// Rise //

I had been given too many hands, brought up with ravens nesting in my throat. Love is screaming down the hall, love is darkness tearing cracks in a house which cannot fall. I learned the secret as it was threaded, woman into woman into woman into me. My wrists rush full of your veins (you at the ankles of my budding devotion, you the ascending lotus flower, you the sinew of the mouth of lineage).

My name is a language, my name is a generation, my name is earth, my name is seven letters penned in the dirt.

My name is the name of the truth.

I made it split my tongue, this opalescent rain which fills my lungs. Wet this room at the center of my neglect, concave, dim; the white eyes of this dying celestial.

Fracture this calculated light where I hunger and crawl and thirst for the rivers, watch as my numbness scales every mountain if only to peel back the sky, death is but a kiss along the seabed of a dying moon. Teacher, read for me. If my words disturb you, feed your breath to the cells of my body until I speak again of gentleness, speak the name, all of the names within my name, embryos falling through my hands.

And we will turn our cold minds to emptiness; we will coax a taste for morning, begin to raise our faces from the dust.



// Gentle Lights, Bury Me //

And what will you do to dig up these bones when I’m still here, how will you feed me to the wolves who need my throat, teach me, grow me with their yellow marks and claws. Suddenly it is all black water in this garden, the water rises and churns, setting the tides on fire and I am swimming deeper and deeper still until I find those things I lost so long ago, milkteeth, crickets, the shadows I crawled into behind my childhood eyes, before the waste of the world became so tired and over grown, before it was the cold which stung like bees, before it was the heart I bled underneath my sleeves.

The people don’t come back, they walk onward, they walk past, I weep for I would do the same, and have. The spaces in between my lungs (naked lungs severed and hanging from trees) there are wings fluttering there, little bodyless commotions, threadbare ivory wings who meant to reach for the burned out sun but fell blind, and I swallowed them whole.

No one to tell in hushed dry tones, no one to tease open my waterfall lips, no one to paint their ears on again, only doors into an ancient unhinged soul who is always leaving and does not bother to lock up anything.

Unchained, unrattled, untethered, untouched. This flesh was made for letting

There is a dark moon which rises alone in every heart, it cannot move, only reflect, it cannot breathe. And as these nights cave the days in upon me, I do not reach, I do not reach. Bury me, all these beautiful little moth wing lights sifting down as I do not speak. All of these gentle lights burying me.


An excerpt from my book Luminae, coming this winter.

// Slow Blood //

What are the skies like where you are, has the new air been good for you. Blue as the veins of the ocean tide, sweet as the almond sun. The way you look through the way I looked away. Do you bathe yourself with the salt of the tears in my hands, drink your tea warm with honey and is it sunset by the window, or everywhere. I hold your motion in the poetry, feel blindly the depths of the things I cannot touch. You enter me and leave your heart behind. Do you taste my hair against your strawberry mouth and draw the purple shades of night down with your low dark eyes.

I miss the lifetimes I spent alone,
someone’s always calling
but no one ever calls me home.

Could it be that we all reach for something like wind to keep us alive when the rest of the world smells only of rot, remains, annihilation. No two souls have ever touched each other inside such gentle bruising. How your teeth never quite leave my flesh days after, the way my voice fills your mind, dampens your tongue, breaks wild against your muscle. How I pray for your healing as I do for you to ache until it bleeds. Nobody says what they really mean.

When you move your body it speaks of the secrets you keep from everyone but me. Lights coming up all over the jagged bones of darkness. The drench of this heady stolen quiet smothering the bedtime trees. Desire presses in my skin. Beating hot, beating slow.


// Jasmine //

It had been a jasmine evening which left its hand upon my chest, the moon so lonely I could taste her forlorn eyes. Some days prick like lemondrop needles sweet and bitter against the tongue.
Out there the wolves.
Out there the doves.

