And a lover you shall take

Warm lips and a soft waist,
you wait for me.
My emotions a kaleidoscope.
Your blonde hair fans out
over the grey silk pillow.
Your smile is a candle,
your anger a cactus.
You curl and curve and call,
and what am I before that?
I am happy in your orbit,
fingers laced together,
eye to eye, green to brown.
None of us are who we used to be.


Dangle a nebula around my neck.
I will carry her.
I will carry you if you’ll let me.

Take this white dwarf. No, take it.
A gift. It’s okay to say yes.
Lean on my rings. You are safe.

Comet of the last decade
will evaporate into sand.
I am unharmed. You, she,

I am not done breathing.

I cannot pull you out,
but I will try. Add the weight
of implosion to my side
of the tether.

Crash into me. I can take it.


My wings are bare swan bones
grotesquely sprouting from
between my shoulder blades.

I cannot fly.

They are bloody with strips of
burst flesh clinging
to cartilage, splintered
at the tips from spearing
loose ends.

Stay with it.
Keep going.

No down or contour or flight
feathers. Nowhere to hide.

I clench to spread them
fan them out over my head
now dripping and sticky
with pieces of my back
falling into my curls.

Nowhere to hide.

Hideous and joyful and terror
embracing what I cannot.

Turn me over slowly in your mind.
I cannot cartwheel for you.

My red wing bones scar my shoulders.
I cannot flap. I am not broken.

Mushrooms and Wine

Lead me into the woods
where it is unsafe.
I wish to howl with the wolf
in my dreams. He cries to be heard.
A den of my own making:
Ground palms and sandy loam
and a handful of psychedelics.

We almost burned down all of
Hunting Island in our drunken delirium.

I love her best.

Chris said my ego is in the way.
Whose isn’t? Drop that Earl Grey
at my feet. Tea is for therapy.

Our tidal house fallen from stilts
into the Atlantic. Still I want
to sleep in that 30 degree angled bed.

Don’t try to save me from myself.

And I said NO

Please don’t ask me which
was best— leaving or sitting
in an oak ten feet up.
It was defibrillators primed.
I sat in an unpaved parking lot
under Palmettos and said
for the first time. I could speak.

How many ways can this be said?

I choked on my love for him.
Suffocated. Self flagellated.
I placed the best parts of myself
under his steel toed boot.

I washed his grey. Sanitized it.
Sanitized myself.

No color for me. Black skies
in black shirts over a blackened
and charred heart.

Somehow it still beats.

A poem about love

If I want to write about love,
I’ll do it in AB positive, universal
receiver. If I want to write
about love, I’ll make it count.

What do I have to say about it?
Love is honesty and saving the last
slice of German chocolate cake.
It’s more than domesticity.
Love is a smoldering pile of leaves.
It’s a notebook filled, written
to the bitter loving end.

Let me define love.
It cannot be defined.

Abstract mathematics is full
of glorious gaps. Love lives there.

Love is a Thursday. Love
is a rogue wave toppling
fishing trawlers and research vessels.

Love is calamity. It’s smelling
the End of Summer and singing
from the back porch.

Love is nothing.
Everything is love.


Jenny to birth. My room
a nursery. The chickens will never
come home to roost
little ladies on walkabout.

Jenny reborn, joyous in her
bleeding heart. Her cries
are smiles. Her smiles
are laughter. Her laugh
is a church bell loud enough
to rock all of Dublin.

Jenny unchanged, her hair
woven gold. She loves me still,
stray dog though I am.

Jenny across an ocean.
Jenny lost and found.


Light it

Matches are for burning bridges
and lighting lanterns for escape.
Fly by night. I am a stone.
I am a shattered kneecap. No

flying for me. What then?
That bridge can burn

even if I’m still on it



Making them shorter doesn’t
make them any easier. The panic

rises heavy handed. Sorrow
so deep my chest aches brings

out memory, the flashes.
Nothing to do but breathe.
Nowhere to go but through.
Medication can only carry me

to my crystalline end. I will
shatter to slate. I will shatter
again to pebbles. My veins
run with ice and glass, my heart
banging on the door to my ribs
screaming to be let loose.
Breathe and release.
My skull is a metaphor.

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