superfluous sincerity

My heart drowns in its own superfluous sincerity.

stars & wrinkles

I.
The back of my neck
is striated with creases
of wrinkles deep;
formed from
all the times
I tipped my head
back to align
my irises with
the celestial tarp
of night’s comforter,
pulled up tight
over the trees’
sleepy-eyed leaves.

Those star beams
hold me there,
like puppet strings.

II.
Count these rings
and you will find
the age of my awe-
how many years
I’ve made this skin
truly alive by embalming
it in the thick sheen
of star-capped
wonder.

Shame does not
gather like dust
on the shelves
of my crinkles;
but instead
they offer their soft
spines up as stairs
to the places
I’ve climbed to;

to peaks I’ve reached
and wanted to press
their points into wax
paper, like a rookie
cartographer,
so I could remember
the recipe of steps
needed to return.

III.
“Old” is a close-minded
adjective en-shackled
in negative connotation;
I’m going to jailbreak
at midnight
it in silken black gloves
and paint wrinkles
on the billboards
all across the sleeping towns.

IV.
When the people wake,
their hungry eyes will long
for the chilled kiss
of the telescope’s lens
and not the mirror’s hard stare.

The stars will fold the wrinkles
neatly, skin handed over skin,
and a soundless wisdom
will grow green
in the garden
of their minds;
until the stars
look down from aloft
with envy
at the humans
new-grown
brilliance.

anchors

Help me shuck
these anchors
from my insides;
I can feel their
thick congealment
circumnavigate
my lungs, replacing
alveoli with barnacles
that choke with
rusty knuckles
and statuesque
apathy.

I bleed
in blots of S.O.S.;
come fish me out
of this quick sand
panic before I sink
beyond the depths
of grasp; these threads
of what’s left of light
can’t hold me
for much longer.

Darkness
has swallowed
and the digestion
is biting at my heels,
licking layers of skin
away. The crayfish
chuckle softly
at my murky demise
and the sea vultures
begin to circle overhead.

The water asserts
its saltiness
harshly,
jabbing its flag
of claim down
into the meat
of my tongue.
Breathing is
a myth I only
vaguely recall.
Drowning
fills my now.

labile love

A labile love
shan’t be leashed,
not by gripping leather
or crown of lavender,
not by braided velvet
or golden fleece.

This labile love
cannot be tethered
by trembling hands
or the pinpricks
of thumbtacks holding
it against the alphabet
of “here” printed bold
on the boundless map.

There is no lease
contractible on its confines.
Always, a labile love
must be liberated-
let loose on the open road,
unlatched from anchors
enlaced in its lively legs.

His labile love
is journey-bound;
he packs it neatly,
folded without creases,
in a navy blue suitcase
with his other delicates.
The zipper can barely
hold it inside without
bursting.

Bravely, I will blow
hot air under his fledgling
wings and hold my breath
until he’s out of sight;
then I can mourn
the acute absence
of my labile love
in long sighs and sobs
and hands grasping at
empty space.

To the boomerang gods
I will pray, that he will
come back around again
and show me that “labile”
isn’t bound to the denotation
of lessening- but in itself
can be adapted and develop
a courageous connotation
of growing instead.

With palms pressed together,
I pray that the crucible
of change will reap a garden
and not a graveyard
from the seed of our
labile little love.

Reasons why I find the female-genital nickname “hatchet wound” offensive (even if it is referred to in a joking context)

  • Female genital mutilation actually occurs in some horrifying contexts of sexist abuse; the mutilators aim to remove any parts that may potentially bring pleasure to the woman and bring about an inestimable amount of pain while doing so. 
  • 1 in 3 American women will be raped, according to statistics. Thus, you never know when a survivor is around and you could instigate PTSD or other excruciating memories with this insensitivity.
  • Domestic abuse is something real that affects the lives of some women every day; their struggle shouldn’t be mocked.
  • True, sometimes having to endure bleeding for a week sucks; but just because we get our periods does not mean we are wounded or defective. It’s part of our biology; it is a means of creating life.
  • It implies that all women were wounded somehow and that this is just a natural part of life (since every woman has a vagina). It also implies that someone gave them this wound- and thus they are victims.
  • To me, if a hatched was going to be categorized as being gendered- it would be a male tool since men are supposed to be aggressive and strong and the yeilders of weaponry- thus there might be said to be implications of men being the ones who create the wounds.
  • If we consider the hatchet as a phallic symbol, then this construction insinuates that sex should be painful and women have to endure this pain.
  • But in actuality, as Betty White said, our vaginas are significantly more durable than men’s genitalia; so jokes like these don’t even make sense. 
  • It’s insensitive towards anyone who is going through surgery to change their gender. 
  • It’s unimaginative and just plain rude. 
  • You have no right to name my body parts.
  • Just because you don’t understand why it’s offensive or you didn’t mean it that way doesn’t mean it’s not offensive.

iamananggryyoungman said: Your poems have this wonderful sound quality to them- alliteration, etc.- and I like to read them aloud. Beautiful imagery. Thank you for that.

I honestly can’t explain to you how meaningful this message is to me; the idea that anyone would take the time and use their breath to read my poem aloud absolutely blows my mind in the best possible way. Thank you infinitely. You are so wonderful and I am so fortunate to have crossed your virtual path in even this tiny way. I appreciate your immense kindness; and I appreciate the person you are to have read my poems and writing this benevolent compliment. May your day be infused with all the positive feelings I have now. 

post-funeral

Refusing my role
of endangered elephant
in a room full of concerned
-looking conservationists,
choking back their research
on my impending extinction,
I jailbreak custom.

My fleeing feet
slip shadowless through the sea
of still, obsidian satin,
too dark to see through,
and unbreathing cotton
to cross the threshold
in his not-yet-emptied closet.

Things are stiller there.
Swimming head sandwiched
tight between double-breasted
suits perfumed in thick
assertive Lagavulin,
I can almost smell his
heart on the sleeves;
but the drum of the beat
is eerily absent; as if
erased.

Instead, grief knocks in code.
I send my earlobes
under the door’s slit
in clean white envelopes,
tongue tied shut.
The inscription on the front
reads, in mascara inkblots,
“I can’t hear you”.

With fishing-pole-fingers,
I am a pickpocket,
the lines of my skin
passing over the wrinkles
of his pockets and flinching
at the chill exhaled by forgotten
pennies, all tail side up.

In his shoes,
there are film canisters
and Snapdragon seed pods-
he eclectically collected shells
of things that gave birth.
Mama’s maternity clothes
made his favorite quilt.

The satin of his hanging
ties brush against my cheeks
as I sway, like weeping willow
branches reaching down
to commiserate; like snakes
gone soft in the night.

There are bags of seeds tucked
inside miscellaneous socks.
We planted these through
chinks in winter’s armor
and had a garden in January
because he knew the words
to whisper to the dirt
to make it want to be alive again.

Hungry for heirlooms,
ready to reify his now-ghost
love into something hold-able,
a bible of made up of his
strong yet feathered breaths
and all his candied smiles,
my hands tremble at the
emptiness.

Mad Girl's Love Song

observando:

I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead;
I lift my lids and all is born again.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)

The stars go waltzing out in blue and red,
And arbitrary blackness gallops in:
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.

I dreamed that you bewitched me into bed
And sung…

Kris Knight's Secrets Are Things We Grow is the most beautiful series of portraits I’ve seen in the longest time. 


Selected by mariana

(Source: cross-connect, via poemsofthequiet)