A collection of words for National Literature Month 2018 by Chiara Amisola.
When I was born I took a note, from Crosley and the bandwagon, to throw the skinny bookmark off the "Invisible Monsters" copy on the gray desk and table. Like driving late at night with strangers that share my name, under the fixation of a sound and the transatlantic symphony that takes me lonely once more. I leave my cigarette burns in the side of the pews, and a name barely visible in sticky note and peeling walls. A birth on the bad side of the internet, with old men reeling over intellectualism and offbeat VCRs, culminating in some shitshow where everything but me comes a star. I looked at an ashtray under my bed, the stain on my office chair, a reigning sense of dread in the balcony. Tell my friends the feeling of water pulling me whole, enveloping me and Eve and the holy water and the passport lost and gone and all the boys who dared think I could be salvaged. Teach a lesson in self-embalming, in praying myself pure like the only body I dissociate from could grapple with my face. In the restaurant bathroom, the panic attack and the pills unfound in the corner where they always were, I call him only so he may knock and the world returns. We seal out the bedroom window and no longer does the hypnic jerk tackle the breaking of my spine on those Tuesdays. Three days later I apologize, and always comes the only response. They say this crisis only comes when half-dead, so why mark my midlife at fifteen? The girl and envelope in hand, no life after twenty-one in sight, like astronomy and fractals are enough to burn a failed-out engineering degree. Like convincing myself there is enough to know in the world and I hold it all, picking myself up alone at night in the halls of a world I can no longer breathe in. My mother tells me to sleep tight, the same tongue before the frying pan burn to Zippy catastrophe in a letter trove. I run from my name and my body, with nowhere to rest.
My girlfriend is a writer, for teen magazines and lonely people. Bares herself, skin and brain, lets critics pick them out and waits nightly for emails telling her to go die. Frames lingerie with suicidal caption, begs media to be a mirror; I tell her I love her with her collarbone in my chest. My girlfriend is a writer, in an upper-class publishing house. New York Times approved, if that means anything. Goodreads devoured, I'm sure, no, I don't really read. It's something of a story about bulimia and narcissism from the 80s. Our words tend to disappear on weekends, mellow as they are. My girlfriend is a writer, the one on Tumblr. One-liners and Kaur would be jealous. Mason jars and lace shorts piled high in the 1400-square feet; Summer Salt and Clairo on the weekdays. We've done off-prescriptions since fourteen. I hold her hair for her in the festival porta potty. On Sundays, she cuts herself and hides in the bedroom. My girlfriend is a writer, voyage straight from the writers' workshop and international fellowship. Smokes my brain for me and tells me pretty words. I feel her veins like syllables, like every fuck is me piecing together another collection. Our life is in secret and that's how we do it. In the courtyard of Brooklyn and on daytrip to office hours. My girlfriend is a hollow vest; I learn her when convenient and pile subscriptions on the Paypal for diluted vases of toner for passing phases. My girlfriend learns submission, keeps quiet and rocks the night to Mara films or Danzig; I fall in love with her tragedies and look her in the eye--like every whisper in this moment and tugged bones will tell me this is why I write.
Take your body featherweight, listen to me when I whisper, "I want to disappear easy." My body grazes empty welcome of a bed, daily I sink and forget it all--my dreams momentary fragments I forget as easy as I do names. … Last February, "attachment" no longer picked itself towards me. Every feeling in between has come to apathy. I pray to nothing in particular; I baptize myself in cold water every morning sunrise. I try to be like a Christian: no meaning or serenity in life so I kiss wood and burn grain with the back of my tongue. … I touched the sun after you had left: it was everything we had promised and nothing like you'd become. On some days, I pretend the world isn't a gaseous golem succumbing to its own force. On others, I pretend these tiny ghosts in machines march monotonous again like the armada of clockwork: feeling nothing, pretending steel can sheer steel. … Two years later, I wept. I had never wanted to lose a thing, either. Though I no longer remember him--just some gaussian dance in a crowd. Home is no longer here, feelings are no longer here. Winding the gear was solely a timesink; something not even featherweight, that I dare bear for the rest of our march.
