Tag Archives: friends

Ten Poems for February

1:
I bruise easy.
I found what looked like finger bruises on my forearm a few days later. I thought. I thought. Maybe one of the other people did that to me, the people I’d seen over the weekend. Who held me when I wasn’t watching.
But it wasn’t
It was me. I held my arm in front of the officers, hard enough and long enough to leave a bruise. Two bruises, my sisters noticed before I did.
They’re yellow and faded now.

2:
C’mon let’s remove those tentacles,
The ones that say you care.
First the one with the memories,
The ones tied to guilt and shame over the silly things you’ve done together,
Then the ones that thought you might be okay, normal,
And the ones that are embarrassment, wanting to do it right..
Finally all your little claws, talons, pieces, hopes, are all back where they belong.
All died like the succulents you water too much.
And we’ll go on as usual.
I’ll not ask for what I need.
I won’t have to learn how to build boundaries.
You can go collect spare tokens with the other partial memories of the boys who’ve loved me.

3:
So what if you’ve seen my body,
I haven’t bared my soul.
You can tell me my brother’s name,
But not how it feels to love him.
Maybe that’s something I’ll never get to share with someone else.
They’ll always be a part of me held back in trust,
That’s where all my optimism in life went,
Reserved from the cynic,
It sits in my heart, and promises we’ll open up for that perfect person
Who’ll love me perfectly.

4:
I have no doubt we make better friends than lovers.
Something about my canal being too tight,
And your lack of patience and finesse.
Maybe I can’t deal with your short height and children.
I’m too much for you,
That’s what you said.
That line you should never say to the depressed.
But we can make each other laugh,
And conversationally rhyme so easily.
Not as lovers, but as friends, we’d be good.
If I were safe and you were taken.

5:
I met a woman in the bathroom last night,
When I was the drunk woman handing out love in compliments the like of which I won’t give to people I love,
She had chains on as a shirt,
I told her she had beautiful nipples.
She said thank you, everyone else had just been staring.
And I continue to connect with the safe people, who I know I’ll only know for an instant.
The only time I’m honest is when I know there can’t be consequences.
And I’m worried I’m becoming dependent on something else to allow me to be myself.
Yesterday it was alcohol, today it was sleep deprivation.
I’m only proud of myself when I can turn part of my mind off.

6:
Maybe if I can tell you then I can tell him.
This is my name.
I was not raised in an emotionally healthy household.
I have abandonment issues, while at the same time am the victim of emotional abuse
And later in my life, sexual assault.
I am the child of parents with anxiety, depressive, and possibly schizophrenia.
For all intents and purposes, I am the child of an alcoholic.
No one ever taught me how to have boundaries
I have only recently learned these are a thing I’m allowed to have
I like things explained to me, because I like to understand.
I like to be right
I like to be safe.
I want to know you like me before I will let myself like you.
But, you’re practice, like so many before you.

7:
My fan can make a breeze and cause a change.
It does more than I do, laying here with a heating pad
But I turned on the fan.
Does that count as inciting action?
Or am I merely circulating already circulated air,
Trying to not smell like the boy who lay here,
Just like the fan,
Always reacting to someone else.

8:
The free food will be eaten or thrown away.
And all that worry about it will be for nothing,
Except creating new grooves in my brain patterns
That are friends to stress and worry,
About how quickly I can eat the food,
If I should have taken it from work,
And whether or not I’m taking up too much space in the refrigerator.

9:
To the women who upload romance novels online
So I can download them for free,
I love you.
I feel guilty for reading,
For downloading,
Even if I do often buy them in print.
But thank you.
For this love affair with the happily ever after,
Has gotten me through a couple bad nights,
Where I might have turn my addicts eye to something stronger
Than the printed love.

10:
Austin, Texas.
Why couldn’t I have gotten stuck up north where I was wanted?
Instead of here.
With all this muck of humanity in traffic on I-35.
And dirt and heat
People trying to be something.
I want my seasons to change. I want to date someone other than a software engineer who plays rocket league and drives a car with modifications.
I want authenticity that isn’t in the form of tacos.
I want to find the damn place I belong.

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Ten Poems (09-04-17)

all right guys. i’m having trouble writing. so we’re reinstating ten poems in twenty minutes, that way least i’m writing something.
welcome to day one.

 
1:
I’m working again
In an office that gives you free food and drink and snacks for the day.
What could be better?
I’m in a safe office. There’s a place to park.
The people are kind.
Short commute.
Good pay. Easy.
Easy work.
It’s not hard. It’s entering numbers, basically.
My bills are paid for once, without dipping into my savings.
And yet. Although. But. Wait. Hang on.

