Tag Archives: written

Poems from My Day (5-10)

i had a day i thought would turn out better.

I bought a bike.
I purchased it in pieces.
I assembled as much as I could.
Perhaps I was overwhelmed.
It’s been sitting half done in the spare room.
That room smells like rubber now.
Hang on a second, I have to let the dog in.
Two people offered to help.
I can’t take them up on it.
I don’t know why.
I should be biking,
I’ll have to this summer,
Carless. When my ride goes back down to Montana.
I can’t seem to, get it done.
I stare at it.
I think, give me a little more time.
I think that about a lot of things,
Just give me a minute.
One more second.
A moment to figure it out.
I am the mud of spinning wheels.
I am death.
I don’t know what that means.
I should go to sleep.

I’m sad my clothes smell like the wet mold you get from not drying properly.
I don’t know how to fix this.
The dog, not my dog, the dog bangs at the door to come in.
She scratches.
Her owner taught her to breathe at the door.
Exhale, exhale, exhale.
She wants to come in.
I can’t hold out as long as my roommate.
The whining gets to me.
If I ever have a baby,
The same thing will probably happen.
I’ll be the weak one who’ll give into the cries.

The woman who works next to me read me part of a book today,
A children’s book about how to play nicely with others,
Something something brown colored pencil,
No one wanted to be around the thing because it was always negative.
Is that me?
I am a brown colored pencil that’s always angry and sad.
What does it mean about my adulthood that I take lessons from children’s picture books?
I self-censor when I keep my mouth shut.
Adult conversation isn’t all that advanced from when we were seven, I suppose.

A little kindergardener mimicked me in a mocking way today.
That hadn’t happened to me in years,
I wanted to call her a little shit,
But she’s a kindergardener.
I didn’t know what to do.
I was upset I was offended.
I have no coping mechanism for this.
It reminded me of the time I met a new girl in choir,
And the first thing she said to me was did I know my two front teeth were longer than all the others?
I’m aware.
That’s all I can ever say to bullies young and small.
I’m aware.

They look at me like they’re waiting for me to say something else.
I don’t know what.
That’s it.
I can come up with more to say.
If I were on a college campus it would be a day where everyone would look at me weird.
And the servers at the dining hall would cock their heads to the side.

I want to go home.
I use that phrase as a litmus test of how bad a day is going.
Oh man, I only thought that three times before lunch.
I have no home to go to.
It would be worse back there.
I tell myself.
You’d be within driving distance of your mother.
But it’s become a Monk’s chant.
I shower. I want to go home, I want to go home.
I cook. I want to go home, I want to go home.
I fall asleep, alone, after no one invited me out.
I pet the dog who can’t quite get her blind eyes to focus on my face.
I check my cell phone for messages.
I stretch familiar yoga poses in the dark.
I sing Prince songs I’ve heard a thousand times before.
I pretend to like the beer they’re drinking.

She was on the second floor of this office building off a boulevard right off the exit of the highway.
The building next door stood empty.
She is black,
I didn’t want that to be a thing,
But I think worrying about it was wrong,
I tried to be normal,
So I guess, that makes it just like all my other interactions with people,
Trying to pass as normal.
Not wanting anyone to hate me, so they won’t tell everyone else they hate me.


Poems from My Week (3/31)

i’ve been having trouble getting my thoughts together in one piece this week. so this week’s poems are structured a little differently to accommodate

I’ve learned that you need to be straightforward and honest.
Say what really happened, because otherwise you’ll forget what you were lying about, and it’ll slip out.
It’s less work for you in the long run, if you think of it that way.
Which is how I think of most things.
Like why I still go to church, and won’t tell my parents I don’t really believe.
It’s less work for me in the long run. Less to deal with.
My mom can make her own assumptions, but this way it doesn’t come between us. And it isn’t a thing.

I felt like I was a guinea pig, being used to see how a process would work, it’s not a good feeling, being a product. It’s really not.
It might make more money. But it makes me sad.
Because I don’t feel like me, I feel like I’ve reacted a certain way based on the circumstances you’ve place around me.
Unnatural. Forced.
There’s nothing I hate more than being told to feel something.