Out there a world revolves around itself and the same revolution envelopes whatever this cruelty is inside of me. I can hear you talking but I cannot let you in. There was something they gave me to take away the pain and it took you, too.

I am letting go.

The tethers are coming up
ever so slow

but I still hold you deep in my bones
even if I cannot touch you
this I know
I know.

My ribs full of roses blossoming thorns
swollen sadness she is breaking my soil she is
she is mine,

beautiful are the tears which do not come and I know
I’ll have to crawl up out of this grave
swallow life again but this baptismal throat is fire,
these limbs, how we have become this tired.

I do not know.
I do not know.


// Red Fire //

My poet is a wounded heart, beaten and bruised, she is still flowering.

In the hands of the darkness we fall upon our knees, turn our bodies into fantasy.

There is a body living in my mind.

She weeps, she feeds upon the thoughts I am watering like vines. A rose to my lips and your face at every window, you shadow of my shadow, you the haunt I breathe as I sleep. It was quiet, the violence, when my veins began to rush with blood, ache for the pierce of your teeth.

The pitiful grace of you, smoke gray the empty eyes, the brutality of the things you do to me in the name of a love you have never known. I break as you force my petal mouth slow.

How insistent my desire opening the moon, how mad the redness of this fire.


// Stranger Dark //

You are so good to me, I press the words like secrets against your neck. You part my lips with your fingers and as my chin drips into your madness I catch a glimpse of the knives behind the eyes. A thin shimmer of blades, a sparkle in the way this will end badly for both of us but what are the endings if not the beginnings.

We have been here before, rough hands grazing my silk stomach. I know every move you make before you make it, I can practically sing to it. You, whistling for me in the darkness which cradles itself.

For all the sweetness hanging from the cliffs between us, threaded in honey currents beneath my fevered skin, poets only attempt to touch the things we know we cannot reach. Such arrogance, such hope. For all we expose even more is forbidden. We the fire in the ice in the raindrops trailing along your spine.

Time is a twisted punishment but you are so beautiful when you close your eyes.

This is love, this is lust, but this is not the answer. No such thing. Just the breathing out and breathing in, we are steel traps with ripening skin.

This is the life and death of the mind inside the mind, the body inside the body in constant rotation. There is nothing to see but the way we see it. Tomorrow is already here, beloved, (eating us eating us eating us) it’s the horizon which never comes.

Day breaks where loneliness mouths the word for freedom. Quiet fog in your glass house. Cherry wine in your torn up throat, blood washing itself in the curtains.

We will always be lost within a journey into our own abyss.
We will always go hungry feasting upon ourselves.


// Time After Time //

Wasn’t it just yesterday I wore my heart upon my sleeve, was I not a place where lace would become bone. Now I sit with the richest coffee in the bluest room in a house occupied mostly of wind. Poetry, golden leaves atop a broken crown. words falling all around me and my stomach knotted (the perfection of being bound) a braid of hope, desire and departure.

There is something in sensuality we will never touch.

It is what keeps us coming back to a thing we do not recognize save for in the cup of silence.

There is a place within us we clumsily reach out to touch
and it is crying, its tears are shed in reverse, we swallow them and glow with the blood of all the things we cannot make our own.

Even the flesh will leave the flesh
of itself. Mothers, infants, fathers who have buried their wives. Mothers and daughters and sons, turning in hand-linked circles. Children born of children under an exploding sky.

When I wash foamy upon your shores you do not see me. Woman as fish, woman as bird wing bent, woman as wave which curls like a soft breast underneath your palms, your feet, your tongue lapping at the edges of the sun.

There are those who can write of the way they feel in a way which collects the crowds, I sink behind them. Woman as sunset, woman as sea bed, woman as sandshell, woman as the length of an afternoon shadow as you walk in humid shapes alone.

The time for tea has come and fallen away, the time for dreaming has been nailed to the wall and stopped breathing.

