Don’t tell me
my voice is beautiful.
Don’t compliment
my use of words.
Don’t encourage me
to speak them louder.

I don’t want to
talk about poetry.
I don’t want to abuse
language that way.

The day will come
when I don’t hear
past voices in every
present moment.

But until then
don’t push me.
Don’t praise me.
Don’t remind me.
Various attributes of myself are constantly betraying me. My voice is probably highest among them. Someday someone will say “You’ve got a beautiful voice” and I’ll take it for the compliment it was meant as.



I want to help you
but I don’t know how
and I think you have
already decided to
jump off this cliff
regardless of the
consequences and no,
I will not go with you.
If it’s in my power
I promise to be here
to catch you if you ever
reach the bottom of this.


Not Out

I think
deep down
where you would
never admit it
you want to
mean more to me
than you do and
knowing that and
knowing you don’t
helps more than any
other thing could.



You said “I don’t know
your body by heart,”
and I smiled, thinking
about the few that
I have memorized
over the years.

She didn’t have
many curves
but I spent hours
running my fingers
over every rise and fall.

He had hands that could
pull me anywhere
storied and callused
and I can still recall
the sensation of being
carried away by them.

You said, “I don’t know
your body by heart,”
and I smiled, knowing
the only appropriate
response is “Yet.”
It was a good weekend for poetry. That’s what happens when the hibernation ends and you actually leave your tower…



I needed you and
you weren’t here.
It’s a sensation that
I have forgotten
over the years.

You haven’t been here
in a very long time but
tonight, I needed you.
And you weren’t here.

I want to say that I managed
just fine without you and that
I didn’t notice your absence
but you’re the only one who
can stop the noise from sinking
into my spine and I needed you
here to cut through the din and
I haven’t needed that or you in
years but tonight, I needed you.
And you weren’t here.
Note to self: Don’t go to the club when that club has a history of inducing a panic attack when your ex-girlfriend isn’t around anymore to pull you out of said massive panic attack.



I will never be comfortable
with how well you know me
but I will keep on insisting
it’s only because you are
that tuned in and not
that I am so predictable.

More often than not I would
like to strangle you in frustration
but then I turn around and think
how great it is to have someone
who will always call me out and
challenge me to be more
but make no secret of
his stake in the matter.

And I don’t want to remember
what it was like to kiss you
but I admit that sometimes
I just can’t help it
because now and then
you look at me and
it goes right through me -
leaving a handprint on
the small of my back,
the ghost of your touch.
I’ll tell you a secret. Most of the time I feel incredibly naive. But sometimes, I don’t mind it.



If you had asked
I would have insisted
I’d never go out like this
but it’s not because
I’m too prideful to fail
it’s because I honestly
never think that far ahead.

I do what I have to
when I have to do it
and I don’t leave room
for making plans for later
which is why I’m failing
to fix all this now.

But I know with a certainty
I can’t quite place
that this is the right move
because by some miracle
I don’t feel guilty
about standing up
for me for once
regardless of the disaster
I leave in my wake.

It’s an odd sensation
and one I don’t hope
to repeat in the future.

I won’t let it happen again.
Not because I’m too smart
or too determined
or because I have it
all figured out.

But because I’m thinking
that far ahead now and
I think I’m done
doing what needs to be done
just because someone has to.
3 cheers for making the selfish, right call for me. One organization down.