Emptied

The slow bow of a cello

scraping across strings

reverberation in loss

if her face betrayed

all the pain inside

if her face was a building it would collapse

where the ravage and gaps exist

you cannot see

all the times she’d been

pealing back her expressions one by one

a window without covering

someone sitting at a table

running her bare empty hands along the scarred wood

fingers without rings without bonds

falling against the door frame

hearing the echo

feeling the pain reach in and pull

until only music sounds

the songs we danced to when I was whole

believing what didn’t kill you

made you stronger

then how is it since you

tore out my heart and shredded it

with all the words you gave me over the years

like confetti

I have not been able to stand

without collapsing

I am now set at an angle of grief

you say oh in time all things heal

that must be your experience

maybe when you said you were honest with me

you weren’t honest with yourself

and what would destroy a mortal man

does not get too deeply embroiled

you are after all

by your own omission

someone capable of closing yourself off

feeling nothing

I would that I had learned that art

it may be a month

or ten

but I will stand here again

grief will mark my place

as if no time had passed and no lifting assuaged

the heartache of your betrayal

what can I do to change the outcome

looking down the road and seeing only hurt

I would do anything to change how I will feel

but you have me tied to your world

even as you

leave mine

emptied of love

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Two reflections

Easter BunnyFamily

Can be a nest of vipers

The greatest joy

An empty glass

The pain you feel when it matters most

Strangers

The best of times

The cruelest cut

A Sunday

Morning

Before the squirrels are out

You leave the house you grew up in

The walls and plaster and wood of it

Walking fast into town

Empty ships, last night’s slips

A faint odor of terpentine

The market stalls are bare awaiting their traders

Sun is hardly met in sky

You don’t know why

You escape the warmth to be in the cold

Where things unsaid ring truer

In the little park off by the church

Horse chestnuts have fallen

Ivy grows lush

Statues keep their secrets

And imported flowers are red among the green

Like Spanish dancers

You remember

The hollow feeling

And the times it wasn’t

The whoop and rush of emotion

Now you are older and still you are that child

The theatre stands unmanned

All the actors washing their sins

Up to their elbows in suds

He has taken his bike along fastest route

You met here before

Maybe you were twelve

The doorways are the same

The ship fronts have changed names

But still he smells of Autumn and old books

Still his large hand covers yours

And you are the child again

Running from the pain

Dazzled by the jewels of the city

Looking in windows

Seeing this time

Two reflections

The salve of indomitable

140829195756-22-women-in-comedy-restricted-horizontal-large-galleryI outgrew myself, watching stillness

Now I am

Blanketed in straining waistlines

An unusual feeling that thrums my vanity

Like a badly played guitar

Because wasn’t I the girl who refused to change?

And then there was the road and its damage

I walked it timid, my feet bled

I saw no end

I may

Regain the attitude of the untouched

In due course

As memory befuddles

Twins of angst and fear

For the soft skin of recovery is a mockingbird

She sings hopeful

Strikes down what I took for granted

The old me

Always the same size and circumference

Thinking she was invulnerable

Now she trembles slightly

If her stomach lurches

When it slaps suddenly, the salve of indomitable

You spend as much time picking up the pieces

Of what you thought safe and sound

Anxiety is your friend in the search

For that girl you were before

Now I can’t fit into myself

I don’t know who remains

But if you’ll lend me enough to purchase

A replacement …

Skins of fear

08c50a5ff98e430af4bc56e4b6b80bc6Surely this is the year

We put our skins of fear aside

They are already well flayed and comfortable to wear

And step into

Shoes that do not yet fit

But if we hold on

Shaking in place

Tempted to turn and run

Back to the oppressive we know so well

If we learn to be

This new size

These new shoes

Lending us the necessary dexterity

To skip away from excuses

Vanquish the tendency

To think we only have

One tread
One mark on this Earth

And cannot instead

Inherit the wind

We stay in that diminished moment

Growing cold though the sun shines

You have to satisfy yourself

Fill in the edges

Pick your ink

Color the world

You have to lift yourself up

Nobody else can love you as much

From the cradle to the grave

There’s one friend who won’t leave

If you learn to stop hating yourself

Movement

Is an elixir

Be it in your arms

The first time we danced

Or from your house

The last time I looked back

And as we leave pieces of ourselves

Like a photo album of torn skin

We are surely moving forward

Learning again

The lightness

Of being

Nothing of me

The actors of the film-serial "Our Gang", America, Hollywood, Photograph, Around 1930She stands in the doorway