2:
Last summer when I had to take cold showers,
I would sing a song as loud as I could in my head.
While I got done what it was I needed to do.
I can’t think about it. If I do, I stop.
I keep hoping, it’ll get better, easier,
If I keep pushing myself to get it done.
Today, getting up will be easy,
Brushing my teeth won’t be climbing a mountain.
But I hiked a thousand stairs yesterday.
My legs are sore,
And I still can’t make myself brush my hair.

3:
No.
You don’t get to treat me this way.
I am not a person to be unsure about or around.
You’re with me or you’re not.
I don’t do half-washed certainties.
My ideas can be fluid and in motion.
My feelings are not.
You’re with me, or you’re out.
If you can’t make up your mind and ask.
I’m gone.
I offered.

4:
I told someone I wrote these.
For stranger friends to see my soul.
And I’ve had trouble writing ever since.

What I say in anonymity, is a comfort.
I process out loud; I need a bounce-back to think it through.
And when I don’t have that, I use you.
But the thought that my thinking, that what I might not feel, but what’s written, true.
Might be heard and exposed by someone,
Has shown me a coward,
And caused a lack of words.
I’m sorry.

5:
I live now with my sister and her husband.
She asked, how could we be stressful?
After living with Mom and her husband.
And I couldn’t answer.
She doesn’t remember all the damage she’s done.
Or the oddities I bear because of her.

She doesn’t see the strength of a weakness,
Or the person behind anti-social whatevers.
If you don’t shower there’s something wrong with you.
Because she can’t be wrong. Right?

6:
Let me tell you the truth.
I will erase this sentence after it’s written, but I have to keep it here to start writing.
I will make it perfect, but first I have to get it out. Then I can fix it.
This is a judgment free zone for the next fifteen minutes.
Write it, then fix it, but be true, and not cutesy.
Just start typing.

7:
At the blood bank to give blood for the first time,
I threw up at the reception desk, into her trash can,
From nerves. And because I had just hiked six miles of stairs in the Texas heat and humidity without enough water. Then I drank warm water I had waiting in the car, and took a bite of a granola bar that had been sitting there too long.

I called my mom.
She was the mom I remember.
The great mom.
Who was there for me.
To make me laugh, and make me feel better,
Tell me how great I am. That I’m superwoman.
And all I could think abut was that I don’t know what I’ll do when she’s gone.

8:
I don’t want to be boring. I don’t want to have done nothing.
But I don’t want to travel the world and use what I take from other people’s cultures as a way to make myself better, as a way to make myself more appealing to new people I meet.
I want to be important. But I won’t mistreat people. If you tell me I’m doing something wrong, if I’m hurting someone, I’ll stop.
I want someone to love me. But I want partnership. I don’t want to make all the decisions. I want to be the bridge partner who calls trump, and lets his partner lead, directing the flow of power from behind the scenes with well played strategy, silent strength, and smarter than you all.
I want to be able to support myself, and live alone, I want to find out how to make myself happy,
Without your help.

9:
If you can’t run with me,
I’ll never see you as an equal.
If you can’t go twelve-rounds arguing about why a zebra would be a better politician than a hippo, I don’t want to let you see me.
If you are too grounded to never admit you’re wrong, to never be corrected,
Or take a criticism with a nod and a you’re right,
Then I want to go back to my people, the friends I know.
Who will argue with me about the socio-controlling forces of the anarchistic traffic light,
Or at least smile while I ramble on.

10:
I’m scared you only love me without my filter.
That I’m Doug Stanhope, only funny without the alcohol.
When I’m not sleeping enough, and my brain can’t work well enough to work against me,
I can only then be myself, and only then loved.
But when my bricks are up full force, when I’ve slept and ate enough, I become a waiting game,
Waiting for me to go back to “normal.”

Leaving South

i left alaska. i’m back with my mom.

She drove and gave me another hug.
She gave me a hug twice.
And told me she has a lot of friends, but not a lot of good friends.
And I got on the boat.
And watched it pull away from the dock.
And as we left the rolling hills and pine trees of the pacific northwest,
Driving through the fog dusted mountains on 90,
I kept thinking, turn around, I’m going the wrong way,
This isn’t right.
But I left all the same.
And I cried by myself in the midship deck that used to be a bar,
Crashed on the curved blue couch in the back,
With everything I possesed right there.
Now I have to go to yoga, and move all my stuff out of storage,
And find a job,
And fix my car registration,
And file my taxes
And figure out what the hell to do about my friends and these people I seem to have acquired.
When I just want to hide.
And I want quiet.
And they didn’t give me whipped cream on my smoothie.

