild whisker zeal

T-REX

If the grass should grow as long

Then why were we so wrong

To think and do the things we did

We cheated and lied and kept it hid

Although I see now that it’s through

You kept your lies hidden from me too

I was so in love

That kept me blind

You saw so clearly and had a purpose in mind

I told you more than once let’s just enjoy

That wasn’t good

So you chose to destroy

Now you have it

I hope it pays off

To me it was much more than just getting off

Farewell my friend

My secret love

You have what you have

And I’ve definitely,,,,,,,, said enough

Screaming won’t do it

Narcissism, have you witness some one that have used every moment in your life to put you against the wall? Yes I have jumped into fire many times over and over again. Why though? It’s easy said because I have gain lack of trust from pass scares that refuse to close after trying to deep stitch it back into my soul. You came alone, I was warned of trouble but the lust for your sexual attraction I gave in. Than again and again. Now that I have matured into a better person, Yes I apologize for the lack of care, see I saw you differently until the night you opened a scare, as I lay into the dark you set outside my home and a stranger car, I should have left you alone than but I couldn’t, I know I was right, but because I couldn’t show you your lies I thought I’ll be wrong to leave right? so I stayed and yes I did me, because I felt the trouble I was warn came true and I stayed with you cause I started to love you and thought if she really love me , she would come clear of what she do. But she didn’t and as I continued to walk around like a dog on a leash, still with her but in the streets building a file she can finally use against me now that I question her doings it’s finally all back on me. Why! because I built the file she can unleash to scream and ignore what she have also did. I open the book that I could have not made and stayed out of fire and safe than now of all I have witness if I didn’t create what would she than had to substitute? An she state! Fuck you! no good nigga! Look what you put me through lying ass, cheating ass, wrong me ass nigga,( has i scream in my had back at her bitch you first pulled the trigger, I just shot back, fucked up thing was I didnt hide it and when you was wondering why that, well I guess you forgot that) started to believe you was honestly harmless, nah your wrong Ms! You started it I was just not mature to address it at the time I just ran with it. But as a matured, I learn from it. Grown ass man thinking damn nigga you didn’t have to really go through it! bad decision making had you doing it, hating what you created nigga you foolish. You could have stayed honest to your character now you walking around clueless. Yet you know it. Narcissism, they would do it, after all they do, you handed them the bullets to use it. And now every time you shoot back your voice of concern is useless because after all you say and ask. It all goes back to why you do it.

Song For A Second Spring

Just as dogwood blossoms fell
so passed the lilacs and my Spring
Shunning seasons, slipping into Winter sleep
icing and numbing my brain beyond care
beyond thought, past pain
To a limbo of sweet peace
with nothing everywhere
Just hints of my dead Spring
of fallen lilacs
and dogwood
Whose fragrance hung
above my head
so sweetly and so cruel.
Yet limbo is not a savage place
if you endure dead Springs
elusive scents
and perfumed lonliness.
The lilacs I told you were gone,
and the Spring I thought was dead–
had never truly withered away.
See what I hold, here in my hand?–
a gift for you,
only for you,
a bequest from limbo;
A gift from a frozen wasteland
retrieved from a wounded Spring–
Please accept this sacrifice
of a heart now returned
From a journey beyond care,
beyond thought, past pain
From a limbo of release;
my Spring was never there.
I offer you my true belief
in lilacs
and dogwood
and Spring.

The Broken Soundtrack Behind the Wind

I wonder if the waking symphonies will mourn the voice no longer heard, a melody now lost in the stinging odor of untimely age.  If no one was there to hear the hymns of beloved, was a song lost before it ever existed?  I can hear the ragged streaks of broken pitch smeared along the measure stretched from one infinite to the other.  The soul of a morning song has been struck by the blunt force of dull frost, a force only understood by its creator.  The wind rests uneasy as it adjusts to the obstacle of a withering ballad.  An anthem never to be heard other than by the roots retired deep within the broken foundation of which the uninked pens and pillow stuffers are perched.  Can it feel the shards of stiff loneliness slice through its undone rhythm?  Or has he already been molded into winter by the heart that beats to the melody of his disoriented warmth.

The Fox At Sugar Creek

The Fox At Sugar Creek

 

As silent as snow,

there he was, a thin

tail dangling

 

through his teeth. On a

sudden cue he

turned away

 

and darted into the woods

beyond a neighbor’s yard.

A mate perhaps,

 

asleep in a snow-covered

den, heaving

heavy sighs

 

with a swollen belly, dreaming

of field mice

and sparrow eggs.

the poet’s woe

I picked up my pen today
Nothing came out of it.
But a bloody mess
Of all those I’d forgotten.

The blood-stained paper
Filled with the anger and despair
Of an innocent child
Wronged by the world.

The words written down,
Sharper than the edge of a sword
Took the shape of the despised
The harrowed and the hated

The mind, once full of ideas
Now filled with rage
Distressed and tired
Drowning in its own sorrow

It hurt my fingers,
But I kept on writing
For all that was trapped within me
Finally took a shape.

To liberate my flickering mind
From its own demons
I kept on writing.
I wouldn’t stop. I couldn’t.

What is this curse
That has been placed upon me.
Once, a source of joy
Now the same pen haunts me.

Maybe this is my punishment.
Maybe this is how I atone.
For the sin of living
Living in this accursed world

~Himan Deka

A Familiar Turn

As I walked
Through the hustling city streets
I came across
A familiar turn
Long forgotten.
And without a second thought
I took it
And
All the memories
All the lost thoughts
Came rushing back.
A road
Once filled with childish innocence
Mud puddles and lost cricket balls
Now an empty street
Filled with despair
Shattered dreams and broken bottles

 

~Himan Deka

The Continuous Burning Home

“When you’re born in a burning house. You think the whole world is on fire. But it’s not.”

Richard Kadrey 


I remember the first time I realized I had depression. I came home from school that day and took my shoes off and set my backpack down. I immediately put on my pajamas and laid in bed. I remember staring up and noticing the pointy texture of my tiny bedroom ceiling. I remember staring at that ceiling until the sun went down and I could no longer see the pointy texture. 

 

I’d always arrive home before my family members. 

I would hate the days I’d come home and be alone with another man that my mom had for the month. I remember I would walk silently to my room and always lock my door. 

 

As my mother would arrive home, it was often heard by yelling or an argument that would turn brutal. I’d eventually hear a bedroom door slam shut. Usually, it was about unfinished dishes that I had forgotten because my depression was so severe I would never leave my bed. It would result in her telling me she wants me to move out or that I am ungrateful and not a good child. 

It’s okay, just pick up the pieces one more time. 

You can move away from this reality soon. 

Just one more time to pick up the pieces. 

 

Inside those burning walls with my mother, you’d hear crying, anger, with so much hatred. 

Everything is my fault. 

Just forgive and forget, Okay? 

One more time. 

Forgive. 

But How. 

Forgive. 

But How. 

Forgive… 

But how many times do I forgive this? 

 

I developed anxiety very quickly as a child. My mother always told me I was incredibly shy and quiet. I remember waking up terrified of going to school because I’d have to face the people who shamed my hair, eyebrows, hairy arms, or my clothes because my family was poor. 

