You don’t know me.
My eyes are bloody
most of the time,
and breathing is like
knives in my chest.
I don’t know you, either.
Your smile is a fiction
I pretend to enjoy,
but your voice sparks
traffic jams and ambulances.
What are you like,
in your truest shape,
your raw, hungry from?
What an awkward dance,
neither of us particularly
gifted in movement, more
suited to staring into space.
The Best Poems
I have nothing to say.
Those are the best poems,
someone a grave over from
me mumbles, his voice
catching with dirt and worms.
There’s a camera in my soul,
you told me over Chinese and
too many bottles of wine.
It records the bad things I do,
and God will watch the film when I die.
What about the good things?
I asked, more concerned about
the leftovers than your immortal soul.
You smiled and touched my cheek.
Sweet boy, you said softly.
Later, we stumbled into bed
and told jokes in the dark until
you fell asleep, breathing deep
and slow, like the rhythm of a dark
ocean I knew one day would drown me.
I should use this as my writer’s bio.
I’m scared of leaves on Sunday,
and egg whites chastise me often.
There is exotic fruit in my backyard,
which is an unknown planet.
I made of video of my time
in the womb, but it did not go viral.
My core body temperature
is hotter than your wife.
I can’t understand colors,
so I call everything I see black.
Still on a writing break (for the most part) but the opening lines to this short poem kept running through my mind, so I sat down for a moment to see what would come of it.
You want to breathe new
life into your past, rewrite
the flash fiction of your youth
into something longer and deeper.
It doesn’t work that way, I tell you
and you smile like Cleopatra
before Marc Antony, before
she thought the only way out
was to hold an asp to her breast.
I remember making this sitting on my laptop while my oldest son did taekwando practice. I’m not sure what sparked the idea; perhaps it was me reflecting on the one PTA meeting I attended, which was I went to one, which was awkward and incredibly boring.
I can’t insert a bigger picture, so if you can’t see it well, I’m afraid you’ll have to zoom in.