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relationships

could fry an egg on the cement it’s so caliente

the little girl’s mind is disobedient. she likes to skip down the city cement, out of shouting range. she likes to read old books, playing deaf outside older windows. she likes to peek through fences, playing with backyard boys she isn’t meant to know. she likes to pretend she goes out, goes somewhere difficult. she likes to pretend she’s allowed to be anywhere but here. she begs for an above ground pool, but no one is ever allowed in it. she begs for some sunglasses to lie down in the driveway, but the cement is so hot and the yellow jackets so large, she’s sure a form of death will take her before reaching tan. the little girl is always so obedient. she watches television in the front porch praying for one day a safe escape. her mother tells her girls get kidnapped, raped by multitudes of boys. there are bad men at the streetlamps; the men her mom brings home are fine. the swings will soar you over used needles. the balls you kick will roll beneath deathtrap vans. the babysitters aren’t to be trusted. her great-grandfather is not to be trusted now either. if anything is loose, you could be poisoned. if anything is quiet, it could be a trap. if anything is exciting, it can’t be honest. if you head onto hot streets, your heels will flame up on your path to hell. there shall never be a summer dusk before you’re back.

spray and pray

tickets are sought. some are bought. and there are times even these

moments thoughtfully forheld are missed.

there are seats empty waiting for prostration.

there are bodies prostate far before their time.

there are relationships shattered,

reservation plaques on linens gathering dust.

there are suites heavy with bouquets,

abandonment or too late indecision forking paths.

there are openings emptier,

canapés clustering, questions dead before they’re asked.

there are sunsets never climbed for,

a variant first to claim tripod in place;

there are mechanical snaps taken in their stead,

thought comes after, spray and pray.

a waste, a waste, such wasted fate

but judgment is not reserved for the ticketed.

at least while you’re above ground,

there will always be the next love and more art.

contained

if only the pink and white translucency wrapped around your soft hands held me instead

if i were bluish green would my feeding off dirt and sunshine concern you gently

if only my hands and feet were soft enough to play along—i can be inviting


if i were rooted grey and thick would my gravity disobey shadows locked in unnecessary skull

if only i could let my body be with you in dayspring unexpectedly

if only i could shake my mind’s nests free before seven a.m. nightmares


if i were to allow my morning mouth to loosen around sounds of insecurity and hope

would the burning scent i initiate instead be so damn enticing


unwanted

i couldn’t make you fall in love with me

unwanted orchids, you left me ceiling dazed so

now i don't really care


solo sheet tossing, semi hoping you’ll appreciate me

i know it's kinda dumb when morning’s done and

i couldn’t make you fall in love with me


ignoring plans and heaving hope, left to my own devices

i felt a build up; if you feel it, it could be meant to be? nah

—now i don't really care


i find you sucking smoke, eating words at the back of the party

i’m speaker bound, been begging you to come my way, but

i couldn’t make you fall in love with me


you were running round rain drenched over there

i got myself soaked waiting for you to embrace me, so

now i don't really care


take your sighs, swoons, needing stares elsewhere, elsewhere

—are you better babe?

i couldn’t make you fall in love with me

—now i don't really care?

NB: text incorporated from the lyrics of Arlo Parks’ ‘Cola’ and Yuni’s ‘Fall in Love’