It’s okay just one more day, sweetie. 

You got this. 

 

Being the brunette of all my siblings was rough. I was never called beautiful. I had messy curly hair that was never tamed. Like ever. My sisters on the other hand had beautiful blonde straight hair. “You’re so beautiful with your blonde hair”.

I wanted to be beautiful so badly. 

“Go get your eyebrows waxed.” 

“You’re a size 5? At your age I was a size 0”.

And my favorite was always “Why are you wearing that slutty dress? Stop asking for attention and be a young lady. Men do not like that” as her husband stared at my legs. 

The smoke from the flames started getting into my lungs at this point.

It’s okay, one more day. 

You got this. 

Forgive. 

 

I remember the exact moment I wanted to commit suicide. I came home from school and was home alone. I was beyond numb from the suffocating world around me. The day before I watched my mother attempt to kill herself. I did not feel anything. I was not scared to lose my mother. I wished anyone on Earth was my mother at this point. I would pray to God every night for another mother. I prayed for a mother who didn’t see me as her competition when I hit puberty. 

Having a mother like mine was like not having one in this lifetime. 

No one to tell me it’s okay and help me battle my fears.

Only it is me in the battlefield of my own mental drownings. 

But the home being installed with propane and the fire burning so bright.

It blurred my vision while I tried to get out in one piece. 

But don’t your clothes still carry the smell of the burning fire?

 

My suicidal thoughts turned into a need instead of a want. I pulled out pills and poured a bunch of them into my small hands. I close my eyes tightly and long for the feeling of my heart to stop pumping blood into my veins. To finally take my last shaky breath as my body stops working. To finally not think about how I am not beautiful enough, to not hear my mother say she hates me, or to not have my mother tell me I am nothing without her, or seeing “trusted” family members look me up and down as soon as I became a teenager, or hearing my dad say he wishes I turned out differently and that he wanted a son instead of me. I wanted to fall into nothingness and be forgotten. 

 

I put the pills back into the bottle one by one hoping I’d change my mind. 

 

Why won’t anyone help me? Can you not see I’m suffering? 

 

The fire is starting to burn me. 

And here I am with all of the scars you gave me. 

They will never heal because I am still in those burning walls trying to find my way out. 

It’s okay, sweetie.  

One more day, alright?

One more….



on the o’hare morning

Riding next to you 

on the Chicago Skyway Toll Bridge

I see a blinking Dodge

with the whole front fender missing—the whole thing.

It makes me think about those kids

born with jelly-chins,

and then about this fawn I found on

the side of the road when I was nineteen.

She looked all wire and bone

and was mewing—

half her downy jaw lay in a parking lot

or a side street or a belly somewhere.

All the muscle of her tongue stuck dry and

naked in the wind,

mewing. 

Illness

as soon as you opened your mouth
you left everybody cold
we were not allowed to question you
we just did as we were told

the chill that came from every word
went all the way up my spine
I knew about your punishment
I learned not cross the line

sometimes you showed a hint of warmth
those times were few and far between
those times when you were like that, though
were like nothing we’ve ever seen

in those sought after times, it was bliss
it’s like you showered us with sunlight
then you would suddenly change again
it’s like the difference between day and night

we just really couldn’t understand it
it’s not as if the rose was covering the thorn
but, on rare occassions you made us feel oh so special
mostly, we wondered why we were born

I’ve since learned it wasn’t you at all
it’s that something inside you broke
I’d have known about it, somewhat
if we had ever spoke

but, things like that weren’t talked about
it’s like that topic was taboo
but, I wish we had dealt with it though
because, it affected more than you

sometimes, I have these ideations

and sometimes, they come true

 

and in those moments I despise myself 

 

I wonder how soulless I must be to have not only searched for, but beseeched pain that wasn’t even mine 

to have gifted the universe with tiny, seething sparks that kindled the death of those who were more loved than I ever will be 

 

And so, I curse myself and swear that I would never let my imagination run astray

that I would never wish ill on myself or others ever again, or spare even a whisper of misfortune, lest it resonates. 

I tell myself : you’re a child of science, but you never know who’s listening. 

 

clearly, all rationality has been abandoned. 

 

soon these wilful promises are subdued, 

consumed by this pathetic, ghoulish part of me which craves the suffering, and attention and validity that accompanies tragedies 

 

the same part of me that yearns for explicable misery 

 

Oh it’s absurd, I know, 

but that hushed, laden voice stifling frantic apology’s and stumbling over words that deliver yesterdays bad news feels like fresh, unbridled relief that holds you gently and cradles your mind and gives you a reason to feel the way you have been feeling for the past month 

 

maybe even the past year 

 

it absolves the confusion and haze of not knowing what’s wrong with you 

and frees the guilt of having everything that guarantees happiness, yet feeling nothing but muted insanity 

 

your conscience playfully tiptoes the edge of coherence while you withstand the banality of dragging yourself out of bed and brushing your teeth and feigning a weary normalcy for those who cherish a version of you that ceases to be

 your mind perpetually on the brink of explosively shattering into unsalvageable pieces forever lost to nihility

 

but,  it’s okay – at least you have something to blame now. now, you’re armed with a cause. 

 

It’s so human to find comfort in despair and usefulness in grief, and to endow and imbue your heartache with purpose – the repercussions of this leave you untouched until you find yourself unable to reconcile peace with fulfilment, as you realise that stability now engenders unease 

 

your healing harbours shame and excavates your every chamber, only to leave this funny, hollow feeling of burning incompletion 

 

and so, you ragingly lust after wonted pain in ways whose unfamiliarity frightens you 

you don’t even want to feel whole, you just want to feel. 

 

you’re not entirely sure who you are or who you’ve become, but you trust all will be restored – it has to be, right? 

But that’s for someday, sometime, 

not now. 

For now, the present beckons and demands swift gratification, 

and the present always, always wins.

 

and so, those same ideations that you once renounced are born and expelled yet again 

only to keep this whimsical, cosmic wheel of misfortune turning, 

and turning, and turning 

 

don’t you ever let it stop. 

X

My left side

Is looking for your right

My right side

Is looking for you left

The man in me

For the woman in you

The woman in me

For the man in you

 

And so on

Before our sweet kiss

A MEN

On the night I was born, the rain was pourin’, God was cryin’ Lightnin’ struck, power outage, sparks was flyin’ The real one’s here, the young boy that walk with lions Around the outlines of chalk where the corpses lyin’.

Stretchin’ the truth, know I never stress in the booth They feel the pressure, me I feel like I just left the masseuse Effortless, how I’m skatin’ on these poems is proof.

its a cold world so i  heat a flask in a beaker, im the last of the Mohicans no weaklings last in my sneakers.

if my poems get published youll see the wrath of the reaper ,  and ill proly go to hell if poetry cooperative asks for feature   🙂

 

the start

The start, a memory one so far that  I hold it close

Hoping if I hold it close enough that he’ll come back 

thaT he will be who he was

Where I felt the most important in his life

In The way he use to look at me

The look I can no longer  find no matter how hard I stare.

How did it go from calling for hours

To be if I get lucky enough to receive a call once a month

Like I was a old toy that was to used 

 Or A soul that was to damaged 

How can you you love someone 

Who u get so bored of, like you choose not to remember the start.

