Category: Death

DEARLY BELOVED 

we built our home on a lone dirt track that the map said not to follow
and when you went hunting rabbits I was huddled in the dawn
a darkened mass of wool and bone and bowls all lying empty
squatting like a child in the dirt to search for stones
answers hidden in the hardened prints of hooves and clawmarks
left by better beings as they watched us keeping warm

but the frosted earth tore back my nails and pulled my lungs to pieces
and I couldn’t find you anything of worth
so I trapped a little bird and watched her struggle with her noose
and pretending I was elsewhere broke her neck
for freedom loses meaning when the blood is running cold,
the only thing important is the silence

I’ll light a fire with what I’ve got and pray that you will find me
one clawed foot, one iron needle, the burning pitch of an evergreen
my shaking fingers stretch her wings and
nail her above our door with little hope you’ll find her
she’ll call to you,
I can no longer scream

march 7, 2017. jrw

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TUESDAY

itches i can’t name
all over this broken
thing all tattered up
and covered in holes
the itch means healing
but i can’t tell the new scars
from the old ones
anymore,
every day i stain something
else with my blood,
the pale gaunt face full
of larvae like a nervous addict,
which i am, and was, and will be,
til sliver by sliver with dirty nails
i tear apart the rest of me and
pick to pieces the remains still
searching for something
anything
of value

UNHINGED 

spit them out, these wasted days and wet-green nights rising up from your esophagus to greet against anyone’s will your
lovers and your sisters and your friends and your parents make them
worry for you but never too much just enough to catch a whiff of the smoldering
human brains on stone tiled floors where
the
cold gets in so easy feel it creeping up the carnage contaminated by the time
it grabs your feet and legs to drag you under
i’m okay, i’m okay — you’re shoveling shouting reaching out to grab hold of whatever’s in reach
creamy rose pink with green sparkles dribbles thick makes you feel
safe watching feel the grip slip this is how we
fight our wars with pink with glitter with ooze like
crying all that bile from your eyes the sticky
worms running playground drills up and down your throat
red rover, red rover, why don’t you come over?
red used to scare you always creeping in or up
more often out
that drip drip down your shaking knees that
seeping out the gashes in your stomach like a watermelon past its prime now just remember– don’t eat the seeds, you can’t afford for anything to grow inside you, and neither can the anything– that environment is uninhabitable
for living things

MISTS

you are
nobody
you are
nothing
you are the
absence
of bodies
and things

you are gone
from my skin
like a mist
or a phantom
you rose out
left some stains
nothing more

the clouds are red-black
and the wind
cools me down
i haven’t felt
the wind
in ages

_____NOTES FOR NO ONE

i’m sorry. you know this can never work.
je suis désólée. tu sais que ça ne peut rouler jamais.
jeg beklager, men du ved, at dette ikke kan gå.
ho sento però ja saps que això no pot sortir.
lo siento pero ya sabes que esto no puede salir.
it’s been years. have you forgotten?
ça fait du temps. t’as bien oublié ?
det har været år. har du glemt?
que fa anys. has oblidat?
ha sido años. has olvidado?

i hope that you get some daylight in

that you listen to heartbeats, eat sausages made from
pigs you met, stuff your face into big fluffy
roses

hope you squeeze tight
whoever you’re squeezin
squeeze ‘em good like
you used to squeeze me
(but not better)

hopin on hope you eat shit that you ripped from the
ground with your hands and stay dirty
if just a little
but always

hope you’ve come as far,
and as much,
and as many times
as i have
(though of course
i doubt that
very
much)

i promise

i did love you,

je promette
jeg lover
ho prometo
lo prometo
bien oui que je t’aimais, quoiqu’il étàit bref
jeg elskede dig, selvom på det forkerte tidspunkt
jo t’estimava, però no prou,

te quería, aunque por sólo un momento,

 

i could never lie about that

LUNGS

they come crawling
like clawed children
in hallways, in day – light
and night – light,
the worst ones of course
in the

dark

everywhere
hands grasping in
from the walls and
you will love the way they feel
when they
touch you

this place isn’t safe
for lovers or dancers
or birthers or swimmers
questionable even
for saints

build an altar
get a stepstool
squeeze my
waist and burn
this whole
place to ashes i

want

to inhale you
like fiberglass dust
in my lungs all
blue and purple
dressed with flowers
anointed with
venom and tea tree

oil

i found some leaves
on the ground in
lisbon on these
steps in the
rain and the darkness
made them greener

they looked like lungs creased down the
middle so i picked one up and
held it to my chest and
inhaled