more than

December 14, 2016 1 comment

This is to say
I want to write you a lullaby
for the bruises
on your heart.

I want to remind you
that they’re proof
of the body’s defiance,
a mosaic of the night sky,
the sun,
a thousand secrets.

I want to explain
that survival is like this:
a scald of coffee,
a glove left behind,
an unanswered kiss—
you learn to live
a tasteless life,
no salted skin
or apples,
sweet only in its
the way want curls in,
learning to comfort itself.

But darling,
you are more than
measured bones,
more than the sanctity of reflex,
more than someone’s
safe choice—
your heart
is not a habit
someone else
can tame.

This is to say
that I have known impossible magic,
thrown open the windows,
called spring
by its first name,
made promises
with my hands—
this is to say,
it’s wonderful
to get what you want.

Categories: poem, Poetry, Uncategorized

all that is wild

December 7, 2016 Leave a comment

Give me imperfection—
the distance between hips,
the grief of your body,
the way want uncoils
like spring, endlessly
green, always reaching.

Hold your tongue
it is put to good use.

Unfold this map
with greedy fingers,
then, get lost.

Recite a spell
written on skin,
but use no words.

Give me
a prayer-song
that no church would allow,
the catch of teeth on a promise,
all that is wild
and bone, a fogged window,
the greed of a too-full heart,
the click of a belt
beg the stars
from my bones
and I will give you
the night.

Categories: poem, poems, Uncategorized


November 19, 2016 Leave a comment

The stitch of mouths,
the binding of hands,
the fire, the pyre,
the frenzy—
history hangs
in the balance,
tucked between teeth,
a bite,
a smile,
a coward—
he asks you to come closer,
he asks you to trust,
he demands
your silence,
and make no mistake:
a wolf
can easily hide itself
among other wolves,
but it takes a monster
to stand in the center
and call the mirror a liar,
to deny the twist
of his own myth,
to burn Rome down
and call it justice.

There’s nothing in this room
that hasn’t happened
before—but that doesn’t mean
honest hands should give Nero
his fiddle, or that solid souls
should offer
Circe her poison—
once the seal is broken,
you do not accept it,
you do not condone it,
you do not make it pretty,
and you do not look away.

has a thousand heads,
and your heart is a sword:
use it wisely. The wolf is waiting—
be the stones
in its stomach.

Categories: poem, poems, Poetry, Uncategorized

these bones are marked

November 12, 2016 Leave a comment

You speak to me of secrets,
but the storm is right there,
I can point to it
with my whole hand,
feel it with my whole heart,
the darkness
that refuses to see itself
in any mirror, refuses
to acknowledge the mirror
exists, turns its back
with a smash, kindness
in the wake of a scream.

Wait and listen, then—
someone will call for your silence,
someone will ask you to calm down,
someone will tell you to buck up,
someone will demand your acceptance,
someone will remark that it will be okay,
but I want to know:
how loud is your kindness?
how furious is your compassion?
how strong is your courage?
how weak is your apathy?
and how wide are your eyes open?

This world, right now,
offers us a new gravity,
its weight is heavier
than it was a moment ago,
full of fire
that can do two things:
ravage or warm,
and we must be mindful
of the spark,
the way it catches easily
on what’s been leeched
and blanched
beyond all human recognition,
these bones
are marked by a living ghost,
a thick howling creature
with a gentleman’s smile.
Do not tell me to look the other way
in the presence
of a monster. Do not ask
that I turn the other cheek.

Do not think I will sit
and stay small
when a mouth
becomes a noose,
a knife,
a burning cross,
a gleeful hate.

Remember, remember
this: in a world of burning things,
we should strive
to be water,
but do not forget
that water also drowns.

Categories: poem, poems, Poetry, Uncategorized


November 7, 2016 Leave a comment

Don’t call it what it is,
don’t examine it too closely—
the way want arrives
without ceremony
or warning, there’s no
howl, just the flick
of fingers, a feeling
that spreads like sunset,
all color
and no shame,
an unexpected patchwork
that reads like a miracle,
and yet not—
an echo,
an unwasted spark,
a hurricane
of body and bone.

There’s always more
than one way to strike
a match, to give thanks,
to unravel
the astonishment
of desire—
but a crooked heart
always leans in one direction,
and you are a splendid
magic, a fully satisfied
smoky secret,
pushed beyond warning
into bonfire,
and this
is a steady invitation,
and imperfect,
a crack of fire
undeterred by the rain.

In the end, a mouth
can be a safehouse,
the curve of a hip
a happy mistake,
the way it feels
to laugh into a kiss
without breaking—
no self-defense,
only freedom.

Now, examine it closer,
take a naked look
at this sweet circus,
the harbor of a red mouth,
all salted skin
and rough promise—
there’s a story
deep inside, a name
in a gasp,
come, find what’s waiting
in the dark.

Categories: poem, poems, Poetry, Uncategorized

a place of depth

October 10, 2016 Leave a comment

Maybe this is more honest
than the last ocean,
all salt and song,
dedicated to the current
of everything that’s wrong,
pulling darkness
out of marrow
until something breaks,
a snap, mouth
mistaking sorrow for air,
leaving every shore
again and again,
beneath the sure weight
of an endless want.

Break a dish,
cross a street,
kiss—there are always
overripe and sweet,
laughter that spins
like an earthquake,
but you don’t realize
what’s collapsing
until it’s too late.

Throw a name at the sky
and see if it takes flight,
more bird than bone,
the way the wind unhinges
itself, reveling in its own freedom,
the simple way
it finds and loses
its footing, never settling,
always on the rise.

All hearts
are a place of depth,
a darkness
in which we willingly
drown. Ask what’s more
air or love?
The ocean
knows all your secrets,
and even on its worst day,
will sing them
word by word
back to you.

Categories: Uncategorized

Whatever You Do, Don’t

September 22, 2016 Leave a comment

Your hands are full of darkness,
a cruel want, a kiss,
someone else’s apple,
the clean crunch
of a heart under a heel,
a name
like an apology
that pivots
as a bullet hole,
through and through,
all exit wound,
all exit.

Look down
at the reckless perfection
of your fingers:
call up the memory
of skin on skin,
slipping from one hunger
to another, never
calling it what it is—
whatever you do,
don’t look in the mirror,
don’t dig up forgiveness
by the roots,
don’t believe the rumors,
never mind that you
started them yourself.

You are someone’s reason for living.
You are someone’s reason for leaving.
You are a body, a shot glass,
a fit of tequila, slow burn,
a prayer candle
in a church that’s burning down—
now, what?

Sooner or later, your heart
will burst for the wrong reasons,
a reminder
that all love is a flood,
that sorrow
is textured like a bruise,
that doubt lingers
like a broken wishbone—
what if what if what if?

This story is always yours,
always someone else’s—
beginning with a name
no one says aloud.

Categories: Uncategorized