The outline of her slim shoulders

The hallway light seems peachy

She is home and without her

Home will be a strange wasteland

Where survivors cling to wreckage

Watching for her shape every night

The smell of her still on tortoiseshell hairbrush

Why didn’t she need it when she left?

How did she choose what to take and what to leave?

The only choice I was certain of

..

I was not under consideration

That need, to not need

Suffocating on duty and then

Deciding to toss it into wastebin

Along with other chains

I have carried as my own brand of perfume

She who gave me life, wanted life without me

Always did, from the first day they placed me in her arms

And she thought … oh no

It isn’t her fault

Love never arrived

But I am left alive

Yerning to matter, knowing I never will

It is a bigger part of me than I care to usually admit

A voice in the dark always crying for Mommy

I thought I’d grow up and get over it

But wherever you go, there you are

In my case, a kid whose mom didn’t want

I’m still looking at doorways

Watching for her tread

In other’s faces, a memory yet

Even as I grow older than she was

When she squeezed her heart

And despite the shared DNA

Found it held

Nothing of me

Starting today

Bring might to the stage

Stop selling yourself

For pieces of flint and stone

Starting today put away childish things

Voices from the past echoing

A clamor of our downs and undoing

You’re not that clown face anymore

Not the one easily convinced you have no worth

By hellbent egotists intent on keeping you low

That you might never know

The sunlight of your parts

When arranged and strong outlast

Their fickle mercurous passions

For the fat headed go home

Take off their emperor’s clothes

Naked they see the transparency of their game

Is to their shame, their confidence relied upon

Keeping you down

Now you know

Let nobody crush your sights

There is magic in your being

They’ve been keeping quiet for fear

If you knew your worth you’d

Not need them

And their neglect of you

It’s not enough to have scraps

You are deserving

And beautiful

Now that you know

It’s impossible to be caged

By the whittling of simmering minds

Who would deny your purpose with their own agenda

Destroy the child, ruin the man

Or so it goes

Until emerging from dark the child knows

He is made of stars

Breathe deeply and have courage

Little one

For your life is equal to anyone’s

And this veil of sorrow is not your inheritance

You

Are meant

For greater purpose

Now is the time

To claim yourself

Those words of promise

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Count the

People who have said

The exact same thing

You must trust me

It would be pathological not to

There is no good reason

I am telling the truth

Here’s a promise

I mean what I say

I swear

Then. Then. Then.

It is a lie

What do you do

The next time

And the next?

How do you disseminate

Or decide?

I can trust this one

But not this one

You may be saying the exact same thing

Expecting me to believe

Something different

But how?

Why does one promise

Differ from another?

Why does one person’s assurance

Ring true whilst another is, hollow?

You often cannot tell

As much as you want to

As smart as you wish

You simply do not know

You’re at the mercy of those words of promise

Which means

Potentially it can keep happening

When it does, eventually something breaks and you say

Enough ! Just enough !

Then you really can’t believe anyone

You just can’t

If you can’t believe anyone then what?

Where do you go from there?

How do you get over that?

How do you move on?

Isn’t moving on surely, just being alone?

If that much mistrust has built

That many people have proven false

Of course a voice in your head says

Maybe it’s your fault

All of this

Because you’re the common denominator

You deserve this and cause it

Somehow

But you don’t know how

You just want

People to be honest

Don’t tell me things because you think I want to hear them

Don’t make promises you can’t keep

Just be honest

It’s the dishonesty I can’t take

Even as the truth can hurt

A lie will always be worse