Happiness, for lack of a better word

Happiness is hypocritical in a sense,

as the most unhappy thing I can think of is not being happy.

People tell you what to be,

been there

regretted that.

And yet,

am I happy?

When panic grips me,

is it truly unhappiness or just stubborn belief that I can’t make myself believe,

that I am ok,

that my rambling words make sense,

that my stupid stutters that pass for words

are a valid validation

of my being.

Happiness  is to abstract to grasp- grasping at straws just leaves you without a drink.

The absolute insistence on a man made word kills more dreams than suicide ever did

so

maybe

happiness should be scrapped,

for lack of a better word to describe a word that could be better.

and maybe we can just feel our feelings

with out feeling like the world is telling us that these make us an unhappy person

 

 

 

TESTING THE WATER (remembering Scott Hutchison)

A flow we seek to capture,

bridge or channel, yet cannot confine.

Lithe as mercury, slipping fingers,

it is held in brush-stroked cloud

and then let fall, rattling on rooftops.

Pools, unstirred, collect

the tension of drip, drip droplets:

mirror-flat, refract our point of view,

reveal all kinds of surface.

 

Of running water, folklore says

that no enchantment can survive it.

To know the end you go to, be the stream,

not a stick that’s spun at source.

Ride the impulsive rapids to middle-age

meandering, no cataracts in sight.

At the delta of days, silt-laden

reach the surf; then fathomless beyond

swim until you see no land.

Valentine’s day

Birds that sing, me to sleep,

Waking up to see roses all around,

Chocolate hearts laying side by side,

 

Over those counter bestowed by presents,

Each wrapped in red,

Hearts covered for those we love,

These names written in our hearts,

 

Each spelled loud and clear,

By vocals they get heard,

Letters written for those who we care,

Quotes given to those who struggle,

 

Bite sized chocolate hearts eaten,

Shared and given to each,

Words we spoke,

To all those we love and care.

poem by Sarah Shahzad ( Raven )

Entry # 35: Worth Every Prayer

**Tonight I am beginning Entry thirty-five,

Another day is conquered, & I’m thankful I’m alive.

Also it is now year twenty-twenty-three (2023),

I’m curious as to what this new year has for me.

**As I’m hoping & I’m praying for my pain to be quite low,

But because it changes daily, its severity I just don’t know.

So I will just continue to battle & fight like hell,

Perhaps this year we’ll find a cure, yet only time will tell.

**Also one thing about me is I don’t give up easy at all,

Even through the unbearable times, when I stumble or fall.

Plus I’m still refusing, to show this curse defeat,

When my health & life are concerned, I will not be beat.

**But through this new year twenty-twenty-three,

I vow to remain as happy as I can possibly be.

So if this brand new year of ours, happens to find a cure,

It will be worth every prayer, that I have prayed for sure!

©Jan. 2023 Melissa Darsey (Passionate_Poetess)

Tee with Oreos

i suppose we both felt that it wAS real…

yours had reasons though, and mine i could feeL .

bOth at different stages iN time,

when you Get there, you will understAnd mine;

juSt To cherisH momEnts in life that are rare,

and i recoGnise youRs , …i wASS already there.

however ,Stupid tHat i ALLowed that feeling in, and to GROW,

proves that my years have nothing to show.

i experienced something few ever have,so deep and true

blinded by that, I realize now was very different for you.

I Went from zero to infinity ,to friends and beyond ,

you saw a trophy and an escape ,not a bond.

my love was intense and so genuine towards you,

i just realize what a fool ,now that it’s through .

So I guess I can sum up all of this now….

you played me so well you should take a bow.

and it hurt too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Love-You

All I once cared,
Was about myself.
I was just scared,
To let down me-self.

Then, I met you
Not wanting to care.
But everyday like new
You always did share.

People did come and go
But you always stayed.
And then it grow
Just like it was paid.

Always being there,
Loving with passion,
We did share
Without compassion.

But without myself knowing
I fell for you.
Can’t just know the feeling
But love I want to sew.

Just want to stay,
Forever and more.
Don’t know how to say
But you, I do adore.

Raven

 

The sky felt dense,

The mood it gave off,

Like moths in hue,

And butterflies in pale,

 

The showering of haze,

Over us at ease,

It’s not seen,

And there I won’t be seen,

 

The morning routine,

Of the everlasting gloom,

The day stuck in reprises,

And another one it seems,

 

It flies by scoring petrified faces,

Clipping by the nests,

It stays there,

For it, I won’t.

Poem “Raven” By Sarah Shahzad, January 2023

House Crows

Raven

The sky felt dense,

The mood it gave off,

Like moths in hue,

And butter flies in pale,

 

The showering of haze,

Over us at ease,

It’s not seen,

And there I won’t be seen,

 

The morning routine,

Of the everlasting gloom,

The day stuck in reprises,

And another one it seems,

 

It flies by scoring petrified faces,

Clipping by the nests,

It stays there,

For it, I won’t.

Poem “Raven” By Sarah Shahzad, January 2023

Wild Birds in Captivity

Those birds that roamed free,

Endless flights filled with glee,

They glide over the trees,

Flying side to side with the breeze,

 

Above the deserts, they can reach,

Following the wind that they preach,

Finding the oasis that they screech,

Under the clouds that breach,

 

A glimpse of their prey,

They plunge headfirst at bay,

Stumble and tumble right on the net,

Shackle and tackle trying to release itself yet,

 

Realizing the faults of one’s actions,

The bird gives out its different reactions,

Confused as the bird seems,

Its faith got interrupted by human needs.

Poem on Wild Birds in Captivity by Sarah Shahzad, November 2022

Saturday Night Bus, Ireland

Slashes of light dot along the wet black road,

bus windows’ reflections like quick photos.

Boys on the back seat (tang of sharp aftershaves)

talk Tik Tok titles, reckon their teams.

The girls together

give off a mixed heady scent –

lily of the valley, rose, orchid,

trace of spice, enticing oils.

Silent, blended, their perfume wafts across.

All these hopes hit town at once –

the Saturday-night bus route

past the herringbone pattern

of parked cars on the wide main street;

five pubs to choose from,

the weekly stops.

 

Ishq

कुछ सनम के साथ बैठे है

कुछ गम में जागे पूरी रात बैठे है

कुछ हाथों में ले कर हाथ बैठे है

कुछ हाथ काट बैठे है

इश्क़ भी क्या चीज़ है ना जनाब

खुशियां दिक्कतें दोनों हज़ार देती है

पूरा हुआ तो संवार देती है

अधूरा रहा तो मार देती है

When A Plaster Won’t Suffice

When A Plaster Won’t Suffice

(After The Poetry Pharmacy) 

 

When a plaster won’t suffice,

A bandage, a crutch

Or packet of ice,

When a tonic can’t cure

A mind on the mend,

I search for Sieghart’s solution –

A poetic prescription

For the human condition.

A pharmacy like no other,

An apothecary for the soul,

A medicine I reach for

On the shelf,

A talisman

For young and old.

 

Jordan McCarthy

The Edge of Reason

At some stage in our fragile life,

We’re all drawn or summoned

To water’s non-judgemental edge,

To reignite precious inspiration,

To extinguish passing desperation.

