— Clementine von Radics (via thefagartist)
The year dwindles and glows
to December’s red jewel …
The sky blushes
and lays its cheek
on the sparkling fields.
The dusk swaddles the cattle,
simple as faith.
These nights are gifts,
our hands unwrapping the darkness
to see what we have.
— Marilyn Hacker (via itsmezc)
I’m thinking about you. What else can I say?
The palm trees on the reverse
are a delusion; so is the pink sand.
What we have are the usual
fractured coke bottles and the smell
of backed-up drains, too sweet,
like a mango on the verge
of rot, which we have also.
The air clear sweat, mosquitoes
& their tracks; birds & elusive.
Time comes in waves here, a sickness, one
day after the other rolling on;
I move up, it’s called
awake, then down into the uneasy
nights but never
forward. The roosters crow
for hours before dawn, and a prodded
child howls & howls
on the pocked road to school.
In the hold with the baggage
there are two prisoners,
their heads shaved by bayonets, & ten crates
of queasy chicks. Each spring
there’s race of cripples, from the store
to the church. This is the sort of junk
I carry with me; and a clipping
about democracy from the local paper.
Outside the window
they’re building the damn hotel,
nail by nail, someone’s
crumbling dream. A universe that includes you
can’t be all bad, but
does it? At this distance
you’re a mirage, a glossy image
fixed in the posture
of the last time I saw you.
Turn you over, there’s the place
for the address. Wish you were
here. Love comes
in waves like the ocean, a sickness which goes on
& on, a hollow cave
in the head, filling & pounding, a kicked ear.
"Postcards" by Margaret Atwood.
God, I almost forgot how phenomenal she is. Her writing bites me to the bone.(via writerofthings)
church bells are ringing.
In another place
I’m in the basement.
There’s a freezer running
and we’re headed there.
Something’s been busy shifting in my abdomen,
marbles or something softer, maybe.
This is to say,
it’s nice to be with you
even when nothing else
is that nice at all.
I have had horrible nightmares ever since. Last night
I dreamed I was shot but there were no wounds.
I kept having to convince people there were bullets
breaking up my back bone. My subconscious
is a lazy poet.
I have no right to be this tragic, to have a brain like
a broken record. It is unfair to those with reason
to suffer. The worst has already happened to me and I
have tried so hard to be whole again. To wake up every morning.
To buy groceries. To look at strange mens’ strong hands
without half wishing them dead.
I am terrified of what’s inside me. My organs are such
ugly things. They twist and rupture and fail. The good news
is we are all like this. I’m not sure this is good news.
When I say that she was the greatest,
I mean that she resembled a circus.
She was not brightly colored,
nor was she composed
of three rings, but
under a tent in the middle of
a starlit field
on a summer night,
you could see her
in just a t-shirt
and forget how unhappy
the elephants were.
— “The First Girl,” Rob MacDonald (via speioritur)
When I said I wasn’t with another girl
the January after we fell in love for the 3rd time,
it’s because it wasn’t actual sex.
In the February that began our radio silence,
it was actual sex. I hate the tight shirts
that go below your waistline.
Not only do they make you look too young,
but then your torso is a giraffe’s neck attached to tiny legs.
I screamed at myself in the subway
for writing poems about you still.
I made a scene. I think about you almost
each morning, and roughly every five days, I still
believe you’re there.
I still masturbate to you.
When we got really bad,
I would put another coat of mop water on the floor of the bar
to make sure you were asleep when I got to my side of the bed.
You are the only person to whom I’ve lied, knowing
I was telling the truth. I miss the way your neck
wraps around my face like a cave we are both lost in.
I remember when you said being with me
is like being alone with company.
My friend Sarah wrote a poem about pink ponies.
I’m scared you’re my pink pony.
Hers is dead. It is really sad. You’re not dead.
You live in Ohio, or Washington, or Wherever.
You are a shadow my body leaves on other girls.
I have a growing queue of things I know
will make you laugh and I don’t know where to put them.
I mourn like you’re dead. If you had asked me to stay,
I would not have said no.
It would never mean yes.
