You know, I always associate
Waiting for my turn at a poetry slam
With really terrible things
Like sitting on death row
Or being led to sacrifice.
And y’know, I can’t help but think
I’m not the only one
Cause all the waiting poets I see
Are a shade of green
That would make the Wicked Witch of the West
Look like Key Lime Pie.
It’s kinda like being at a slaughterhouse
(Told you, terrible things)
You watch the other animals go forward
And you know you’re going to be next soon
And the people holding the axe
Show no mercy.
But it’s just the waiting that’s a slaughterhouse
Cause being on the stage
Is like being an assassin
Get in, do the job, get out
Feel no emotion.
And after you’re off is like Free Cone Day
Nothing in the world tastes sweeter.
I didn't bite my nails all summer
I trimmed them when they got too long
For my obssessive-compulsive sensibilities
And yeah, sometimes I trimmed them too short
But I didn't bite my nails all summer
And during the summer I sometimes wondered why
I figured out why this week
While sitting in English Seminar
As our teacher drowned us in paper handouts
Explaining writing guidlines
The books we're expected to read
What's expected of us Read more »
It's 90 degrees backstage
But my costume is heavy
So it feels hotter
I'm so scared
I feel like I'm going to be sick
I've only had two weeks to learn these lines
I'm going to forget them
A friend of mine is panicking
I focus on helping her
I tell her it's only another dress rehearsal
I peek behind the curtain
And then revise my former statement
It's just another dress rehearsal
With half my street sitting in the audience
The curtain goes up
The lights go on Read more »
A squirrel runs through the parking lot, perky and alive. A squirrel runs to the front door of the house on the other side of the parking lot's chain-link fence. Ding-dong, I almost expect to hear.
A light finally flickers on in the big house. I can see the outline of the lamp behind the pink curtained windows.
Do you think they've ever seen the squirrels? Read more »
THe room never sleeps, the room never changes. Sure, the wall paint is changed, the magazines fade and the plants are dug up and replanted; but the purpos and anxiety never changes. No room on Earth has even been home to such intense anxiety.
Here, little toddlers bounce anxiously on their grandparents knee, curiously awaiting to meet the alien that been living in mommy's belly.
Here, mohters squeeze their husbands hand in fear, as they wait for the hardest news they'll ever hear.
Here, doctors let out a long-awaited relieved sigh as they get to brake the good news, "You can see him in a minute, he's fine."
Thousands upon thousands of prayers have been poured out here. Begging and pleading, just one more chance.
People's lives change dramatically here, some for the better, some for the worse. People's memories live in this room. Memories they re-watch everyday. Memories of the waiting room.
If anxiety was a color
it would be the blackest purple,
blackest purple as the end of a long hallway,
as the center of the ocean at night,
as a big black hole, sucking you in.
If anxiety was a taste
it would be a sour apple,
bitter like a tart,
acrid like the after taste of coffee.
If anxiety was a smell
it would be the smell of moisture.
If anxiety was a sound
it would be the sound of silence
because you can’t hear the tears it causes.
The anxiety sets in before the car has been parked. The anticipation of pain and blood really gets me thinking. Will they actually wait for the anesthetic to kick in this time? What array of utensils will meet my flesh today? How many mistakes can they make in a two-hour period? My heart rate seems to increase with each turn of the hallway. I walk at my usual brisk pace. This is not because I am eager to get it over with; it is purely for efficiency. Efficiency is why I am here. When a part of you doesn't meet the standard, you get it repaired or replaced so you as a whole can become whatever you define as better. I check in with a woman with poorly dyed hair and take a seat a few feet from her. I am the only patient here. This is one of the few "comfortable" looking waiting rooms I have been in, which is completely oxymoronic, but at least they tried. The lighting would be more suitable for a restaurant. Read more »
I last visited Rebecca in the fall of seventh grade. It’s not as far away as it seems. In some ways it’s closer. The memories speak of a Sierra who has crawled back into existence. Being a teen with OCD has a strangely familiar ring. It’s like Persephone, tithed to the treachery of her underworld. Four meager months a year she spends with her helpless mother, and the world above blooms anew. But her debt is ever left unpaid. She’s granted little reprieves, here and there, but she must always return.
She may be in a wane, but she’ll always wax again. Read more »
The funny thing about depression
Is it is always there.
It is always hiding beneath your bones,
Waiting for the right second to jump out
Just long enough to give you a good scare.
And as the days go on,
We busy ourselves.
We tell everyone that we are fine,
Things are different now,
Things are good.