I understand now.
Why people bring little bits of things along with them.
It’s so something looks familiar.
It’s so unsettling. To have nothing you’re sure of. Nothing you already know.
When you know how it breaks, cracks, falls
It’s less to think about. You know how the bugs move.

I went to a funeral today, for a women whose kids were taken away.
She drank herself to death.
4th this year. In a town this size.
This place has a nice tradition. They wear the dead person’s favorite team’s jerseys to the funeral. I like that. I think if I died a few people would show up and wear some Colts stuff. It would mean a little bit of something to me. That’s some sense of community then.
Everyday I feel like a belong a little more, when I meet someone and think they would come to my funeral.
It’s like high school all over again.

I have so much trouble going to places where I’m supposed to feel a certain way.
I want to sit in the back and crack jokes, and be inappropriate.
I can do it at home, no consequences. I’m an asshole.
But here, everything is noticed, and it doesn’t work nearly as well.
And I haven’t found anyone to let my guard down against.
I have little hope I’ll find someone, who’ll let me be.

I’m so upset right now.
Why am I upset, the counselor in my head asks?
I’m upset because it is the final day on my contract,
And I had a final call with my supervisor.
This is the job I quit when I moved up here.
And she was rude.
She blamed me for not doing something I did.
I’m so angry.
Well, here’s what happened.
We scheduled a call for 9:30 a.m. EST
That means, 5:30 a.m. my time. I woke up early specially.
The guy who was supposed to be on the call never showed.
So instead we went over things that might need to happen.
There are two things to be sent for review.
During the one time I got to talk last call, she must have zoned out.
I am unlistened to. That’s frustrating.
Because I said what she’s getting mad about me over the phone.
I said out loud what was going on with the blogs.
Not only that, I added it to a physical document, then shared the document with her in two different ways.
You have no right to be mad at me.
I’m mad that she’s mad at me.
God, I’m so glad I left.
So, so, so, glad.
Literally you can complain about me all you want to your little friend, bad-mouth up to high-heaven, I did what I was supposed to do. When I couldn’t, I got out. What more do you want from me?
Uh-oh. I’m asking the question only jerks ask.

I feel like I’m waiting for a clock to run out of time, or finish that no one else can hear. My countdown isn’t on your timer.

I think, maybe, once I’m done with this year, I’ll stay rural. Maybe not Alaska rural. But rural. I like being this far away from my family. I like it.

Anyway, I’m trying to express what’s really there, and it’s not working.
I’m trying to open up.
But, there’s something blocking, something I can’t tell you or anyone else about, and that’s hard. I think it’s stopping me. I think I’m starting to sound like a lifetime commercial.

Screw it. I’ll tell you about it.
But it’s one of those, that I really hope gets buried in this pile of regular rubbish.
I’m trying to be open and honest here, because I am no where else.
A guy my roommate, new person, only person I know, introduced me to,
Helped me look for her dog,
Went out fishing with,
Invited himself over to hang out while she wasn’t here.
Everybody drinks here. They won’t eat processed foods, but they’ll drink rubbing alcohol.
He brought a backpack full of PBR.
We dyed easter eggs.
He touched my knee.
And I said I had to ask my friend before we went farther.
That didn’t work. But it didn’t go too far.
I feel so guilty.
It took me two days to tell her he was over here.
Then she asked little questions,
And I did what I do best,
I sound like an idiot and distract.
But, oh man. He was so warm. And there seems to always be a chill here.
The man in the iron mask was playing. And we watched chuck Norris.
And I’m a terrible person. I’m so alone.

I try so hard to be cool, calm, collected.
I just mess it up every single day.
I think, oh man, this time I won’t say anything.
And then I do.
Why do I say anything.

My dad said something a little racist on the phone, and I wasn’t sure what to do.

My new roommate said something interesting, she said, I wish there was a guide, one, two, three, four steps you could take to make it better. But there’s not. Not for when your parents drink themselves to death while you’re still young, still in high school. You didn’t live with her anymore. But still.

