it weeps beneath its
blankets like a dog
gone to its cage it
bleeds with fears with
stone regrets and is
soured now by rage
it weeps beneath its
coin eyes coin
spills from out its
spout the taste of
copper floods its mouth
it strung its veins from
street lights like banners for
its bruises child whimpering beneath
its amber shelter knees
breathing on its collarbones and
woman shadow of a distant present lying
bare and gutted on the banks of a
I sleep with sadness because sadness stays. It moves my heart to beat and coaxes breath from out my lips. It kisses me just to wake me, and it offers a comfort no one else will know. I can feel its lips and its skin and I sometimes hear its voice, but it’s quiet in reverence of the dead. I am dead, and the embrace I share with sadness stands forever. There’s no surrender to admit when I confess my existence of surrender. Our pulses have always collided, and our veins have always run as one.
it rests its head on
hot cement and
wonders what the
teachers meant ”can’t
you take the rocks we
throw” “can’t you
build a fort” it bled
too much wet red
cement wet red
cement its breathing
fell too short
I’ve posted four cameras for sale and took a few photographs this morning. The light had already begun flattening by then, so I don’t think I took any good ones.
Almost on cue after telling everyone I’d been doing better, I went upstairs and wept more wounds into my skin. I had a hurricane of thoughts, of plans, and then it all went dead. I don’t remember much. But I think someone’s sharing my skull.
How different do you think New York would’ve been if it had stayed New Amsterdam? The Dutch named it New Orange at some point while warring with the English. I’ve read about the areligious theme of New Amsterdam, the fact that settlement was more for gold than for a god. I think I would’ve liked to know the Dutch back then. It’s the main reason I’m so fascinated with pirates, you know: Creed didn’t control them.
I’m so tired. I’m always so tired. I think the world of behavioral health only minds my fatigue if it’s too restricting to be “productive.” Productivity productivity productivity. Never mind that my skull is crackling with dynamite. The wick has still a few days before it runs out! and as long as I can slit my throat repeatedly with language, the rotted bone and brains are very much worth losing. Oh, but I have to submit for publication, since otherwise, “writing is unhealthy.”
So is staying alive ha.
I’ve heard things like “New York City is so mean!” “Everyone’s rude and obnoxious!” and then I consider how many people ran to my mother when she fell that winter and how three went immediately to help her up. How five of them were doctors who helped us through it and how one gave life-saving advice. I remember that one rode in the cab with us to the hospital and how it had been below freezing this whole time and snowing very hard. Maybe it’s a miracle, their kindness. I’ve heard about the woman who was butchered in front of seventeen or something people and nobody called the cops. That was in the ’70s, so maybe it’s changed. But maybe it hasn’t.
But I’ve found more obnoxious passerby in California and in the southeast. From the few times I’ve gone to New York, I’ve noticed people are private. I don’t think it’s arrogance. I think it’s a way to keep the City’s rhythm going.
Lone experiences don’t redeem an amassed reputation, but when we live there, we will be kind. If someone falls, we will ask them if they are okay. We’ll keep to ourselves when we want to and keep away when we need to, but I know New York can’t harden me further. I’ll take walks for leisure during cold evenings and listen closely for shuffles and thuds.
Daffodils are poisonous to cats, so that’s another reason to have a dog. I’m scared they’ll bark too loudly and someone will show up with a New York Yankees baseball bat. I don’t want to have to get a gun, but we can always buy a cast-iron frying pan.
Would you be okay with adopting an older dog? We will save their life by taking them home and feeding it Natural Choice and hand-knitting it sweaters. You’ll come home to see us watching films together, and you’ll wonder how I could’ve ever not liked dogs.
I don’t think there’s a day where I’m not tired. My productivity seems to suspend from a hypomanic tightrope right now, but the rest of me is in a pit with open arms. It waits for one misstep, and all my parts will hide and sleep and cry for a while. However, right now, I am creating. I am producing. I am doing.
I don’t have much to write right now, but I want you to know I’m thinking of you, and I love you very much.
i watched its body scrape
the sea i think they
smell its blood on me it
hanged itself with knots
tied wide so i was there
when sparrow died
wicker ghostling re
names into the ce
llar’s silent skin
their elderberry plants
eat the seeds they
said eat the seeds
wrapped in twine and
at the stake the ghostling
counts the matches
(what do fatal fires take) seven
counts the matches
it has starlight in its mouth but
if it talks the stars fall out a spout
of fire burns it skin so foreign
tongues it feels in
i burned out the corpse i’m
living in because i read too
many books that told me
gravity does not exist and i
gave scalpels to the wasps and
i am an unpaved road of
rainstorms a stretch of salty
sea of seas gravity brought
i sit and count my poisons every
day because blessings are
incentives to keep rowing and
are very tired.
Sometimes, when I’m still enough to hear it, I hear changes in the universal rhythm. I hear the demolition of old buildings and the applause at small theaters. I hear flies on murder victims and the closing of high school textbooks. All this noise, all individual, wholly mistake-ridden, spotted and varied maintains somehow a rhythm I can feel. I don’t know music, so I can’t offer written beats, but I know and feel the measures overheating, and I wind up weeping with broccoli against my neck.
My letters to you are a sort of diary, I think I’ve mentioned. Love letters and journal pages, drawn in wrinkled leaves and heartbeats too heavy to pen. It might be easier to understand years from now, but please know these two sides of me, (dialogue and universal experience), have never truly met before in words. I don’t know if that’s pertinent to mention, but it feels of some consequence.