He often thinks about the type of narcotics it would take to get off this trip, to remove a name from his lips; only this sound. A room bare to witness public breakdown, hospice gauged to cross mortal man. Tell the poltergeist all your fears: darkness, death, submission. Refuse to listen about the possibilities of love in a mortuary, red band elevator ride ghost stories to girls in touch with their feelings. Say maturity like sin, think hard when asked what you do for fun. Pump gasoline without looking at the reflection lest sirens call your stomach out, make eighteen feel like nothing but juicebox and usage. Rhyme your own name with self-assisted homicide, keep the pill in all your hiding places--the only thing we've learned so well from running wild of spiked fathers and homebound wreckers. Say an excuse and play victim well: shut down all those who still have heart to fight.
Chase electricity with blind eyes to count the frets in hertz of a beat, adjudicated lonely by girls unintact as two years discarded on false rims. Pray my name like a whisper, like mutual confession on how we no longer believe in god or raise our skinny fists. Remember the sound of a name: each grapple with diction, self-imposed lisp to run syllable dry again and again. Teach me the way ordinary burns a magnet, a crescendo, a burial at touch; how sand runs fast with the descent of our knees. How no one knows how anger can mesh, how film can dictate a fall so fast; an ensign running on ash, a vow on how long it lasts, a birth laden from conjugal visits to highway rides to all I can ask.
When I was twelve years old I sat down on a Spongebob-covered comforter where my mother offered me the one-ply tissue, told me I meant nothing and my name synonymous with financial burden. I would call myself Lady Bird and throw the National Bookstore-bought Yellow Pad out the window, into the street flurry for jeepneys to run over and small starving bodies to piss on. I would call myself that except the sound of my name unleashes tired instinct to brace myself, brace for impact, brace for wood; it is in this same line of abuse that I let it happen all over again. I say sorry, I can't afford two days without eating but would have killed myself with the razorblade to free us from the IV drip that night. My name is put on a pedestal: they are running out of ways to hate me; this is an uproar in narcissism, I think I'm impossible to do so. The spinning of the world raptures. No longer do I believe in God, and this time I tell them. No longer do I need him to walk, no dizzy alcoholic coughing blood to desecrate my name. No makeup covers the cuts on my left arm. No time to tell him that I am the greatest mistake and in spite of rather than because of becomes sacramental key to my name. No time to entomb myself or discover the tombstone, no time to run around empty house, judged by a bedroom count from sperm donors to unwanted tenants. I still hear the hum of Manila television. I still hear the sound of seventeen on the turnstile of life wishing that I never was because of reasons other than his.
CANTO I a girl is born under a ceiling fan or gun; she cries amidst lavender oil and robes of bleach against adderall. her head, swung back, the lights or roadways the sole thought before the collision. i can become every ember of death itself: and before she is born it is as if her mother swears every anxiety to her. every misstep in dissonance. every reason to fall. CANTO II momentum—the first day of fourth grade where her socks tear holes and her tears mend her whole and the stomach dies empty and insideout her memory. "this is the tragedy before you know it," like some warning sign to befall all of man before we are to even know what we possibly could become CANTO III a girl plans a suicide; she is to become a martyr. there are no heroes in this story. tondo is still left with the lights of the alleyway on, a crevice at age two all i could become was the wall and the capacity and the potential to be who i want to be and kill who i want to kill if i had known the master or the monster or the mystery then the mister would be wiser and the mother a morbid widow flaking in the memoirs of her passing. at age sixteen i still nestle myself down suck my thumb and stick fingers in blenders like how i forgo mirrors and rub my own blood over my skin in the shower and in this time all i could become was myself and nothing can kill this nothing can be this i can be nothing
and the lord said i want to bleed out in a bathroom stall. syringe of electricity seeping from the collar with dead skin of cold boys tugging at coke cans. with the third day, blisters on knees and all—disobedience a reminder of false hallways with running bills. the boy holding his own body, feeding himself whole: like emancipation wrought on suicide. and the lord said let there be light, let there be girls hollow from porcelain, let there be dying pacemakers holding the last laps of these generations, let there be ugly sobbing in the book's second canto, let there be art in the body of the deceased and do this all in memory of me.
