no surprise, really

i am sorry for all that i’ve been

and now my business

is promoting my original thought

for someone else’s sales

my words are owned by a person

i’ve never met

much like everyone else

i am 23 with

 

it all begins from within

and here i am

too obsessed with what i’m living without

the external is made by me, not makes me

how do i access that bit?

i wanted to do, so i did,

then i stopped

too aware of the glass

i was crushing in my unsigned checks

i was comfortably shape shifting

within

but it stops

and forward procession must be marked

by an intentional call toward detachment

but that’s not to say

i can’t love you

 

just that the only one

with the power to drive me crazy

should be whatever storm

is already inside of me

everything else are inventions

and i create, with you, a reality

a shared reality

that i’ve been mistaking for my own

foreclosure

gather the pieces of me that

the people who have seen my body

still hold onto

take back the part of me they believe they still have

take these pieces and not place them back

in me

but create something

outside of me

something that belongs to no one

that exists in time and not space

a separate self

a non bodied self

now untouchable, more whole than the fragments

that previous owners believed were assets

to their portfolio

 

though I loved you

your territorialism and chest puffing

and slut shaming and gaslit desire to keep me

“safe”

and

“pure”

said more about the percentage of my body

over which you believed you were owner

than of the respect

you claimed to have for my freedom-

men with skin like yours

want to own everything,

anyway

 

take back the piece of me

even from you

from the fingers before you, to the arms after you

that still calculate

my flesh

and my hollow space

that they were privileged enough (sometimes strong enough)

to touch

as a deposit into their self worth and sociopathic ideas

of what makes them “man”

 

though I loved you

I could not see you were holding onto

the final piece that needed to be collected

so I could deny

future ownership

and allow

this new wave of mine of escaping spirit

to live within me

without territory, without registry

unkept

untouched

by anyone who believes

they still own a share

teach, ease

teach my heart

ease my soul

lean away from madness

and sit in the cool

calm

silent shame

teach my mind

ease my flesh

build a gravel road

garden

and dig, not to bury,

but to grow

to want and to be wanted in return

is a tall order

if you fake all the wanting

touch my brow

ease my tongue

corner myself at the

meeting points of

here and endless anywhere

maybe I’ll finally heal

when every last page of this book

has been filled

with the ink of perpetuating fear

two ghosts with trust issues walk into a bar

They both

In their ghastly pains

Scratch at the loose dead skins they once wore,

Share horror stories, share fables,

Some about homes

Some about wars

Some about mudslides

Some about lost belongings with name tags no longer true

They eat,

One more than the other,

The other obsessing, obsessing,

Obsessing over dried gum underneath the table

As they look through each other and check silently for blemishes

The looking becomes a search party.

The other stands suddenly,

Seemingly at attention and attentive to a far off horizon-

It seems possible,

They feel,

To reach if only the walls didn’t keep closing in

“I’m claustrophobic,” this one finally admits,

And the other, ashamed, tucks away their tunnels into empty pockets.

The hours pass and the bar closes and they wander into the street corner

Beneath an overhead lamp borrowed from an interrogation room-

A police room-

A nightmare,

Although ghosts don’t really dream, they just wander

And they trade similar recollections of pulse

But it’s just comparing scar tissue that will never be possible to feel

Or to heal-

Flat footed, but not really on the ground,

One points at the forward running street,

Asks for a sense of direction,

But with hands so obscured by plasma,

The direction isn’t a route-

It’s a shot of a cry for help in the dark-

The other stays still, floating in the flood, water rushing through to wipe away

Their delusions.

When they try to touch

They miss-

Not for a lack of trying,

Mostly for a lack of nonbeing,

As one throws a lost bone from an old broken soul.

teacher

Her feet smelled of saffron rice

and her palms, of sweet incense and thyme.

Every inch of her flesh was a tea ceremony,

a sacrament

to intention.

Within her chest she held a tenderness of living breath,

and her toes, the dust of unsettled earth.

I expanded with giving,

my soul open to light,

my breath honored, knees humble.

Between the blades of a heavy hearted back,

And the bones of a heavy handed soul,

I felt the radiance of lasting softness,

laying in stillness

as “here” swelled itself open.

Hands full of flesh and given nothing more than

the gentle ease of a currency with no value

but that which she carries on the bus

between vacancy signs and milky starlight,

I danced like one would without legs–

sideways and

entirely undone.

labor day

Captive is short for

Captivated so

Tell me more about being alone

Tell me more about feeling desperate

Tell me more about your isolated mind

And I’ll glue my body onto your destructive intellect

My eyes are framed solely on the spin room your observations violently weave

My fingers are at attention

My flesh on the front lines

You’ve got me

As much as black hole can capture cosmic explosion

You’ve got me

As much as sink hole can capture unsuspecting tender feet

You’ve got me

As much as stockholm can award prizes for most in tune with interpretations of

The Divine

Tempt me with serious questions

Then taunt me with blank face and explosive change of heart

I’ll sit still silently

Easing up on my trigger finger

Known deadly to the worst kinds of Simple

Throw me a soft ball or two

Then hold me steady and strong armed

I’ll pant at your door

Wagging a tail that’s never felt the pulse of warm blood

Until it’s felt the dis-ease of being benched.

Tell me every fear and explain every bruise

My salve is that of ripe ears

Too young to suspect malice or greed

Too jaded to appreciate the Clear

Tell me stories about ghosts and grappling with a fear of being deadly

And I’ll convince myself it’s life

Not speed

That I’m tabled by.