Category Archives: Unedited

Observations

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You asked me to write you.

You asked me to write you and yet

And yet and yet

Here I am writing but it’s not what you’d like-

Not what you asked for, I suppose, not what you can use-

But that there are blue veins beneath your skin

Blue eyes to match

Blue lips- cyanotic- too long apnoeic

You play the role of the dead too well.

 

I wrote once of a girl who explored her insides

She was dead too, you know,

Preserved but cold; slippery and wet, still,

But yes, very dead.

For her traumatic, for me erotic,

Rather like you, like you,

You drive me to lick my lips

But I don’t know why.

 

I see, I see,

When I close my eyes I see

The imprint of your skeleton against that void

Not empty, but vast, vast, so vast

That any glimmer of anything else gets lost

Minutiae before- within- the face of god.

Camouflaged your heart

I can’t see it, but I’ve a fist that fits

Within your chest to feel it.

 

I’d suck the sun from your lips I’ve written

As good as saying it

Almost as good as feeling it,

But you, an autopsy scar,

I don’t know if I want to tend you or rend you.

You want to break open as badly as I do.

It’s almost like you invite it.

 

It’s not sex, understand,

It’s far more guttural than that.

 


Sit back and wonder
And wonder, and wonder
If the heaviness in my hands as I bring them to the keys is simply
A lack of practice or an absence of feeling.

I’m tapping an invisible pen against the back of my teeth,
The distant knocking of words that yearn to be written
But they’re invisible to me
I feel them
I feel them

Stilted and jilted a love song I can’t quite provoke
Words of regurgitation,
Of abstinence, of the guttural and distant
Nothing here comes smooth
No trance to suck it from my gut
No passion, no inspiration.

Every word a tired, dull thud upon the page.

If you have to push for it,
It’s not worth it, right?

Give me my words.

I will wrench them from the universe if I have to.
I will write trash. I will write paragraphs, solitary paragraphs, with no end and no beginning.
How dare I be given the need but not the substance.

Here with no stories.
Fierce passions lost to the ether,
Nothing new to explore,
A burning I smother by spreading my legs and opening my mouth,
Loud and proud and still

Silent in the only way it matters.


Angel.
I would call you angel, if he hadn’t
Hadn’t been the first, I mean.

Initially an antithesis, you,
Chin dropped, brows heavy, an unconscious manoeuvring
Of limb

You seem nothing of an angel.

But if they were wings you hefted upon your back,
Instead of the weight of your world,
You could be Michael or Lucifer
Or Uriel lamenting, your sword in flames.

You think fire does not become you.

Cloying smoke and burning ash
Seem dark enough to me.

 

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My love is not aesthetically pleasing.

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I offer only gristle
Because in bleeding there was nothing.
There were no flowers in our lungs,
No sweet green tendrils twining our lips and tracheal cartilages;
My anatomy is not so illustrated
Ill-defined and wet,
A mess of acrylic red and kidney maroon.

And my tendons twanging, twinging,
Stretched taught against yellowing bone-
I am not clean and sun-bleached.

I wrote a poem once of lovers in the kitchen,
Dusted with flour, a delicacy.
In this body a slab of meat, calf muscle and tender heart,
But fat and connective tissue also;
The less palatable with the rich and bloody.

If there is art in my physiology I struggle to find it.
There is no melody in my movement,
No marble to my flesh,
No recycled literature to be splashed with paint
In depictions of my ribcage as a vase.
Rough-hewn I am rickety
And stagger in the dance.

Even with flour and a sprig of rosemary
There is little craft in the making of me.

Alive – The Glut

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I like living, I really do. I’m hopeful. I hope the world learns from history and things are actually getting better and we just can’t see it yet.
I’m hopeful for a future where things are different and good and that humanity is evolving toward a better, kinder existence. I don’t actually believe so, but I hope so, and that’s close enough.

Today is a nice day, it’s sunny and clear and I’m talking to a beautiful woman across the other side of the world who tells me she loves me and has such a big heart and is excited about going to dinner with another beautiful woman

And there are colourful yarns and I’m listening to music, music that is so bountiful I could listen to a new song every three minutes and never ever have to repeat one

And I am healthy, and relatively young, and I have touched and been touched by some of the most brilliant minds ever to be totally unappreciated by the world, and there is art, centuries of art, cataloguing all that the human race has ever done

There is architecture and philosophy and poetry and cooking tv shows and Gordon fucking Ramsay and christmas carols which I hate except for when I don’t and people crying at airports and orgasms and news anchors who burst into tears on live television because they saw a picture of a dusty young boy pulled from the wreckage of his home and

metal rulers and movies about slavery that make me cry at 2 in the morning and memes and stupid articles about Apple headphone jacks and beach breezes and a Cute Pancake Girl who may stay or go but right now she kisses me

And family, blood and found and chosen, and pretzel sticks, and drinking water from rivers and bacteria and very pretty rocks and very plain rocks and wine bottles being recycled into glass walls for glass houses and cruel politicians and the goddamn KKK and whirling planets and songs about Voids and boys with body issues and girls who write porn

And dalmatians and pallas cats and wine and anthrax and
This world is a glut, my loves.

