Constellations

I like the sound of my pen scratching paper drawing smooth long lines until we

Stop

come up for air and breathe for a while

aimlessly wander to the brink,

of this morning’s tastes
and the colours of last night
that have seeped into your skin.

For my pen could draw lines on your back connecting each scar, freckle, blemish

Rose Tattoo

A constellation tattooed in the back of my mind though nothing is permanent,

but the sound of my pen this morning and you-

 

beautiful.

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Over a Bridge

Confused, conflicted, what’s another word that begins with C? Alliteration is more effective when it comes in threes.

I’ll ponder that for a moment.

Today felt like a dream. Not a nice dream though, not dreamy, but not a nightmare either. Rather, it was a slow, sluggish daze. Today was hazy and heavy, like that moment when you wake up from a deep sleep, only partially conscious, your head like a cement brick.

I drifted from each class and through each hour. I didn’t notice much. I was terribly unfocused though I managed to go through the motions; contributing to seminars, taking notes, raising a point or two about postmodern literature, etc. But nothing really stuck, nothing landed, solidified in my mind. I felt, in one word, disconnected.

I’m in a fog. And it goes on for as I can see, as far as I can look ahead. Which, albeit, at this stage, is not very far at all. I figure if I was not outwardly present then maybe I was too inward, too internally focused.

Regardless of my ‘haze’, I walked home in the chilly September wind, happy that summer hasn’t made an early appearance just yet. I wrapped myself in a long scarf, looping it around twice before tossing it over my left shoulder. It blew in the wind, flailing behind me as I walked across the bridge, over the Torrens, which, surprisingly, didn’t smell too bad today. Earlier I walked over another bridge where couples, people, people in love had inscribed, initialled, engraved, fastened locks and assumedly, thrown away the key.

Thinking about bridges I should probably get over it.

Perhaps alliteration is overrated.

 

Captive.

Morning After

after

nights spent in sadness, cocooned in blankets, hands clasped, close to your chest with shallow breaths, clinging to the edge of your rib cage, clawing at your throat
escaping

in and out, in and out again, your dry and evaporated breath, air to lungs, fingers shaking, lips trembling
eventually

skinny light edges through your windows and birds wake up before you do and you, you let your feet swing to the edge, maybe slowly at first, your heavy still, but not anchored

eventually
toes slip from the bed to the floor, sinking into carpet, into socks, into slippers, maybe boots, your move next, and you move

on
and on

again.

 

Directionless

Forwards, backwards, two steps to the right and back again. The weight of the world does not rest on my shoulders alone. It’s weighing us down together.

That morning, I decided to go for a walk. A slow walk, not at my usual hurried, gangly pace. I slowed and noticed. I noticed the clichèd sounds of wind rustling through trees as my feet sank with every step, disappearing into the mud.

I had laid awake, listening to that 2 am rain. 

I watched tiny birds hop over puddles and absently wondered if they’d forgotten their wings. I walked on, sure of my direction, yawning and squinting into beams of early morning light. Shadows crept into view. 

I strayed off the quote unquote Beaten Track. I was drawn into the wild shrubbery, taken in by the allure of the moss covered rocks, twisted, fallen branches and gum trees that seemed to be giving up. Further and further from man made suburbia I strayed. Away from the distant views of empty driveways and laced kitchen windows I ventured.

I am lucky to live where I live until living becomes a conscious effort. The physical place does little to make up for a mental space that’s becoming smaller and smaller. Lucky is now a synonym for acceptance, an expected social nicety and empty consolation. It even sounds hollow, clicking on the edge of my tongue.

The outdoors is nice. Beautiful. Even though I’ve dressed it up in manufactured subtext by romanticising the trees, moss rocks and birds, and needlessly describing the squelching of hiking boots.

Do I ever just walk?

Everything is Noise

Hold me a little closer and drown out the lies. Their words are becoming truth, snakes under my skin.

I can no longer find the quiet spaces I used to retreat to. She has been taken from me. My secrets have been snatched, still untold, but not mine to tell anymore.

I feel like the dull ache in your legs after a Thursday night shift. Like the emptiness of being awake at 3 Am. All the time.

I can taste hostility in the back of my throat. Sour grapes, hard to bite into. I scrape my tongue with a tooth brush laden with paste as Mum always told me that was how you got rid of bad breath.

Her words rest on my tongue now.

The edging of lace on my grandmother’s table. My fingertips pull at the edges. Photographs, paintings, of those who do not want my eyes there are screaming at me. I am wasting away in my own way. On the inside I am dying, drying. A dried, feeble daisy.

There is no brightness in the hollow of now. The sound is screeching, moving to the beat of a thousand electro hits. It’s a dark tunnel. Most people think and fear loudly in 140 characters or less. I fear permanency.

If the cold rain could wash us away, down the sidewalk, to a drain. If we could run through the cobblestones and create irregular rectangle patterns through the cracks of less accepting times, well, maybe, that would be for the best. Quieter at least.

Tidal Wave

I hold this to no standards
The air that you are
the mornings of cold comfort and ice melting down your chest

      I feel like a tidal wave that will drown you

                  I am sorry for the immensity of my words
                    

But if I cannot hold thoughts of you in the jars I gaze up at longingly on my highest shelf
Or keep secrets locked in jewelry boxes in my bottom drawer underneath socks and magazine brochures
How will I remember the moments of fleeting sense and reckless abandon that carved out spaces of beauty in my grey months
How after all that I have invested in seconds, and calendar crosses, and alarms will it not go to waste

                           to evaporate

 

I cannot let you be that

an absence of explanation a slip in my minor scale

a fallen note into pale silence

                                                                                                                            washed away.

Be

the splash of milk in morning coffee
the worn pairs of socks sliding down hallways
the snort of true laughter
and the crinkles of true faces
and the gaps between teeth
the colour of ideas, rainbow, tomorrow
The scraping of chairs, the taker of seats
The owner of space
the rustle of feathers, the rustle of papers
the leaning forward, the leaning in
the unfolded petals, of letting light in, open
Turned to face the sun