Shoreline, never a straight sure line,

Yet a neutral, benign borderline

Between spinning earth’s solid footing

And water’s strange gravitational pull,

Alluring form’s shape-shifting wonders.

Inexplicable is early morning’s pull,

Late evening’s lull, the ebb and flow

Of eternal energy’s recurring ripples,

Seemingly seamless through space

And time’s subtle variations of “Fine!”

Bright rippling apexes of extreme highs,

Dark complexes rippling in nadir lows,

Only fear knows how it steadily grows,

Readily growing into knowing despair,

As a numbness of uselessness sows,

Throws out the last meagre shakings

Of self-esteem’s reason, logic and hope,

Finding rest, rooted in the stony silt

Around my cold bare, advancing feet.

Mighty heavens open and only knows

How pricks of sharp pain, slips of weed

Attack my almost numb yet sensitive toes,

To trumpet some small forgotten victories,

To flutter bunting, bare-threaded banners,

Still flimsily clinging to and proclaiming

My mind and spirit’s Hope! Want! Will!

When then the BangBig Genesis, sperm2egg, was I

When
then the BangBig Genesis, sperm2egg, was I
of note zygote, woman.awhile till the Y o Y did I,
androgenic sink toward as you can see something to p
standingly. That Judge, Chaos, no matter my felt loss
threw the Dice deviced to make a man of me. Yet She
in me wanted a-back reborn Paradise where OnceAgain
MyWoman reigned.
Mother from whose grotto I gotta emerge in 3 trimesters,
preferred the pee wee wee as the prisoners do in male’s
jail, but O MOMMY thank you for the blest incest of FirstYear
which happily did me queer, and too your girling polish
red bledcolor co-ed on these fingertips, the Bliss
KNOWING WELL ALL ALONG that scarlet toes and tips
to the KinderKind WomanKind best belong; THEN
with milk and mom-mammology Boobs grew on me
PRIDE protruded abreast. . . The Rest, I guess I overgloss
to look the soft She and sweet to pass as Lass,
Ma’am notably mammary to all who me-do-greet.
Now
in State Hallowed the curse does begin to end
for I have left penitently the Penitentiary of men!!!

Christmas Ride

Christmas Ride

The house was dark and cold

Only a thin ray from a streetlight 

Shone through the window

The Christmas tree was a shadow

I was six years old and skeptical 

Would Santa really come

I silently left my bed

The floor creaked with each step

I was afraid of being caught

But my curiosity had won out

As I stealthily moved forward

My leg hit a metal object

It fell to the floor with a bang

My breath froze in the air

Someone big was coming

As I knelt down to hide

A hand touched my shoulder

It was my grandmother

Whispering, shhhhh

She helped me get up onto 

The most exciting gift ever 

It was my first bicycle

After sitting on it briefly 

She motioned me to bed

My grandmother always 

Had my back

Protecting our secrets

She was the best gift of all

Christmas Ride

Christmas Ride

The house was dark and cold

Only a thin ray from a streetlight 

Shone through the window

The Christmas tree was a shadow

I was six years old and skeptical 

Would Santa really come

I silently left my bed

The floor creaked with each step

I was afraid of being caught

But my curiosity had won out

As I stealthily moved forward

My leg hit a metal object

It fell to the floor with a bang

My breath froze in the air

Someone big was coming

As I knelt down to hide

A hand touched my shoulder

It was my grandmother

Whispering, shhhhh

She helped me get up onto 

The most exciting gift ever 

It was my first bicycle

After sitting on it briefly 

She motioned me to bed

My grandmother always 

Had my back

Protecting our secrets

She was the best gift of all

Hope’s Silent Symphony

In the despairing grasp of fear,

I now know I should fear less,

 

Waste less my precious focus,

Fearing a fleeting fretfulness,

 

Just like the toxic-looking froth,

Foaming to spoil lakeshore soil,

 

Appearing to pollute pureness,

Its existence alludes to ugliness,

 

Only for wiser winds and reeds

To calmly compose, sway, caress

 

Legato indications of hopefulness,

Stirring

flights                         of        frothy

freshness.

 

The Day of the Monkey.

The day of the monkey,
That’s me,
The monkey that pretends to be free.

So happy to have his day,
To hear the cheers the laughs,
And you looking his way.
Laughing at the faces I make,
My clever tricks the cake I bake,
Clapping resounds in my ears,
And blows away my silent tears.

It’s the monley’s day,
No matter how many tricks I play,
A monkey I will stay.

I will always be locked up in my little cage,
I may shake the bars in sorrow or rage,
But I need  the peanuts they throw in my face,
I need their laughing to avoid disgrace.

A little monkey with monkey hopes and monkey dreams,
Monkey desires and monkey schemes,
Monkey wishes his fears away,
Monkey longs for a better day.

Sometimes I take myself so seriously,
As if I’m very important really,
I dress up as if I’m real and proud,
And strut around my head in a cloud.
I pretend that I’m important for you and the world,
I drink up the laugher the applause of the girls,
Just before I realise my dilemma,
My cloths are too small my act is a failure.
All dirty and torn, I’m not near normality,
My mind is a mush I doubt of my sanity,
And I’m a million miles from you even seeing me.

So most of the time I sit here in half slumber,
Waiting for the sun to pass over,

I don’t even see the day rolling by,
The stars that shine in the night sky,

I gaze at a point on the floor,
And empty my mind of anything more,

That would remind me of my state,
My position, my hope, the closed locked gate.
The feelings I felt,
The thoughts that I tried, to formulate.

I know you have left me alone in my cage,
I know I’m alone with my hopes and my rage.

Sometimes they pick my cage up and move it around,
Sit it the wall, put it on the ground,

Sometimes they take me out in the sun,
Or swing it around to have some fun.

But most of the time they forget that I’m here,
Here in the dark of a thousand years.
Alone waiting for you to come home,
Searching the horizon for your grave stone.

In fact there’s nothing left at all,
In my monkey brain they put on the wall.

Does a monkey have a soul?
Am I for real or really just a hole.
Will I wake up and disappear?
Will I wake up and become thin air?

That will really be the day,
The day the monkey has got away.
My last trick, they didn’t see nor even care,
The day the monkey dissolved in thin air.

No more shaking my cage in despair,
No more pretending that I am here,
No more strutting about, making a noise,
No more playing with my plastic toys.

I will disappear and no one will see,
Nor even remember a faint memory of me,
They’ll put the empty cage on the wall,
And my ghost will eat the peanuts they let fall,
As they continue to wonder, laugh  and clap,
At the empty cage, dead monkey on your lap.

Thoughts

Thought are only feelings too,

Thoughts that I think so often of you.

Feelings are my sensations within,

The mud and the rubbish,

The diamond ring,

Sensations are the messages you send to me,

A sword, a cross, an olive tree.

So many images flash through my mind,

So many feelings to which I am blind.

So many thoughts that I never dare think,

Like old dirty dishes in the kitchen sink.

Hidden away beneath the shit,

The mud the blood and the rest of it.

Thoughts and feelings lost in the wind,

What really mattered is hidden within.

Within the noise, the laughing crowds,

Between the lines of song sang loud,

A whispered caress, a gentle breeze,

A butterfly’s wing, down on my knees.