I did something wrong again. And I don’t know what. I keep messing up.
Can I have one day I do right?
It’ll be the day I sleep for 24 hours.

Poems from My Day (2-10)

i’m in a slightly bad mood today.

It’s so funny, you know, we’re both trying to be so proper,
And once we let our guards down,
We finally speak the same language,
But it’s not the words or the intonation,
It’s the feeling behind it,
That finally made it through the muck.

Why is it only the people who get support are the ones who ask for it?
Why don’t we support the quiet people.
They need it just as much, they’re just quieter.
Somehow it doesn’t seem fair.
My mom told me once, when she bought me dinner,
Fairness is really important to you isn’t it?
I didn’t know how to respond.

The Starbucks tax.
I should be able to deduct this.
It’s line item – the I need a place to work that isn’t here-
So I buy a coffee I don’t really want.
Sit in uncomfortable chairs, freeze any time the door opens and quietly sob.
My mom calls it the worker ant.
She can only work when she’s around other people who are getting stuff done.
When she was in law school she’d drive an extra hour to go work in the library because she’d be productive.
Huh. Why is it so frustrating that I’m the same why?
It shouldn’t be, but it is.

A short note to Miss Pasta
It’s been a year, I thought I’d check in.
I got myself a job with hard-won skills after working for free for a few months.
Thanks for believing in me, but more importantly, telling me you believed in me,
That was nice.
I think it helped a bit.
I know I did it myself. But still, I’d like to give credit where credit is due.
I like to think I succeeded in part because you were nice to me.
Even if your job said you had to.
Also I probably should have told you about my panic attacks.

About the boy I knew in high school who died of cancer.
You were a basketball star. You were tall, and handsome, and from a good family.
You were our first player drafted by a div 1 school.
From our tiny high school. You would dunk for fun.
You married a friend of mine, she wasn’t a good friend, but we got along.
She is best friends with your sister.
I didn’t really know you.
You would probably recognize me as a girl you went to high school with, but beyond that, nothing.
But you were an asshole to my friends, even if you weren’t 18 yet.
And you only got press because you were on the dream-run-team that made it to the march-madness finals one year. Golden.
And your wife was pretty, and you were pretty. Hometown goodness.
She started documenting when you got sick. It was terrible.
You died last week.
And all these people were up in arms.
I couldn’t find it to care.
Why are we supposed to care more about this guy? Because he could play sports.
Because he was big, and cool, and something of a lost star.
Why are you any different from all those other people’s family members who die of cancer?
Why are you asking me to care for you?
Because I went to high school with you?
Because you made noise in the news, because they said you were somebody?
But, wait, you say, it’s not my fault I got this press. Fine.
I still don’t think it’s right.
I’ve gotten yelled at for this.
with nasty looks.
Call me jealous, I very well might be.
But it doesn’t change the fact that the only reason you’re on the tv is because you could shoot ball. What about all those other families with babies in Riley? Why don’t they get money and coverage? Flat face. Flat reaction.
Sure I knew you guys in high school, sure it’s a shame, sure this city is really, in fact, incredibly small. And we like to come together to rally around something.
But couldn’t it have been something besides a sick basketball star?
This is a basketball state, no matter what the big football team tells you.
It doesn’t seem fair.
But I guess getting cancer and dying isn’t fair either.
You only get so much luck.
Poor sucker.

Put a human face on PR disasters that helps.
Even if it’s snitching.
Post it on Twitter.
This is the intern who didn’t relay the correct node and took down the telephone lines for three hours on a Monday morning.
He didn’t mean to.

I’m freezing cold in effing Starbucks.
Oh my god, my legs are so cold.
This conference call is going to suck. Why did ever leave my apartment?
It’s snowing. Quit opening the damn door.
Oh Jesus Christ, someone close the godforsaken portal to hell.
How is everyone else not shaking? It’s so damn cold.
That’s it. I’m putting my coat back on.
This has all been pointless.
Never before have I wanted a restaurant to be less busy. Stop coming in. Abandon your coffee. it’s two in the afternoon, you don’t really need it. Go away. Let me write in peace. Warm.
I’ve started irrationally hating every over-combed prick who comes in here.
And also insulting them for no good reason.
Someone stop me please.