None of it matters, and all of it matters. Everything hurts and there is joy all around. We’re all going to die someday. The whole human race will die someday and all of this? Everything? This is all history that we’ll leave behind, and whether we’re alone in the universe or if there’s some kind of life out there, these abstract passing functions of our existence will outlast us.
Is there a word for being simultaneously hopeless and hopeful?

This is what we are. Neither good, nor bad, just… Alive.
For a brief moment. Alive.

Harmonising

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And again, and again, the nowhere place, the liminal space,
Again with these halfway words
Within, without, holding, beholding, witnessing I suppose
But what
What beyond fixation and fascination and the push
This the pressure inside me that builds like orgasm
But when I grasp it, it fades, it eases, it
Falls folds up into itself.
Like towels being pulled from my mouth it heaves up from my stomach
Behind my ribs
Suffocating and thick, scraping
Each retch like forceps, metal at my teeth, fabric in my throat.

Urging me to sleep
I’d rather make use of this
This, I waste on vomiting words to friends
Describing prophesy, watching like birds
The non-fluid dribbling from my lips I offer, cupped in tremble-steady hands,
Palms upraised, wrists dripping, water or blood or something else altogether.
Like dreaming this, absence, I think, focus
And nausea and hunger and
This desire to tear out- at- my womb
Self-evisceration.

Clarity of vision like lucidity but
Alice down the rabbit hole
He never described the way it feels like suffocation
Lungs pulling hard on mirrored glass before it bursts

Peaches and cream fingertips
Cold and welted
Pull through or push against.

Spine screech
Like trains on rails or a fumbled bow on too-tight strings
Do I arch my back and offer my throat or
Do I curl over and inverse-gasp groan
Bite down hard, grind teeth, rend flesh or
Crack open my ribs and expose cat gut-cardiac muscle to the air?

 

 

Hush, the loop.

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Somehow we clash, we come together. The violence of our selves fuses us and forms a functional machine.

You with your lethargy, the clarity of your sharp blue eyes, the smooth movements of your hands, and me with my frenetic energy, the uncertainty in all things that makes up all of what I am. I fluctuate and flex around your sharp edges. You maintain your rigidity, your walls give me form.

I find myself falling asleep in your arms, your lap, your embrace. My eyes flutter closed even as I press my lips to yours. You flush pink. You flush pink.

I sleep. I don’t dream. The sounds of the world filter in and convince me that I am awake, truly awake.

I sleep. You flush pink.

Some Not-Poetry

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Lying on the floor, preparing to push out another 500 words before I let my manuscript rest for the day, in my underwear

In the path of a very pleasant ocean breeze, and music playing

Listening to Liam draw and whistle at the workbench beside me…

 

I myself am tucked neatly under my writing desk, laptop propped against the foot rest,

Watching my toes dance, reflected in the screen while my face remains dark.

I harvested another tomato today. Would have been two, but the caterpillars beat me to one.

 

Ah well. Small victories. This is a good day.

Sorry for the silence- Notebook Tidbits

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Let me get inside your head,

Let me introduce you to want, to lust,

To the grotesque and the carnival,

To the blood and the hunger and the flesh.

Let me give you the taboo,

The safety in indulgence, in risk;

Here in words everything is sacred,

Everything is true and honest and

You will not be judged.

Let me lead you where you will not go,

But have always wondered,

“What if?”

My mouth is full of snakes.

I would throw myself to the tracks beside but it would take one half of me, and harmonic though my ribs may be I feel that is too harsh a price. With ropes upon the earth I hold my tongue and wait; bright green-yellows and gentle whites guide the eyes and hold them stable herein without and basic… Still they watch, they wait for this chassis to break, crack open and spill the world ultraviolet.

Silence descends. I will find my way back.

They exchanged “I love you” against each other’s lips, catching the words with tongues and pulling them back into their mouths to be inhaled like smoke.

It infuriates me, the way she breaks me open like a lotus, a rose. Every night she stifles my complaints with kisses, and with her touch bids me forget, lost beneath her gaze. Always the same routine; the sex, the paint, sleep and then she is gone in the morning.

A water box in a glass box with a fish in it, I don’t understand what I’m looking at.