Beneath the thoughts, behind the scene,

Under the feelings and what has never been.

Though the holes in time and space,

What is always forgotten, your long lost face.

Shining brightly for all to see,

It was never you, it was always me.

Always me down in this pit,

Thinking and fighting to make sense of it.

Always me blocking the way,

Blocking the door to keep out the day.

Always me who had the last word,

Propping up the blind and absurd.

Always me with something to say,

Thinking and feeling my life away.

Money

Money money, ringing in your tills,

Calling us to worship,

The hundred dollar bills.

Bend our knees in wonder,

Bow our heads in awe,

At the power of the liar,

Who now controls us all.

From the darkest deep caverns,

To the stars in the sky,

From the infinite universe,

To the strangers passing by.

From your inner most conviction,

To your laughing in the night,

From everything you ‘re seeing,

To everything out of sight.

The new God has risen,

To claim the holy throne,

The one that we have emptied,

Our hearts all cold as stone.

The throne that we have emptied,

We killed the rightful king,

Sold his crown an sceptre,

Pawned his sacred ring.

Raised his bleeding body,

Up on that bloody hill,

The silent lamb still bleeding,

As the money fills your tills.

Listen

Listen to the buzzing, in your ears,

Listen to the humming, of your fears,

Listen to the baby crying inside,

Listen to pleading in your lover’s eyes.

Listen to the music you have never played,

Listen to the sinner who’s never been saved.

Listen to the empty silence of your mind,

Listen to the whispers of man kind.

Listen to the never heard nor seen,

Listen to the listener who has never been.

Listen to the monkey, you know you really are,

Listen to the wise man, who’s never been that far.

Listen to the dying, crying man,

Listen tot the bottle buried in the sand.

Listen tot meaning you never really meant,

Listen to the letter you never really sent.

Listen to the lovers who loved another one,

Listen to the brothers torturing their mum.

Listen to the noisy who never say a thing,

Listen to the silent crying deep within.

Listen to the never ever really said,

Listen to the dead man laying in his bed.

Listen to the flying, dying man,

Listen to the solid only made of sand,

Listen to the night time, they told you that was day,

Listen to the meaning they stole an took away.

Listen to the singer who never made a sound,

Listen to the thunder in the lightning cloud.

Listen to the voices you never hear within,

Listen to the last train’s whistle, whistling.

The Hammer

Who can hear, the mornings call?

The dead dove’s body, as it does fall.

Who can see through the dead man’s eyes?

As the burning sun, falls from the skies.

What once was new, has now become old,

What once was alive, has now become cold,

What you believed, was worth a lot,

Is burnt to ashes, in the melting pot.

Let’s start again, I hear them say,

Let’s start again, another day,

Let’s make again, what we made before,

Spill more blood, on the kitchen floor,

Lift the cross, up on the hill,

Load the guns, to fight and kill.

Fight and slaughter, till there’s no one left,

Till your mind is empty, your heart is deaf,

You thought that, I was a soldier too,

You thought that I said, I love you,

But I tell you now, and I tell it true,

The angles of heaven, and the angels of hell,

Are riding now, to the ring of deaths bell.

What you thought, was silver and gold,

Are ashes and dust, on the open road,

What you knew was good, what you knew was true,

The hot sun has dried, like the morning dew,

The very memory, of hope and despair,

Is lost in the hole, of your soul laid bare.

The empty hole, behind the clouds,

The music and the laughing crowds,

Are dead and gone, have faded away,

As a new sun rises, on a bright new day,

I tell you now, and I tell you true,

As the hammer of me hits the anvil of you.

Your Birthday

Those were the only days of the night,
When he was born, came into sight,
The only moments that the sun did shine,
Those days when you said that you were mine.
When hope and joy lit up our eyes,
The new born babe lit up our skies.

When the world did open it’s womb to embrace,
The love of God for the human race.
When the earth and nature sang with joy,

The birth of the baby, be it girl or boy.
Hope came on to the dark path,
Something new shining on in the dark.

The birthday.

And now it’s mixed with fear and tears,
The suffering lamentations of a thousand years.

Mixed with death of love and hope,
Mixed with pain, a sinking boat.
What the hell, I shout and scream,
What the hell, is this hell’s dream?

When doors open to the light of the day,
Another one closes and takes you away!

You were born deep in a cave, silent and still,
You died in pain, nailed up on the hill.

Born in the joy of a thousand songs,
Dead on the cross of a million wrongs.

What is this story you sing in my ears?
What is the meaning of my tears?
What is right and what is wrong?
Where does reason and truth belong?

My heart drilled through with a thousand spears,
My mind is lost, drowned in my tears.

Is it me or is it you,
Who left behind this dirty old shoe?
Why is birth and death be joined?
Joy and sorrow, in sequence do follow.

Meaning and absurdity are my bread and butter,
My mind a frozen tear in the gutter.
And is there’s no right to be,
No right to be wrong,
No right to find a rhythm for my unsingable song.

When heaven and earth do finally meet,
When we eventually rise to stand on our feet,
The sky turns black and the sun does fall,
When we behold the real meaning of it all.

When we can lift our eyes to look at the hill,
Your heavenly throne, and your cup unfilled.
Your body hung limp high in the sky,
As people go on laughing and passing by.
The night falls on the old burnt tree,

Is it you or is it me,
Who died on this cross,
God on his knee.

Mentor

He used to say once you’ve felt the darkness creep you can spot it in anyone. You can recognise the suffering of another’s mind. A wordless look that’s all it took, a look of knowing when you’ve suffered too. It’s a type of scar that gets left behind. A gift if you will for the burden of the dark nights. It allows you see, those that suffer in all their light. It’s in the eyes he’d say, you can see the shadows. He’d spot it from a mile away. He’d say it out- loud for all to hear. He was fearless in his recognition. Fearless in his saying, he’d suffered too. He’d advise to talk it outside of yourself, paint it outside of yourself, when the wordless day’s cast shadows, write it outside of yourself. His speaking was as if anointing freedom within. Now you know to be fearless. Fearless with the ink on the dark days as he would be fearless in speaking. To anyone with shadows, don’t forget, there’s light in you too

Surrender

I find myself at this farm gate again,

Peering at the deer.

I want what they have,

Serenity.

 

The field is peaceful,

Dainty legs delicately poised.

Many eyes stop and stare at me.

I gaze back.

 

They are curious and kind,

For a moment it is only us,

Eyes locked,

Our silence beautiful.

Smile – Luke Clerkin

He took a picture of her

The door way acted as a frame

The lights above flickered

So much that he could use it as a flash

 

She smiled the kinda smile that would even make the Mona Lisa cry

The couple at the back of the room in awe

At the sight of her

 

He remembers why he fell in love

Each time she does it

And each time he feels like it’s ever lasting

But deep down he knows each smile could be her last

The last one that he sees

Now Only

Now only whirling dervish thoughts

Now only I dare to dream again

Now only, hope I held so tight released

Now only I breathe

Now only fears starts to fade

Now only I realise, this is not a dress rehearsal

You taught me how fragile life is

I miss your guiding voice, your knowing smirk

Now only I decide where my path goes next

Now only I sink or swim

Now only I own my mistakes, adventures and successes

As you would, I frown, cry and laugh in equal measure

My training wheels are no more

My journey continues without you

Vigil

Alone, in my childhood bed, I’d dream of fire.
Of suffocation. Being snuffed out.

