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colours.you invert colours till the night sky
becomes a white page; connect dots —
the stars are black pepper spots
that do not spell your name.
and i sought you in every place where
i knew you would not be.
stand close to me: let me breathe in
the hue of your eyes
and the shape of your smile.
i long to feel something tangible,
an ache within my bones.
my heart is shallow, though deep waters
surge about my ankles.
meetings“Hey. Are you alright?”
Summer was buzzing in his ears when he turned towards the voice; a chorus of insects was accompanied by the flapping of wings overhead and, somewhere not too distant, a stream gurgled. He saw a girl with black, unkempt hair – there were holes in her jeans and her t-shirt was splattered with mud. His gaze travelled to her jaw, bloodied and grazed.
“I think,” he said, tilting his head slightly, “that you should worry about yourself instead.”
“That doesn’t answer my question.”
HitchhikerI stood at the side of a
dusty road, thumb raised,
sun shining on a reddened face,
and when the car came to a halt, said that I
wished to journey on eastward.
Compliance: she was headed the same way.
Her radio crackled tuneless songs
and the seatbelt was too tight.
I saw a creaking apple tree
but she would not turn; her orchard grew
more fruit than she could ever
care to eat.
I saw a sculpture of ancient stones
but she would not turn; in her room she had
a corkboard peppered with pins and a
postcard of the same scene.
When – at last – my feet touched ground,
I could not speak with sincerity.
She tapped her nails on the steering wheel
humming that if I yearned my own route,
I should not sit
in the passenger seat.
You have sewn stars to your sleeves.I talk about stars quite a lot (do I not?);
I’ve described them as stitches and grains of salt,
I’ve written of distance and said with a smile
That travelling through space
Takes a while.
I don’t need to go that far.
You, dearest, in the stretch of one stanza,
In the breadth of two heartbeats
Can dazzle the world.
Love and compassion thread through your verse:
Your sunshine brightens your words.
You have sown splendour where cracks used to meet.
I want to watch gardens grow at your feet.
the miracle isAnd I do not know this feeling in my lungs
only what it resembles:
nostalgia, creeping up from the depths
of a yesterday
(forgotten / lost)
tapping on panes with
seeping beneath the door.
But hardships pass
become embraces – fleeting,
trapped between the pages
of books with gilded sheets
and spines so strong that they are
The smoke disperses.
We are left with emotions
which heal and cleanse;
we wrap ourselves in golden love
remembered / found.
you're very dear to methey are not words that I speak often
but ones I carry
in the core of my chest,
and with you, I am grateful
that there are never those questions
about which of us loves more
or which of us loves best;
there were days
where I felt so fragile
that even a smile
made me stammer and cry,
yet you extended a gentle hand
and with the simplest strokes,
taught me to fly
upwards, into that peerless blue:
on the cloudiest days
my sunshine is you.
You do not know what it is to feel love so deep that your heart contracts in the centre of your chest. You have never experienced your organs inflating at the first thought of another; I say this, Dearest, because you do not love You and thus know nothing of my pain.
I want to seize a star and trickle its dust from my hands into yours. I want the clouds to paint your name on the sky’s summit.
But for now, I shall be content with dreaming of you. I hope that incense sweetens your sleep. I hope that the rain soothes your spirit.
declarationi studded my fingers with glitter
and trailed stars across your brow.
because i want you to know
while it matters
that this is my love.
that i cannot climb mountains
or traverse oceans for you
with a fleeting touch,
remind that i am here:
i am near
and will not dissolve.
my words are never grand.
i pray they are enough.
CardigansWhen the world slowly rolled towards evening, I leant over the balcony railings and watched her stand in the communal garden, flat face uplifted, eyes closed as she basked in the sun’s last warmth. It could have been like the sinking star in storybooks – a brash vermillion – but it was always golden. Once my mother heard of my disappointment, she scoffed,
“Life is rarely like a storybook.”
Those words did not leave me. In autumn, it brought me no delight to look for squirrels carrying fruit. In winter, I did not waste my time with searching for identical snowflakes. And in spring, which was the heaviest with folklore, there was no hunt for fairies.
Summer arrived. My mother returned to her old pastime. She stood outside, pale hands clutching her thighs. Her cardigan sleeves had frayed. The hem of her skirt swept the concrete floor.
