Knots

Twisted barren branches reaching up
Looking for starlight
Each sharp bend an overcorrection
An attempt at change.
Branches twist painfully away from the stunted trunk
Each knot a scar on the tree’s arms
A cut in the skin.
Abandoned choices haunt withered sub-branches.
Roots cling to the rocks
A claw of bones
Digging for soil where none exists.  
There is always a cliff
There is always a shore
Edges, limitations, confinements.
An opportunity for isolation
A familiar escape
A place to bury.
 

Medication

I smothered myself
Poured water on the coals
To stabilize the waves
I’m drifting through
 
The sky is clearing
But I miss the storms
The churned up sea bed
And the broken coasts
 
I want to capsize
But I can’t sink
My mind is bloated
With too many thoughts
 
You call from rocks
A lovely siren
But will you harbor
My broken body
If I crash
Against your shore?
 

Homesick

Homesick for a place I’ve never known
Missing something that I never had
How is that possible?
Do ghosts have footsteps?
Would I have heard your approach?

I saw you
In my dreams I saw you
You were there, on the sidelines
As I sorted and sorted and sorted
In a storage unit

An apt setting, my long-buried ghost
You required excavation
A reopening of wounds
In hopes of finally understanding
And desires for new memories

Walking that thin line between support and
Over-caring.
Always my weakness
Always my appeal
But the risk was worth everything

My alphabet, my line, my reflection
Building a stronger self
A broader arc of knowing
A trove of new smiles and overlaps
A ghostly hug
A calmness and an upset

Best keep the shovel ready.

My Little Shadow

Falling victim again
To my escapist tendencies
On the darkest day of the year
As the rain spills loose from faulty gutters

She sleeps
Hammers echo around her oasis
She dreams
Of someone strong and happy

The pressure to be her demigod
Increases my doubt
The task is unending
The price is myself

Eventually she will see me as human
As I came to understand
After years of thrashing and anger
Now only to start the cycle again.

Postscript

Again, my dear alphabet.
From roots to saplings to branches.
Falling like leaves
Masking what waited below the surface
My buried pet,
My forgotten anger,
My abandoned other half.

I heard your call
Or was it my hollowness finally catching up with me?
You've been my favorite ghost
All these years.
A passing shadow,
A winter storm,
The curl of someone's lips.

Guilt and regret: the most useless of feelings.

On the edge of an ancient fire,
Under the stars,
Worn down by insomnia,
I remembered.
Allowed myself to unlock the box in my head.
A tumbled mess of apologies and gratitude came spilling out,
Falling from the brittle branches. 

Their fall is uncharted.
Down the rabbit hole, I go.
Passing letters, notes, lines, quips.
Listening to the echo of the ellipses.
Awakening numb synapses,
Fusing old cracks,
Piecing inspiration slowly back together.
Again, my dear alphabet, again.