Behind the closed wooden door, he has the music playing as he soaks in the bath. Soft ambient sounds pulsing through the steamy air. I hear the water move when he moves and imagine his ocean blue eyes closed against the lavender heat.

I pour a second cup of dark roast coffee and read through some of my old poetry. Even though I recognize it, there are pieces that still manage to catch me off guard with their honesty. I understand why some actors never watch themselves on the big screen. It can be jarring to see yourself up so close. To observe the patterns and lines and curves of your own strange textures.

Sunday mornings are peaceful because we are lazy and cozy and naked. Make love for hours as the summery lilac breeze sifts in through the open bedroom windows and caresses our smooth bodies. It is all hazy glow and porcelain skin. Messy hair, wet open mouths. Seduction. Submission to desire, lust, pleasure. He sleeps heavy after. Always does.

Later we will swim. He will bring me chilled wine and I will thank him for it as if I owe him my life. Maybe, in truth, I do. Now R.E.M. is playing behind the closed door. The bath water moves again when he does. Losing my religion. I left religion behind a long time ago myself. I don’t make sacrifices anymore but I still remember a handful of the feast days. August 15th is the Assumption, for instance. The Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.

I never had any issues with Mary only with the way they treated her. I don’t starve myself or hate myself the way I used to back when I was a girl learning about all the things girls were bad at and bad for. Now I’m grown. I live my life the way I want which is not to say it’s right but only that it’s what I want.

You can surprise yourself when you come face to face with what you want. You may find that you thought you wanted something else, something better for you, or worse. You find yourself doing a thing repeatedly and you realize that if you keep choosing it, good or bad, it must be what you want.

We still sabotage plenty of our own chances at happiness about a thousand times in any given week. But on Sundays… on Sundays, every single thing we do is just so goddamn sweet.

My Hands Take the Shape of You

The windows frosted with fog, the air sweaty and smug, I lift my eyes toward the morning mist which hovers low in the trees. There is something about the very early part of the day, before it’s really the day yet. This time when you know the light is coming but even when it first appears it is so gentle as to almost be only a suggestion of any kind of time at all. Nothing is pressing yet. Everything is soft, hums with the possibility of elegance, and elegance only.

Lover is a soft word. It has no other way to be. It is soft in my mind and soft in expression on the page. Inside the poem. Rolling down off my tongue like smooth white sheets tumbling lazily from the bed. It has been quite some time since I held that word with any kind of care, any kind of tenderness.

It is ten years ago or maybe more, and I want to be so tough. I want to be the kind of invincible they promise I can be with the right lipstick and sky rocket heels. Love is for the needy. Fear does not exist. To think back on it now is a swollen type of sadness, nostalgia but also grief. The curtains sweep back into the room, gliding on the faint summer breeze, sweet grass and honeysuckle. The fizz of the dawn resting cool on my skin.

Before there was you, I would imagine myself without being able to picture my face, my hair, my body in motion, walking into a room. In my memories, I did not exist in form only in concept. But now I see clearly my own presence. I can see my body draped along the mattress, my face has its features, my hair has its cascading wave. Something about the way you see me, piercing like eyes of extraterrestrial nature. You observe with a keenness. An energy which penetrates, resists distraction with a pulsing, strange sort of ease.

I turn in bed. I reach for my glass of water. I remember you like missing someone I’ve never met. The image of you against my palms. My fingers along the hollow of my throat. My hands resemble the shape of you.

The Other is Ecstasy

I thought you would have known by now that I’m no good for you, baby. I’m no good the way I drag your heart out with my teeth.

You want to get up close. You want to crawl inside and taste me where it hurts.

When I let my mind wander it’s you like fire snaking through my veins, racing along my skin. You give me sex but I want feeling. I’ve been dead for so long now. I’m used to being alone with the black dress of night.

They give me work to do to stifle the screaming. Greenblue hum of glorified madness.

People are brick walls with no eyes, impossible to penetrate by softness of hand. Pain as startled liberation; violence to snatch you out of yourself and bring you back to life.

Early morning is gray like a tombstone and it is everywhere moaning its silence. I pour my coffee and fall from a storm cloud far off beyond the distant hills, the rushing of traffic and labyrinth halls which pulse their neon red sound.

