i’ve got a cookie thing about you

given the nature of what we do, i shouldn’t be talking to you. you are so far off the food chain i should probably bow a curtsy and call you sir. 

or mylord. lol.

what it’s like coming down from the ivory tower, you ask. i feel giddy, disoriented.

damn that smile could send someone into someplace else. my ears are ringing. and all I can think of is how am i going to eat this cookie and can you just go away now.

more cookie?

i blink my eyes into morning, your smile the only one i see.

They told me that I was meant for the cleaner life;
that you would drag me through the mud.

They said that you would tread all over me,
that they could see right through you,

that you were full of hot air;
that I would always be chasing,

always watching you disappear after sleeker models—
that it would be a vicious cycle.

But I know better. I know about your rough edges
and I have seen your perfect curves.

I will fit into whatever spaces you let me.
If loving you means getting dirty, bring on the grime.

I will leave this porcelain home behind. I’m used to
twice-a-day relationships, but with you I’ll take all the time.

And I know we live in different worlds, and we’re always really busy,
but in my dreams you spin around me so fast, I always wake up dizzy.

So maybe one day you’ll grow tired of the road
and roll on back to me.

And when I blink my eyes into morning,
your smile will be the only one I see.

No Matter the Wreckage
Sarah Kay

hungry for something it can’t name.

Owen keeps asking what
happens to his body

when he dies, what happens
inside the body,

and I tell him
all your organs slow

down, your lungs and
heart, your liver,

and the blood in your body
stops moving

around your body, until
everything stops

and become quiet and
rests. he wants to know

if it’s the same thing
for birds and when birds

die what happens to their
feathers, if the feathers

stay up in the sky and what
is a wolf, he wants

to know, and can it eat us.
He says that some things

come back after they die
but we don’t want

them to. No, I say,
sometimes that’s all

we want. No matter what.
For someone

we loved to come back
no matter how terrible

or painful it might
be. His older brother,

Hamza, is alone in his room
again, lying very still

on his bed working out
the compass of being

a teenager on his
Nintendo. I want to

take both boys out
into the yard and have

them bathe their feet
in the October grass.

Pull the cold air over
them like a woolen overcoat.

But I need to get dinner
going and I need to

grab the clothes from
the dryer and fold

them. I don’t know
how I will get the house

cleaned up before it’s
time for bed. Before

I became a father my
greatest fear was dying

in a plane crash, the
plane stalling through

a cloud of birds. Now
I sit at a kitchen table

and stare and stare
at the gas bill

like looking out
the window at a car

on fire. Sometimes
I want to be a ghost

or a vampire, a zombie
slowly walking over a hill,

hungry for something
it can’t name but,

with arms outstretched,
begs for anyway.




ALL HALLOW’S EVE, Matthew Dickman

crash. boom. bangg.

Years away now. Years my life without you near. Years in solitude and just like that you came back into my life. No signs, no hunch. No sting in your gut trying to tell you this is the day. This is the day you’re going to again meet the love of your life. You got rid of him and now the universe is giving you a second chance.

What have I done? I set you free. I have set you free.

Robbie Loved You a Bit Too Much Sometimes

She was as I saw her the last time: confident, so sure of herself that she scared me. She was what I was afraid of, the kind of stability that would only suffocate me.

I should have not taken you away from her. I should not have come between the two of you. She was your soulmate and you, hers. You’re so steady with her like you could face everything together. Unlike us where everything was hot and cold and there’s days I didn’t want you, days I spent with people I thought I loved. I didn’t want you and you felt unwanted, abandoned. 

One look and she said to me, “Of course you’ll be here.” 

What I heard was, “You’ve done enough damage.”

And I imagine you in that bed, alone, where you should not be had you not meet me, probably living your life still, careless and free, alive and not dying. 

She said exactly that.

Just imagine if I stayed away just like she told me off once in a bathroom stall a long long time ago. 

But I loved you, I loved you! How could I stay away?

But she said I could have and you’d still be standing. She was right and I felt my insides crawling leaving, slowly but surely, seeping away like thin smoke. My insides no longer belonged to my body and I was gone for good. 

People talked to me and I heard them faintly but I wasn’t there. 

Jetter asked me what she said to me on our way home but honestly I couldn’t remember anything, I only felt like I should undo me.

I know I wrote once after Camden beat you up, you came to see me. You were sweet and I told you, you’re a Daddy now.

But as I lived on in this side of the story, everything got rotten. You were broken. You didn’t wake up the next day, you didn’t come to see me. 

what i do know.

it’s only september. i don’t know how many seasons i will be allowed to love you yet.

what i do know is that you have flown one thousand miles to stand in my kitchen, dropping chocolate chips into pumpkin pancakes

—like arranging freckles for the face of a perfect child.

“A Simple Love Poem”, Megan Falley

PTSD. (2)

That night I heard you whimpered I thought I was dreaming but you struggled on your side of the bed, waking me up just to find you sweating and crying.

You started to have these dreams, where you were fighting for breaths in a sea of sludge, you were crawling on legs you could not feel, you were drowning. You struggled to breathe for hours. You were crying and it felt like I broke apart.  

These nightmares were recurring, so I let you drink to fall back to sleep.  

But it’s daylight now, bright and sunny, and you’re drinking again. You have turned into a zombie, but subdued and mute. You sat by the piano, staring at the keys. I wasn’t sure you were really there. You hardly eat. Sleep got you restless. You just sat there, day and night and day. You barely talk to me, as if I too wasn’t really there. 

I didn’t really want to go and left you alone when everything felt unreal to you and you weren’t even there to feel, or to be. But maybe, just maybe, you wanted to be alone.

Maybe, just maybe, the sea of sludge was me.

I hardly hear you, holding back tears like that and you know I wanted you to say it, that I was there for a reason. But the truth was, I couldn’t bear myself to see you like this, every night, and day and night and day. I was exhausted.

You’re so thin, your bones sprouting out of your elbows. Your jaw turned sharp that you looked so different sometimes. I had to convince myself you’re just the same as before your accident.

cathartic.

i have blown a thousand apologies into the air, didn’t you feel them in your breaths when you’re running into the wind? feel me there. feel me in your lungs, in your chest, inhale me into your veins —here’s to every moment i made you bleed. here’s to every pain every sting every stab every scar and every kiss. here’s to everytime i leave with not so much to keep…

In July

You and I moved fast and slow, twisted time to match the beat of our hearts, eyes closed to something no one dared to see. Go on, I said, you’ve made your choice but we breathed and lived for all the wrong reasons and you left for years without looking back and here you are now, bittersweet perfection, sullen and angry like a Cat 3 hurricane too far offshore to be noticed, sad and angry like the hot tears you once cried so long ago in July.

Diana Perry

for a thousand more.

When you proposed you didn’t have a ring, and it was not pancakes, it was eggs. It was not fairytale-like or slow paced romantic. It was late morning and you smelled like penicillin. Your hair was crazy curls and you hadn’t shaved for like a week. You blurted, “what if you changed your name into Mrs.C.” I was stunned, offended, my eggs burnt. I said you can’t say things like that, smelling like that, looking like that. First take a shower, get a ring, and ask on bended knee. You said nonchalantly: my knees hurt.

where guilt is alive.

When you are living in a house where guilt is alive, it leaves a mark.

And when you are living in an atmosphere of daily, ever-present guilt, what does that do to children? It changes their souls.

Molly Shannon

like morning.

i think a lot about your eyes
…and how painful it is to be
in a room full of people with such
empty pockets and words that are
so heavy i cannot lift them from
the fog.

you are the greatest secret
if i could i would hold you between
my hands like morning.

Alison Malee