Millie

8/6/17 5:06am
Millie by Aliice Black

The flowers in the courtyard
Half withered, half new.
Handfuls of them I want to grip
their stems and take the prettiest ones
home to you.

My aunt knows the names of every flower.
She can tell you of Magnolias,
Jacaranda,
Amaryllis,
and Creosote.
She paints them onto dishes,
stuffed into baskets on the front of bicycles.
The wheels always a bit uneven
But they’re perfect to me.

Don’t Cry

8/6/17 4:31am
Don’t Cry by Aliice Black

Do you remember the way things were when we first met?
Roller-coasters beneath fireworks and every day was a celebration.
Every day was an anniversary, an outpouring display,
Of all of our shiniest bits. The ones that I like to nibble on.
Making love inside tents while rain dripped down through the trees,
All my memories of you are reels on repeat of giggling and holding each other close.
Walking across hot coals in your dad’s back yard. Climbing through the woods.
You and I were always climbing, but then there came a shift; I didn’t feel the hand reach back for me.
I don’t know when it was that I grasped forward and felt my palms fly through the air,
But suddenly you weren’t there and I turned into a gnashing and resentful whirl wind,
Of drinking myself stupid and watching the clock expectantly.
I miss the way we used to be. I miss the empty apartment with one couch,
Our room just a few boxes on the floor in the corner. I miss the way things were,
Before this became our present. I miss the calmness of your presence like a
San Diego ocean lulling me to sleep.

Sister

8/6/17 3:17
Sister by Aliice Black

She looks like you.
Pale and eyes full of longing.
Sand shifting through the hourglass
of her body.
Calculated.
Were you always this hard?
I could sharpen my intentions
on the
slab of roman concrete
your nose.
I always envied you,
your curves.
Your pooling bust and
rumbling hips.
But it’s your wrists that I miss
most of all
Small wrists keeping the sky
from crashing down.

Temple Vein

8/6/17 2:10am
Temple Vein by Aliice Black

It has always been your fault
From the first breath
to today’s silence.
You were born evil,
pathologically manipulative
A vile spitting and kicking thing.
A screaming thing.

It has always been your fault
for being too quiet or
walking too far behind or
not responding when I fucking said your name the first time.
I know you heard me.
Walk faster, speak up, they’re looking at us again.
This happens every time I take you anywhere.

It has always been your fault
you’re so annoying
can you please stop singing
sometimes I want to smother you
do you have any idea the day I’ve had?
The phone is always ringing
why is the phone always fucking ringing

It has always been your fault
It has always been your fault

Always

Give It Up

8/6/17 1:05am
Give It Up by Aliice Black

Electric bubble gum popping
The wires all open ended
Gasoline and sparks
The trains don’t run here
It’s too flammable
Uninhabitable
A Chernobyl wasteland of what used to be “pride.”

Sludgy and thick
Battery acid crackling of ulcers
What you could’ve said
should’ve said
Spilling over
Melting through your plastic suit
The radioactive quarantine of what’s been kept inside.

Clear out the rot to make space
Cut away the decay
And ease the toxicity.

Spatial

8/6/17 12:36am
Spatial by Aliice Black

You’re a tiny thing
twinkling in the spaces
gooey and dripping between the stars.
You’re nimble fingers plucking at constellations.
You are.
You are.
You’re the pressure of planets
spiraling out of control
colliding into glittering gold.
You place the specks between your teeth.

Those are for you sweetheart.

You’re a tiny thing
Cosmic and glowing.
They called you indigo child and kissed your head.
I hold your head.
Small and heavy head,
lulling with it’s many moons.
You can name them and yes,
keep them
That means
we can keep them.

You’re a tiny thing
pointing at them as they’re falling.
You hope to catch them like fireflies
the itsy bitsy bits of you
Pin pricks of dust
Galactic debris collecting on your lashes
my little nebulae.
You are.
You are.

At the Circus

8/5/17 11:10pm
At the Circus

Lick the whip that
sits coiled on her chest
resting above the Lion’s beat.
Her poor heart,
It rustles like an animal
Stretching giant lips over
canines.

Wincing beneath the leather
It’s flecks of saliva
The cut-off roar.
At the circus,
She asks herself if she’s the tamer
or the tamed.

Black

8/5/17 10:19pm
Black by Aliice Black

I’ve been bargaining for loss
Switched it left to right
The slight of hand
Swapped a name in place
of what could’ve been a grave.
Still you’ve stayed just inside the edges.
The finger-less gloves
within one state
either direction.

You’re still the extension of me
blood leaking from the same vein
Inky and familiar
My sticky home.
I’ll never have to say goodbye.
You’re designer draped
shaped to fit my skin.
It’s chewed into a name
That I’ll carry til the end of my days.

You have a proper family
roads traveled in opposite directions
But the earth is round and you’re always driving
right back to yourself.
My chest meets at the crest
sunlight peaking through the spaces
You’re holding my hand through it all.
Homecoming and knowing
That we’ve never left.

Marla

8/5/17 9:15pm
Marla by Aliice Black

I’m selling some clothes.
I am Jack’s utter lack of surprise.
Dodging cars since I could walk,
I’m the daughter of the subways,
broken glass of the sunrise.
Stumbling fumbling between intersections.
I keep seeing you in red,
The lights outside my apartment.
Somebody called the cops.
I don’t know who we are this time.
When I wake up
Smoke shudders
Shoulders in thrift-torn second-hand-worn
fur.
She’s bony and slick, the stray cat.
But still he wants her.

Goddess

8/5/17 8:26pm
Goddess by Aliice Black

Sweet Gaia
Rustling through effervescent decades
She is the spiraling serpent that plucked the apple from the tree
She is the root of the tree.
She is Persephone
Licking pomegranate seeds, her fruit of the dead.
She is unafraid of the dead, unafraid of the underworld.
She is what made Orpheus look back.
It was she
That drew iron tears down Pluto’s cheek.
And then reborn as
Venus spawning from the sea.
She is in the waves of every mouth
a god has ever kissed.
She is in the frail wrist of the fading,
Wading in the tides of dried flowers
and humble offerings.

What of psyche?
What of the personification of soul?
Wraps you up in satin sheets
and eats you whole.
Pours into every vein
Vain like Narcissus,
held in every echo.
Just like Echo, speaking only mirrors of her love.
Gaia, my love.
Pull you into the river to quiver along the valleys,
Gripping talons into the earth.
She is rebirth.
Infinite.

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