of whom i march into death with; oh, whom i quake into hell with, recite after me: a bloodstained homage to our generation. a homage to the plight of the defiant, the conformists, of apathy-laden young boys and girls crooked on growing pains and lies. a homage to the existentialist, objectivist stewards burnt on pedestals of tomorrow. a homage to the crackheads at dawn, morning intoxication where i pit my bones against my bones for strangers in the dawn of bloodfest yesterday. a homage to my tongue, still stinging of bronze and nylon rope; eyes that have drowned in walkthrough to hell and mind that is blessed with the perpetual idea of the biggest sin of all --hands that await a magic trick, a flicker into a tombstone. a homage to the deus ex machina of death, i reborn a glass conquered of mountain and gods underneath silhouettes of moonlight tables roundabout corners of the bible. a homage to howl, an ode to a generation bent n' fucked over backwards undeserving of the litany praise discouraged in its throes we are the immutable scrutiny born of southside american dreamers and northside hazmat seekers, tearing the roof off from Bellevue and wishing our goodbyes juxtapose the frenzy we have left behind in the daylight drear of mahogany and fervor; where christian men and they raylight transgressors be born again in the lake of lux. cascade yourself once more as i have split apart the sea from Charlemagne, i ran the pythius drone of the sea from three years yonder. i set sail to the west coast, brink of self-extinction with tar and shackles cuffed to the tips of my hair. when i went under i tasted the tinge of frostbite and the boiling blessing of brokeback coins on people who have always wanted to try but never made it anywhere, calculating devastation concocted hellfire off the riverbank of Chicago, unrequited love on the white sweater cuff off the second column, fourth row; the daze of my eyes glinted on the light falling apart and breaking beyond cliffhanger signs and bridges that bring the edge of tomorrow, rise against Madagascar fury and loneliness, the kind where we joke about alcohol and cigarettes and play around with the former and stray away from the latter, where we feign innocence and suicidal tendencies on the hotel room balcony and say a prayer to the night sky that has never loved as just as we loved it, we spill out our emptiness to the stars. we divulge in it, our secrets spinning like comets crashing down in systematic waves following through to the ends of the world, conquested the south barrier of binding bush where apostolic gurneys drag on cohorts and candlewax, burn our teeth on amphetamines and Ativan, banned bottles of benzios bouncing of the room our anti-depressants are the only love we have ever known the lines and lines of words that they cannot read are the only conversations i have ever had they are the only times i have spilled my devotion out and my eternity out and my whole being out into text and words and chapters and literature converged of semicolons and quotation marks, i grew up not thinking of my hometown, or the street, the empty vacant lots or the flickering lights in the afterlife of the party. grew up with the hues of the cars hurtling at my bedroom window, blue light bearing witness to my sadness and blue voyage burning bridges for barters with gangrels and hostages. concrete fucked the crosswalk stopwalk cherry blossom avenue that i used to call home like teenage vows in lost parking lots or childhood time waxed and waned and ass shown in front of webcams instead of scarring arms and calves on grilled wire and pavement, i grew up with virtual boyfriends and plastic breasts (or the wish of such), pouring my feelings out into empty ethernet cables and dancing in the hellfire of adolescence and youth watched my nation impaled dead and hollow hostile on its own lands, closed walled cities but open ass with this foul of a president gorging himself into every orifice armed with remington 870 pretend myself alive in hawthorne where costco comes waltermart and michaels comes luisitas bookstore where no longer do i have to hear gastropub or nightlife or smoglife or cars in eternal orgy in the lanes of a skyway damned lost all salvation in catholic school and learned to no longer believe god there too, perhaps it was religious studies or hands lifting her hair in the bathroom stall or the casual juicebox sipping stranger laughing maniacally at the premise of communion bread alone or the boy crushing the unleavened flesh in his mouth and spitting it into the trashcan where the only sin was that it was found believe me again lost and alcoholic of mountain dew and command lines in a pile of shit over at connecticut, raise me honest on kraft and goldfish crackers and crack teach me how to miss myself in a dormroom with no mirror except for the one cracked and donned with matte cherry chapstick and condom wrappers dancing in the first snow i've ever seen and ever wrapped myself under believe me with thighs like weapons and salvia tucked and skirts hacked off and shot at men. make me wish life was simple off on cigarette lane or under library named after off-shore chinese billionaire. pretend i'm pure and vanilla again at cannes or sundance, make me whole in the face of refrigerator-induced anorexia where hollow boys point me down at gunpoint living off vending machine tampons and coffee recite to me my will my diary my existence my twitter feed while i ravage my lungs dead blurry a hazmat excuse for believing a girl on narcotics and narcissism raised on false delusions and cultists, give me reason for existence on a ledge of god or off cliff give me every reason not to jump jagged into fire when we breathe through this everyday give me reason to hold on and call this something. tell my story on fatbox tvs and projector screen, reel me into the children who believe in inherently bad governments and gma standing for dead presidents in conical comical situations pray for me wrecked even when i am of the wretched see me standing in the aisle of every convoluted government line wait for me there. wait for me again.
