and the creeks don’t rise

in every dream, a house;

in every room, a hole: a

broken floor, an exposed pipe, a

gaping window wanting to be a door.

 

at the end of a life, last words

are overrated: i’m so confused;

i’m in trouble; get the hell away

from me. it’s not like the movies.

 

you better hope you made your

amends, exchanged embraces,

made your love known while there

was still clarity. the last gasping

 

moments are not made for love.

 

 

 

 

 

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the beautiful rest

there is no time to be afraid;

 

just walk into the question:

 

it curves around and meets you

 

where you are—then takes you

 

to the beautiful rest.

 

 

ride

bird

the first few months are magic, are safe,

are exhilaratingly edged, are me showing you

my best held-together self. it’s not fake; i’m really

feeling it, really flying. but it’s not the whole

 

package. it’s as if a part of me—that

spiny slant of light—has split off and

soared—and you are the reason, and the

co-pilot, and the sunset, and the high.

 

the trick is in the sustain. all things must come 

to a bend; all things must eventually land.

but what a fucking ride.

what a fucking sunrise.

 

i would not go back and change a thing.

ok, maybe a few tiny things—

but only on my end. you were every

thing i needed at that time.

 

you were

every thing.

and for a moment,

so was i.

orchard

alive & well

20150605_135801

i’m still here,
kicking around,

holding up this
sign of life:

head just above
the black-water.

the anger is the
edge of a red knife

held just below the
surface: aching

tension pulled taut
across too many hurts.

i need the momentum to
shove me into the next day.

is there any other way?

when the doctor asks,
how do you feel on a scale of 1 to 10

i ask, does anyone
ever say 10?

i don’t know what
that would feel like.

it would seem almost obscene.

i don’t know if it’s the inability to feel
happiness, or the fear of

fully feeling it, or the panic
at feeling it and then losing it.

there are moments;
tiny pockets of time

in which i revel, marvel,
spin, float, feel high.

i try to sustain, but they
pass: like seasons,

like heartbeats, like hot-air
balloons taking off without me;

like the many mutable things

i’ve learned to appreciate but
not count on.

i watch for their arrival again
over the horizon, like waiting

for morning to come, to
rescue me from the voices:

dark with teeth like
exclamation marks.

if i can just make it to day-break.

then i crash, unable to face the
sharp light, but still here; still breathing.

i’ve even fallen a little bit in love
with my melancholy; with this collar:

it’s what i know, it’s what i’m comfort-
able with—until i’m not.

it’s why i don’t trust people who are always
smiling; the thick fake lacquer over the face.

friends stop coming around,
stop calling. it’s contagious,

this dread. it travels well
despite its heaviness. it

permeates—
deep and wide.

i try to contain, but the
implosions.

when i can speak, create, connect,
let the shards out in bits into a

willing receiver, i can
breathe again, for a span;

when i can feel a purpose beyond all
this sleeping, waking, dreading, falling.

why this shell? why the merger
of this shell and this soul?

what is this duo supposed to do?
in this world? in this moment?

to be both alive & well,
in this world, in this moment,

is the most i can ask for;
is a gift.

20150603_181517-1

declaration of independence

when, in the course of four

mountains, one encounters the

four winds, and the four directions

by which they came;

 

when the buck meets you on the

borderland and says: we are one

in the same; when the eye of the

cliff excoriates your four-score soul;

 

when you descend from the perfect-union

heights and wend your way down, down

into the well of stars to find the cell-singing

mountain bending beneath your feet;

 

when, in the course of four

sky-strings, you let go and

fling yourself off this earth

engine; and open every door.

when