I got to Seattle,
And I said the trees don’t look right,
These aren’t my trees.
This isn’t the Tongass.
I want my forest back.
With all its scars and its danger.
It didn’t care that I was this thing,
It didn’t give me a second glance,
But kept going with it’s own life,
I can respect that.

I miss the salmon strips and chips car rides.
Riding out the road with loud music playing,
And one of us sitting in the middle back seat with their arms on the passenger rests
Eating smoked fish with our fingers, skin and all,
And passing around a bag of sunchips,
Talking with our mouths full,
About how much we loved each other.

I remember driving down killer hill at one of the 3 p.m. sunsets
And the world filled with orange,
I thought, it’s almost worth it.
To pay eight dollars a gallon for milk,
And not be able to buy fresh meat at the store.
To know none of these kids stand a chance.
I left on the ferry, going nowhere, back to my mother’s house,
I watched the new terminal pass behind the boat,
Until I couldn’t see the light,
Standing out there with only the die-hard smokers in the cold,
In the jacket I was wearing when we got stuck out the road.
I stood there undecided.

I don’t want my life, my year up north to be some memory I use,
I won’t expose those people, who were good to me,
I wouldn’t do that.
I want it to keep growing, I don’t wan to lose them.
But I didn’t want to stay by myself. I couldn’t.

Poems from My Day (3-1-17)

1:
You find the strong people because you can’t hurt the strong people.
When you’re sure you’re going to hurt someone,
Find the ones that are already bleeding,
It’s safer.

2:
I can’t believe she didn’t take responsibility for getting us stuck out the road.
She never apologized, or said it was her fault.
At the time, I didn’t think anything of it,
But I’m madder at her now, than I was in the freezing cold,
For getting us stuck out there.
You answer to yourself, if you’re uncomfortable stop.
You’re responsible for you.
Jesus.
Be a wimp, or don’t be a wimp, either way, own it.

3:
She just comes from a different world.
You know what?
I come from a different world.
So what you were privileged,
Own it don’t hide behind it.

4:
I bet she tells her boyfriend all about me,
God that’s so annoying to me,
Who’s such a private person.
She’s so much a – suffer in silence.
I went off last night,
On how much those people drive me nuts,
Something wrong? You say so, dammit.
I think I offended her,
Or she finally saw me as I am.
But I don’t care. Because I have nothing to lose.
Group me in with your low-lifes and your vagabonds,
Those people you’re trying to save,
Whatever you do, just leave me alone,
Or keep looking at me with pity, and a you could be better face,
I can deal with that.

5:
She’s so insecure and it drives me nuts,
You shouldn’t need group acceptance,
Be fine on your own,
Not everyone has to like you,
Not everyone will,
So make sure they like you for who you really are,
Not the woman you’re trying so hard to be.
I’m giving her too much credit, by spending so much time on her
With my words.

6:
She was right, I don’t know why we’re even friends with her,
I told her the Alaska line –
The you don’t have much choice in friends so you go with who’s left –
But I think she’s like me,
And will be lonely rather than deal with idiots

7:
She checked up on me
And asked me where I was
And asked me where I was going
And asked me what I got done today
Can I tell you how annoying of a girlfriend you make?
Everything in me has clenched fingernails into the palms saying,
Leave me alone.

8:
God she wanted to see me drunk,
So she could feel better about herself,
And have something else she would know about me,
Because she uses what she learns,
And loves it.

9:
I don’t have beautiful words or bangs, or things to tell you.
I wanted you to talk to me, more
So I could know you,
And I can’t punish you for the man I now know you to be,
Can I?
I don’t know.
I think I need to meet you when you’re being you.
No, that’s a lie.
I’d just need to meet you once, see you once, to know what kind of man you are.
It’s one of the nice benefits of abuse, you’re people reading meter is excellent.

10:
These women marry these idiot men
Men who can’t compete with them.
But they’re the ones that cook,
And the men are the ones who leave.
They don’t know how to take care of kids,
Or they can’t handle it.
The other moms don’t want to narc,
Even if we know that baby daddy is on drugs when he’s watching the kids.
If you don’t tell us we don’t have to know,
And care.

10 Poems from My Day (10-27)

these are a bit long. i’ll post lots of photos tomorrow to make up for it.