There is a sadness we do not speak out loud

for fear of it killing us.

It burrows in.

You come to me like chimes at midnight. Spread my body upon cool grass. Using your thumbs you close my eyes. Choose your words carefully, baby. The dead are just sleeping – just dreams in your head. Touch me there. Kiss me at the gateway to this life like a prison.

Gatekeeper. God as Deadly Wanting. Holy Release.

One way out is pain. The other is ecstasy.

. . . .

I’ve been writing shit poetry in old beat up notebooks because I cannot seem to understand who I am at the moment. If I don’t write I go out of my mind, and I go out of my mind when I do, but I prefer the latter. The former is a suicidal masturbation. They don’t want you to write. They don’t want you to know yourself because if you do you will know them, too. See all the way the fuck inside. Find out we are all the same. Find out the secrets and destroy the game.

All the Way to Heaven

We push back against the blinking chaos, invisibly and without heart. The heart has been removed. You want to analyze and to turn me over and over like a mystery, you who are looking for something other than the sweet of my tongue, the salt of my mind.

Your arms around my bare summer shoulders. The scent of paradise is almost too much to take without crumbling beneath her enchanting fingers. The sea is calm and glittering in a hazy sunshine mist, waves slow to ripples against your naked feet. Shivers in the small curve of warm afternoon.

I am looking for messages on the sand, listening for voices in the wide blue distance. When this life calls to me she unfastens the knots in my chest. Flowers in the aching between my legs. We reach for her together, coaxing her supple petals, beads of nectar hot like sin.

At night we pour the drinks. At night we watch for stars to appear above us all around and speak about our dreams. Dark desires beating inside my skin. I wonder why living has to be so hard when the air is so soft it melts me with grace, melts me with elegance. Makes me numb enough to forget the pain is never more than a tear stain away.

Touch me in that way you do that lights a fire enough to get me high on flesh and bone and mouth. Press into me, make me open, turn me into something more beautiful than I am. Wreck me, take everything. My eyes like moonlight flashing along a black midnight ocean.

Maybe in the end none of anything will matter. I don’t belong here but I don’t want to go. I pray to something in which I once believed. Please give me something I can hold, feel like smooth cool stone in my palm. Keep like a golden locket dangling secretly between my breasts.

A single star flashes its sparkling particles across the vacant night sky and then disappears into dusted oblivion. Kiss me so the spinning stops. Stroke me so I can remember what pleasure feels like pulsing me out past the noise. Please just don’t let me disappear.

If It Pleases You

I watch his eyes for the things he may not know how to tell me but I need to know are there.

Bubbling up in his blood. Prickling all over his body like pebbles of hard rain on a stone gray ocean. I wear a tiny bit of lace, light the candles by the mirror like maybe I’ll be saved, anointed, forgiven.

I want to be soft and him to be savage tonight.

Fuck poetry. Poetry is murderous. Poetry tears you into shreds, makes you beg. If it’s worth anything, it kills. Makes you watch. Makes you a witness. Makes you a voyeur and a spy. Poetry is utter devastation. A haunted kind of life.

It has been a long time since I formed my mouth around a word like a vengeful god binds his wrath into a fist. Since I kissed you like a burning bruise.

Let you drown in the searing ache of wet rose madness for a while.

Now all your thoughts of me are swollen, ripe, and red.

All the color has drained from the head.

I like the way your jaw juts out from your thick neck. I like the way you force the taste onto my tongue.

My love is a brutally beautiful thing. Lavish with a suffocating kind of attention.

I watch his eyes as he does it. I watch like a snow white lamb for the glistening of teeth.

Watch him fuck all the pain out of me.

Take it. Cut the lights and skin my knees. Poetry is reckless. Poets are nothing but bottomless pits of need.

Love You So Hard

We slept in later than usual. My body and mind are both still sweetly tingling with the whispered press of our love making which we rode out from dusk til dawn like we used to do when we first met. We have been through so much, traced our way through the darkness of a time we thought would break us, and still you can make me blush, make me open, make me cry for the sheer depth of the beauty of it.

