Tag Archives: drama

Six Poems (10-18-17)

my mother came to visit. expect general family analysis.

1:
Look at my sister with her husband, and her hobby,
Those degrees and prospects.
She deserves it, of course,
Of course.
I’d like to say, look at the support she got that I didn’t,
Look at the personality she got.
But I can’t shift blame away from myself.
I’m told, everyone does things in their own time,
But I want my timeline now.
She’ll never be an understanding person,
She’s never been friends with the rapist, instead of the assaulted.
But qualities of character don’t matter much,
When eight hours a day you get to spend doing something you like,
And I sit behind a combination sitting-standing desk staring at excel spreadsheets.

2:
Let me tell you how I’m doing.
I’m reading illegally downloaded romance novels on my macbook and changing the pages with my pinky because the rest of my fingers are Cheetos stained.
I’m hoping he texts me back.
I’m not applying to grad schools because I don’t have three people who would give me recommendation letters. It’s all my fault.
I’m crying all the time.
I’m dodging the volunteers lady from the community center because I had to watch the worst 2nd graders in the world for three hours, and I hated it. I’m not man enough to say I won’t go anymore.
My hair feels greasy.
I’m actively avoiding the boy who likes me because I think he’s ugly. Everyone needs a fallback right?
I can pay my bills.
I’m sneezing out pieces of dead grass from the music festival I went to. But I can say I’ve been to a concert now.
I’m so lonely. I want an adventure again. Or at least someone who lets me rest my head on their shoulder.

3:
I went to dinner with my mother, her husband.
My sister, her husband.
There was no one on my side. I wasn’t first for anyone at the table. Unless I made a fuss, then I could temporarily get bumped to the top of the list, ahead of my dying grandmother.
I want to be the reason someone else is there.
I’m not an afterthought. I’m important too. She tells herself quietly in her own head.
I need help to wake up tomorrow. I’m tired of my mother being proud of me for making it on my own.

4:
What am I doing wrong?
I should blame you for making me doubt myself. I’m told.
I must have done something wrong, that you won’t text me back,
You won’t try and make alternate plans when you tell me you’re busy.
I should drop it right here.
But I liked you. And I don’t meet hardly anyone I like.
And I thought?
But you never touched me. Maybe I confided too much? I shared too much of myself.
I should have planned better dates?
It’s just a difference in character. It’s nothing against me personally, I’m sure.
Even if he did set something up, maybe you would be the one to draw back.
He wouldn’t change just because you got what you wanted.
He’d still be this inconsistent.
But I really liked him.
And I can’t seem to stop myself.
Why does it hurt so much? It shouldn’t. It’s silly.
I’m being silly.
Suddenly I’m relating to jazz songs.
He probably has lots of plans. You can have lots of plans too. I bet. If you wanted. Not that you’d have anyone to go with you to them, because you can’t seem to find anyone who isn’t a ghost.
I can fix me, just tell me what to do. Well, damn, that’s pathetic. You don’t stand for this kind of nonsense. Men should treat you better than this.
Nod your head and move on.
Please?

5:
I should never have told my sister our mother pressures me into having children.
Now my sister thinks our mother thinks she’ll be a bad mom.
Not just once has she brought this up.
It was my mistake. Sharing. Sharing anything at all with my family.
It’s the thousand little winces that build up when you’re around them.
And I can’t do anything with them. They’re just piled on top of old wounds.

6:
It is not wrong to put feelings on a shelf.
My way of dealing with things is no worse or better than yours.
Please stop making me feel guilty for the way I process emotions.
I’m quiet dammit. I don’t like to explode. I don’t like to get angry. I want to think about it first.
I will resolve the issue when I want to.
It is possible to feel things later.
I don’t like your way of doing it, because somehow, it’s always me that ends up hurt from your blast radius.
I don’t think I’m sulking. I just need a minute.
Or I’ll let it go.
Please stop it. Let me be.

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Poems from My Week (6-6-16)

i went home back to where I’m from for my brother’s high school graduation. i was a mess the day I got back. i am more of a mess five days later.

1:
I can wish to be more than I am.
I pine for hardships that make better stories,
That suffering that gains me sympathy and somehow,
Magically,
Street cred,
But I can’t fabricate.
I can only show you what I am,
What I have,
Who I am,
Right now.
As faulty and sheltered,
As unwholesome and irreverent as I am,
I can be nothing other than myself.
I make no apologies for that,
Not anymore.

2:
I missed being touched.
God, he was so warm.
I wanted to make him portable,
So I could walk around all day, and always be warm.
If I ever become rich, I’ll always be warm,
And I’ll have blankets piled everywhere,
No one will touch my thermostat,
Warm.

3:
This is the mood.
The one I stay up all night reading on countertops waiting for the sun to rise.
I’m in that mood.

4:
Most of my life revolves around having to put a bra on.
As in,
Do I have to,
Right now,
And why.

5:
I am weak in a lot of ways.
Mostly, I won’t disagree with you out loud.
Because I know how it’ll end.
I’m always right.
So I’ll stay quiet.
Instead of confronting, which is what I should usually do.
It’s not the right way to go about things,
But it’s just about all I can do right now.
Take a seat, please, and watch me push you away.