1:
I angered my sister via text about casserole.
I’ll tell you the story.
My father sent me money wrapped up in a church bulletin.
A line at the end of the page said, “You can sign up on the clipboard in the narthex.”
I sent it to my sister. “This has to be the most Presbyterian thing I’ve ever read.”
She said, “It just needs casserole.”
“I’m partial to ham loaf.”
Here’s when I messed up.
She said, something like “you know, tuna noodle casserole has always been one of my favorite things to eat. “
I sent back a one word reply.
Pagan.
Then it began. “Geez, I try to share one silly thing about myself with you and you make me feel bad about it.”
This right here is where I should I have apologized for hurting her feelings.
Instead. I said,
“That’s what you get for liking tuna noodle casserole.”

2:
She makes me feel alone.
I have a real problem with people who treat people like little things they can squish between their fingers.
I am not your caricature.
You will treat me as a human being, not a story to relate to your next roommate down the line.
I don’t know how you are a teacher, when you look so far down on anyone who needs to learn.
When you yourself are embarrassed to have more to figure out.
You talk, but it’s not the conversation I like to have,
It’s placemat placeholder placating blah-ness.
I told her, actually, I said, I love to have arguments,
When I can separate myself and just go with the logic,
I can argue a point, it feels like stretching my wings.
She doesn’t understand.
I always feel stupid after an argument, they always end badly, don’t you always win?
I don’t want to share myself anymore. I want to say, good you should feel stupid, it makes you want to learn, be better. Arguments can be so much fun, they can change your opinions. I’d say with an evenly matched partner, I win half the time.
She doesn’t understand.
I miss my friends, my friends who would push me,
And not talk to me about their Facebook headlines.
Maybe I am wrong, maybe it is better to never open yourself up to be wrong, to fight for what you know, to have to explain yourself.
Maybe it’s better to be safe where you are, to know people.

3:
My first thought on seeing a sex ramp was,
“Oh my god that must be so much better on your back.”
I took some quiz about fantasies,
Googled half of the questions.
I’m glad to know, though,
That some part of my conservative upbringing has stuck around.
It feels safer somehow, that I’m still the prude I was in High School.

4:
I called my brother for his birthday today.
Plastered on a smile and jumped up and down a few times in my doorframe,
So I could have the love to sing.
I said I was worried about turning into Mom.
He said we all turn into some part of our parents.
My sister got the fussy part,
Maybe you got the storytelling part.
Would it be so bad,
If all I did was narrate my life?

5:
I’ll explain myself here, where it’s safe.
I don’t know what I’m looking for,
But I want more.
I don’t know how to say what I need,
And for someone who tries to use her words,
That’s really frustrating.
I would love to depend on someone.
I don’t know what that looks like.
I’m so scared about sharing myself,
Because you’ll use it against me.
I have this window of vulnerability,
Before I shut people out,
And your door is closing.
I’m doing it on purpose,
I won’t say I’m sorry anymore.
I need you once you’ve gone to sleep.
I don’t know what we have in common,
I don’t know what I can offer you.
I’m waiting for you to get tired of me and ghost.

6:
Do you think after dating an alcoholic
I can’t tell when you’ve been drinking?
You touched my foot while I was doing yoga.
And said tickle tickle.

7:
I don’t trust doors.
I loved everything about this parting statement.
As the woman with the old lady white-hair fro
Walked into the wind, out of my path.

8:
It happens in a weird way,
There’s a guy you think is attractive,
But you don’t have feelings for yet,
You could though,
And someone brings him up,
Everything gets smushed together,
Suddenly, you want him to like you,
But you’ll only make the first move if you know.
I wish the world was bigger.

9:
There’s all these things I need to get myself to do,
And I can’t.
The list builds until I hate myself.
I have to wait till I’m angry,
Or have the courage,
To just plow through,
With my eyes closed,
And hope no one sees me.
Then it starts all over,
And I hate myself a little more for letting it happen again.

10:
Thought process. Goes like this.
Maybe my jokes are mean. I will just stay quiet.
They won’t like me because I’m quiet.
I want to leave.
I want her to stop talking.
I do not like this sam I am.
I put myself away in a corner of my mind so I could just be there,
Not have to be there.
Maybe it’s me, maybe I make her feel embarrassed.
But if I change me, am I still being honest?
She makes me feel embarrassed to be myself.
Do I do that to other people?
How much more do I have to watch myself?
I already try to be so careful.
I wonder if she knew I was angry.
Maybe they can read me easily,
Maybe I hide as much as I think I do.

Poems from My Day (10-18-16)

Eight poems for now. More later.

1:
I took a drive with her.
We’d never been by ourselves before.
I tell her I’m quiet, that’s nothing wrong,
Which is a lie,
She tells me she wants to know me,
Then plies me with peppermint schnapps.
She tells me about her last week in Anchorage,
Hanging out with the man she had an affair with,
Taking a bump at a strip club,
Looking for that someone who will
Make her better, into the person she thinks she should be.
She tells me about her High School English teacher,
Who wrote her a poem,
Saying she was just waiting to fly.
All I see is a dreamer, with three kids, a small house,
And too much to burn.

