I Exist


I am a single story hut 

Whose original plans

Were to be a sophisticated high rise

Every time I was built up 

I was quickly knocked back down

My body is the building

And it bleeds

Constantly reaching for the sun

Your wrecking ball 

(The dirty words they are)

Spread pieces of me across the asphalt

In a messy cacophony 

That you swore was a symphony

As it bruised me 

My walls built themselves back up

Thinking they were upright

But all it was 

Was a shanty 

That would blow over when touched 

By a tender breeze

All of the other buildings know

Which is why they look down on me

With such spite

They would kick around pieces of me 

That the road sweeper had missed

Laughing at the embarrassment 

Whispering of my ill chance at ever being more

I wept for respite

Jesus did too

I will be dust in due time

Until then 

I exist

I exist

I exist 

 

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Trees


Trees grow together

In the forest

For a reason

Drawn in by their strength

We don’t respect their example

Staying where they first took root

And watching their family grow

Being solid and sturdy 

Hundreds of years go by

Until we chop them down

Keeping pieces of them in the living room 

Until one of us leaves

Slamming the door

Then we cut down new trees

Buy new tables

Have new homes

Become new people

Wiping the slate clean

Until we realize we all die

Desperately seeking someone to hold our hand as we struggle to breathe the air that was provided by a tree

That we cut down

And use to place our glass of wine

That leaves a stain

Reminding us of that time

A body was there

But we pretended not to care

Now we drive

To the woods

Go for a walk

Feeling the bark

Examining the sun 

Rushing through the leaves

Making us feel touched

Knowing

Sensing

Acknowledging

We did it all wrong

Broken Love


Love is broken 

Splintered

Bleeding

Cracked between knuckles

We take glimpses of it 

Tucking them under our pillow

Filling our dreams with 

Stolen embraces

That only happened once

Or not at all

Getting on our knees

To wash feet

With our own hair

Seen as a weakness

A man would rather 

Get spit in his eye

Than wake up to the same woman

Twice

What a beautiful 

Event

We simply cast aside

Deciding we know best

By skipping steps

And running to what feels

On our skin

Instead of that sweet 

Satisfying 

Feeling

Of being enough

Completely

Totally

And only wanting to see 

Him

Stranded in the Doldrums


No longer able to think 

And think 

And think

But now I stare 

And try not to think 

And think 

And think

Holes drilled into the wall break

My train

Of thought

Remembering 

Fingers 

And teeth

And biting down

Hoping 

And 

Waiting

And being greeted by silence

And something worse than rejection

I still don’t fully understand

Changing the order of my molecules

Too much has shifted

No longer anchored 

My ship has set sail

I pray to God this crew doesn’t fall down dead

And leave me stranded

In the doldrums 

I swear I didn’t mean to shoot that bird down

Try to Focus


I’ve called

Ears raised

Only to shut the door

Avoiding 

Turning

Saving face

You tortured me

With empty promises

I will fill a room

With all of your lies

And play with them 

Like dolls

Without eyes

Ring around

Ring around

Turn the water off

Your voice trails off in my memory

I didn’t know you that well

Too much room

To fill in the gaps

I weave stories for fun

And yours was incredible

Valiant 

And brave

I liked you

And you liked that

But never me

In my imperfections

Just like they don’t like us 

As a group

As a family

As a form of life

Turn into the mud

It’s cooler in the heat

I’ll try to focus 

And say this 

All the way through

I hate you

And what you didn’t 

Have the guts to do

You 

And you 

And you

Room


There’s a room

That started something

Violent

In splashes

Signaling

The loss

Of hope

And innocence

It was forced 

And quiet

Throats were 

Held tight

And the memory

Lingers

In the air

Like perfume 

Smashed

Against the wall

Inexperience

Was fuel

Blamed 

Shunned

Cast out

Never allowed to be

What was 

About to come 

To fruition

An excuse 

Or simply what was always to be

Sensing impending doom 

Hiding beneath covers

Avoiding friendly faces

Knowing what it was 

To be left

In dusty tire tracks 

Searching for the way home

You’ll never see me

No one ever did

Features


The bridge

Of your nose

Always catches

My eye

Funny

What we notice

Not meaning to try

Speckles

And 

Freckles

And crooked teeth

In a straight smile

Jaw bones

Bony fingers

Sculpted wrists

Curves and divots 

Perfection and flaws

Muscles creeping up 

From beneath the skin

The way hair curls 

At the nape of a neck

The inner ring of fire

That highlights an eye

The different shades of amusement 

That take over a smile

So many options

And features to select 

If I had to choose

I liked yours the best

Smoke

I saw a fire in the distance
I knew

I felt it

I kept driving

Into the smoke

At first 

Alarmed

Then my lungs opened up

My eyes adjusted

I ignored my intuition

Remembering sermons on hope

I pulled up in my car

In the house

Flames escaping through the glass

Reaching for the sky

Baking the floor boards

You 

Standing in the doorway

Holding a gas can

You asked me inside

As always

I was entranced

By the way you spoke

Whispering with wit

Smiling at me when I wasn’t looking

This time your face was blank

Unfinished

I searched for meaning in your pebbly eyes

You looked away when I thought I saw something

I first entered the home raging with heat 

Flames still romancing the walls

You slammed the door shut

You remained outside

You locked the the only way out

Let me see

Inside those eyes

That were hiding 

Not wanting to tell me

This isn’t what you wanted

But neither was I

I had started to become something

You couldn’t leave behind

At night when your mind wandered

Trying to find peace

You saw my face

Long neck curving

Cupping your chin

Letting you know 

What love could be

You craved my desire

It was never the plan

You knew I wouldn’t turn down an invitation

So you set the house ablaze

Sent out a signal for me to attend

You would watch

As my flesh disappeared

And my bones became dust

It convinced you that you didn’t feel

You didn’t realize the dreams that would stick to the lining of your heart

Watching your crimes 

As you felt what you could not deny

With your eyes closed

Your heart exposed

You’ll leave the crime scene in ruin

You can visit on a full moon

Scream out my name 

As you fall to your knees

You’ll wake up in soot 

And walk away clean

Pretending I never existed 

Never again

Say my name 

Color within the Lines


I hate that you think that way

I hate that is how you see the world

Digits and place holders 

Dividers and classifications

I want to beat down your door

But once I get to it

Something is wrong

Familiar

It’s my own

I’ve started to look through the same foggy glass 

Newly polished to look tarnished

Aging in the corner 

Collecting dust in the creases of my mind

I’m starting to see people by their value

And label ways of living right and wrong

Inevitable

Truth or accepted deception

Propaganda swallowed whole

Eating our own young before they have the chance to hatch and show us they can fly

I never meant to give up my dreams

I was told it’s what we all do

Thirty is too old 

after all 

to fall in love 

And see the world 

Still dreaming in color 

High above the clouds 

I’ll see you in the morning 

Coloring within the lines

You Were Here Too


I turned you around 

Until I saw light

You nodded and told me 

It would all be alright

I couldn’t imagine life 

Before you

It seems like you’ve always

Been here too

You blink with both eyes

And keep your head straight

Never forgetting to remind me

This was always my fate

It might seem impossible

To finish alone

But in the end there’s no one closer

Than those who share your skin and bone

If I could change things 

I’d make it better 

The world never said 

I could take off this fetter

We will sit where we are enjoy this view

The people who possess this moment are few