— "A Working List of Things I Will Never Tell You", Jon Sands (via foreveragoforemma)
like a cloth set down on something spilled.
useful but soiled. handy, but not essential.
maybe you’ll evaporate, or come apart
in the wash. maybe you’ll figure out
what binds you to this planet
is not a magnet, but a cord so fine
you can slide it across one hand, fold
your fingers around the slippery
umbilical. pull. here is sorrow.
pull. and here is bread. pull. some light
breaks across the linoleum. pull.
where do we go from here.
— Marty Mcconnell
I wake up still alive. still with this
river of grief clotted in my throat. ice wind
up the loose legs of my pants, alive. blown reflection
in the store windows, alive. January sun, slow train,
the alley home, alive. and I have no right
to be sad. I’m alive, no one
I love is dying, not any more
than usual. but there’s an angry dog
about this morning. I leave the phone
unanswered for hours, the noise piling up
in my windpipe as people’s loves
contort and resolve on the small screen. it’s
a kind of relief, the pressure of making
no sound. watching fiction unwind. but I can’t
stop looking at the shoes, the way they couple
and recouple, and it undoes me
each time. the walls are no comfort, stiff
in their salute of just going on, I want it all
to collapse. to come down on me, concrete
and steel and excuse, I want to stop.
there is wine, there are pills, there are clubs
full of bodies to grind this sorrow against
but it’s all so alive with consequence and I want
not to die, exactly, but to pause all this feeling,
this relentless feeling, the exploding bird of my heart
taking up my whole insides with its enormous
flailing wings, its vacant, breathing, catastrophic mouth."
— Marty McConnell, “the fidelity of the ingrate” (via renegadetongue)
don’t say it’s too hard, the world.
but also do not say it gets better
just because we survive it. oh,
these wings, that feel like historical corpses
strapped to our backs. let us not belittle
our suffering by saying it’s behind us.
each day a man wakes up loving a man
is a day at war. make no mistake, things
are better, somewhere. for some of us.
the woman who has her own talk show
is hilarious. and a cosmetics spokesmodel
in flat shoes. but the spread on her wedding
in People Magazine included not one kiss
between the brides. I am allowed
to be bothered by this. to look
at my love on the subway and think, if you
were in the hospital could I pass for your sister
and receive permission to spend the night
watching you breathe. beautiful boys, do not
jump off of bridges or wind ropes
around your evolutionary
throats. we are failing you
as slowly as we can.
— Strength starts the “It Gets Moderately More Tolerable” Campaign, by Marty McConnell (via steptwo)
in every band of trees. To
my blood cells, to well-ordered systems,
to my head absolutely thick
with disease. Ode to the dress I slept in
and wore the next day, to the cilantro
I planted in all the wrong weather.
Ode to the fucking cosmos. Ode to my face
against your face, to poems that want to
like us but don’t. Ode to being
the bloodless one, the neurotic one,
the one ignoring your spiritual journey.
To your clothes in my basement
covered in ink. To I wore this when
we first met., to .I want to hurt you like this
and then like this. Ode to quitting my job
to stay excited, to exposing myself
to my neighbors, to embedding so many
rocks in my chest. Ode to Tulsa.
Ode to the 900-foot Jesus, to keeping
my hands in my pockets most of the time.
To my brothers and sisters, to all my
enemies, to imagining every way
to die in every possible scenario.
Ode to crying when I can’t find my shoes,
to feeling like God will punish me for
sins I don’t believe in. Ode to taking
pictures in front of strangers’ houses.
Ode to my jacket covered in yellow.
Ode to how I wish you were built
out of wood panels. Ode to staring
out the window in the worst
of the house. Ode to your age,
to my age, to how I react improperly
when reenacting your fate. Ode to
so few phenomenons. Ode to
absolving myself of everything.
To singing what I’m doing, to arguing
what counts as “artifact” and “alive.”
Ode to my wandering pacemaker.
Ode to my big fat heart. Ode to
pretending I’ve never been where
I used to live. Ode to hoping you’re
a goner. Ode to grieving nothing
each time a villain is born."