Turning

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Autumn arrives in the air all of the sudden
Nodding to me it’s time, she advances

The horizon will darken, trees age in a day
Fruit molds and drops, our garden dies back

Too old to mourn the ending summer, I turn,
Flush red and gold, mature fast as a sapling

When night comes early I am ready to greet her
Shedding my guilt like a snakeskin, or leaves

All fall down, together under a turning sky
We recognize that growth has many faces

She

She was a child with a fear of fire.
She was a child with dreams of art
and nightmares of death
and dying and killing.

She became a woman with a story
clutched to her chest.
She was a woman always walking,
and sometimes faltering,
but never stopping.

She becomes a master of solitude.
She is like a deep lake;
emerald near the shore and
the color of lapis lazuli at the center.

It is painful to know fear so intimately.
It is exhausting to embrace it,
to cradle it in your arms.
Still, she tries
and tries.

all the wrong places

encircled by a ring of wine on teak
from where you set your glass in february

on the tattered page of a violent novel

nestled at the foot of my winter bed, beneath
an afghan crocheted by sorrowful tales

ringing in the woodpecker’s persistent rap
on our iron chimney cowl

atop a Zeppelin of the dreams I set free

masked in a wing of scarlet paint
across a bum’s haggard jaw

sealed in ironed wax paper
next to a frozen four-leaf clover

i search for that girl
in all the wrong places

Cold in the Doll Bones

Last night I became a paint-eyed doll with a broken leg.
You can fix human limbs but not doll limbs,
because we are only made of porcelain, which doesn’t fuse back together.

We stood in the drunk crowd, tired, and listened.
Angel songs of passion, drugs, and God spilled into us.
I swayed against you to the melody, asking for love in the only way I know how,
fumbling for something to take my breath away with its sheer beauty.

I listened to save my life, or to give me reason not to.
We dreamed of lighting cigarettes against the persistent wind,
of driving to the coast and watching the city lights flicker like a mirage.
At least that’s what I was dreaming of. Were you?

My leg broke in place of my heart, because I needed something tangible,
and I fell hard on the concrete when life shoved me.
No hospitals or casts or prescriptions for me.
Eyes glazed over emerald and my body hardened like glass.

Ch-ch-ch-changes

Photo on 10-20-14 at 5.57 PM #4
I chop off my hair.
It is ragged and uneven and looks horrible but I need this.
I hack pieces of my femininity off
and watch it fall into the trash bin.

I don’t give a shit.
Nothing touches me.

I smear on makeup never worn before. Taint my skin & dirty my eyes.
Angry at the world, untouchable.
My boyfriend won’t like this but fuck that.
He asks if I still have hair, because it matters to him.

Angry at norms and expectations.
I am restricted by regulations.

I wonder if my anger grows from my depression, insidiously twisting towards others.
I try not to lash out.

Friendships recede into the past, good times setting over the horizon.
I wonder if I will see them again.

Is this adulthood? Are these the celebrated college years?
I try hard not to fixate on the daydreams about my death.

Sometimes I believe I am to blame.

Searching

Hello,
I’m trying to find a place
where I won’t be lonely. I’m trying
to find a place where I can be myself.
I’ve been looking for a long time for somewhere
people will understand me.

Hello,
I’m trying to find a person
who I won’t be lonely with. I’m trying
to find a person I can show myself to.
I’ve been looking for a long time for this person,
and I know the search will last a while
yet.

Hello,
have you seen happiness? I think
I lost it. Have you happened upon a smile?
I think I forgot mine, a few years ago. On a shelf
in a closet, when I was thirteen.
Can you show me where my
laughter ran away to?