Out the bedroom window the rain is pouring down, a steady thorough rain, and there is a cool wind moving through the blood red maple leaves on the trees across the street. The birds sing wild little songs as I run my fingers through your soft blond hair.

I know I don’t say love because it sounds like nothing to me when I do. But I love you as if that meant more than any word could ever mean or contain or imply. I love you hard like the wet pavement takes the lashes of the rain without relent or protest. I love you until that cruel ridiculous word finally takes root in my limbs, an expansion bright as the sun which exhausts itself sliding through miles and miles of my thin bending veins.

At the beginning we didn’t believe it could happen. And when it wouldn’t let us go we didn’t want to trust in any of it, in anything that could ever hurt like hell again. But here you are kissing me and here I am tangled all over you and here we go clutching again and again and again like the world could end and the walls could crumble and the sky could burn and we would not stop. I could say love and you could say love but I think it just means that we will not stop. Not for anything.

Body for Sale

They can turn you into anything they want. You should know that going in but you won’t because they are good at tucking away all the signs. You won’t see the red flags. There are none. The red flags are shiny coins you collect along the way. It’s clever, really. You seek them out yourself. Compliments. Praise. A glance. A wink. A dark sensation which excites and terrifies you. A touch. A touch. A touch.

And you can trade that shit in for prizes. A certain kind-of attention. A certain kind-of power. A certain kind-of status. But you don’t realize that you aren’t the powerful one, you are not the owner of that power so much as you need to collect it coin by coin, bit by bit, from them. You may acquire some currency but they are the ones printing it in their basements to begin with. They can turn you into a collector, a trader, a black market, an employee. Even the play is work-for-hire.

You learn to roll with it, though, I mean sure I was a slutty thing, hungry, bright-eyed, electric and alive for whatever could jolt me out of the plain old hell I was living as an every day life. Yes, it’s a game rigged against you all the way to the end but some of it’s fun. I remember a time when all I wanted was to give every guy in the office a hard on. Part of that was about me trying to understand if I had power, if I was desirable, because that made me important and not invisible, not useless, not a throw away. Part of it was just that I was bored.

Life doesn’t always present you with all the options. They bank on you not thinking for yourself and buying into whatever their vision is for you. Husband, house, a bunch of kids. Now you hear all this bullshit about the need for millennials to have more babies or something? In order to stimulate or maintain or keep afloat the economy. This is hysterical to me in the grossest, most disturbed sense of the word hysterical. Hilarious also in its blatant transparency that all along women are essentially just fuck toys or baby-making machines.

Sound harsh?

When you spend your life collecting the flashy coins, you do it because you think it will make you rich, and you are compelled to do so even though it’s never really clear what ‘rich’ means. Or could mean. You think it will somehow – and granted you hadn’t worked out all the details entirely – buy you safety, protection, leverage, allow you some sort of confidence or freedom to live your life on your own terms.

The trouble comes when you realize that the currency you stashed away, all the ways you used your body in the hopes of liberating your soul, was actually debt. There is no end, there is no way out because all along the coins were red flags and the red flags were worthless. So you just have to keep selling yourself.


Hunger is the name of the day, seems to want to become the name of the day. She has told me I write like a kind of carnage. The wreckage of the pain on the page. No. The wreckage of the joy in the wound. She wants it inside of her like a cock, like a secret, like a needle.

She wants there to be blood. No. She wants to be able to taste the blood.

What I write I do not see but feel as a connection between myself and the passing of experience. The many connections to the tortures I want to feel mourning through my own flesh, crying though my whole body. No. Crying with my whole body.

Morning is a living creature which advances with its own brutal light. It forces, it blinds, it distorts. In its clutches, I am unable to see what scorches through my veins hot with need to see, that which lies beneath the surface of the obvious.

The light comes to murder us.

It can do so easily, no one accuses the plainness of the light. It is invisible in its visibility, this poison which fills and fills its stomach with its own desires. It takes and takes and takes

everything it sees.

And so we hide. We duck under the rocks to avoid the blow of the blade.

I trace my fingers along the shadows in her face, my skin soft along the hollow of her cheek. My wrist inside her warm wet mouth. I suck against it with my own cupped breathing. Pulse to pulse, we endure the slow waves of assault. Swallow the brutal elegance of the sin.