6:
She collects movies she thinks she should watch, instead of the ones she likes.
This woman who is nice.
When she is authentic, as pasta sauce,
She shows her insecurities
In insulting me.

7:
I’m still pissed my sister thought she needed to tell me I’m smart.
It wasn’t the – I’m so proud of you because you’re smart.
It was the – I should tell her she’s smart because she needs the confidence boost.
My mother must have told my sister something I had confided in her,
About feeling unequal when we were younger,
Because I couldn’t keep up with the conversations she had with my father.
Great.
I had to find my self-worth on my own, thanks.
I haven’t needed it from you for years,
Nor do I need your approval, or look to you as a totem pole.
But I loved that condescending reminder of who you used to be to me.
I don’t have to prove a goddamned thing to you.
Let alone in waffle house.

8:
Oh my god I just looked at engagement rings online
Someone help me.
I’m reading about women who get pregnant.
Is this because I went back on facebook?
Did I do this?
Did I create a timeline in my head I have to follow? Kids. Marriage. Steady, plan-y things.
What the hell me.

9:
I need to give my brother a speech about consent,
Because no one else has.
If I can get him on the phone.
And he’ll listen.
It would have been nice if someone had given me that speech.
No a boy can’t do this to you.
And,
You have to say this out loud.

10:
Your wedding photos are terrible and it’s making me happy.
Bad lighting, bad composition,
Your husband’s ears are sticking out,
And his father looks significantly more handsome than your guy.
Damn.
Shouldda gone for him.
Also, you were mean to me in high school.

Poems from My Day (5-17)

these are decent

1:
Let me tell you about the scars I wish you had asked about
I listened as you told me all about yours.
The one from the bike crash where your atv fell into the creek, the one from you running into a pit full of sticks, the one you really should have gotten stitches for when you were little.
I didn’t get to talk about mine,
But I guess you can’t have it both ways,
You can’t hold back and then expect to be asked.
So I’ll keep my stories to myself, and pout,
No one wants to hear mine anyway.

2:
I had all these things built up to say to you in my mind,
I had all the ways I was going to act, all set up,
I knew how I was going to behave,
And say, and not say
I had my eye contact mapped out,
And I had topics planned.
And then you never came by.

3:
Let me tell you what happened. I’ll try to take my bias out.
As much as I can.
Somehow, she did it on purpose, or I let it happen on accident,
But she’s made me feel inferior,
Like I owe her something. i won’t stand for that.
She’s made me feel like I’m bad with people, bad at communicating,
Because we seem to misfire.
Like I’m not right enough, or good enough, somehow.
And then I went to the big city,
And I say city with quotes around it, remember I’m in Alaska,
And I got along so well with everyone, almost,
I remembered I’m pretty decent with people when I want to be
In the short term at least,
I’m kind of a failure long term,
But then again, I haven’t tried long term,
And as my mother would remind, you have that one chinese friend down where you went to college,
It was this great relief, to remember I can make friends, I can talk to people,
It’s not just me.

4:
The second I let myself be me, people look at me oddly,
And someone from my past shows up to laugh at me,
It’s awful.
I keep a tight leash.

5:
Me and alcohol have a weird thing going
I don’t crave it, but I don’t want to crave it, but I still want it,
But I’m proud of myself for not wanting it,
But I kind of want to drink it, but I won’t like it when I drink it,
Control.
I’ve seen too many people lose control.

6:
I’m about to spend two hundred dollars on produce that doesn’t go bad.
There. I did it. I clicked a few buttons online, and, groceries.
I’m trying to find foods I can take with me as lunch that won’t go bad without a refrigerator.
I need to go to the store for more bread, and vegetables, and meat, and eggs, and butter,
But my roommate hasn’t gone, and I don’t want to ask.
What am I going to do this summer, when she’s not here, and I have no car?
Hmm?
Die. I’m going to die.
Or just bike ride everywhere. Yeah. Right.
I need a car.
I can’t afford a car.

7:
I told Beth a little about my roommate’s romantic life,
I regret that.
I try to keep people’s people to myself.
But she asked,
And I think I wanted to share, cut her down a little, which I now feel guilty about.
I hope it doesn’t go anywhere.
This boy? She asked, don’t you mean this boy? No, that one. She’s dating that one.
I bet they’re related and I just insulted someone.
Shit.

8:
What an odd thing to say, “where is my dog?”
It shows such propriety.
She didn’t use her name, or say,
“Where’s the dog.”
My dog.
Like somehow, in the last two hours, I’d taken her away.

9:
I love how dogs hold a bone like they’re scared it’s going to run away.
I wish I held on to life that way.

10:
I want lightning. I want my anger to show up in the clouds.
But it rains, then sometimes, rains louder.
And there are 10 days when it’s clear and beautiful,
The only days you can convince people to live here.
That’s what they tell me,
When I’m visiting the city.

