Freshman On Fire


I was a freshman like you were
a freshman like you are
full of hopes and dreams specifically and eagerly deceived.
And then I was on fire skin peeling burning for release.

I was a freshman like you were alone with my flames
that even though it tried sometimes it could not melt my soul.
And there will be times when you walk through campus blazing flames
begging to be seen or heard and no one will give a hot turd.

But other times you will find others on fire –friends
and you all shall blaze joyfully content to have chosen UC to be.
Blazing blue you shall laugh…. Smoke? Drink? Party?
Maybe run naked through hallways…. And in between it all pick up some knowledge.

I was a freshman like you are.
And it was beautiful-
blue flames that licked away at what you now think is an eternity of endless nights
endless ice endless tree endless credits endless life.

Well a few years down the line you may look back and realize
the exact moment your blue flame began to die
your blue blood began to thin and reality came stealthily creeping
hard and bold splashing water cold on your hopeful soul.

-Poem for the Uconn Free Press “Disorientation” issue October 2012

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Necrophilia

“The world could end today.” He stated matter-of-factly.

He rolled onto his left side on the blue and white striped sheets to face her. The bed squeaked in protest. She did not acknowledge it. She stared a vacant stare; she was off in wonderland.He reached his hand up slowly and lightly touched her hair. Maybe just maybe the slight vibration would penetrate her skull and tickle her brain drawing her back to him.

Her eyelids closed and when they opened she was back. She squinted her eyes a tad bit like she usually did when she was focusing really hard on something. Her face was smooth no creases although her lips were pursed as if ready to lay a kiss on his forehead. He knew every crease. Every curve and flavor for he had adventured it late at nights and early in the mornings on filthy corners and even in puny closets that by no means diminished it’s sweet ambrosial taste.

“The world has been over for a while now,” She whispered almost like a sigh. “I was there  eyes wide with innocence. Mind utterly unprepared. The world has been over for a while now,” she let the silence sit,  “I remember…. I was there.”

He hated when she said things like that. It was like she was teasing him with all the dark corners of her soul she had put in vaults and didn’t want to share. It unsettled him. Her darkness unsettled him. He nestled closer to her an automatic reflex after months of this routine. He knew that asking wouldn’t make a difference. She would simply withdraw from him an armadillo into the shell that was her mind. Eyes vacant, body cold, he didn’t like to be with a zombie.

She was still a little warm from the last half an hour. She wrapped her arm around him and nestled deep into his hairless chest. She pressed her body against him almost painfully. It felt to him as if she was trying to drown in him. She’d rather be in him than out of her mind alone. She just didn’t want to be alone, even if she was just a zombie. How did he fall in love with a zombie?

He lay on his back and she automatically rearranged herself deeper into him. He stared at the filthy white ceiling. Nothing had changed it was still rough. No matter how many times he looked and wished he were somewhere else staring at something else it was always rough. He squeezed his eyes and tried a little harder. It was still rough. He was stuck just him his bed and the filthy rough white ceiling. She kissed him softly on his chest blurring his thoughts. He loved the sensation, a slight distraction from the roughness.

How did he fall in love with a zombie? He never thought she was. He remembers a park bench, laughter so deep it rocked her body, and he never realized it didn’t reach her eyes until they finally lay down. And he lay on his back watching the rough white ceiling. He loved her no matter how many times he stared up wondering what demons she had locked down deep inside her; what demons took her away from him even as they shared heat; what demons she thought were to heavy too share with him; what demons made her a zombie? He knew her too well to even ask. He squeezed his eyes again and opened them to the same filthy white.

February Lovers the Essay


“February Lovers”
For shame
they say that lovers
are blind, but we
only choose to see each other.
The warmth of your ___ is what smothers
me and causes the
cold heat of February lovers.
If only we were 
still ignorant as
when we were
babes just months ago with our rebirth.
As you were born
and I were born
on this grand day
known as the -anniversary.
It is not my fault
that I am so selfish
you have given me your
 all
and I have never had to share
so why should I start now
I would cry as you would cry
lack of normality and my soul leaks it’s blood
through my eyes
I bleed for you. (February 2008)

We trudge along the cold streets of Brooklyn, NY hands intertwined. We have dated for a little over a year and are now high school freshmen. Separate schools cannot keep us apart. Tuesdays and Thursdays we leave our homes early and meet at the train station near my school. It is February in New York and it is probably twenty or below. My fingernails are purple but he is here and I am warm.