I’m sitting in the car beneath shy sunlight and am feeling a heavy death in my core. My legs ache again, and I haven’t looked in the mirror for over a week now, I think. I’ve stopped counting.
tracks for farmers walls of grain the
harvest starts with country rains heated
steps the fire burns maps unfold and
gate keys turn leaping in the
fields below it’s culled before the crops
it tried to carve its weight of failure from
off its stretching skin and in the midnight
of this storm it cried and cried and cries the
glass cuts shallow just deep enough to keep and
the mirror, rotted teeth and sallow, cheapens in
it tries to carve the weight of
failure but carves mistakes instead a scarred-
through corpse dead and buried the corpse has
lost its head
They want things to look unreal. A bookcase in the right light is still too real to be anything but ugly. They’ll starve it of its colors or force feed it contrast and make the sunlight a Barbie pink. People twist what it is, because it’s real. I’ve heard before to accept artistic differences, but there’s no artistry in bowing to a common complex. I will take my bookcase dusty or clean, but if it doesn’t have depth, it’s not art.
I know I’ve written to you twice today, but I’ll count this as second, since the first one was finished at 00:30. I’ve written a lot today although lamentably have written nothing on that story. I’ve written many poems about corpses and my usual death, decay, etc etc etc. I think my mind would be a frightening cage to be inside of. I’m glad I’m out of it sometimes. Ha. Ha.
I was going to watch Close Encounters of the Third Kind today but decided I should write instead. I think my productivity in writing freeform-attempting rhymes has been goaded by the lack of productivity elsewhere (read: story). Keeping busy though has helped me to
red velveteen red halls it
echoes red against the
walls the red death
grins in red wove cloth the
red, red fire and redder
yet and redder yet, the moth
I’ve always had a gift for rhyme. I remember poems I have written by their melody and nothing else. I’ve said before I can taste, feel, and smell language, and it’s true, but composition is my strong suit, I think. I’m not claiming a quality to my writing but I can’t protest my method.
May I take you to the Nuyorican Cafe someday? Maybe we could make it into a routine to go, and maybe someday I can perform there, too. No. No, I don’t really want to perform anymore. My writing is rarely ever performance, and when it is, I feel like I’m warranting frustrations. I can’t talk to people. I can’t write to people. I can’t even really write at people, so I don’t think doing either is what I want to do. When I write what I write now, I consider no audience and freely discuss corpses and mention “blood” as many times as I see fit. Because death and decay and tragedy and suffocation are beautiful, and I can tell you that is not public opinion.
I want to take you to a traveling show someday, something carnivalesque. Or maybe not. I think we both agreed at some point that carnivals were unpleasant. Or was that circuses? I think you should clarify on this,
I get lonely from here, I think, watching the world stir around me like leaves in an autumn wind. We’re beings of decay, I know, rotting in the fibers of time and memory, but I’m so far from the others. I want to stay away most of the time, but there are fragments of feeling still in which I ache for a hand to touch. They’re few, but when I catch their scent, I begin to cry. If everyone took a thread from me, have I unraveled so much I’ll beg them back? If I close my eyes really hard and sit still and quiet, I can hear words in the mind-static that tell me I’m not alone enough. Just partially alone and I want to be fully alone, but to be alone not because I must be but because I can be. People have poisoned me. Crowds have poisoned me. And I am very, very sick.
Do you get lonely? I guess everybody does. You’ve told me you’ve been lonely before, I remember now. Do you think that I will be enough for you? that when you get sad, you’ll be able to find comfort in me? My mother sometimes reads Beatrix Potter to me. I’ll do that for you, too. We’ll go to a videostore on rainy days and rent films we can cry our troubles out to. We can paint our nails, or you can paint our nails, since I’m very, very bad at nail-painting. I think when I get sad, things will be harder, and I’m sorry. I don’t want to subject you to the sounds of me throwing myself against the walls. I don’t want you to have to see what I do to myself or have to hold me when I feel like jumping. Furthermore, I don’t want you to have to call 911 because you don’t have enough to bandage me with. I think about you every day, and I think about this, and then I remember why I’m so alone.
I have to be.
My body and soul have been poisoned, broken, and desecrated. People have cheapened me, and I have cheapened myself. I cradle my body in beds of broken glass and am lulled to sleep by sirens, and I only wake when stabbed. I’ve been sick in ways I’ve never heard of, and people drive the knives in deeper by telling me my Infection mimics theirs. I don’t just have an Infection, though, I am Infected. Every movement I make is spurred by the
i planted landmines
close to dawn and
wept beneath the
sky a thirst to
run with loaded guns
i blew that well up dry
I don’t have much to say. It hurts to move my jaw, and my face feels tired. I’m not expressive today, but typing plucks the pen from my wrist, and I bleed unstoppably. I’m most defenseless when I speak but most powerful when I write, and I think it’s because there’s something difference between sound I make and sound I create. There’s a resonating note somewhere in between both worlds, and the residual voice reaches where the pen reaches paper. I don’t know anything about writing. I don’t know anything about my writing. I feel everything I think and breathe even more.
I can see you sitting on our windowsill and looking so real. It’s all so real, these images, as if I’ve lived them before. Memories of a not-yet and future reality.
Have I ever told you I don’t like the word “future?” I think it sounds ugly, disjointed, and wrong. The “fu” sounds like a mistake, and the “ture” sounds like a stomach churning. But do you think that’s my problem? that I can’t stand to live because I can’t stand the sound of living more? Putting these dreams in the realm of