Of love and prison chains.

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To you, from a future unseen.
From a tomorrow, a day-after,
an “it’s been a year but I still remember his voice.”
From a bedtime story in which you are the prince,
and there is no happy ending.

To you, from an abandoned shipwreck.
From fingers that no longer feel like my own.
From lips that you’ve kissed, and kissed,
and never will again.
From a loosely sewn curtain of a body,
from a broken window of a heart.

I tiptoe across my room past midnight,
hands through my hair; my calendar begs to differ but
it feels like not a day has passed.
I dream of screaming, of finding a voice under the debris in my windpipe,
a little oxygen lost in clouds of thick smoke.
Searching crowds, and empty streets, for your presence
and conversations for your absence.
I call these my withdrawal symptoms.
I call this the human tendency to cling to what gives us happiness,
to never be able to tell illusions from reality.
I call this a unicorn’s crash landing,
spilling all seven shades of my soul on concrete that feels like a prison underneath my feet.

Look at me; I’m
all fragile, fractured bones
all poisoned blood
all torn-apart feather cushions
all tear-stained journal entries
all palindromes
all math problems
and every spring that I have grown to hate,
every flower with you promises on it; smeared.

Thin down what runs in my veins;
puncture, bleed, destruct.
Numb my nerves, fail my reflexes;
beat, bruise, decimate.

To you, from unanswered questions.
From one last phone call, one more chance.
From an obsolete apology, from letters I will never mail.

To you,
My love, my madness, and my sin.

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Surrender.

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(i)

My mother keeps a record

of how many meals I skip.

In the past week, her tally marks

have totalled to thirteen.

Today, I force my dinner

down my throat. 

It tastes like memory loss. 

Also a lot like suddenly remembering

that I haven’t hugged my grandfather

in seven years. 

(ii)

I have learned how to breathe

under three layes of blankets

in a room with no ventilation.

I can feel my sobs in my stomach

and the light from the cellphone’s screen

hurts my eyes as I 

search the internet for tips

that help in forgetting phone numbers.

(iii)

I have suppressed the urge to

tear down every piece of poetry

or art stuck on my wall.

Instead I carefully peel off

the paper on which I wrote

your words and tear it to shreds.

Tomorrow morning I will

paint that cavity black

and draw a white flag over it

to mirror my defeat. 

Houses.

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when i imagine houses i tend to see them from the inside. 

i see the front door slightly ajar and a cat having made itself comfortable in the gap that lets the dusty sunlight in. 

i see a coat hanger that bears the weight of an exhausting day, that makes the wooden floorboard creak when osbcene insults tie themselves around it’s age-old pegs. 

i see windows, and curtains, and furniture that passes of as antique but in reality is only representative of a time when this house reeked of happiness and fresh baked macaroons, a grandmother’s oven mitts, a grandfather’s crisp newspaper. 
my lover, however, 

always imagines them from the outside. 

she says she sees a cat peeping inside an abandoned house. 

she says the paint looks like something that could have passed off as pink a few fifty years back, but now is a pale ashen grey through the milky glass of the windows.

she says the insides look like they’re crumbling. 

as if a soul once inhabited the chairs and photo frames but has now left; left these inanimate bodies waiting for sunlight to burn them to the ground.

my lover, she says she can feel the house spiral down into an abyss. 

i ask her if she wants to mend it, if we could change the fixtures and paint the walls. if the matted tablecloth could be replaced with a flowery sheet, if we could breathe life into the house, again. 
she smiles. she shakes her head and tells me how we’re both too spent already. how my heart doesn’t have enough room for reconstruction and how her shoulders don’t have enough strength for shifting furniture.
so we walk away.

and the house we both imagined, it basks in its emptiness.

Colloquy (#4)

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“Can you count the freckles on my body?”

“I can, but I haven’t.”

” Do it now.”

“Where do I start?”

“Wherever you want to.”

“Okay, come here. Let me look behind your ear.”

“Alright.”

“Shh, don’t move.”

“I can feel your breath. It tickles.”

“Stay still, don’t make excuses.”

“Stay focused, don’t kiss my neck.”

“Stay silent, I like your soft skin.”

“Stay, I like you.”

Colloquy (#3)

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“Do you ever run out of things to say?”

“Sometimes. Depends on who I’m talking to.”

“Have you ever felt that way when you talk to me?”

“Not yet.”

“Which means one day you will.”

“Maybe.”

“What then?”

“You’ll have to do the talking. There’s probably a lot that you haven’t told me.”

“I might never.”

“Why not?”

“Not used to talking about myself, probably won’t ever be.”

“Well, then, we’re going to have to suffer in silence.”

“And then you’ll drift away.”

“Only if you let me.”

Colloquy (#2)

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“One. Two. Three. Four. Six.”

“Five. You forgot five.”

“Deliberately, I wanted to see if you were paying attention.”

“I always pay attention to what you say.”

“What’s my favourite song, then?”

“Trick question. You don’t have a favourite. You’re in love with those monkey men, that’s all.”

“They’re my favourite band, stop calling them monkey men.”

“For as long as you are with me, no.”

“Not long, sweetheart.”

“Don’t make promises you know you can’t keep.”

“I will kill myself, I know it.”

“No you won’t. You’re a coward.”

“I fell in love with you, that was brave enough of me.”

“Bad decision, kid.”

“Aw, baby. Will you break my heart?”

“Haven’t I already?”

Colloquy (#1)

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“Why do you bite your nails so much?”

“I don’t know. Do I?”

“You’re nibbling on them as you say this, are you even real?”

“I don’t know. Am I?”

“I should have been the one stoned right now, you’re high even when sober, weed only gives you an excuse to be annoying.”

“Right now would be a good time to shut up and kiss me.”

“I’m gonna pass.”

“Oh come on, I know you like the taste of my lips.”

“Yeah, the sugary aftertaste of smoking too many Marlboro Cloves. You’re a fucking chimney, you do realise that, don’t you?”

“Honey, smoke is beautiful. Reminds me of you.”

“Because it’s beautiful?”

“Because it vanishes without a trace.”