I promised

I promised once
to keep you close
but as fine wire
I was cut by my oath

I promised once
to help you shine
but tarnish remains
lungs swimming in brine

I promised once
to give you hope
but I am a wild horse
and you were the rope

I promised once
the stars were bright
but you draw curtains
burned by the light

I promised once
to never let you go
before the summer
faded into snow

I promised once
I wouldn’t leave
but I trade your suffocation
for an ocean breeze

and without you
I begin to breathe

Remember Then

when the green
has faded
into the grey
a dawn of ash
a mother slain
by the children
she gave all
before columns of smoke
before asphalt choked
the poison
that triggered her fall
when the ocean
has turned to stone
jaded
as those who passed her by
when the rivers turn to dust
forests flake and rust
with unslaked thirst
and forgotten rain
when the world is dry
remember when
you loved your steel
a four wheeled ego
the slim device
tucked into a pocket
that taught you how to feel
instead of breathing
in the air
then
you confined life to a cage
built by plastic
the death of earth
unfolds on a screen
while you wail
and whine and rail
that nothing is fair
the world is ending
while you stare
at worthless fantasy
a banquet for dynasty
while nature starves
because we carved
wounds into her bones
remember then
what you have done
and what you ought have
but did not

Doctors’ orders

He told me to scribble

all of my hopes

But when you’re a skeleton

Limbs rattle and clank

only to cause a flood of ink

No real tears to cry

or soft words remain

to envelope bones

Weathered by the years

softened by the rain

He told me to write down all of my dreams…

but there are bats in my skull

and nobody in the world

wants to hear them scream

Some things you can’t say

to polite company

or in general

lest they shut you away

My memories do not belong in words

but in containment

A cage for violence and blood

who flutter as frightened birds

Taming Demons

the girl without wings
the monster under her bed
feet splintered by oak
and the savage words she spoke
temporarily
before lightning struck her blind

the familiar
strange somehow, as shadows’ depth
is drawn into cutting edge

the girl with no voice
the beast spinning songs of glory
bedtime tales, bad girls
who throw their stones to break bones
brittle ivory
softened as she is by smoke

the girl who grew up
then learned to leash her demons
at the end of silver ropes

missing

I’m the wordsmith
you left tongue tied
Haunted
by a missed sentence
when your breath met mine

I’m the lost girl
who tosses and turns
Poured into an ice cream maker
But it’s broken
and my ice has thawed
into everything
I leave unspoken

Because

I’m the dancer
with battered and broken feet
But then I rose
onto bruised tip-toes
so I could taste your lips

London

When the concrete was your duvet

Blinding neon beams your nightlight

Flickering eyelids

you’d never close fully to the world

And the river

Diaphanous as wings

A butterfly cries out clearly

as the water sings

The city’s oldest morgue

A deep freezer for the bodies

of those who were lost

but one day will be found.

You learned to live with death

and the spattered paint of human violence

Those stains have washed out

but it has left a brand on the birdcage

that cradles your heart.

The curried goat you swallow

Casual, in the face of anarchy

The rats and cats emerge

from long buried facilities

They twirl in a form of ballet

Delivered by the scent

that floods the tunnels for miles

Roads of broken smiles

and a world we left behind.

The flash of steel in bras

with no wires

Your head held as high as the moon

as songs of the sirens

works themselves into a lather

The adrenaline

The endless flow of scarlet ink

that once held a palace of memories.

When the streets were marbled with the rivulets

and remains

that no rain could weep away

When cemeteries opened their gates

to listen to whispered words

When you were on the brink

The edge of the bridge with no care

A bottle and a cigarette to carry

you into flight

while the others danced and laughed and screamed

That was love

And you were a real girl.

In Dreams (Lyrical Poetry Project)

I have never seen a rainbow
that didn’t fade
but I have seen where the stars go
in evening shade

and in my dreams
I will forever call your name

lonely sky wraiths as reminder
we hearts are small
fragile thread for the book cover
glittering jewel

When the grim marble outlasts us
Once, we were here
What will remain? Stones etched with love
Once, we grew here

And in dreams
We dance together in the rain

And in the stories we’ll forget
sleeping wolves lay
We won’t spin the tales of regret
That blood soaked day

The beauty that we remember
Just ephemeral as embers

This piece is based on In Dreams by Howard Shore

Serpents’ Breath

The word
Breath upon the ice

Stars in hiding

The world ending
as we linger on sidelines
Slowly roasting
in the tears shed as fire

Our sails
furled
by the dragons’ lightning

They speak twice
The first sentence
A clash of wings

Then they bring death
Bright as summer morning
that turns to the void of night