Wednesday, November 18, 2009


When I look in the mirror, I wonder
what I would look like if the bags under
my eyes never stopped growing. That they
would have to be wrapped around my neck
like scarves, their fragile, silky heads
writhing like snakes across the pages of
my book, my hand pushing them away
as I write - Carriers of all the
dreams I'm not allowed to have, and
purses for all the dreamless nights
They've strangled from me.

For now, my eyes droop far enough.
I don't have to smile anymore to make
their suitcases noticeable - carrying
all my thoughts and late-night philosophies,
like a badge of honor.
Bags of baggage - the only kind that hold
so much, but stand for so
much emptiness.

11/18, 4:15 AM
Edited 1/4 2:07 AM

The Last Things from the Apt.

The things I carried weren't heavy -
They fit into a box under my arm.
The glass I used as a vase for the
flowers you bought me, that were
supposed to make it to our new place,
but kept being left behind.
The scratch pad I bought for my cats
when I first moved in, to dissuade
them from destroying the wicker
furniture that anyway they never touched.
A bar of herbal stain remover, a roll
of recycled paper towels, some
baking soda, castile soap, my
efforts to never use artificial cleaner -
A vow I broke the last day I was there,
after finding a bottle of chemicals
cowering under sink (I put it back).
In my other arm I carried the
moldy towels we'd used inside
our fridge to catch the drip-drip
from our icebox freezer, a FedEx
package for you, and an Eve Sedgwick
book that's since been recalled
to the library.
Before I left, I swept up our remains;
piles of dust bunnies, raccoons, and
tiny kittens forming and dancing
in the corners of our past life,
trickling down the stairs,
pursued by our dustpan, which
wasn't really ours (I put it back, too).
I shook the sheetless bed of its blanket
of dust and fidelity, and picked pieces
of our memories out of the carpet.
The hair, the dust, the dreams,
so much fell through my fingers and
is still scattered on the linoleum floor.
You can see them lying there,
in the pictures I took as I left.
I found pieces of your first visit
here, as I lie on the bed before leaving,
pieces of your devotion that I had saved
to wrap around myself while we
were apart. I found remnants
of our loving gazes and aching goodbyes
caught in the screen of our window
that faced the long driveway. I put
as many of these in my pocket
as I could. Our goodbyes now don't
have those gazes, where we live.
I carry a lot of warmth with me
to our new place, still cold and shiny
from being scrubbed bare of all
the pain that was once housed there.
I plan to decorate the walls again
with as much of my devotion as will
stick, and dust the carpet with
new memories, as they form.
The towels I'll wash, and the scratch
pad will hang on another doorknob,
hopefully dissuading the cats from
scratching the sofa your parents
brought us, which they've already
discovered. And I'll layer our bed
with the fidelity that's left, and hope
to make it extra toasty with my
electric blanket for you, once it
gets colder outside and you need
a place beside me, to keep warm.

- 10/12

On Foot

We're adults now, you and me,
Somewhere past the carefree childhood
fuck-all to the fuck-each-other,
looking up from my essays on transgender
composition theory at you and your
zen and motorcycle maintenance,
or, rather, to the book eclipsing your face;
My gaze is drawn to your chiseled legs,
feet slender with a perfect arch, your
hand laying limp on the belt line
of a perfect torso -
I look at my feet, too, protruding from
beyond your computer in my lap,
and I realize how big we are, how
adult we are - making our own way,
carving out livelihoods,
our paths of sexuality and
identity, all on our own - on foot, even.
And this is the texture of our future,
of us, of our lives, of the
biopolitics of the nation we'd be anxious
to leave -
though for now I'm content to sip
my tea and ogle you behind your book
until its time for those perfect arches
to carry you to bed with me.