I love watching impatient older ladies get stuck walking behind two young women.
The old lady isn’t sure what to do or how to pass them.
They’re talking right next to the door.
It’s hilarious. She’s stuck with her blonde poof hair and serious business, non-fleece or knitted scarf.
Waddling around, racecar hovering side-to-side, trying to find a way past.

Do people just randomly talk to cops?
This is so weird.
Oh my god this cop has the goofiest laugh.
And his laptop looks like it holds the business secrets of the world.
Or at least wouldn’t crack when he drops it chasing very serious suspects in suburbia.
I need to stop people watching.


p.s. i want an award for actually following my schedule for one week. see? new content monday – wednesday.

Poems from My Day (2-9)

Gravitas he lacks it.

I hate that I smile when I’m uncomfortable
I hate that I’ll think I’m stupid and know nothing in 5 years.
Please don’t ever talk to someone, pat them on the head, and think their problems are cute.

I kept telling myself if I get everything done I need to today,
Then I can do nothing and sleep.
Except I got almost everything done,
Felt guilty about not doing more,
And never got the break I was promised.

I hate being dependent on someone.
I feel obliged.
And I’m never sure what they’ll do with that obligation.
Like ask to let something slide,
Or tell me “it’s nothing,”
So we have something to hide together.

I feel like I worked all weekend.
And I didn’t get that day to do nothing.
Maybe I won’t ever get those days anymore.
But knowing that the last time I would have a free day, would be the last day,
Probably would have just added more pressure to have a good time,
Instead of increasing my bliss.
It’s like, the m&m can only be so good,
Even if you save the last one till twenty minutes after you finished the bag.

I have a new worst thing in the world.
It’s when someone does something wrong that effects you,
And gets mad at you for asking them to fix it.
Also known as payroll.

It’s the first time I’m being asked to sign a non-compete clause.
I’m vaguely offended.
But this company has always put business practices before doing the right thing,
Mind you, they tend to screw those up too.
Even if the founder would tell you different.
I’m going to get in trouble for writing that.

I deleted all my books
The ones you made fun of me for,
And now there’s no record I’d read them, or where I stopped reading them, or gave up.
I still want credit for them.
Because I so desperately don’t want everything to be for nothing.

But my handwriting is perfect.
That’s what my Mom told me she thought as soon as she checked into the hospital for stress exhaustion.
She told me this after I told her all my clothes are folded and put away.
And everything is perfect.
But the me is lacking in me.

Poems from My Day (1-26)

i’m moving across the country soon. did i mention?

My father has never been happier.
His little girl, forsaking the world of marketing,
High-profile, clients, ARR,
To take a year of her life and work for the good of the country.
First time he’s ever seemed full of pride since I graduated.
He’ll be able to make so many sermons out of this.

A pretty girl in middle school told me,
As she was trying to braid my hair,
That I had a sensitive head.
She didn’t think someone like me would be so soft.
To this day, I still have no idea what she meant.

Everyday I drive on the highway,
I have a second, a feeling,
Like I was a hairsbreadth away from crashing.
Some days, I think, I’ve lived my whole life like that.
Just this far away,
From walking in front of that car.

I’m sitting with my arms pinned in by people talking loudly on either side of me.
We’re in a basement of a crowded place, there’s alcohol, and the social necessity to talk.
Sitting on those kind of benches from 8th grade lunch.
It would take me a solid thirty seconds to get out.
And once I realize I’m starting to have a panic attack,
It makes it worse.
I got through it.
Then I sat in my car for twenty minutes in the parking garage with the lights off,
And cried.

I don’t like when people know things about me.
It’s mine to share.
I don’t know what you’ll do with it.
Probably hurt me.

Why am I so bad at the things I think I should be good at?
I want to be quick, nimble, and fast.
Smart and caustic.
But I feel slow all the time.
Behind, outdated, frumpy, and slow.

