I saw you across the room you were wearing
salmon shorts and a blue polo I remember
your order it was something unsweetened
and iced with extra soy milk I thought Oh
me too you walked over to me and I prayed
everyone stopped moving and one lightbulb
flickered the planet stopped mid-spin it hung
in empty space it began to fall toward Pluto
but before passing Jupiter you turned around
everyone kept moving nothing had changed
except now the sun was smaller in the sky
and Jupiter floated on the horizon like a big
orange I remember because I was sitting near
the window so I could see down the street
there were clouds but not enough to cover
the peach-yellow sky all of the ice in my drink
melted and so did my plastic cup the whole
time I don’t think you even saw me or maybe
you were the girl with the neon shirt the thick
black tattoos on your back the bleach-blonde
hair and we didn’t stop at Jupiter we fell all
the way to Pluto and we kept falling until we all
fell off this planet and onto Pluto don’t you know
there’s a Starbucks on Pluto and you turned
around and stepped outside into the rocky
beige I sighed and looked back down Oh a text
Words have weight, something once said cannot be unsaid. Meaning is like a stone dropped into a pool; the ripples will spread and you cannot know what back they wash against.
reflecting from Words
by the middle of the week, i am tired of being a person. so on thursday, give me a space to die a little in private… i will retreat into myself, where i have resided obscurely through immeasurable and contrasting lives, all disorganised and stacked on top of each other in the pit of my stomach. sometimes, they spill out of my mouth like sheets of ice and your nagging fingers pulling at my bottom lip, hungry for me to tell you what i think before i know how to say it.
Marilyn Monroe took all her sleeping pills
to bed when she was thirty-six, and Marlon Brando’s daughter
hung in the Tahitian bedroom
of her mother’s house,
while Stanley Adams shot himself in the head. Sometimes
you can look at the clouds or the trees
and they look nothing like clouds or trees or the sky or the ground.
The performance artist Kathy Change
set herself on fire while Bing Crosby’s sons shot themselves
out of the music industry forever.
I sometimes wonder about the inner lives of polar bears. The French
philosopher Gilles Deleuze jumped
from an apartment window into the world
and then out of it. Peg Entwistle, an actress with no lead
roles, leaped off the “H” in the hollywoodsign
when everything looked black and white
and David O. Selznick was king, circa 1932. Ernest Hemingway
put a shotgun to his head in Ketchum, Idaho
while his granddaughter, a model and actress, climbed the family tree
and overdosed on phenobarbital. My brother opened
thirteen fentanyl patches and stuck them on his body
until it wasn’t his body anymore. I like
the way geese sound above the river. I like
the little soaps you find in hotel bathrooms because they’re beautiful.
Sarah Kane hanged herself, Harold Pinter
brought her roses when she was still alive,
and Louis Lingg, the German anarchist, lit a cap of dynamite
in his own mouth
though it took six hours for him
to die, 1887. Ludwig II of Bavaria drowned
and so did Hart Crane, John Berryman, and Virginia Woolf. If you are
travelling, you should always bring a book to read, especially
on a train. Andrew Martinez, the nude activist, died
in prison, naked, a bag
around his head, while in 1815 the Polish aristocrat and writer
Jan Potocki shot himself with a silver bullet.
Sara Teasdale swallowed a bottle of blues
after drawing a hot bath,
in which dozens of Roman senators opened their veins beneath the water.
Larry Walters became famous
for flying in a Sears patio chair and forty-five helium-filled
weather balloons. He reached an altitude of 16,000 feet
and then he landed. He was a man who flew.
He shot himself in the heart. In the morning I get out of bed, I brush
my teeth, I wash my face, I get dressed in the clothes I like best.
I want to be good to myself.
Trouble, Matthew Dickman
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