Only For You

It's been an up and down
not quite right
everything scattered
everywhere
kind of a month

as usual
I weave my way 
through the chaos
not altogether gracefully
tripping over this
and a couple times
that

but I had a minute
and chatted with an old friend
and maybe it's because 
we travel in the same circles
or perhaps because
the universe saw fit
to summon you back
into my consciousness
we spoke of you
briefly

and I said
I wished we had never been together
because I missed
your friendship

that was enough of that
and I went about
my measured sprinting
in accomplishing
all the things
needing
to be accomplished

and then
the cruel joke
from humorless 
gods

a song
one I hadn't heard in almost a year
picked perfectly
its moment to
reemerge 

turning the still embedded knife slow in my gut a reminder that it was beautiful for a minute but also knowing with the heaviness of its truth it was not so glorious that it was worth losing a friend.

little by little

the wheels 
have been put
into motion

as the night goes long
and my fingers fidget
i laugh
small
short
soft

i've no ring to pawn
pass on
tuck away in a small box
pushed to the back of a drawer
to be forgotten
until it is remembered
during sad
solitary
sauvignon nights
no

so
contemplation continues

there was never 
a proposal
the 'big rock" moment
joyous tears
speech impeding shock
the announcement
and following picture
to the circle of friends
oohing and aahing
the phone call
to parents
sharing the same 
jubilant
surprise

no 

just an obligatory acceptance
of wedding
the mother
of his 
children

i would like to think 
he loved me
i would like to believe
i was more than a
live-in maid
nanny
chef
personal assistant
i would like to hope
that it wasn't all for 
naught

yet

i don't
i can't
i won't

instead
i will keep 
churning the crank
operating the 
cold 
and tired 
machine
rickety yet
integral to
and capable of
shattering
the shackles
which once
bound me
to him

Tia Molly

I kissed two fingers  
and then
pressed them 
upon her 
cold
surprisingly smooth
forehead
my boys
kneeling beside me
kept quiet
no one told them to
they seemed
to gather 
the gravity of grief
all on their own

I didn't expect the tears
she and I weren't close
yet
there I was

crying

the heaviness
pervaded my being
I knew
immediately
I was heartbroken
for the ones
she left behind
friends
children
but mostly
her sisters...
just as tiny and frail
just as angry 
just as hopeful
just as loved
just as stubborn
in the face 
of lives 
which never came easy

I sobbed.

Here it was.
Mortality.

the blinding awareness
of my warm
two fingers
pulsing
while
pressed against
her cold
and surprisingly smooth
forehead





Shadows

It hit especially hard this morning.
The Melancholy.
It’s been a a good long while since it has happened. The weight of the past crushing me while I sat in my car waiting for the light to change to green. All because I took a minute to examine my surroundings. The neighborhood hit with gentrification. All the old replaced with new.
The burger place was now a bank. The corner pharmacy now empty, a For Lease sign clinging to the storefront, dusty and tattered. I knew this area once. Long ago, another life, a homeless teen sharing a basket of fries with the other delinquents. Lifting bags of chips and hygiene products from across the street.
I drove past the alley I slept in.
Before I learned that my body was a commodity that could be exchanged for a night out of the cold.
All the independent coffee shops with the bottomless cups keeping me/us warm during the long days…gone.
I felt my eyes welling.
I tried to shake the shadows off.

I kept driving. Taking deep breaths. Fighting against the rising tide of panicked sadness. And then I saw the greasy spoon I took my first child to when he was still in diapers. Yet another version of myself that I couldn’t bear to be reminded of. A young mother who knew nothing of receiving unconditional love but poured herself into loving a child she could barely care for and knowing it. Letting him reside with his father because she didn’t have her shit together enough to provide for him the way he deserved.
Drinking until the guilt faded into the next sick hungover morning.
The guilt turning into feelings of being unworthy.
Being unworthy turning to multiple attempts of suicide.

I always failed.
Because at my core, I was a coward. I didn’t want to live. But I was afraid of dying.

The pall was enveloping me quick.

My cheeks were wet with tears. This city, which I had tried to run from before, was bombarding me with all the things I had tucked away so neatly. Or so I thought. My mistakes, failings, friendships, loves, heartbreaks – my heart was flooded, drowning. No use now. So I succumbed to the tide pulling me under.

Sobbing, I thought of you.
How we were going to “make new memories to replace the old”.
There is no such thing.
The old will always resurface. Intertwined, reminding of us of who we were. What we have been through. We can be grateful that we have progressed. We have transcended the previous models. I am Me, Model 273. Maybe. I don’t know, I’ve lost track of the many skins I’ve shed. I just know that I will continue to evolve and that soon, the places and time we shared together will eventually join the rest.

Another shadow following me until I stop moving.

Splinters

How do we miss
and continue to love
the ones who have hurt us
irrevocably

is it the moments
though brief
full of promises
promises

never kept
always broken

(breadcrumbs for
emaciated birds)

shards of
good intentions
scattered
slicing
through stubborn
normally thick
skin
with ease

(tis but a flesh wound…)

like tiny splinters
hidden deep under fingernails

there throbs
a constant pain
of remembering
what was
what could have been
what will never be

Sunday

It is Sunday.
Just another day
which was supposed to be ours.

Yet
Here I am
Alone
Realizing that

Days don’t belong
to anyone

They are just
measures of time
fading into the nothingness
of the
eventual forgotten

Still
it is Sunday

Just another day

Yet
I haven’t the Heart
The Desire
Nor the Wish
to share it with
anyone else.

Imprisoned

Pouring regrets,
mistakes,
guilt,
into this
rocks glass

*neat please*

it’s the way…
the road
to perdition

a constant
hell
of one’s own making

exoneration
is a
pipe dream

as lucidity fades
culpability
becomes
a
faint tendril
disintegrating into
the dawn

forgiveness
teasing
with the
rising
of the sun

self-delusion

as it
diminishes

returns
to the
blurred
and sloppy
self-loathing
as the
exhaustion
of BEING
becomes a dense,
thickened, hairy
weight
on the
soul

all that is left
for respite
is sleep

only to
repeat
on the morrow