Any sunrise / that has dawned from my fingers / was your transcription.
If I drown tonight
I hope you sleep light knowing
My lungs filled with things heavier
Than than the air needed
To scream things heavier than us.
The most difficult /
thing I’ve ever learned to do /
was running in place.
cradled all things she revolver gentle —
the kindle and bellow and above and below and scratches and bites and exhale-from-the-bottom-of-your-loves…
all of the ways I wanted to tell her
crawling over each other,
scratching and fighting for alpha like
crab-bullets in gun barrels
wanting to be the first one to
jump chamber and priority air mail
itself to her, addressed to center mass
and carve our names
in the bark.
I was never great at drawing hearts
That looked loveable
So I circled us in a target.
When did you start writing poetry?
I grew up in a home full of writers.
I think some people know every day that they are growing up that they are going to be what they are growing into. Some have the luxury of really just walking down the road to the market and coming back with milk. Most days I pity them… Until it’s one of those specific days when I feel extra spun around and don’t know which way is up or down, and don’t know what direction to write in let alone what to write about, or that I should be writing more my name and the date on the top of a blank page I don’t know why I stole, or how to spell my name, or what the date is…. Then I really envy people who are doing what they always knew they’d be doing.
All I ever really knew was that it wasn’t going to be me — writing. And then I woke up one day and I was 16, in a creative writing class during my junior year in high school, and the poetry section started. My teacher, Robin Moten, showed us “Slam Nation” and I got to watch Saul Williams and Beau Sia and Jessica Care Moore and muMs da Schemer represent the Nuyorican Cafe / NYC at the National Poetry Slam. Taylor Mali and is “Like Lily, Like Wilson’ poem. Saul’s Pickininey Children and Aunt Jemimah and Uncle Ben shooting at them. I was hooked. It was like a light switch got turned on. Mostly on Saul, and most of my early writing really reflects that point of inspiration. Young writing (still problematic), and more attempts at wordplay than attempts at meaning, some times (and still).
But I knew that I was saying something. I knew that it was important — if only for me.
I won the poetry contest/slam we had in that class. And the one the next class had (they invited me back). A few slams and some wins here and there, and a lot of stages and mics have helped me grow into who I am. As did a long break from mics and stages, which happened after I decided that I was winning or doing well in slams because I was a better performer than a writer (the opposite is now true, and performing isn’t as fun as it used to be — but I’m trying to get back).
I spent the next decade or so often living, sometimes writing about it, and trying to figure out how to write more and more and more for _me_ while not being more and more and more open to the world. It’s been exhausting, and incredible, and hopefully I’m just getting started.
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Who is your favorite Pokemon? ;)
I worked security for an anime and cosplay convention in downtown Detroit a few weeks ago. It was a wild ass experience for me. I think I saw 5-7 Ash Ketchum’s and fiddylevum Missy’s. There were Pikachu costumes people had purchased prefab, and homegrown costume versions of many other PokeDex entries.
From a security place, it was a nightmare… A bunch of people dressed up like characters that I either 1) can’t readily describe to my colleagues in the case of an incident, or 2) who have the same exact outfit as seven other people in your general area. [_Try telling someone on the other side of a convention center to be on the look out for one of the Lara Croft’s — the one who ISN’T pulling the costume off…_ See how good you feel about yourself, or how well they understand you…]
Anyway. These aren’t the answers you were looking for.
I was a Generation I pokemon player, and don’t know anything beyond about 150, in any honesty. I gravitated toward Psychic or Ice because they felt so unreasonably strong.
Favorite Pokemon: Alakazam / Lapras / MewTwo.
Ask your questions here
I dug in myself
Pulled out malignancy and
handed it to her.
She looked at my tears,
and shame, and empty, and blew
on my cheeks like spring.
She asked why I cried;
said she was the one awestruck
by the way I bloomed.
It feels like the years have
collected like rocks at the bottom of a lake along
the bottom of my stomach, and
along the soles of my feet;
I no longer float in the water,
dirty dishes in a kitchen, sinking;
I can walk, along the bottom of your pool
Time has passed since
a past named she smiled sly
and walked out of my room,
and down the stairs,
and out the door
white-toothed rapids passing under bridges should have
seasoned and sealed me watertight,
but I look at my hands and wonder whether weather’s worn more away
from my palms than was there to begin with…
Doppler radar map pictures of storms named
after women disappointed in how delicate their moniker’s made
are tattooed along my brow ridge —
homages to homes swept away.
I’m still here on my knees
asking God to direct salve through meta carpal tunnels
and into these tasks, goals that pool and puddle
keep dripping through the holes
well-intended tornadoes and torrential rains have
landslid right through me.
She says she wants to be caught;
that she’s tired of running faster than
the men chasing her with nets and rings.
what have you been training for?
Why have you spent your entire life
photosynthesizing and blossoming and
uprooting yourself into such beautiful freedom,
if getting caught and plowed and
planted was your end game all along
because to see her running — to see her in bloom
is to learn why we should never thumb our noses at roses or
toward heaven, and why we should scream and cry the sky for joy
that we were given legs
and not wings.
and yet i’ve never been her even for a day of my life;
I’ve never been a Monarch,
so I can’t tell her that she should not reminisce over cocoon
Til one day when her smiles fell,
and he followed suit.
faith drip down cheeks,
watched tears grow shoulders
and learn how to carry
along with their sadness
trace amounts of make-up
that spread across the surface
of the pool she was filling.
Couldn’t tell if my voice helped,
or just sounded like my father,
but just kept the count
and promised myself I would find
a way to put each drop back behind her eyes
where my soul belonged.
Her: I'd be a fool not to ask you who this woman is that you spend so much time trying to spell.
Me: And I'd be a fool to tell you.