Falling

You will never be let down by anyone
more than you will be let down
by the one you love most in the world
it’s how gravity works
it’s why they call it “falling”
it’s why the truth is harder to tell
every year you have more to lose
but you can choose to bury your past
in the garden by the tulips
water it until it’s so alive
it lets go
and you belong to yourself
again

When you belong to yourself again
Remember forgiveness
is not a tidy grave
It is a ready loyal knight kneeling before your royal heart

Call in your royal heart
Tell it bravery cannot be measured by a lack of fear
It takes guts to tremble
It takes so much tremble to love
Every first date is a fucking earthquake

Sweetheart, on our first date
I showed off all my therapy
I flaunted the couch
Where I finally sweat out my history
I pulled out the photo album from the last time I wore a lie to the school dance
I smiled and said “that was never my style
Look how fixed I am
Look how there’s no more drywall on my fist
Look at the stilts I’ve carved for my short temper
Look how my wrist is not something I have to hide” I said
Well I was hiding it

The telephone pole still down from the storm
By our third date I had fixed the line
I said listen
I have a hard time
I mean I cry as often as most people pee and I don’t shut the door behind me
I’ll be up in your face screaming “SEATTLE IS TOO RAINY SEATTLE IS TOO RAINY
IM NEVER GOING TO BE ABLE TO LIVE HERE.”
I sobbed
on our fourth date

I can’t live here
In my body, I mean
I can’t live in my body all the time it feels too much
So if I ever feel far away know I am not gone
I am just underneath my grief
Adjusting the dial on my radio faith so I can take this life with all of it’s love and all of it’s loss

See I already know that you are the place where I am finally going to sing without any static meaning
I’m never gonna wait
that extra twenty minutes
to text you back
and I’m never gonna play
hard to get
when I know your life
has been hard enough already
When we all know everyone’s life
has been hard enough already

it’s hard to watch
the game we make of love,
like everyone’s playing checkers
with their scars,
saying checkmate
whenever they get out
without a broken heart.

Just to be clear
I don’t want to get out
without a broken heart.
I intend to leave this life
so shattered
there better be a thousand separate heavens
for all of my separate parts
And none of those parts are going to be wearing the romance from the overpriced vintage rack
That is to say I am not going to get a single speed bike if I can’t make it up the hill
I know exactly how many gears I’m going to need to love you well
And none of them look hip at the coffee shop
They all have God saying “good job you’re finally not full of bullshit”
You finally met someone who’s going to flatten your knee caps into skipping stones

Baby, throw me
Throw me as far as I can go
I don’t want to leave this life without ever having come home
And I want to come home to you
I can figure out the rain.
Andrea Gibson, Royal Heart

The Hottest Night of Summer

And then one student said that happiness is what happens when you go to bed on the hottest night of the summer, a night so hot you can’t even wear a tee-shirt and you sleep on top of the sheets instead of under them, although try to sleep is probably more accurate. And then at some point late, late, late at night, say just a bit before dawn, the heat finally breaks and the night turns into cool and when you briefly wake up, you notice that you’re almost chilly, and in your groggy, half-consciousness, you reach over and pull the sheet around you and just that flimsy sheet makes it warm enough and you drift back off into a deep sleep. And it’s that reaching, that gesture, that reflex that we have to pull what’s warm – whether it’s something or someone – toward us, that feeling we get when we do that, that feeling of being sad in the world but ready for sleep, that’s happiness. – Paul Schmidtberger

The Suicide Dress

“This is my suicide dress,”

she told him
“I only wear it on days
when I’m afraid
I might kill myself
if I don’t wear it”

“you’ve been wearing it
every day since we met”
he said

“and these are my arson gloves”

“so you don’t set fire to something?”
he asked

“exactly”

“…and this is my terrorism lipstick
my assault  battery eyeliner
my armed robbery boots”

“I’d like to undress you” he said
“but would that make me an accomplice?”

“and today,” she said “I’m wearing
my infidelity underwear
so don’t get any ideas”

so she put on her nervous breakdown hat
and walked out the door.
– Denver Butson

Divided Dreams and Forked Thoughts

Driving the speed boat on a winter noon,

the wind messing through my hair

Almost as playful as your fingers.

So easy to lose control, of the boat, of course; and my head around you.

The sunlight dimmed by my glasses just like my wits by your charm.

You were the moon, I was the sun.

The days brought memories and the nights? Ghosts of our past.

Sadness is a good incinerator.

 But it isn’t really you, I guess. It’s probably me.

Divided dreams. Forked thoughts. Parallel ideas that never meet.

I only hold on to let go.

A moment I celebrate you, in the other be disgusted.

At one instant I think of forever and in the other I want you to leave.

So easy to see, know but so difficult to feel.

I guess you’re at fault, too.

You’ve changed me in ways I cannot handle.

I do not like the things I end up doing for you.

I am not ready but I am willing. Maybe?

On divided dreams, forked thoughts and parallel ideas you reign.

You were the moon and I? The sun.

For you to shine, I had to burn.

-s/m/

FALL FROM THE ETHEREAL

Here’s to all the times we’ve done things we can’t be proud of.

To all the times we’ve fallen from grace and landed with misdemeanor. Here’s to your dark side and to what you are underneath.

Here’s to the ones who think there’s nothing more enlightening than misadventures.

Here’s to embracing what people won’t. To have the courage to be something people cannot accept and to believe in radical things.
Fight. Fight for what you believe in and be absolutely ruthless in your conquests..

 If you find a way to revel in your misery, you’ll eventually see its true beauty.

And lastly, here’s to weaving your emotions with literature.

The pen is not my instrument. I am its.
-s/m/

THE HAUNTING

I feel the blood rushing out

From invisible wounds.

I see things, in a blur, a rush, dazed, uncollected.

Cold water rushing though my hair.

So bright I can’t see. Am I awake?

I feel your hands, running along my back.

My hands grasping my dry hair. What is happening?

Is this another haunting?

I hear you whisper into my ears,

Something that once could set me ablaze.

I reach for your lips and the brightness dims,

I see you, it’s raining, or is it the shower?

Too near to sense, too far to feel.

The water’s getting warmer but my arms are cold.

I can feel you on me but I can’t perceive your skin.

The veins in my head are bursting.

Am I drunk? Or was it the bottle of sleeping pills?

You’re something I made you become.

The phantom scars of your words and how your touch heals them; is tormenting?

Everything is abstract, or the opposite of it. I see but I don’t feel.

Where are you?

     Passing through the house, looking for clues

To where you might be, I can’t sense the cold walls but I feel the cotton sheets.

I am being haunted. By the ghosts of my memories.

They need to wake so I need to sleep.

The only way you’re here is in my dreams.

-s/m/