Illinois is where I shall settle down: in a house with tinted windows and thinned walls yet bare of the sound of a father scraping his lungs. My charisma shall finally be as whole as the man on the television—fake and edging on the carseat. Your name still slips when I wish him love, and I remake my name but still replay it all in my head. Bilingualism flailing, the nook of all I have to leave, the internet teaching me to clean a blade after the deed as if this wasn't close enough to death anyway. My love is rooted in the thesaurus; I teach the boy "sempiternal" and he teaches me "alive". Cassettes turn like wildfire, in scrawling desperation of expiring reels. Tell myself to love as I was unafraid at thirteen, that is to say, none at all. A room creaks of empty conversation and diluted phone calls; your voice at seventeen the one I place in front of the mute holiday greetings. My words stretch across the Atlantic, yours all lonesome and so longed. Again, in the sojourn, settled as strangers and memoirs; Evanston's skies alit with planes. Like halfway across the world can make what is empty whole, like bare bones and plastic creaks may substitute two years too soon.
The girl in the mirror is a visage: holding the remnants of her body as tomb to destruct. Our dictionary can only hold so much combinations and sequences until the originality of skin-on-skin here is a mere replica of some other. Maybe the stretch marks of a heart cascaded to strangers or embroidery of a nickname licked serenade underneath streetlamps and parking posts tell the only signs of what this was. Idealizing the lover with hands full and powdered knuckles gashing words and running headfirst gives unneeded symphony. I feel all the lost sounds in sober daylight, repetition a contusion until this love is the only thing that makes sense. Me, hovering over the hospital bed and burning down our ensigns, a love glazed like flickering television and regrets marred by motel signs. This, as innocent as it can get when you beg for the word forever to be more than a peace offering. As if only coffins can hold the baggage blaze under our sheets, the cemented sigh of broken on broken, the whisper of this is all there ever was and ever will be.
In this heat, lonely is solely a homonym for the departed. The daughter speaks like a vortex: some say the hymn is all hers. A blown mirror rests on tightened ribs: deconstruction of all the nicotine could never be. The man walks rancid and on fake sovereignty for glass eyes. The demand calls for her on her knees, stripped of lock and sweat—we can only exist under the same name when you walk under mine. Ombres culling of her shadow pull infractions at the nook of brown-pushed lips; rhyming purity with scandal until a voice dares to say not this. Not this in the nook of tomorrow, in cigarette burns turned innocence with the hand mauling of alcohol and rage. In this country, divorce is a taboo that sets names ablaze. It is a slow burn instead where only pressure brings us to fusion. A man prays with gas lamp on the ensign; he scorns association with the girl marked of his blood. She no longer calls for it, she no longer breeds for the bob of atheists and rum. The vortex encapsulates a world wherein home calls a frequent silhouette. Her hair is not of blight but the darkest paths gone down, a man cannot call the coo of her mouth as he seeks to engorge. Prying himself in the voyage against her shell: a girl cannot succumb to a boy lying in tie and seats—the world is not yours with the curtains drawn. / Disfiguration is stretched hip in bone across the fountain tops in a world away. Religion comes at convenience, crossed arms, carseat burns, and empty eyes. Desecration in the name of all who had believed and all. This is the only magic he knows. Creation and destruction solely by words; heaving disgust and clockwork like a birthmaker ought to lapse. As if every woman lives on the nook of the world and it is his sole duty to right them all as a lone daughter watches self-proclaimed god down alcohol and fall.