Sensation hot with the exquisite press of needing, wanting, the breaking point between infinite desire and the sweetness of complete destruction.

We want to write, we want to create, we want to know the feeling of surrender to a kind of innocence we once knew. No. We once were.

She takes her hand from my hand and moves it down along my panting, caressing. The wreckage of the beauty of the bruising. Of the ecstasy. No. Of the kill.

Body as Teeth

Lying inside of a crater on the moon, I stare up into the vast beauty of the star dusted galaxy and breathe steadier than I ever have. It’s weird without a body, you might think it would feel liberating but you still have sensation so it is difficult to trust what is happening. You still crave the feeling of being touched, of being boundaried, pressed, held against something else. I only know I am lying down because my vision is looking up. This is a dream I have often and sometimes I wish I’d never wake up.

But morning comes as it always does, dissolving itself into me as darkness sifts almost imperceptibly to light. If I do not take the hand of the early morning darkness and give myself to it before it evaporates, the daylight becomes far too much to bear.

I begin to write a poem about desire and stop. My obsessions can be choke holds and unless you are into that sort of thing you might feel like you are drowning, or dying, and hate it. Thrash against it, try to bite and hiss your way out of its clutch. Some people, though, weirdo creatures like me, we get off on that kind of suffocation. It can’t be explained just as it can’t be ignored no matter how hard you try. I know because, for years, I tried.

You think I will save you but I can’t even save myself so please don’t try to be a hero or ever, ever think that I might be. My skin-tight tights are only that and though they may look hot as hell they will only take you as far as the end of the world as you know it. Hot girls. Beautiful women. Pussy. Body parts. Sirens. Portals. Vixens. Death by ecstasy, raging to life against the friction of the meat.

We are born into bodies we learn to dissect. We learn to divide and divide and divide like cancer cells. Like disease. I like women who fixate. I like women who sink their fangs in and hold fast like feral animals to the bones they want. I see how they are crucified for becoming the very monsters they have been turned into against their own will. I see how they reach out and steal the only power they have been allowed in a game of life and death which has been rigged against them from birth, and fashion out of it weaponry. Bait.

We are chained to ourselves. We eat ourselves. We thieve from ourselves.

In dreams where I do not have a body, I still want to be touched. What is this kind of cruelty which invades the psyche so deep. What is this kind of incurable lust which we can’t admit fills and fills and fills us up.

Body as Decoy

My obsession loves me, maybe you hadn’t noticed. Or maybe you thought I was out of my mind to allow myself to be so crowded with greed. Although I will tell you this: it is not my fault. He found me on the street and I got turned around. He noticed my sinister stare and how I had been disturbed in a way that made me curious.

Perhaps you cannot see the way he sucks at my nipples, tweaks and flicks them until the shocks turn me into a humming, like tuning forks, before ringing the body like a bell.

It’s subtle, it’s subtle, like feeling up a girl in the back of a cab at 3am. Like a voice on the phone tries to finger you by using your hands.

I am a strange sound, crackling through dead leaves. I am on fire, on display. We like to look. We let them look. We are given a role to play and we want to play it well. I am reading the scripts hidden under a bed which is engulfed in flame.

He places his fingers upon my neck until the blood flutters against the skin, soft warm pulse, slender collar bone, traces of withering, feathered breath. I follow his fingers and crawl to the ground. I follow instruction. I eat the words and quiet down. I follow the flow of the motion of his perpetual eyes.

The coffee was hot at the office today before it turned cold, it was never going to be any good either way. How was your day, it was stale and I ate it. The traffic was crushing.

My mind is a bruise; my chest is a knot at the back of my shoulders. I swell and swell with unpeeled need.

He is edging me until I can no longer form a proper response, until my throat can only moan. He is taking me out toward the drowning I asked for myself only to leave me there, treading, treading. I feel divine like a maniac. Take me out past the body, out past the mind, out past the hurt, out past the pain.

Into the bluest blue void. Into the wide open heavenly sky.

Under his attentive coaxing, I am hot ripening, fruited sweat.

Like a soft wet pill on the smooth thick tongue of his fingers, I sway like a pendulum, beat like a metronome. He commands the music; turns my body and soul into song.

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