My mother used to tell me stories of little girls
trapped in buildings. Of lives lost.

The same woman who would not allow bedroom
doors to be closed at night, in line with safety

lessons at school. She banned candles.
Feared incense was evil. Did not

comprehend my point about it being
in the bible. About it being a gift.

 

I still have nightmares. But, these days,
I’m not scared to light a candle

to hold back the dark.

A Baby Is Not Broken

A baby is not broken

nor is her warm head less than velvet.

 

Four upturned feet receive the clouds,

choosing the softest cumulus

to envisage as vanilla candy-floss for the taking,

deserved desserts.

 

A baby does not time her wails

to suit her caregiver,

gauging a grin as a green light

to feel.

 

She knows herself

like a temple knows its gods,

invisibly and well,

before a classic facade.

 

Her chipped toy-box takes up room,

where room is a matchbox,

 

but on she plays,

all lampshades ablaze,

striving to squish her big sausage toe

into a teeny Barbie shoe.

 

A baby’s hand

cannot understand

the things it loves to feel.

 

At what point does she let

the clouds pass by her brow?

 

When does the shoe get too small?

 

 

 

Dissenter

Dissenter

 for Zhang Zhan

 

Discord is as necessary as concord –

music history a pendulum’s swing

between harmony and dissonance;

in Hegel’s philosophy, no thesis to

synthesis without antithesis. Marcuse

said all transcendent art has to destroy

complacency, superficial consensus.

 

“At the risk of striking an off-note,” she

says before each grand assembly of those

who espouse certainty; to whom she is

agitator and whistleblower, a girl who

won’t stay mum – sitting alone on some

stone steps, making her small voice heard:

with her many names: Cassandra, Antigone,

Joan, Rosa, Malala, Greta…

From We are the Walrus (Salmon Poetry/Nov 2022)

“The Art of Being Invisible”

T.M.

My initials.

Planted on a whiteboard next to my poem,

It’s a simple reminder to myself that I exist.

To others, it’s a trademark.

a bunch of scrunched-up letters of terrible melancholy

and twisted messages of holy symphonies.

I do not exist.

The art of being invisible starts when the chimes stop ringing,

and the bell no longer tolls.

It’s the silence that bids the awaited farewells a restless goodnight,

and the stammering steps an awkward kiss.

The T stands for tenacious and the M stands for more,

because I want to be more tenacious.

I want to be more.

And as if dipping my hypothetical pen in a symbolic river of ink,

I write my T’s in endless curves and whispers.

I write.

I write.

I write.

I stop and turn my keys to more.

Because there is more to me than just a trademark.

I take ownership of my flaws.

With every indent my body makes,

I bow my head to the future.

She is an almighty deity whose hands reverse and intertwine.

She is beauty.

I pave a path and walk in a straight line,

I stretch out my arms and pray for the light to make me shine.

I want to sparkle,

to be a sun that slowly fizzles out,

to leave my initials.

To leave

Tragic and morbid.

To leave

T.M.

“You Gave Me Purpose”

I once read a story about a man with a flower.

He had picked it from a field of poppies for its petals were wilting.

He carried that flower for days,

sacrificing his own water to help it grow beautifully.

Eventually, he reached his destination

and watched the flower wilt.

He harvested the seeds and planted them at his mother’s grave,

for in the years that followed,

he would watch the blooming flowers give life to the deceased.

I think about that story often.

How the man gave beauty to the ill-fated.

And I think about us.

I too was once a wilted flower in a field of poppies,

until you gave me a chance to bloom beautifully.

“My God, She Was…”

She was the object of my infatuation.

She was everything and nothing.

and she was perfect. 

in every-which way 

my god, she was perfect.

She walked on clouds and winked at the moon. 

She danced amongst the shadows through June. 

and she was broken. 

in every-which way

my god, she was broken. 

 

She touched the ground like golden silhouettes. 

She sang away my last trace of cigarettes. 

and she was beautiful. 

in every-which way

my god, she was beautiful. 

 

She had long and slender hair that hit the light at intervals. 

She had wells of tears that flood through my walls. 

and she was kind. 

in every-which way

my god, she was kind. 

 

She had a voice that sold sweet sorrows through paper trails. 

She had a breath that weathered my storm through every exhale. 

and she spoke. 

in every-which way

my god, she spoke. 

 

But when winter’s longing cast a spell . 

And her dreams no longer fit my well. 

She was gone. 

in every-which way

My god, she was gone… 

 

And now the object of my infatuation she remains. 

for paper dragons and perfume 

Her ghostly figure here she stays 

with freckles 

that kissed our moon.

“Interlude”

My world is caving in. 

The roads I take to self-clarity are fading into the abyss, 

And the only thing I can do besides watch this ending unfold is attack my brain with vindictive thoughts and confide in those causing the issue. 

The people living in the prison of my skull have resorted to cannibalism while those on the outskirts don’t know the gravity of the situation.

And in all honesty, I’ve given up on caring. 

Slowly but surely the smoke of my blown-out candle carries with it the last remaining speck of hope while I become a machine, unable to perform without being programmed, and I become another number on society’s list of fucked-up teens. 

Another number of those who left the pages of their novel untouched and unfinished. 

Clarity is an interesting thought.

It’s not something I was able to see or touch yet there was an ounce, somewhere in my body, that helped me live rather than survive. 

That being said, the dripping droplets draining from the waterfall of awakening are drying up as they descend onto my lap and onto the page I write on. 

I can see the end, it’s as near as the hand I wipe my cheeks with, yet I can never seem to truly reach it. 

It’s a dome of ecstasy my body is rejected to, and like the repulsion of magnets, my negative will never be any closer than a few inches to the negative of my final curtain call.

With the thought of this being an interlude, that the real Ragnarök is only a tale told by those who never truly opened their books and saw that this catastrophic mess leading to the inevitable path of oblivion had two roads with another reaching their second act, I come to terms that not all clarity can be lost. 

Those who gave up on the battle long before it started had the clarity of sanity, and those who somehow continue to live their lives on the battlefield had the clarity of courage. 

So I stand before these roads, one broken, the pavement cracked, a doomed pit of darkness at the bottom with just a few logs of wood to climb across and a long winding road ahead, the other, a paved path, beautifully made with red bricks, saturated trees and rose petals guiding the way, I choose to face my fears and climb over the abyss pulling me down. 

The road is dark, winding, and absolutely terrifying, but what lies ahead is nothing compared to the fact that my world is caving in…but my story hasn’t reached its ending.

Light is a Cosmic Time Machine

Sudden there swoops an August around
On vulture wing, fed and fat.
Anew in navy, Ursa sighs
‘Alive, alive, you were once alive.’
And even now, through wet teeth, wonder
Will such lust ruin all again?

Myself, I return as the lowly satellite
Some missionary failure from the dark side of Luna.
I tried the ferrous lock on the cosmos seal
And now, I shall never speak of aliens.
Oh, I was nothing but obsessed
And lonely in that sunless sky.

