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I learned to open my eyes,
I have been born.
My life is complete andI have finally
found out where I reside.

Our home swims in the cul-de-sac
that rests in your eyes.
Your teeth sit like the shingles on our roof;
Ajar, building character.
Pulling me into the imperfect perfections.

The smell of incense climbs the walls
and settles in your curls.
Laughter fills the halls.
To some a burden,
to me a symphony.

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Listen to Mother Earth(a)
The leaves shake;
something I can no longer do.
No quivers; flinches.
There is no surprise.
Surprises, an enemy I’ve come to miss.
I wish I was shaken.
To feel my heart drop once more
when I see your face in my brain.
“Compromise? What is compromise?”

Ashore

Colossal waves beat on your frosty  bones
Bending your vessel to near fail.
You drop your oar;
Tossing it to Poseidon in exchange for freedom.
Forfeit.
But he doesn’t let up;
a vicious game of cat and mouse.

Your screams nearly muted in the chaos.
But I hear them, like the sound of a distant television
The ringing that nags my ears, it come from below.
I press my ear to the ground
tell-tale, my love.
Rip up the earth; dig until my nails bend back.

Our boats sail the same ocean,
just in different times; separate dimensions.
Though, I have grown lucky,
I coddle the shore while you battle the gods.

Release your fists so you can hold your compass.
Hold your head high and you’ll see
the stars that exist beyond your ceiling.
Let yourself be guided home.
You borrow; I dig
Fingertips bloodied,
I scream for you until my throat grows hoarse.

You deepen, I fist fight the ground.
A break. A single beam light.
I see you
The eye of the sea has you.
You raise your chin to the sky.
I reach out my hand—
Step. Plunge.
Swept away once more.
You don’t want the help…

Hold on, castaway.
Let yourself be loved, outcast.
Be strong. I’ll wait for you on my shore.
We’ll be together soon.

Marbles

I feel as thought I only love puzzles
because I like fixing broken things.
I like things to be complete.
When thinking about it long term,
maybe it’s because I myself am–
broken and unfinished.
Making that one last piece fit,
feeling that sense of accomplish
before starting the next puzzle.
I don’t share that slight raise in heart rate about myself.
I’m still looking under the table for that last bit of sky,
while classical music blares in the background.
Drowning out my self doubt with the
“Great ‘Sea’ Major Symphony”.
So, it’s simpler to finish other puzzles;
complete other people.
Distract and deflect.
Because the Mona Lisa lost her smile
and no one is allowed to know.
Put a post-it note substitute in its place
and juggle for the crowd.
I’m not allowed to lose my marbles,
I don’t have many left to lose.

Honeymoon Cottage

Wind whips through lavender fields
Striking the plants like strings on a violin.
The dirt path leading up to the “Honeymoon Cottage”
smells of coffee grounds and cigar smoke.
You walk up the creaky steps and open the screen door.
The aroma inside, old carpet and morning sunshine;
with just a hint of dew.
The feeling of nostalgia wraps you up
and sets you down on the couch.
You’re just in time to watch the matinee showing
of the dust dancing ;
Lit by the beams of light bursting through the window panes.
The faint sounds of Tchaikovsky trickle into the room,
followed by the sounds of phantom choreography on the floor.
And laughing; bellows carry themselves through the house.
Sounds as sweet as lemondrop cookies.

Lucky

You wrapped me
In your arms.
Smiling, removed my hat.
“Look at this hair”.
The words familiar, even in context.
But to come from a man
I chose to love,
Who chose to love me–
I’ve never been so lucky.

Chasm

How frequent does heartbreak have to occur before it takes up residency in “disappointment”?
With every breath, oxygen fills the empty cavity in my chest.
My heart slows, yet I don’t die.
The only thing I could wish, denied me.

The Life and Times of Frankie Bee

My name is generic. It is the store brand cereal you buy because it’s cheaper.
It’s based upon convenience. It is the unworthy leader. It’s the boring drum major at the forefront of the parade. It is a mask. It hides the true me, and I hate it.

My name is the wrong color. It is a light-brown haired white girl with blue or green eyes.
It is the wrong era, personality, and vibe. It doesn’t flow or groove as I do. It doesn’t belong to me, it’s just attached to me. It just exists: it does not live. It’s the shy kid at the middle school dance. It sits in the corner. A wallflower.

My middle name, however, is what is most important to me. It is the body of the butterfly; what holds everything together. It is unique and driven. It is quirky. It drinks tea in poodle skirts while listening to vinyl. It wants to travel the world. It is the law and it’s steel worker strong.

I wish my middle name was my first. Frances. I could be Frankie. My middle name is care-free. It has a personality. It’s my awkward laugh, my creative side, and my undercover badass. It is my true identity. It is a breeze in a field of grain. It’s dolphin skin. Smooth. You can’t teach smooth. It’s earned, I earned that name. It wasn’t found, it was inherited.

It is leather jacket clad. It stays up past its bedtime. my middle name lives for the moment. It has goals and dreams. It’s nothing like the rest. It is its own self. It exists and lives. Frances. She’s who I want to be. It’s what I will soon become. Frances. Frankie.
The face behind the mask.

c. 2013

Confetti

Do stars get stressed out?
Do they decide they’re worthless,
while the men at NASA talk them down?
And when it doesn’t work
when the plethora of colors parade across the sky
like intergalactic death confetti,
who cleans up the scene?

Hades laughs while Nyx grieves.
“Such a bright star”
“It was my favorite”
“The constellations will truly miss them”
If only you said such things before.
If only you saw their distress,
noticed the shift in the night sky.
If only you let your eyes leave the ground for one second and gazed!
Just, gazed.

How can you possibly mourn the loss in a nebula
if you can’t remember what it looked like?
You never looked up in adoration
but you don’t, you would never, miss the chance to look up in mourning.
Post the splattered guts for likes.
Selfishness iced in fake empathy.
Save your tears.

I watched a star explode today,
a ball of gas I held dear
It was young; fragile.
Only living for twenty-six years, five months, and seven days
before pouring out in an explosion of color across the sky.
9,652 days after it’s own birth.

I watched a star explode today.

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