Underneath tired sundown and the statuette of Mary he paints a warning sign on my neck, a traipse of purple-red in the slow collision. "I cannot feel a thing." I remember his words frozen in the blessing of Manila. Our sweat dons like rosaries, his sisters cry of loss and unfamiliarity. I still remember his name and the vestige of a girl whole, the suicide note tucked in stained skirts. All I needed was the voice again, on the ledge out in the southbound or safety in the whims of a dream. I call my will out in empty profile and sink deep again. I rinse my hands and let the cuffs of my skirt fall; I embrace it in coal and never say his name again.
Under the light or not, muscle memory dictates the freezing of my hands: they open up like a hollow widow. Gaps in my veins allow for portrait portrayal– girl in empty coat, dancing on stilts of black. Vortex unsound and neurosis waiting in the bonds tugged by mental ills. Loves barred solely by fabric, a city alive on the throes of stilts seized by the quake of the night. Three months is enough to wither, break, disappear– and I, the matter of the living where it is understanding what it means to exist for us to truly live. It is the chord sung from a name, intonation the sonata of phonemes and other phenomena; rivalry poised of nightingale and the transparent cavalry of planes in night sky. Love is a cascade left on empty lots and trailed by cigarette stains. Pretense of meaning to a world devoid of such: the grand piano I beg to touch, letting go of familiarity and comfort in silk skin and rough vein of a crowd unknown. "I wish to play– as we all do." Crossing the interstate to interference of a beat; intonation a mere surrender to captivity in a lonely place, where the organ shelved by the friar who kisses the sea again. No melody is sound at the bottom. Foam is the marsh and this place the rest of the children who had all drowned.
Bombed down the west with only a reflecting gun: hear quietly suburbia on its last knees, begging to depart. A boy empties his stomach, turns it with sleight just like feigned apathy; it begins with the fervor of doubt, a synonym for we were never meant to be here. Your hands outstretched, all over Temple Street, wicket and expiry count clasped in your chest. Tomorrow is the day deribbed, love let known for solely the end of times--like history in its still, or calendar embrace over miles of landline. I cut the sinew with razor and sorrow: only man can be man once made of nothing. Only solace can forgive the repetition of my gaslight; chamber in the stall or lit lone man standing. I watch you cut down nicotine and metal from seven thousand miles away. I light the life down on the street, with rain and mercy and the spool tied; in the absolution of luminance I once again tell you that I would have walked through hell with bare feet, like everything I had ever needed comes with blight ravaged on her hollow vest.
Gloria is the sound of my thighs, cleansing a body hollow like chasing ghasts on countertops, ricochet towards a fever dream where cities walk dead on river drive with the believers on the harbor. Spot carcasses or spoon them; desolation intrepid on a bed—ribbed sequences or echo under the cusp of a chamber. This is Gloria for the people and all Her memories I failed to salvage. A boy decked on roadside, let him offer a gun in this heat. I chased empiricism in a backseat, beat Kerouac from a bedroom. Chase sundown against her hail, the stellar vow of the unknown lost in the purity amongst living. We swept Gloria for the lonely, concealing his vagabond wept for me to believe in a thing again. Try the harbor or washed solstice, as skies alone never suffice. Seek time and time again, cross scarred for the bedlam where theists come so ideal can fall. Gloria for pen of man praying for finality’s lapse before it can even come. Gloria for the gangrel felled stuck on a tombstone.
exploration into the last chapter four-hundred men marched westward last sunday, decked with lace and thursday sung a memory of the past. hear their elbows clashing in unison, wind bellowing their shoulders, ruffling in discontent. then a beast frolicking in the shades of the moon, vestige carried of human familiarity, bested the worst and the worst the greatest; in thunderclaps or the storm drain feel the guts from yesterday relapse, oozed from bargain prestige with life in its discontinuities, or so they say. remove the laughter, balcony and its hollowness, her chamber doors and mellowness--the lull at the death of the world is only a place for the end. seize man and his rally, proclaim a savior in the common man. knock three-heads and ask why god destroys that whom he loves; when i had suffered i live only to sacrifice and not to torment. my benevolence is everresting patience, persecution of the live, ranchor in the token word. teach me in precision my saturation or my gear. force the sky in its setting the world at 2pm is alive and unrestrained. best the ghouls of the unforgiving, give the gift of another try.
