Get My Word In

I write with vigor
but I can’t talk with
my friends
Some nights they’re
like this
I can’t push and
force myself into
behaving so I find
a groove with
the music and
I speak through my
fingers and onto
the page

I will not beg to
be one of the girls
one of the girls
with a way of words
from her mouth
but a woman who
hordes the thoughts
and later arranges
them so onto the page

Later spilling them
throwing them at my friends
at my lover
while they’re sleeping
or silent and I can
finally get my word in

Beer Makes Me Sadder

The band is far
too loud
for this pint sized bar
on a Thursday night

There’s no crowd to
play through
just the band
and me
empty tables
and a head ache

My friends they
get happy on the beer
but the beer just
makes me sadder
which is no good thing

I sit with my pen
I steal blank white
order tickets from the bar
with which to write
nothing good upon

I think of having the singers babies
I think of having the drummers babies
I think of having my boyfriends babies

When the song dies down
I hear my lovers voice
booming through the
patio doors as he
laughs and carries on
with my girlfriends

I love the music
the singer is good
but the beer it
makes me sadder

It’s Not About That

We take a hard swim in the river before meeting my family up on the hill for pork roast and blackberry cobbler. I try to make myself presentable with jeans and boots but my hair is so wild and windblown it makes me look like a clown with my pink lipstick on. That’s how I feel anyway. I want to be pretty for them all. For my boyfriend, and for my Grandpa John who we just found out has cancer. I want to be there early but it’s seven already by the time we finally arrive.

They’ve just finished eating and have to reheat the beans and meat. My new boyfriend is quieter than I would like. It’s clear to my family that no one is proposing anytime soon–as usual. Just a boyfriend? Is that all? I mumble-talk to my family wishing I were prettier like my girl cousin, and peppy-er too. In the morning I spend a full hour wrestling with my hair and smoothing my clothes hoping for the picture-perfect day with my boyfriend–the kind of day I’ve always imagined. We go for coffee and the barrista is so shining and beautiful she makes me sad when she smiles. But I smile back and I thank her SO MUCH and she coo’s at our black dog Honey. She’s as pretty as I want to be.

I beg myself STOP STOP STOP, it’s not about that. Nobody cares about this as much as you do. We pull out of the drive and the truck hits a bump spilling my milky caramel coffee onto the jeans and dress I had so carefully selected this morning.

I vow to give up on my face and my dress. I should be thinking about my grandfather with the cancer and the fact that just this morning my boyfriend said I Was Beautiful. I don’t feel fully better until I write this out in the passenger seat of the pickup, coffee between my thighs, sticky fingers, imperfect but perfectly feminine and passionate and alive.

Cleaning Up & Letting Go

Shine a bright light
into the black spaces
of our lives and we
find small, cowering
things starving and
losing life
We find secrets
trapped in stone
growing inside our
own cavernous minds
bad things taking form
that never shoulda
I want to lead
the fears
hand in hand
from my cave
from my temple
and free them
one by one
to make my life
more simple

High Hopes

I’m hungry
but I won’t touch
my plate
all the delicacies
in the world
would not satisfy me
and so,
how can I be helped?
What I salivate for
is not of this world
maybe it is
my unborn child
maybe it is
his budding,
not yet bloomed
love for me
maybe it is
the love withheld
from me
maybe it is
love to gift to
‘stead of waiting for
it from my mother,
my father,
my lover
maybe this thing is
fame not yet attained
maybe this thing is
Maybe, surely
it is that unsatisfied
vessel that we all know
so well
That itching space
that we all share—
an unfulfilled fantasy
so out-of-this-world
it will never be achieved
like how we imagine
our wedding days to be
so high on the shelf
it’s out-of-reach
better to just forget
it’s even there
ignorance is bliss
they say
but I deserve a knowledge
tried & true
I’m hungry
for love &
I beg it of you
So many dreams
tattered at their feet
I will not be like my parents,
I will not sell myself so cheap
How do you eat an elephant?
One bite at a time
How do you stay sane
with a hunger like mine?

The Load

We all have our love woes
they come in their own unique
shapes and sizes
Often lopsided
Old married couples
have big love woes that
make for strong foundations
Things to fall back on like
joint accounts and children
Things that makes people say
“Oh what the hell” and stay
Young couples have little
love woes they pick at
til they bleed
and when they dry
they pick at them again
I’ll let you guess which
love woe I have
I’m walking with my
love woes today &
who put Valentine’s Day
in winter?
We bundle up against
the wind, our faces
sadder than ever &
everyone I see,
including me
walks alone

Billboard People

Instead of regurgitating facts
why not digest the knowledge
Instead of claiming ideas as your own
shoving them down my throat
like capsules of lead
let them collect around you
and carefully handle the wisdom
grow to understand it
before you accept it
Everything has a label now
most of all, our own persons
are we not all tagged as this
or that?
Who am I if I do not
promote myself to you?
Do I exist at all?
Have I no life if
I am not on display?
Have I got no education if
I don’t wear it like a badge?
Have I got no past if
I don’t carry my albums
in my mouth
spilling them out
on the floor at every change
waiting for you to stop
talking so that I might
do my dance
How old are we anyway?
Still young enough for
Show and Tell?
Are my bones
my breath
my eyes
my body
all lost on you?
Is my presence
not enough?
I forgot my billboard
at home
You forgot my
my phone number
You forgot I’m
a person
not a number
Not friend
number 362
but a soul
a spirit
a woman