Alas, it will make a brilliant memoir
To have touched a height so pretty and grand.
Far from kitchen-counter arguments
And mending walls.
The stars, they teach you false sanity,
And how to never love again.

Freedom

Iawakeninmycage.Unlikethelastthiscagehasanopendoor.ThefreedomtoleavebutacagenonethelessFreedomtoleave!Andgooutintothetreacheryandpainwheremenofpeacewageallkindsofwar.Womensmilewithdaggeredteethandthechildrenremindmeofalifelonglost.Freedomtoleave!Tobeamongstthecrowedlikeyesterday’snewspapertositwiththepigeonsandgrowjealousoftheirignorance.Forallmypaincomesfromhumanity.Freedomtoleave!Foramanwhocannottrulycommittothefightwhatisfreedom.ForamanwhocannottrulyloveawomenwhatisfreedomForamanwhohaslostallhehascreatedwhatisfreedomFreedomtoleave!IwillbefreewhenIleave.

Cosmic Happy Juice

For I stand atop a hill

Glassy eyes scanning the horizon 

An ocean of cornflowers

The current pushing toward the end

I willingly frolic away from reality 

My sanity wafting away in a light summers breeze

Carrying with it my laughter

I once feared the danger, of wandering into this field

Now it is my domain

the place I shall wither away in bliss

 

 

 

 

Alone When You Grieve and a Sad Poem to Read

Alone when you grieve and a sad poem to read, for there are things beyond your control; how could you win those never foreseen.

Bolts of Thunder, Where to Go Wonder: A Shock of Sad Poem.

Bolts-of-Thunder-Where-to-Go-Wonder-A-Shock-of-Sad-Poem
A-Shock-of-Sad-Poem

Where thou start the trail,

The abundant rain filled the trail,

Where thou shalt go to live,

A far hill, and alligators in water to give

Jolts!

Bolts

Of thunder,

Where to go wonder,

There is death around,

No easy life to be found!

….

more at: lifexcites blog

this time will be different: a found poem from a news article

protestors continue to deny that guns
were the problem. how many more shootings need to happen? the time
for us to have stopped was right after Sandy Hook high school. Parkland. Santa Fe.
twenty children, seventeen people, ten. a moment of silence, and then the “wonderful NRA.” dismissing calls. “extreme political agenda”
Dallas. Sutherland Spring. El Paso.
five people. twenty-six people. twenty-three people.
a church. a supermarket, a
rampage. protect our kids, not
guns. how many more of these need to happen? all I want is
reasonable gun control. reasonable background checks. eliminating
military-style weapons. we are an embarrassment. we cannot protect our children in our schools.
“this time will be different.”
every decent American is mourning twenty-one beautiful lives.
ruthlessly and indiscriminately extinguished.

phrases from my spam folder

the world: updated. we,
we chose tomorrow. you’re invited! 18K gold
handforged samurai swords
autographed memorabilia
floating kinetic
bonfires.
a new way to discover
how to get started.
(coming soon) we would like you to apply
an expert
weighs in on
zero gravity. get
the best, the most
prestigious bean
bag chairs, break
into the new
final hours, last call for
(up to)
80% off!
your invitation to apply is
waiting. what
do you need to get accepted? wait, don’t delete. get
the latest buzz.
make a
difference.

I don’t know how to live, ok?

Thinking won’t make me safe
And yet it persists
Being alive but not living
Avoiding mirrors
Sharing my day
Interacting deeply
I’m all in the clouds
Time moves bizarrely.
People look at me weird.
It’s not safe to be me.
When did I become this?
How did I become this?
Is it because of my environment?
Am I simply afraid?
Shame, confusion, pain, fear, disconnection
Am I dead?
How long have I been dead?
I skipped something? Missing something?
Time slows down and fast-fowards.
The stomach grinds to a halt.
The masks way heavy on my face
As the Gods turn their backs.
I open my mouth to scream
nothing comes out.

Happy Birthday

A dainty table for four
A rah zah zah restaurant
Four chairs
Filled with empty people in an empty room
Here to ‘celebrate’
No music
No smiles
No genuine ones at least
A man with a fresh patchily shaven head
A man with $600 copper spectacles
A woman with a neck brace
with a distaste for garlic
And a woman with a strawberry drink
Isolated
Quiet
Eerie
Held captive by the dinner table

You are that light that never goes out

I thought you’d always be there

in the back

when I go to look for you

Just like, shit, there ain’t words

to describe the half-lit room

in my mind full of things about you

The lines of your eyes

Pearls in your ears

Hair the color of a wine stain

Skinny jeans an inch too short

I look at you, feel like I’m dying

Love you, love you too,

Say it back, she says

You like that?

You say I have the best reactions

to everything you say

You tell me to be safe in the car

but I don’t make any promises

Your fingers are sure of it

around their cigarette

Because I love to suffer, I don’t say goodbye

before I leave I play a song full of religious imagery

and I save my own life if it goes on

like this, I won’t last

You’re like the water that never runs dry,

You’re like the runner who never slows down,

You’re that light that never goes out,

and I’ll never forgive you for that.

The Mower – Philip Larkin

The mower stalled, twice; kneeling, I found   
A hedgehog jammed up against the blades,   
Killed. It had been in the long grass.

I had seen it before, and even fed it, once.   
Now I had mauled its unobtrusive world   
Unmendably. Burial was no help:

Next morning I got up and it did not.
The first day after a death, the new absence   
Is always the same; we should be careful

Of each other, we should be kind   
While there is still time.

A Story for Rose on the Midnight Flight to Boston

Anne Sexton

Until tonight they were separate specialties,
different stories, the best of their own worst.
Riding my warm cabin home, I remember Betsy’s
laughter; she laughed as you did, Rose, at the first
story. Someday, I promised her, I’ll be someone
going somewhere and we plotted it in the humdrum
school for proper girls. The next April the plane
bucked me like a horse, my elevators turned
and fear blew down my throat, that last profane
gauge of a stomach coming up. And then returned
to land, as unlovely as any seasick sailor,
sincerely eighteen; my first story, my funny failure.
Maybe Rose, there is always another story,
better unsaid, grim or flat or predatory.
Half a mile down the lights of the in—between cities
turn up their eyes at me. And I remember Betsy’s
story, the April night of the civilian air crash
and her sudden name misspelled in the evening paper,
the interior of shock and the paper gone in the trash
ten years now. She used the return ticket I gave her.
This was the rude kill of her; two planes cracking
in mid—air over Washington, like blind birds.
And the picking up afterwards, the morticians tracking
bodies in the Potomac and piecing them like boards
to make a leg or a face. There is only her miniature
photograph left, too long now for fear to remember.
Special tonight because I made her into a story
that I grew to know and savor.
A reason to worry,
Rose, when you fix an old death like that,
and outliving the impact, to find you’ve pretended.
We bank over Boston. I am safe. I put on my hat.
I am almost someone going home. The story has ended.

D.H Lawrence – The Enkindled Spring

This spring as it comes bursts up in bonfires green, 
Wild puffing of emerald trees, and flame-filled bushes, 
Thorn-blossom lifting in wreaths of smoke between 
Where the wood fumes up and the watery, flickering rushes. 