Monday sounded heavily faint of leaving; the noxious pull of irregularity timed— not with a bang, but with the breaking of it all. Let me teach you how every single person can be their best and still spend life trying to come whole: let me teach you that the notion of completeness is just another void. Like the way you look for me in every single body, in the passing crowd, in the lingering familiarity that you will never quite pull together. It's equally improbable for us to part as we were when we were together. You repeating your mistakes, saying her name, face the inevitability—pretend you know it, tell your parents it was on you; it really was. Deconstruct her fond words, shiver again, can you imagine the carapace you've laid yourself down on? If amnesia is the poison and chronic emptiness the tool; one on hyperfixation and the other on regret. We name these things only so we can attach ourselves to something else; learn how humanity is history inscribed on tongues and virulent warnings. A body is just as good of a prophecy, like a gun sketched on the nook of a neck practically as devastating. "You were never there at all, and other things we're tired of reiterating."
Down now, like the designated series of concubines—three-feet depression over pavement reason. Leap slowly, cover your eyes, wait for the gasket to burst out: this is destruction of all streets you have known. Erasure, or the preparation of such; removal of the memoir written cautiously in the high school bathroom mirror. Co-existence in this constabulary involves (not the lingering of a name but) ivy-tested sun buried on the outskirts of the drain. It's gasproof and irony, draw a map out of impulse no wonder every city we burn leaves this in its wake. Grit your skin, envelop a body (not your body) in another; consecrate the wounds—let the stranger in the crevice of your hipbone. Worry far, the flared ruin to upskirts unmolding your scars hold a city I no longer seek. Come where we have built all your epiphanies and time-tossed words— in the crevice of lace and lies, I am open and outwards. A transparency my mother would envy, or: creation mustered in a shell we no longer speak to. Breathe deeply, this is your one life. Cordial is the tomb we built, namesake of glass ligament and static. Sit yourself down, clasp a window, furrow against the storm drain. Bury breathless, half-done, teach this empire a number to feel; like understanding presence in the departed.
Human evolution, the product of our genes and bodies racing against the transgression of elements: the self-written history or handmarked tutorial--please do not let yourself fall victim to one another. It is too late now; this is why Jesus condemned science, why man argues knowledge. Make razor blades to catch a fire captive, slice a body--let bits of space unravel, then at the same time walk the earth with hollow shells and let the church say evolution is another fraud. I cannot love you to infinity: we have yet to discover it. Propulsion becomes additional terms to never describe a human: only what we create. Marked, like the kisses left on silk bodice. Your puberty and sinew stiffening mocked nightly; it is 13.8 billion years and mother bares the fanfare of societal construct. Languid strands of hair that the stars have kissed for my flesh, the product of infinities and uncertainties to be bound in a cradle of homeshed safety--my mother to teach me the usage of the razor blade. Then, secularity for human skill of severance, synonymous for development, akin of where would god exist if not here? Let the wise men wander again, perhaps find king cleanshaven, ear to childlock radio. Find the product of evolution, tell me truly if a man could pray for the fallen: no gospel choir in the pretense of holy or oil-slicked whisper would bathe me free of sin, tell me the altar secret of severance in the gospel light of your room--trace the white marks, tell me again why we search for god when we have this.
My bedroom has extended an open invitation to the guttural sound of my wrists twisting, archaic rumbling, vindication taught from the television, the world bends and empties a crevice on the concrete: compensation for a woman's story. Does the bruise on your palm tell a story? No, but perhaps the bodies hanging on the clothesline do. One where I was touched in bad places, one where I accidentally cut something open that was not meant to be cut open and up left a bleach stain in its place. Tonight they're too busy to come home, so I bus the grandeur, steal coins from the drawer downstairs, and host the party that was never given to me. It is impossible for the greatest generation to not be of my own; my depression is causative from my birth year, my loneliness the technology brought around me. I was born to want to die. Does the emptiness of it all bother you? No, but I can pretend to talk existentialism and listen to sad songs to relate to people. They are all afraid of dying: they're microscopic and meaningless, and so are the reincarnations of their beliefs in every variation. They invented such a boring god, too--he could dance and run rampant, come satellite to a sea, but instead burns cities and makes salt ladies. Our house is empty and the word 'home' is some disparage, some invention wrecked of malice. Glass made to cut the hands of someone tired of living: fencing, fourteen, fucked up. That's all we are. Nights are young and vibrant, likewise I dream a time where I am happy. Mostly, they come apart again, the dent--and I heal, in time.