2:
Stop competing with me,
Please.
My name is listed on the undersides of game boards
With the date we played, and my final score.
I’ve had guys ask for my number.
I’m sorry you’re insecure.
There’s nothing here I’m trying to win.
My father sent me a gift in the mail,
She says she’s jealous.
I say it’s guilt money,
That’s nothing to hope for,
But I don’t think she believes me.
Whatever I have is worth it.

3:
You don’t ask my kids why they weren’t at church on Sunday.
They’re in a safe space here.
School grounds. Dammit.
You don’t pressure them here.
All my instincts said protect.
I hate this weakness. Oh if only I were in a bigger town,
If I was Kanye’s better, faster, stronger,
I’ll never have the guts to stop it when I see it.
I’m going to have to deal with this about myself.

4:
I drive on what’s left.
After the pot holes from sewage projects, rain, and only black gravel.
What’s left behind at the store after the barge comes through, and the rest of the community grabbed the fresh vegetables.
I love what’s left of the people they were.
I sleep on the bed from the woman who lived here before me,
Wearing clothes another dropped off at goodwill.

5:
What can I love of what a monster creates?
Who am I to judge?
Can’t I sing along with a woman?
Admire a painting?
Can’t I read something,
Someone terrible wrote,
And not celebrate them?
Or by not ignoring them,
Am I giving the virus-filled pages ad revenue?

6:
I have trouble dealing with insecure people,
I don’t think it’s because we have so much in common,
I think it’s because they can’t take a joke,
I can’t tease them,
I can’t push them,
And there’s no equality.

7:
Yesterday,
I sat on the couch,
My day off,
And ate the shortbread fresh from the oven,
Listened to Jazz at Massey Hall
And read a wallflower romance novel
In my new pair of Xtratufs.
I’d never been so happy with myself, or my life.

8:
I’m having trouble saying I need attention,
I want attention,
I feel like I’m just become nagging,
Like my mother.

Poems from My Day (8-23-16)

it’s a day to hide in a corner

1:
I didn’t understand people who bragged,
Until my brother decided to be a doctor.
I’m so proud of him.
I want him to do so well.
Is this how parents feel all the time?
I don’t want him hurt, but I want him smart, and happy.
I feel so bad for my mom. She’s been feeling this for years.

2:
I want to hide under the covers.
Cover me up in a corner.
Don’t make me go outside.
I’m weak today, and vulnerable,
Worse than vulnerable, I’m noodly,
I’m flexible, I’m not me, I’m not strong.
I want a big bear of a man to protect me.
I don’t really care right now if that makes me sexist.

3:
Why didn’t I hug those kids.
I should’ve hugged them, told them I loved them.
I’ve never met kids and wanted to take care of them before, I wanted to take them in and make sure they were okay.
I’ve never felt that before.
But their mom drank herself to death, and they’re going to live with their dad,
You know, which might be good for them,
Stability.
But I really liked them.
Damn.

4:
I was supposed to go to the capital this weekend.
They couldn’t get a plane here,
First the fog, then more weather.
I had all this built up energy ready to fly,
And I’m still on this island.
I won’t get to see my friends again before they leave.
One to Seattle, one who won’t be in my program anymore.
Damn.

5:
I can’t get out of my head today,
The space that says,
You’re doing everything wrong,
You can start that later.
I just want to sit and read to avoid the judgment.
That judgment that never leaves.

6:
There are very few people I like,
Even fewer that I love.
But, I think, for those people that are real friends,
I won’t let them walk off the deep end,
I guess there’s comfort in the power I have but don’t exert.
At least, I like to think there is.

7:
The first time I remember feeling claustrophobic
I was sitting in the crowded middle school cafeteria benches.
I sat on benches like those today,
And all the fear came back.
Funny how that works,
You never really leave your fears behind.

8:
He grew up with a different life than us.
He didn’t get yelled at for spending money.
I don’t know what that’s like.
He always got what he asked for.
He had all that attention.
He played all those sports.
He had all those friends.
He knew he was loved.

9:
She said if she had girls that looked like that
She’d keep them locked up.
I don’t know why this bothers me so much.
I think, first, that, you would keep kids locked up just based on their appearance,
Second that you assume bad things will happen to them,
Third, you think bad things will only, or only happen, to pretty people,
And lastly, that keeping them locked up will do any good.
Maybe there’s more reasons that bothers me, maybe it says more about me than her.