We clasp hands and I shove them into his pocket. His hands were and still are double the size of mine. They are rough and could probably palm my head but in my hands they are pliable; soft, warm; they are protective; they are supportive. We troop through the Jewish neighborhood, past their kosher stores and beautiful two story homes and well-manicured lawns, but their beauty is easily ignored for we are deep in conversation. We converse about life, where we want to be, who we have been, philosophy, morals, jokes, videos. We share almost every thought and ask almost every question. We are peeling off each other’s soul skins and digging our teeth into the rich fruit beneath. We are devouring each other’s very essence.

We have talked for what seemed like an eternity if an eternity was twenty minutes. My school looms in the distance and we are quickly approaching it. Footsteps get weary and my chest tightens. I will not see him for another day. We reach the bus stop, thankfully it is right in front of my school doors. We wait, still in animated chatter accessorized with pokes and sometimes squeezes of the hand.  The bus is across the street and now our conversation is rushed trying to wrap the latest topic of discussion up. “Goodbyes”, “I love you’s” and “have a good days” roll off our tongues without a second thought, with ease. Another squeeze of the hand, a hug and he is gone I must face another day alone.

If you had asked me in February of 2005 if I would ever walk for blocks in the blistering cold just for some witty conversation with him I would have looked at you as if you were on cocaine. It is amazing to see the difference a year makes. The weeks go by but our ritual does not change. Snow disappears, as do the blistering winds. The gray streets of New York come to life. We are no longer lonely lovers stealing secret moment. Trees begin to flower, the morning joggers creep out from their winter caves and we have witnessed the change. The heat starts to creep in and some mornings he bring me breakfast from home, eggs, pancakes, bagels with cheese. He nourishes me body and soul through the winter and the cold.

It is our first college Christmas vacation and I am strewn over his couch head on his chest and he is breathing.  It is the single most relaxing sound I have ever heard. Like a lullaby it soothes my soul. My usually tense muscles relax and my defensive layers melt away. I have always told him that he smells like home and that has not changed. He draws circles in my palms and I listen to him breath. The television is on but the time together is more valuable than all the gold in the world. Soon our responsibilities to our families and ourselves will rip us apart but for now we are perfectly content ignoring the world. The tv is mute I am too busy listening to his heartbeat strum to pay attention to the words. His body sings a song to me and mine dances to it. The strumming of his heart has harmonized with his breathing to hypnotize me completely. I have no other option. He is mine and I am his.

We trudge along the bitter streets of Manhattan souls intertwined. We have dated for a little over five years and are now college freshmen. Separate schools cannot separate us. We have walked for what seems like a lifetime. The Megabus looms in the distance an omen predicting the lonely weeks that are to come. He waits in line with me patiently, patiently pretending in pleasant denial that we will board the same bus to the same destination. We play pretend as we bathe in each other’s essence. We kiss, tainting each other’s souls enough to last ‘til next we meet. I sit and exhale and watch him go through the window and reluctantly realize I must face the next few months alone.

If you had asked me in February of 2011 if I’d ever imagine standing in the blistering cold waiting for a bus to leave him I would have laughed in disbelief. It is appalling to see the difference a year makes. The weeks go by but our ritual does not change; he is the first person to text me when I wake up; the last person to text me before I go to sleep. Snow disappears, and the blistering winds of Connecticut ease slightly. We are lonely lovers now more than ever, imprisoned by distance but nourished by hope. Trees begin to blossom and so does the knowledge that I will soon know the blessing of his warmth daily. We both can sense the change as hope creeps in with the heat, painting everyday as a day less to wait. He fortifies me when I am close to breaking. He nourishes me mind and soul through the winter and the blistering cold.

It is February 2012 and he is miles away. College has placed him away in Philadelphia- no more morning walks in the cold. No more fingers intertwined despite the blistering winds. But I still love him and he is mine. We talk through android phones minds intertwined. Morning walks have been replaced with morning calls.  Text messages and video chats allow our rituals to survive.  Deep conversations and declarations of love have not faded with the years as with many other couples. “You are young,” they all said “you won’t make it through high school.” Didn’t we prove them wrong? “You are young,” they still say “You won’t make it through 
college,” don’t we intent to prove them wrong?