All seas recede in November. In time, memorize the gashes of a skin from burns against salt, dead land opening itself up, a girl fleeing from it all. Perhaps find rekindling in its horizon: forever we hold no idea of who to become, or be, or drown. It's pure salt and fear of sentience, grazing hands to the rekindling: a fire in the form of companionship, in the sole promise of renewal, a husk of man in the face of something that can envelop us all. Follow the sound of a shell, vows lost to the ocean. (Like a heartbeat, or the major who had fallen four feet in.) Choose suburban suicide instead, security, stability, humanity settling in something so temporal. Match the whispering of a gun poised on the nook of the cliff. Fourteen years of people falling until it is your turn and nobody stops you, choose the sea and all the boys it has thrown up, the memories it has broken, the ideas it has swallowed from rocks to engineers to planes to men with dreams. The life where I am alive is one where the ocean has dried up, licking salt off our knees; never could it take you from me.
the dream where all my teeth are falling out or my body becoming a morsel for some shadow creature or the one where i scream and scream and the only sound that seems to come out is the one where everyone said everyone was leaving. what use is the night of respite; the world is broken and chastising dead skin. plucks at hipbones, white skirt suffocating anemic chest--there seems to be no use in it all if existence is a purgatory and the home the cockpit or bullet shell. the dream where all the doors i open lead to more halls, or the white collar job interview where he sits and laughs and stares or the time where my father said he was proud. to come into darkness again i must let the girl subside. tag the glass of water, the nightgown, the lights, the time where i know which mistakes are my own or which ones i am to make--but all the same i lay still, dark, counting teeth.
Our men had marched for all the wrong reasons. The belfry hymn poured out for the forgotten in night, or the new scholars and new millenium with the effervescence of some apathy. This is how they all had sung. Our martyrs come as savants, then outcasts, and no mercy is kept. It is devotion swept under bluebooks, mangled boys for the charm of the innocent and the diary marking revolution of asundered bodies. In the absence of god we are all holy people. In the absence of tyranny's traitorous the children will recede once more— because here I consume the flesh of lost disposition below bureaucrats, beg for forgiveness and alcohol in the altar for political correctness and rerouted paths. See, the halls come a rite of counsel when the dawn has broken with no fear of what it is to be alive: it is only when we thirst for something that the brothers run.
I think I lost my lovers down in sects, all of them held holy names and no longer believed in God. That was their commonality. That, and fatigue crawling on castles, eager to burn a gun and leave every escape hollow: this is a race to see who can forget first. You see, his nativity can’t really exist: it is coincidence in the bathroom stall, on empty hospital bed, edging each corner we searched for some messiah in. My crime must have been skinsearching for meaning in empty bodies. They all liked sad music and the night. Held vices because they lost someone in their life. I thought I could be the next. I once believed in him, honestly. God, that is. Tasting his name on my wrist or next to his son's word, it no longer made sense. They were all cinder and nothingness; save me with a whisper or pale carcass—before Mark I felt nothing. Annually, proclaiming ash on forehead, how miniscule are your tragedies—father, I am volatile and breathless. I no longer take words to purify myself with. I exist to cleanse. I am a stranger's daughter and canvas of sin. I exist to break bones and teach men the heart is child's play. The better one is the lack of curse, repentance is to embrace every pillar of salt. The stranger is the barrel that steals their adolescence. I've seen it all: every mistaken litany, every vow synonymous with severance. Where god hides on fragile kneecaps where girls pray to no longer exist. Father, I found salvation when my safe words were no longer holy. My book has no ends and it does not swear by a man that no longer knows my name.