tongue can’t always swing,
curl, spread, linger,
vibrate, to pair with voice,
a voice that sometimes simply sits,
stubborn in my throat,
swaying like in a boat on the surface of its own strings
it picks syllables, juggles, yet they won’t reach
this funnel made of flesh,
and resonant, glistening pebbles
pronounce what you long to hear;
mouth is open, like fish fighting
for life on the dry sand,
nothing comes out.
I can only offer silence
a blade of sword
that suddenly blinded you:
you didn’t see when it cut
our invisible cord of love.
remember the day
when Earth sweat and
invisible drops exchanged scorching kisses,
every furrow dried and crumbled
in grey powder?
It wasn’t ash – rather
a numbing substance
we prayed for:
and your eyes became stars again.
For many moons I’ve been collecting words. I made a bed. A garden. A bed, planted a garden, and built a house. I am made of tough love. My heart is even now. It beats in the rhythm of the street clock and only speeds up six minutes before noon when it hears the song of trash trucks.
Day sits on my back like a bride’s veil, light but deceiving at this hour of zenith. Nothing stops. You can’t stop. Each worth is measured by a sixteen year old, thumbs made of french fries. Exteriors are sublime, narrow walls of sudden disapproval confront me. I’m not alone. There are many of us. Disgruntled, as I rise above the superficial day, biphasic outcomes. An executioner appears with an ax, rope, and swoops in to behead my intentions.
Non-approbation sprouts fear like a weed in the field of your purple smiles. It’s a black sheep in the white flock of your thoughts, an unwanted spurt hair in a bush of emotions you would like to pluck. They say you need to face you fear. I don’t have time for that. I can smell it from a long distance; I can sense its millihertz vibrations. I sneak, like a stealthy snake. I eat it raw, fragile, undeveloped, and spit out the shells made of careless, nameless sentences.
I look deep inside of myself: satiated garden groomed, blooms in the color of your eyes.
Getting Ready for Night Out
They say it’s much better to use a ceramic knife.
It doesn’t oxidize vegetable meat.
She first rolled the beet over the flat counter – to let
the juices stir. Then cut it in half. She needed only a
few drops for a blusher.
On the shelf in front of her, beside his favorite tea cup,
she found cinnamon.
Just a pinch of this spicy heat will act as a bronzer.
The index-finger on her right hand she gently dipped in the ashtray –
to give a soft grayish glimmer to her eyelashes.
And the final touch – carmine: a dripping sauce
of red, succulent melted cherries
she mixed with three tears of her own blood she had harvested earlier
from her left thumb.
Now, who can resist kissing these pulsating lips?
As she was waiting for him to pick her up,
in the last minute, she adorned her right hand
with this piece of baked clay – perfectly matching her makeup.
Gone with the Rain
It was typical rainy day: grey. A wet curtain hid tired steps of people passing by. At the end of the street, just below the tiny slope, every tortuous creek plunged into the porous mouth of the busy, thirsty drain. Wet sand blunged in the rhythm of soft, muffled sobs as a young woman, with unvoiced stone face, continued to cradle her empty hands.
It’s one of those harsh winters. Whipping wind penetrates to every bone and I can hardly breathe. Only the pleasant, bitter inhale of my cigarette and warm, black smoke that wraps around my frozen fingers are making this bearable.
The trains have been canceled again.
And soon we will hear an automated cold, monochromatic, female voice announcing: “Dear beloved passengers and non-passengers that have gathered here, we cordially invite you to take your suicidal business elsewhere in the future. Thank you for your understanding."
The way I slept naked on the floor;
The way I hid myself from the sun;
The way I ate uncooked food with my bare hands;
The way I flossed my teeth three times a day;
The way I laughed at your stupid jokes;
The way I adored your razor-blade thin smile;
The way your huge hands held me around my waist
is the way I loved you.
And still do.
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Charlotte Perkins Gilman Poems
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