Lip service, to you, bounces like mercury
Then seeps its way in: toxin between our sheets.
My worship turns you caprice
But you, my opioid, I must keep.
I made a nest in your concaved chest
Prickled my ear against your restless murmuring
The tremors in your cage within my reach:
So close but further still.
If I could wedge my fingers between your ribs
(the same way god drew Eve out of Adam)
If I could sync my pulse to yours:
I may know your Eve within.
September brought the heat
Plums soured into aubergine
You took off; restless feet
As I learned to love what was missing.
The morning after our earthquake
I examined the canyon between my legs:
Your swelling, ebbing and withdrawal.
The morning after our completion
All my jigsaw pieces grew new edges
Yearning to be part of a whole that would never exist.
The morning after our journey
I set sail in a paper boat folded from your letters
Watching myself drown in the ink of your fickle words.
The morning after you left
I could not swallow the pill:
Your promise of life left me itching; wanting;
Craving your withholding as much as I hated your giving.
Let us pollinate our minds tonight.
Let us spread our cerebral tapestries on
My yellowed ceiling like glow in the dark stars
That hung above my dreams from two to twenty-two.
We will peel each other open like old photo albums
Leaking sepia onto our fingers with each memory.
And when we are done, not even the morning can sever us
For between these sheets we have created our own galaxy,
Our own gravitational forces
Our own orbit.
Paisley rocks, flowered stones blossomed in your eyes
You told me to follow your chartered constellations, but
I was only led to distant, crustacean shores. Here,
Your words wash against me, foaming gangrene seaweed in your wake.
My ears, curled with the same canals of a conch that
Remembers the ocean’s voice to sing in memoriam —
So will I cup my ears, to hear your voice once more
These murmuring sirens, calling you from an alien shore.
You are still cetacean, impenetrable like evergreen
On cerulean coasts, bewildered and bent but never broken.
While I wait, I will sail your tessellate, undulating mind
So I can navigate you like tides of my turquoise night sea.
Apologies for my prolonged absence. In the past month I had to deal with a seismic shift in my life, including completing a university degree, moving houses and going away for a family vacation. But now that these tectonic plates have calmed down, posts will resume regularly.
In my youth I had so much time
Endless celluloid, press start to play
Record the quotidian day to day
If it recorded a pain; a loss
I could simply fastforward; completely engrossed
In moving away from humdrum distress, but
I did not know VCR tapes could find
Chinks in the recesses of my mind
To play motley pains and losses on repeat:
Stuck on you, and others like you
As if you were a reliquary; a shrine
A monument to all lost loves in life.
In my old age I know I will find
A screen of static fuzz, as
Oblivion erases my mind
But this I know to the very last day
I will still hear you calling beyond the grave
A nocturnal whisper; a ceaseless chime, Singing
O love – rewind, rewind
Silver ice covered this purple fig
Heart, commanded to bear fruit no
Longer many winters ago, when
Selfish appetites stripped it bare of life
You braved the violent winter that year
Spun away the bitter cobwebs, the
Frozen sheen I had adopted as skin
In lieu of budding fruit devoured by cold
Darling, I know that after the frost
I will bear fruit one day.
But when we curl up against the draft
And you drape your sanguine aura
Over my gnarled, frozen shoulders
You have become the warmest winter I know.
Fill your pockets with stone, each pebble
Measuring the exact weight your lungs
Are accustomed to carrying, for
Every breath is an exercise in recycling
ashes of your own internal entropy
Your mother and father’s fractured shadows
Your brother’s calloused hands on your thighs
Murky forms are the only clarity in amorphous
Hours, when you succumb to bitter convolutions
That harden as quivering multitudinous words
Like paroxysms of love that follow their absence.
They catch your breath when all you want is to
Prepare a dinner for your doting husband, but
When you’ve internalised all this external trauma
Even the certainty of his goodness cannot save you.
Virginia learned the hard way
If she cried woolf too many times
Her own mind stops believing. Then
The only one she trusts to carry her weight
Are waters that drown her with applause
So she would not be caught perpetually Between the Acts.