New Old Friends

You said I looked happier
and I thought you looked more genuine like
the friend I had originally befriended
before we went for a walk

And oh how we talked

I chattered excitedly, partly
hopped up from caffeine
it felt like hours passed

and I could hardly keep up with my words and for once I didn’t care because we were talking like we had talked from the start but everything was new again and it was like I was making a brand new bestfriend all over again

I rode back to my car
in your car, bringing out
the bone dust in our pockets
that we decided to sprinkle
out the window

And as I left your car
after our awkward car hug
the clouds began to sniffle
before erupting into weeping
leaving me to get into my car
thinking that the gods
that may or may not exist
sure have a flair for the cinematic

I drove home with the music off
tears in my eyes because of how much
I missed my old friend and how good
it was to see you and know how close
we still are despite the growing pains

I arrived home, excitedly tired
before letting you know I was home safe

And I smiled as I read
the last text sent by you that night:
“See you soon, my friend.”

Voices

That nagging voice is back again
telling me to pluck my brainstem
like a freshly picked dandelion

It’s been a few days, maybe weeks of it —
I can’t really tell, it always starts quiet
more like a polite suggestion
than the boorish demands made later

I’m exhausted from it, eyes blurry
as the voice presses my occipital lobe
threatening cortical blindness

Sunny days dwindle to dreary dark
to the point where I don’t know
where I am or where I’ve been

There’s no desire for a permanent solution
to a temporary problem, but man
am I sick of this all

I’d sleep more
if not for the nagging voice
keeping me up at night

But I will not give up my light
until it’s meant to go out
years from now when the wick
is old, tired, and full of stories

I will not give in to its pleas or trickery
of “peaceful” premature sleep that leaves
behind loved ones and unfinished business

To that nagging voice’s demands:
I refuse
I refuse
I refuse

blues

I woke to soft shades of blue in my soul
little infants of feelings I couldn’t describe
watching as they grew up right before my eyes
from toddling toddlers to angsty adolescence
filling my adult body

I ran to the Lion’s Den
exploring its trails for hours
before sitting down for lunch
and being forced to let them sit with me

Traveling home
all I wanted was indefinite sleep
no desire to die, but no will to live

But as the sun sets, so to do the blues
bored with tormenting me for today



Acrophobia

As I watch a black bird
fly to the top of a tree
I can’t help but wonder:
can birds be afraid of heights?

If so, do they get teased,
given nicknames like “kiwi”
and always being hit with seeds
from other bird bullies in high up trees?

What’s real estate like for them?
Do they have to pass up penthouses
for not so bougie bungalows
in the marshes with frogs and mosquitoes
as their not-so-conventional neighbors?

Are family gatherings a nightmare
spent trying to hold it together
hundreds of feet on a small tree branch
as in-laws talk about their new pet flea?

And do they even want to overcome their fear,
or have they become content with their life
preferring to live outside of the nestbox
close to ground?

I mull through this and the bird squawks
as it soars away to its next stop
reminding me to quit overthinking
and walk home

Nature

cattails cut through ice
in a half-frozen marsh
hidden from the wind

the sun warms my face
as birds lay down beats
for nature’s latest
lo-fi hip hop track

it’s been a quiet winter
as Nature worked in secrecy
no tweets announcing its drop
until it’s released midday
to no fanfare

it’s simply simple simplicity sounds
like their very first album complete
with that signatory Natural hook
of rumbling animal sounds

it’s nothing new, that’s for sure
but you know me;
I’m a sucker for
simple sweets

On Breaking Hearts

As I sit here, questioning my M.O.
I add another heart, broken
I think “How can I change this reckless soul?”
staring at this container, left open

I add another heart, broken
losing track of my count
staring at this container, left open
how could it get to this amount?

Losing track of my count
the pain I’ve caused that can’t be undone
how could I get to this amount
I never meant to hurt anyone

The pain I’ve caused that can’t be undone
why does this keep happening?
I never meant to hurt anyone
to start this cycle, unending

Why does this keep happening?
Am I just a shitty person?
Can I stop this cycle, unending?
or will my past be too great a burden?

But I’m not a shitty person
I’ve just hid from past hardships
but I’ll no longer be a burden
I’ll rip off these old bandages

I’ve just hid from past hardships
of an armed robbery and loving abuser
it’s time to rip off these old bandages
and finally heal this wound with sutures

Of an armed robbery and loving abuser
I will confront and conquer
and finally heal this wound with sutures
turning from victim to victor

I will confront and conquer
and change this reckless soul
I’ll turn myself from victim to victor
and slowly change my M.O.

Loneliness

As I stand in my room,
watching a pool of loneliness
drift through my blinds
like poison gas,
I think:

Researchers say
the perception
of loneliness can kill;
it’s like smoking
fifteen cigarettes a day

I think how rude it can be
sneaking through quiet pleasantness
like the sound of neighbors talking
in thinly-walled apartment complexes

Turning solitude
into solitary confinement,
introspection to isolation,
wonder to withdrawal,
self-loving to self-loathing.

I feel it envelope me
with cold hands
of an abusive lover

It lies to me, saying
I need no one else
before throwing me
onto a poorly-made bed
filled with salt and ice

And as I lie here,
numbness spreading,
I think how

I’ll share my stories,
my fears and worries,
my strange peculiarities,
my unique idiosyncrasies,

And end the cycle
of false loneliness

Planes

Walking back home
on a cold winter’s night
I look up at the sky
as a lone plane blinks by

I become a kid again
in my parent’s front yard
watching that jet soar by
beating the speed of sound

I look down to a yard
filled with flickering fireflies
casting a beautiful cascade
of light over fallen leaves

I listen to the crackling wood
as the final flecks of fire
flick off the bonfire
before my parents call me in
for the end of a perfect fall night

I hear a crunch of snow
crinkling like lettuce leaves
crispy under my feet
I’m brought back to the present

my head snaps down
to the road to my apartment
a path lit by dim street lamps
highlighting the occasional
broken booze bottles in gutters

I hear the whoosh of cars
on this street with no sidewalk,
wind whipping through my hair

And I look up one more time
at that night sky, now empty
waiting for the next plane to fly