-Revised

Bag of blues


When do you realize that you are depressed? Do you wake up one morning and you do not smile? Do you know when you wake up with no hopes? Do you back track searching for that thing that tipped you over the edge? When did your fuse grow so short and your hope dwindled to no fucks being given. Was it last week or last month? You don’t even know …. don’t even remember when you started moving in this emotional slush.

You are being dragged down by life. You communicate with others like an empty shell  in short curt comments and responses… there is no real reason to speak. So more often than not you sit there and stare and completely lose focus. Your attention is pathetic …. you doze  off and zone out and don’t even care to remember where you are. You struggle to be happy. You struggle to be whole.

Music is your savior for it can alter your mood, even if it’s just for a little while. It’s the only drug you need there’s no need for anything more extreme. It rushes through your veins, pounds on your soul and takes you on a ride. It allows you to be someone else or feel something else no matter how faint for a little while.

You do not cry. Crying is for people who feel. You don’t feel. You just are. A walking contradiction because although you are alive you do not feel like you are living. Something inside you is fighting. The flame that you think is dead flickers and every now and then you feel it but it is quickly eclipsed by the smothering dark that is your current situation. You don’t even put up a fight and you love a good fight.

You are alone. You, your books, and your music. Although you feel like quitting you know that something good is coming…. you hope. You are holding out because if you don’t believe that things will get better you would have nothing else. If you don’t have a little faith you have nothing else but a shell of a body and a bag of blues.

For those who hide in plain sight.

Have you ever really watched people? I don’t mean creepy stalker watching. I’m speaking observing them. Have you ever seen the one with the loud laugh and the bright smile and realized it doesn’t quite reach their eyes. Have you peered a little closer and seen a sadness so deep it made you want to cry and when you ask their walls raised so quickly and they closed up just as fast. Those are the ones who hide in plain site.

They hide behind extravagance and false joy because it is easier to get by day to day on a lie than have to explain the truth to anyone. Would you like to hear that everything is wrong? That they are so completely and devastatingly alone no matter how surrounded they are by people. These people do not understand them nor do they make an attempt to for if they really did they would notice the pain. The glimpses of despair that every once in a while slip out of their carefully crafted chains and dance around the eyes and pull their brows a little closer together before they are wrestled back into submission.

They hide behind laughter so deep it quakes the soul but if you really paid attention you would smell the hints of melancholy that echo in their silence. If you really paid attention you would feel the dark shriek shrouded beneath those loud bells of laughter. These are the ones who hide in plain sight. No one ever knows because no one really cares and EVERYONE would much rather deal with fake joy than a broken being who has already decided that they are far from salvation. No one wants to put in the effort of healing torn souls.

This is for those who hide in plain plain sight. I see you. You are not alone. I spot the cracks in your carefully constructed masks, with your elegant displays of perfect content, and I see that your eyes don’t shine as bright and your joy doesn’t run as deep as everyone else thinks. This for those who hide in plain sight as an attempt just to function because you believe that if you pretend enough it will become real but in reality all you get is the ghosts of things you used to feel or should feel. This is for those who bury things deep and pray that they do not reach from their graves and pull you down into the dark abys. I see you…. you are not alone.

Saying Goodbye


No matter how hard you fight
every game of pretend
must come to an end
together forever
together til the end
well who would have thought
the end would be so near
I stand there watching silently
as you pack all your emotional things
memories are folded nice and square
every moment when we laid our souls bare

No matter how hard we fought
we knew that playing pretend
would never end well
well here we are
you on the other side of the door
tears choke out of my throat
as I hold the door
not sure if it I want to close
saying goodbye isn’t easy
saying goodbye isn’t fun
but it’s time to say goodbye
so I shut the door.

I lean back against the door
cuz I can’t support myself
It’s hard to face reality
when all you’ve done is pretend
My body slides down
as my tears cascade
my defenses crumble
but I have no strength to pray
In all honesty
I never thought reality would be so hard
I’d just like to lay here dead and play pretend.

-inspired by song Remember When- by Avril Lavigne