It finally occurred that her words had been a warning. She
the truth about growing up
1. It's easier when you don't think.
1. It starts early,
on a cloudy day when you recall
the 'childhood memories' of
two summers ago,
that's when you start your backslide into
2. On the bright side
you won't notice this until you're
good and ripe in age,
so maybe it doesn't matter
3. That tightness in your chest?
The feeling that you're not ready
to take on the rest of your life; it
4. It stews in the pit of your stomach
makes you doubt,
but there will be days when you look back
on the mountains you climbed -
the raging rivers you crossed -
and you'll have a sneaking suspicion you were
more prepared than you thought.
5. There's nothing like your own bed.
6. Laundry will never smell right
without mom's sweat and tears.
But you still have to separate lights from darks,
keep the zippers pulled tight
and the buttons unhooked.
7. There is comfort in your parents' presence.
8. Things change
the future gnaws and rips
Stranger's funeralUnder the clouds
Under the rain
Staring at the coffin
At a stranger's funeral
We're all alone
Feeling the storm
But not the pain
For he's but a stranger
And the graves around us
Are just there
Keeping us company
During this empty moment
CarolineYou loved the fire
of rogues -
imperfect men who shot up
the endings of the day
and drank down
too much beauty.
And like one of them,
you bellied with rebellion,
felt his tense seed
toil where women
and craved his notoriety.
Poor girl -
his verses won the day
and the call of words
was too fickle a lover
for any constant star.
Don't blame yourself -
are more attractive
and all poets are
LullabyHush, my baby,
Be still, don't cry.
Lay with me
A little while.
Close your eyes,
Slow your breath.
Hear your heart
Inside your chest?
Your heart is strong,
It guides you well.
Be sure to listen
To what it tells.
I hear him now,
Outside the room.
It won't be long,
He'll find us soon.
Now close your eyes,
Slow your breath,
And rest your head
Upon my chest.
AliveA ray of hope shines during the
Long restless hours
I keep enduring the task of
Vanquishing the darkness with the
Energy from the depths of my soul
STALKERYou cannot run from your past...
No strangled whisper,
No repentant plea of yours can escape these eyes.
For I have always been watching...
You believe yourself to be righteous,
But your actions have consequences!
You will not leave this place tonight,
Not while your heart remains beating.
And when you are worn from your escape;
When you are forced by exhaustion,
To shut those fevered eyes.
In your moment of weakness, I will arrive...
Justice will be served tonight,
Whilst the shadows dance with expectant glee!
You may forget what you have done,
But you will never be innocent...
WishCardLet the rays of the sun
Bring happiness and light into your house,
Let the sun bring you lovely gifts.
Let your heart's music free,
Let your smile to light up your face.
I wish you happiness and joy.
things to tell you before i leave for collegeto mrs hatcher:
i promise that one day i will write that poem you asked me for
(the only thing you ever asked me for)
and i will finally tell you that you deserve
so much more.
to mr. walker:
i promise that i will not pity you.
i promise that i will not envy you.
i promise that you will always be part of my forget-me-nots and marigolds.
i promise to always be grateful.
i promise to be careful.
i promise to be crazy.
i promise that i will remember what it feels like to be needed
and what it feels like to let someone who needs you down.
i promise that i will never resent you for asking for help
and that i will always be there when you do.
i promise that even sixty years from now,
i will not be surprised to find a letter from you in my mailbox.
i promise to always remember what it felt like to be young and crazy with you,
how scared and lonely we were.
i will remember that we both survived it,
and that we'll survive this, too.
recuperatemaybe the world isn't so frail that it'll break
the moment we touch something;
and maybe there's a little part of ourselves
(deep inside, perhaps, or close to the surface)
that's stronger than what we give credit for,
because, after all, we burn with the vision
of growing stronger.
i enjoy watching pretty things
like kerbs where teens sit with knees pressed together
feet in the gutter --
stitched to their sleeves.
i relish a name etched into a tree
and boats folded from leaves.
little things, which whisper that people still love
even when purses are emptied of coins,
even when patience
like flowers surviving monsoons;
like ants who carry huge crumbs;
the way the moon is so far
but still blushes at the light of
i want to tell all who tread on hard soil
that even stones soften into the beach,
that the lullaby-cry of seagulls is soothing,
and clouds, now distant, were once of the water
that's cupped in your ha
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