I got sick Sunday.
And went to work Monday morning.
And I’m not sure why.
It wasn’t loyalty.
I had so much to do.
And my sense of right, won’t let me do a bad job, at my job.
Even if they deserve it.

I told my sister once that she was selfish.
I think it was the only time I ever hurt her.
One count.
She brings it up every once in a while,
Expecting me to apologize, take it back.
But it’s the one hurt I’ve never been ashamed of,
It’s a pain I don’t mind causing.
Because it’s as true today as it was years ago.
She’s selfish.
And she’s hurt me so often, it seems like fair cosmic retribution
That I can have my pride on this one point.

Poems from My Day (1-5)

not intentionally dark

My mother was telling how she’s not had as many health problems late in life,
Because she never played sports when she was younger.
Never got hurt.
She has no bad, bum knee to contend with.
I guess because I never fell in love early,
I don’t have any wounds to take with me.
No scars and bumps,
From that at least.

If you tell me I need to have something done by a specific time,
with these requirements and these bullet points,
Then say, “go.”
Then you stare at me.
I might be able to finish a math problem.
If you tell me these things have to be done, and done well,
With passion,
And substance.
You can’t give me those restraints.

Here’s what you should say,
Get the basics done,
If you give me anything else,
Then, then, I work on my own, with my own thoughts,
Give me time to think about it.
And stretch.
That’s when it’s good.
It’s why I have to tell myself, when I try to start writing,
That I can go back and change the first line, that I can go back and make it perfect, because
Otherwise I’ll sit there and look at the screen or the paper
And freeze.

She was teased by her children,
For not being smart,
For not getting the joke,
For being out of it.
But, I noticed, when I got older,
I no longer pitied her,
Instead, I noticed all the ways she brought it upon herself,
Reveled in it,
Made it part of why you should like her.

I cannot tell you how much it bothers me
That the group with the highest percentage of college drop outs
Is mine.
White, female, from a rural area.
That was the first time I heard a statistic,
I wanted to change.
I felt the need to change.

The worst feeling in the world,
has to be when you’re writing a checklist
and you re-read the checklist,
to see you’ve written something twice

I keep getting older and seeing things I could’ve done
Ways I could have been smarter.
And now I see people my age
Who did it the other way
And are, by all accounts, turning out better.
Of course I compare.
How could I not?
And I keep thinking,
I’m going to be outdone forever.
I should do my own thing and be proud.
It’s hard to be proud when you want to be someone else.

Poems from My Weekend

really these should be called poems i wrote a sunday afternoon but scheduled for later
Dammit there was something I was going to say.
It was going to be good –
The best –
But I didn’t write it down.
“I’ll remember.”

Every once in a while,
I come across a word I’ve never written.
I check the spelling – I check the placement of the “e.”
I wonder how it is I’ve never written that before.
I determine to write more.

I met an old friend from college
With her advisors and the other two-year, grad students.
God, I’ve missed being around smart people.
Who will push me,
And not mock me for knowing too much about something they don’t.
God they weren’t trying to sell me anything, it was lovely.
They didn’t care about me –
and told me so.
God it was marvelous.
And he dismissed me once I told him I wasn’t going back to school.
God I love that – that ignorance of the practical necessities of every-day working.
Oh, the majesty.
I miss being told I’m stupid. I miss not having a reason to learn.

I want to start over.
I want to have the know I have now sometime else.

I’m never sure when the fears I have will continue, “for the rest of my life.”
My back hurts –
My ribs ache –
My knees creak –
I’ll always be alone.

My mother always says, “in the grand scheme of things.”
To give herself perspective. Like,
In the grand scheme of things, this decision I’m making right now isn’t important.
“And I just don’t want to ruin it for the rest of you.”
“I don’t want your memories to be bad.”
She seems fixated on the idea,
The importance of memories,
And not ruining them,
That will heal the old ones.

I interviewed and said I was good with people.
Then proceeded to be awkward for twenty minutes.