Slicing through the storm, we’re brought beyond, before
Rosy eyes and pale moon-white
Cheeks of porcelain dust.
Stabbing colors sicken me
And tears march to my eyes, you see
As suddenly then as I wanted him gone
I felt love blossom just as strong.
I fell upon the coldest stone,
And found myself in a dreaming-world.
Where the stars were holes in a gaping maw,
And the moon was a flag unfurled.
I stumbled into a river of thought,
And the current dragged away my dreams.
While the cat-bears prowled on an endless shore,
My eyes came apart at the seams.
My vision blacked and the moon came back,
From its holiday in the sky.
And even though I cannot sew,
I frantically searched for my eyes.
The weirdest part of it all is the massively personal nature of growing up. Every human being in the history of the planet has met that moment in life where they paused and thought, terrified, about the future rushing so dangerously toward them. And every human has realized in an instant how terribly near adulthood had grown, and how temporary everything really is. How insignificant. And despite the frequency of these soul-shattering, intensely huge moments; despite this, every single time a child’s heart breaks, to be replaced by the heart of an adult, it feels like the first time. The only time. Every transitioning human believes for a moment that their journey has been the only journey, that this moment is unique to them and them alone; that they, somehow, are different in their jarring realization of reality. And in a way, they are right, despite the likenesses of every other terrified teen that has gone before. Now, for the current petrified youth, it’s just a question of growing up in such a way that the growing is toward the light; and taking that stone cold terror and making it something good and productive for the world to hold onto after our wisp-of-smoke lives are over.
YOU LOVED ME
YOU LOVED ME WHEN I HAD NO ONE ELSE,
NOT EVEN MYSELF
YOU PICKED ME UP WHEN THE WORLD SAW ONLY DISCARDED DIRTY REFUSE
AND IN THAT STATE
I cannot speak for the cache of blood
Behind my throat and voice
I cannot breathe for the hissing flood
Of death within my flesh.
I am covered now in slate, and bitterness, and sin
I rip with ragged nails at all the ways I’m imprisoned
Ice chips, with frost, have covered all
The life I used to live.
Please set me free with fire; I
Where now I petrify.
I ache inside by solemn knives
With wondering of tragedy;
Where does a woman, lonely, bide
As her killer stalks a block behind?
Where, distraught, do orphans, fraught
With dangers congregate?
To judge and buy or steal and lie
Just for a chance at life’s embrace?
Why, wicked, do the people live
And prosper; untouched, fine?
Why, righteous, do the prayers die
While Death our children kiss?
Why, evil has our throats bleeding
And somewhere, we’ve all given up
Why do we cry when eyes are dry
And laugh through rivers of blood?
Redeem us once again, o Light
And let us not despair.
Should I secure my soul away
Or let it free to drift aloft?
Be happy, kind with every day;
Or change it all in risk and loss?
Decide within me, yearning heart
Beat a message bright and dark.
Fill the cracks within my chest
With aching words and hollow rest.
They say it’s ‘drapetomania’
I call it discontent.
I’ve let ‘wanderlust’ invade
With its courteous malintent.
Sometimes it’s ‘lypophrenia’
With its curious shadowy form;
And disease causes ‘dysania’
(Why can’t I make it out the door?)
Whatever word you call it,
‘Sadness’ works in its place.
Someday I aim to feel happiness instead,
Or ‘joy’- or ‘passion’- or ‘grace’.
I sing and laugh and shout and jest
With many a favorite crowd;
I tuck myself in, exhausted, expressed
Smiling softly at the thought of them now.
Ink must flow as blood runs cold
Save my burning flesh
I cannot know if I should go
How do I tell if I am blessed?
Sugar burrows in my blood
Causing an acid pain within
Do you know the cure for Hell?
Imprisonment in your own flesh.
The flames caress my flesh
Embers plug my veins
I break in pain, utterly undone
By a single breath of covert love.