I am amazed at this spring, this conflagration 
Of green fires lit on the soil of the earth, this blaze 
Of growing, and sparks that puff in wild gyration, 
Faces of people streaming across my gaze. 

And I, what fountain of fire am I among 
This leaping combustion of spring? My spirit is tossed 
About like a shadow buffeted in the throng 
Of flames, a shadow that's gone astray, and is lost.

Wallflowers

Wallflowers,
widely cultivated for their attractive array.
Native to cliffside and meadows.
Naturalized in Great Britain.
From Jacob’s Jacket to Wenlock Beauty.
Each petal crafted for ocular appeal.
Fragrances that dilute the demise and reinstate governance over the nasal senses.
Floral beauty combating astringency within bleak planes.

* * *

Wallflowers,
Intricate observers,
Intoxicated by the Wiles of the sidelines.
Graceful listeners,
Driven by depth
Enticed by the sudden stillness enwrapped in the archaic solstice of quietude that has prevailed since the dawn of time.
Liberation through standing in the dusty parts of the world.
Coveting the corners of rooms and shadows beyond.
Perceptible people emphasized by perplexing perceptions.
Seeking paradigm shifts, defined by the curated efforts found through developing neuroplasticity, a method of logic and effort.

* * *

The cluster.
Outcast, Misfit, Wayward and Weird.
Brain synapses that are uniquely sparking mildly awkward intellect.
Facets of poised thinking clamoring for muttered opportunity.
Thoughts that dive deeper than the rest.
Jarring offenses towards monotonous cadence and mundane philosophy.
Experiencing vibrant views that splash our horizon with a syndicate of wild and genuine intricacies.
Boisterous pastel fitted upon rugged blank canvas plateaus.
Common dialogue rarely entertains.
Weathered whispers, vulnerable vocabulary, deep discussion dynamically outspoken.
Such things pique the abrasive longing of our dialectical thirst.
Misunderstood is an epidemic and trying to understand requires lengthy walks along the longest of channels.
Knowledgeable vagrants wandering in the wilderness of enticement.
Searching for gaudy and lyrical ways to live life in tune to the auspicious and jubilant path between the mind and the heart.
Ancient souls that explode with emotion, bursting forth into a ricochet of manic allure and gloomy melancholia.
Teeming with the ravishing curious attitude, reluctantly breathing the same air yet transposing each breath into a gale of clandestine imagination, constantly quivering due to excitement kept within a frame.
Molds that are deemed to be broken, being shaped by irregular contours found in the dim lit corners of the fallacies perceived as connotations of truthful regard.
Dust that never settles, requiring extra attentiveness to surroundings beyond, deserting all order for originality, committing to abolish the whirlwind that succumbs and entices the frail and the empty.
Introspective idealists, living in between here and there, solace-driven beings constantly challenging their growth with audacity, experiencing the ramifications of striving for a curated charisma that siphons the residual corruption found deep within.
This is a populace that is rich with ingenuity, Huddled together into interwoven cradles of fire, booming to the sound of the storm.
Sounding the gong, waves of euphonic perplexity being soothed by the direct portrayal of calming stillness.
An oration of rest bellowed as a remedy to the aching persona.
We are the silent fighters who battle within.
Sharpening the wretched parts of us into wholly entombed forgetfulness, remembering dreary sunrises that captivated our gilded spirits.
Rejuvenation achieved through trial, singed by the mental apocalyptic fervor, diverging from the norm.
Make no mistake, we are not lost.
We are just found in alternate perceptions than the common integrate

The child I lost

Tragedy instigating the misery that eviscerated a connection.
Like falling in a wrong direction, without a sense of navigation, devoid of discretion.
Evolving into a perplexing situation.

The same room became a fugue of a spiraling doom,
Silence filled the space where time could not erase, the fact that there now a literal space, loss makes tumors out of tulips, with a bottle to catch misplaced tears, just in case.

Control lost it’s cadence as it spun so wild, hollow child,
Free to dwell in light abundant, day one, reconciled.

As the weight dropped down, fell without a sound.
Tumbling upwards, held by no bound.
Arriving on Holy Ground, no death be found.

As shadows fight, grasping for cradle.
None can touch, what Hades cannot handle.

Janky Odd.

Boldly awkward, I can be.
As much of my prominence lays in the head, less so my mouth.

I’ve always been more of a writer than a talker.
I don’t talk really great, but writing I do.
The separation between the two, like a vast chasm with no bridged point.

Most of my recent moments, fraught with feeling outcast but also intuitively seeing similarities between individuals, as if being common brought sanity to all.

Commonality in high composure and astute speech.
From the outside, it’s all there, but inside, hardly think it’s anywhere at all.
You can see it in the eyes, the solemn bravado lay waste in pupils and irises.
Gazes aren’t straight, words are quick, witted and wispy.

All waiting for a turn to speak, rather than listen to the speaking.
For in that specific silence, most will meet the subjugation of innermost traumas.
Has a whole world gone mad, on insolence or veiled reasonings..
Aside from the chatter.

When a mind breaks open, to all the fragrant possibilities,
It is those who remain shut, who wield the torch and pitchfork.
Consistently spinning the same gear against the same mechanism that brought forth a hollow sound that rang in all ears.
But never stopped ringing..

Every thought I speak,
Met with dismissal or wandering murmurs..
A fish born on land, a wasp making nest in the sea.
Such a tragedy, like a ghost wafting in the air,
So I am

More

I shouldn’t have to beg for affection.

I love you but I wish you were different.

You don’t show emotion like I need from a partner.

Do you know how exhausting it is to have enough love for the both of us?

I give you my everything, but have nothing left over for myself.

You never fill my cup but yours is overflowing- wincing as I watch you lick your greedy lips; drenched in the sweetness I poured into you.

The same sweetness I will NEVER taste in return.

I’m always left with the bitter taste of the rind as you squeeze out the last of me down your insatiable throat.

When is it my turn?

When will my fucking cup runneth over?

Why can no one give me the love I fucking deserve.

” You just have to learn to love yourself”

I’m tired of being the only fucking person who does.

Two years with you; I saw fatherhood glisten in your eyes. But those are the same eyes that give me a blank stare when I say “MORE”.

Give me just a fucking morsal of love and attention.

I am so famished and starved for affection that doesn’t follow up with your hand on the back of my head.

Why can’t you just love me like you mean it?

What if I gave it back to you?

What if I treated you the way you treat me?

You would instantly know something was wrong.

“She didn’t call me handsome today. She didn’t cover my face in kisses. Why didn’t she say anything about my haircut?”

You would lose your goddamn mind.

But I can’t.

And you know I can’t.

My heart is so full with this stupid fucking love that you don’t deserve. I wish I could turn it off.

Just so you could hurt like I hurt.

And it makes me fucking sick that I can’t stop loving you.

Even when we fight, I wipe my tears just enough to see if you read my text.

My breathing is labored and I’m screaming into my pillow just thinking about you thinking about ending things.

But when I push you away ; and you hold me closer.

I can breathe.

That small moment when you think I’m really leaving this time, you hold onto me and love me and kiss me and feed me until I’m full with promises and soft whispers from your lying lips.

Only then do I feel needed.

Only then do I feel like I don’t need to beg you to love me.