11:
I’m trying to write, I’m trying to explain what it was, how it felt,
Let me start over.
I chaperoned a high-school lock-in 9 p.m. to 9 a.m.
At 3:30 the leader lady (my roommate) split them up,
They didn’t have to be asleep, just in one of two rooms.
She asked me if I was going to sleep,
I told her I wasn’t sure.
I shut my eyes for maybe twenty minutes. My feet fell asleep.
I tried sleeping on the ground, it was too cold.
I tried sleeping in a ball, I am too fat.
I got up and read on my tiny iphone 4 in the hallway.
My roommate asked me, did you sleep?
A little, I said.
Lying.
Wow, she said. That’s amazing. She said.
You can do that. Control it like that.
What did you do in college I wanted to ask.
But, what I couldn’t tell her,
And what I guess, she’s never been exposed to,
Is
There are reasons people can’t sleep in groups they don’t trust.
I haven’t been able to fall asleep with another person in,
God what year is it?
8 years.
And she shamed me for it.

Poems from My Week (2/5)

One of these is for you. Yes you, goofball.

1:
There are those moments when people are in perfect sync.
It happens sometimes on the internet, when people presented with similar information react in similar ways.
My favorite appearance of it is in Mrs. Dalloway when both she and her husband understand each other for a moment.
I love that perfect comprehension without saying a word, even if it makes me lonely.

2:
This one’s for you. Don’t read it if you can’t take it.
I’m not sure why I’m so upset.
But, damn, am I upset.
So upset I started looking at wedding dresses to try and find some peace in picking apart the minor details in something someone else worked so hard to make.
You told me, wait, what did you tell me, because I can probably quote it verbatim.
I need to learn to control my emotions.
I think that’s what it was.
Well let’s over-analyze that, because really, what else am I good at, hmm?
Maybe you meant you didn’t want to hear me whine. But.
You made me cry, did you know that?
And then I got mad at myself for giving you that much.
I can’t decide if I should tell you why that hurts.
Or just cut and run and call it a sunk cost.
Did you know I was emotionally abused?
I don’t think you do. I don’t think you know how many years it took me, to be able to say my feelings are valid as they are. I am fine the way I am. They’re not wrong. Feelings can’t be wrong.
I can’t even type that without crying.
To tell me to control what I feel is to take me back there, when I was nothing but sand.
Did you know that?
Because you wouldn’t have said that.
You wouldn’t have hurt me on purpose.
Please.

3:
I’ve still never forgiven you
For the time when we were driving home from our every-other weekend with Dad,
and you made me feel guilty for not spending time with him,
and I cried, and you knew I was crying,
and Mom said nothing.
We were right outside town.
I’ll never forgive you for that.
I don’t care if it ruins me for the gold in heaven.
I’ll never forgive you for that.
For making me feel guilty for doing the same thing you’d done.

4:
I always put up these filters.
and when I take them down,
I think, I should leave these down all the time,
Then something I say beautifully gets used against me,
and they go back up with a few extra support bars,
And more space to cover.

5:
I’m the kind of person who says they don’t like to talk about themselves
But is still so insecure,
That if someone is interested, I’d love to be thought of as interesting.

6:
I’m sorry Mom.
I’m sorry your friend is dying.
I know you become closer to her because she’s dying of breast cancer.
And you’re worried you’ll die of breast cancer, because Grandma had breast cancer.
I’m sorry your fussing over this woman,
Didn’t take away your fear that this could have been you.
I’m sorry.

Dear R.P.H. (Letter #15)

I transcribed a series of handwritten letters I wrote, but never sent. Read the previous letters here.
This is the final letter I wrote to him. If I meet him again, I’ll let you know. Promise.

Dear R-

I think I’m closing this chapter of epistolic rants. Basta. Enough. For lack of anything better, I’m going to quote Leonard Cohen. “That’s all. I don’t even think of you that often.”

 

– All My Love

J

(8/20/15)

Dear R.P.H. (Letter #14)

I’m transcribing a series of handwritten letters I wrote, but never sent. Read the previous letters here.

Dear R-

Last time I’ll write you. I miss you now because I don’t feel anything for you anymore. Even when I think of you. Even when I remember the sweetest things you said to me.

And I miss feeling. It comes around so infrequently. Even the misery. I don’t think I’ll ever feel that much again. And I did not feel so much the first time, or in the first place.

I miss that you made me care. I don’t really miss you anymore. But, maybe I’m just saying that now, because I haven’t seen you again or been reminded, or had a little anything for someone else. Now there’s nothing. I look down at that little hole where you sat in my heart. It’s not sad or happy now. It’s just empty. I’m sad about that. But there’s nothing wrong with being sad. There never has been.

Dear R.P.H. (Letter #13)

I’m transcribing a series of handwritten letters I wrote, but never sent. Read the previous letters here.

Dear R-

I’m sorry I misled you. I did it because I thought you’d shut me out. But you’ve done that anyway. I could leave, and you’d never contact me again. It’d all be gone, in just that one second choice.

I reached too far. I actually liked something. And let you know I liked something. So it had to be taken away. Because I’m all wrong and don’t deserve it. God what a pity I am. Such a pity.