My baby, what shall we pray for. A pale body and soft bones. To sail off upon the breeze and demand nothing of the water. To be untangled of hate and fall naked before the wild. Time wrapped around our necks like iron. The time before the time we’re after.


// This Is What I Love, This Right Here //

Along the dusted edges
of a world unknown
bodies trailing by
I walk as though a secret

as though a memory
an ivory mist between the fingers
a dream of a time to come
not promised, not spoken of.

We hold onto hope the way we bow our bright eyes into the fog, made in the image of ghosts, made of wisps of fading photograph delirium, the glow at the tips of fireflies against water in the dark. Reflections. Illusions. For everything we hold we wish were something else.

If we are not lovers, if we are not bound together by vein or tongue or country, if our visions eclipse each other but do not touch, then let the world be brought into eternal solitude, let the earth beneath my grass wet feet weep only to be alone. There is something here we refuse to see. Something intelligent, calling to us with its mouth, a wide gray ocean, fingers tearing open knees, rain pricks stiff along the neck beneath the trees.

And we drift, we are adrift, we grasp for what we cannot believe only to fall again upon ourselves. This is me against me. This is you against you, and every mirror is another hall. The rolling thunder of this bone longing, this desperation. Press your palms to mine, I can feel your heart bleeding into time. And as the sun turns down her body to blue sing the mountains to sleep, I am a wanderer inside for the way we do not see. A vessel for the silence crawling along the seams.


// When I Need You //

All the ways
I did not know
how to love you
catch fire in my throat

wounds poured into salt
along my matchstick tongue.
What was that beautiful pain
sewn to the hips of your acrid words

I open for the taste
of tears tucked under the edges
of my sleeves,
this heart for you

bleeds of longing
wet with need.

Bluegolden bruise,
there is nothing more sincere.

How the colour drinks its own skin
just to twist in the crush
of its thirst.
What is this poison

you treat me to.

In this darkness, I will write the sounds of you from the back of the voices in my body. I will close my mind around you as the twilight haunts the neighborhood, the streets underneath the sidewalk all lead to a single window, glowing full of the sky above your heart. My eyes close around your silence, sleeping in this dream of life, eternity in a cold black place without walls, a room without beginning on a bridge overlooking the end. Baby, where are we, where is it we are climbing to.

But you do not speak. Hair all shades of the wind.


// Bodies. Shadows. Servants. //

In the dream, pieces of the body and face were coming away, large portions of the jaw, craters of flesh had been removed from the arm and the leg. Hair was coming out in plastic clumps though I did not appear to be losing hair. The full breasts were bare and whole, the abdomen white and shining. Teeth were coming out. Fingers crumbling away. It became impossible to function with effectiveness in the world with a body which was apart from itself, disappearing, disintegrating. I had become a film of myself as if projected on a wall.

Upon waking the joy of feeling whole was a deep crimson warmth. Some visions reflect light, some absorb. We are a constant, though everything is birthed to be swallowed again by the waves of a sea which heaves and vanishes. Each curl, each star, each hand to the mouth, an opening. Many will interpret dreams, they will have their own words, their own made up diagnoses which if you listen will tear your throat away from your voice, the only voice you need will be severed, rusted. Sink inside and reach with your mind into the heart, unearth yourself, till your soil, your seed, drink your own rain water.

The being which is the self knows. The being which had been closed off again returns, quietly. The human creature can dig into its own body and resurrect the spirit of secrets, the gauzelike whispers of things we have held bound inside the tissue for centuries. The messages pounded and spread into us through anguish and ecstasy. Grinding of bones, wails of anger, greed, unfathomable torture and pleasure. Those things which float within us which we clutch and release, everything we reach for we reach for inside this place no one else can see. We are coming apart in ways we have yet to understand. Collectively, privately. We have not yet begun to touch all we are designed to touch. The falling out is the beginning. Where we crumble we consume ourselves; bodies, shadows, servants of light.