She left her birthday
cheer hanging on my locked, front
door… her knock unheard.
As you alone type your strangeness
Your angsty alienation dissipates
Leaving you breathless and more isolated.
Then, you read his words so unlike yours but so like the parts you keep silent and hidden in Pottery Barn beige boxes with many compartments and high price tags.
The frozen melts, all changes.
Sparkling water fruit flavors take on a new relevance and potency.
Seeking new Bossa Nova classics preoccupies.
Looping in and out of his kenta cloth bow ties lessens your misery.
You rope yourself around the space above his onyx pinky ring.
He doesn’t notice the finger’s extra weight.
Prostration does little to garner his attentions or time.
It’s okay, ’cause sincere approbation crumbles your gut.
That’s okay, ’cause you haven’t listened to her, since you gave up on John Hughes and Disney films.
Beach kids in tents discovered in and exported from desert storms will never know sandy fried chicken.
Lover kids intent on their media social will never find a mixed tape of adoration songs in their lockers.
All okay, ’cause I never knew what it was to have to drive a little farther to hear my favorite song again.
And, other than my style over content fixations, nearsightedness, and morbid obesity, I am okay too.
Writing that upends, surprises, or jars attracts me. I am reading Audre Lorde’s Sister Outsider, and I just finished Toni Morrison’s Bluest Eye and Colonize This!: Young Women of Color on Today’s Feminism.
I write, because I need to understand. When I work on my craft, I work on myself. Through writing journals, blogs, poetry, memoir, and flash fiction, I come to terms with my inner and outer environments.
I write to help. I write to heal. I write to honor.
I attack apathy, personal and political.
I challenge myself and others to move beyond comfort zones and other narrowing forms of thought.
I critically reconstruct social, political, and cultural issues.
I center the marginal.
I document my communities of the mentally complex, the abused, the poor, the undocumented, the incarcerated, the young, the elderly, the larger, the addicts, the women, the transgendered, the people of color.
I strive to write immediate, active, sensual, honest, and metaphoric pieces.
I struggle to be reborn, to burst, to open.
He is a fraud. She loves liars.
He fills her head with fast fiction every night.
She rolls among his mendacity lapping his words like brown sugar and snorting sweet breath.
They are a merry duo.
He a shaman of Ripley’s know how; she a gaping audience.
“Look at Mommy! Look at Mommy! Flying Mommies!”
“Look, Dylan, look. The waves are big here.”
“Look, it just isn’t working.”
Their words add to the cacophony chorus drowning my labored breathing as I run away again.
I woke up thinking of my momma last night.
I didn’t cry, I just listened to your breathing.
I wanted to call your name but it was late, and
you were up with me the night before.
I can’t remember her laugh.
The heavy meds won’t let me cry.
So, I pretend she had a mouth of lilacs
spurting out sweet smell laughter.
Grief lays between us.
So, you contracted Multiple Sclerosis, and it’s my fault.
I constantly tempted the karma forces by taking the tips others had left at restaurant tables next to me. I prompted the voodoo the night I cheated on you when you were tossing and turning in yet another sleep study. I spat at the Universe as I ripped all of the “do not rip” tags off of the over priced pillows at the new Pier One.
I, the constant fool, lived on the existential edge, but it was you who had been pushed off.
So, I blurted my confession to save you, to save love.
You threw the chair I painted Sorry game token color lime at me and left. I noticed a crack slightly right of center on the seat. I briefly wondered if it would pinch my ass when I sat.
I knew I deserved it.