I don’t want to go in. I don’t want to go in!

A fish tank is a vivid warning in my dissociated state and crossing from the park outside to the park inside brings me to a one-way vacuum door. How cruel it is to show us freedom, a world outside without the bars, the noise, the nurses, the beds without heads and doors without doorknobs.

“It’s only a follow-up.” He soothes and clutches my agitating hands to his chest, gentle though I know he clenches his teeth because I have scratched him again.

Have I been speaking out loud, how does he know? Will he leave me here- oh god the doors are open and in this tiny room the air is stale and sterile- will he come back when it’s all over? I cling, and breathe, and bite my tongue. He understands.

We have to wait for the door to open again, nurses, beds, and hospital gowns down the walkway behind the walls. My fishtank breaks open with a whoosh and he leads me forward, gently smiling, a shine in his eye, reassurances that are yet to fade.

I glance back and the door slips closed, nary a fish within the box now that it is within the bowl.

Two Days

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Two days, back to reality.

Back to puppy cuddles.
Back to furrit chattings.
Back to the hot studio with the grapevine around the side.
A studio I can paint in.
I’ll paint something amazing…
Listen to the cicadas and breathe in the heat and
I’ll sing along to Adele and Le Tigre at the top of my lungs.
Badly.

I’ll contemplate taking up smoking, simply to have something to do between strokes.
I’ll change my mind, because of the health risks.
I’ll think about having a glass of wine instead…
Until I remember I don’t actually like wine much.

Two days and I can begin my countdown,
The countdown to 2012,
New Year’s Eve,
Which I’ll hopefully not spend alone.

I’ll think drunkenly about what is to come,

Hope that at least some of my heart’s desire will come to be.

Dreams come to fruition.

It isn’t much-

Inspiration, Intelligence, Independence.

Perhaps next summer I’ll be sitting in the back of a pick-up truck,

Baking in the sun,

A cold cider between my knees and a burger in my hands

While the smell of warm canvas and oil paint

Drifts from my paintings…

As they wait to be hung on smooth white walls.

In my dream I am happy,

Pleased with small pleasures,

A clear sky, a clear mind,

A room of my own, an income,

And a lightness in my heart.

I can hope.

I will hope.

In two days.

Tidbit: Patient Zero

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Spring, the following year.
I move in. Yelena and Veronika help me relocate my meagre possessions from my apartment to their family home. The day is hot, the sky clear, and as I make my way up the wooden steps to the front door I’m greeted with a chorus of bees and suburban birdsong.
The world seems somehow lighter in this big house with the rain-stained windows and brightly coloured walls. Art decorates every surface- tiny sculptures, blotchy paintings, dainty photographs- and everything in the kitchen is mismatched. Yelena shows me her espresso machine, and we laugh about how the bright red matches Veronika’s lipstick. It is the kind of moment that belongs in polaroid photographs, stuck to a wall with aging blue-tac and a scribbled note: ‘Lena and Mary, coffee in the spring.’ perhaps.
Vero watches with a quiet smile, but then her beeper trills and she excuses herself. I catch a glimpse of hard muscles beneath soft skin as she collects her purse and bag, rushing out the door with an air of urgency.
Yelena laces her hands around my belly. She stands behind me as I watch Vero’s car pull out of the driveway, bathed in fallen wisteria blossoms. “She works for the army, medicine things, very complicated and boring ljubov.”
Her voice makes me giddy and I can’t help but laugh. Confusion crosses her face as I twist on the ball of my foot to encircle her in my arms. Her eyes glitter and her kiss tastes sweet. Her lips are painted with honey. I want to lay her on the floorboards and claim her, but now is not the time. Heat flushes her cheeks, she leans against me for just a little longer than necessary; Suddenly overwhelmed with love I find myself grinning.

“You are so beautiful.”

The smile I’ve come to adore creeps across her face and she laughs with me. Disentangling herself from my embrace she grasps my hand. Her cold and crooked fingers tug me away from the window. I notice the strange outward curve of her nails as they brush my skin. “Come!”

Down hallways, padding across musical wooden floors, we navigate the rooms. Yelena introduces me to each one as if it is a person in itself- “This is Nika’s room, very neat, see? It rattles in the night, I think it sings to her.”- and her hands brush the doors lovingly, grasping the overly high doorhandles with the same gentleness she treated me to when I first met her. Each door is pale pine, each room a cohesive world behind it, a story of the things it contains.
Our room is warm, modern, with multicoloured curtains and fairylights above the bed. It smells like sandalwood and amber. The pillows smell like her.
I move to kiss her but she skips away, laughing, reminding me I haven’t seen the rest of the house yet. She takes my hand again, and the tour continues.