But when we pause our lives,
When we put our homework on hold
And take a few minutes to think
Take some time to inhale Ingrid Michaelson's
You realize that things are just the same as they were before
And they probably will be
Then you begin to wonder,
To question yourself.
Maybe your anxiety isn't so bad
You've just never been a different person
You don't know what a normal amount is.
Maybe your problem, then,
Is just learning to deal with it.
Deal with life.
So you busy yourself more.
Clean your room.
Read a book.
Spend hours making projects perfect.
Then you never have to deal with yourself Read more »
Do you want to know what's hard?
Trying to please someone
who seems to resent you
totally hate you possibally
trying to talk to them
and you get no reply
The feelings that you have for this person
mean more than the feelings that would make you despise them
you love them anyways
kind of an unconditional love
like saying no matter what happens between us
I will still love you
But no matter what you say
or think about this person,
they still resent you
and come at you with hatred
without actually saying it
It's hard when you find that person
hanging out with someone.
someone who's not you
It just kills you.
For some reason
you love them
and after you see those two together,
you find that you love them
even more than before.
That's what's hard.
Sure is beautiful.
Seems like it gets longer every year.
Longer and colder.
Oh, how i hate the cold.
You're cold all the time.
Sure there's fun things to do but I'd rather it be hot,
I wish I didn't have to endure Winter.
Just look at it once and a while.
To turn around and see a white cotton covered birch tree
swaying with the calm winds.
But feel like the sun is beating down on your face
winter is too harsh of a season.
Summer brings a smile to my face
Knowing that there are many more things to do
with out the cold to stop you
and other fun things you can't do during winter
I love Vermont, it's just way too cold for me
"I know who you are.
I know who you are,
And let me tell you,
I am one of those people, too.
I have felt that feeling
Heart-racing, stomach-clenching, anxiety-provoking feeling.
And it's all just an awful cycle
You don't want people to think you're weak.
But you're not
You're definitely not weak.
You've got to stay strong."
And in that moment
Of former despair
Talking with my history teacher
Through the hallway of surpassing faces
I realized that I AM strong
I'm stronger than I could ever imagine
And all these ups and downs
And goods and bads
Have made me this much stronger.
I am strong enough
To put these words on paper
To let the world know how I feel
To let the world know
I'm happy again.
Things are going to be okay.
No matter what happens,
If we rise or if we fall
Or if we laugh or cry
At least we'll all be in it together
We'll all go down together
We'll all be strong
Sitting on the plane
Biting my nails
Remembering it is a disgusting habit
Sitting on my hands
Pulse is racing
It’s not the flight
I’ve flown before
what will life be like
And so every day
She walked home
Praying to the god she was not so sure she believed in
That no one would be in that big, empty house
Please, god, please
Just let her be alone in that big, empty house
She just needs some time to gather her thoughts
She just needs some time to write
She just needs some time to bleed.
Hold that pose, NonSequitur. Feel your muscles shake, weaken
Tighten those callow lungs
Clean, crisp oxygen is a luxury, anyway
Good -remember those words, now
Coax them along from annals and folds
"I -I remember, I remember."
Very good. Reprieve granted.
The world's been reordered, the mantra spoken.
"What -you too good for us?"
A mafioso's voice, a thin chrome surface worked and redoubled to a vaguely human appearance.
My reflection, undefined and leering. "Yes. As a matter of fact, I am."
A second voice, or perhaps third -a petulant, wheedling tone. The blender joins the toaster. "But...you pass us thrice an hour."
"I don't have to. My choice, remember? Rebecca said -"
"'Rebecca said!'" The tone snaps, bridles. "Who you gonna listen to -her, or us?" Sinks, sharpens. "Touch! It's torturing you. You need that symmetry -that power in your fingertips." Read more »
"You all okay?" coach asks us.
Yeah, I'm just fine. It's not like I'm giving myself a fucking panic attack over here. "Yep. I'm okay." My answer is drowned out by the voices of my teammates. Fuck it.
"Good. We're going to start soon. I want you to stay close to each other - try to stay within ten seconds of the person in front of you."
"Okay," I get out in the wave of "yesses" and nodding heads. Oh, God, don't do this, don't make me do this. Why the hell do I do this? Every year I go through it all and then I sign up and do it again. Why? Why why why? Fuck.
"Alright," the man with the starting gun announces. "I want you all to take a step back. I don't want you all getting trampled by each other." He laughs to himself for a brief second, clears his throat, and starts again. "When I say 'runners start,' you can take a step forward. I'll then step off the course. When you hear the gun, go." Oh, fuck. Fuck fuck fuck. Please no. "Runners start." Fuck. Read more »
I don't understand why I'm still shivering, even under all these blankets.
For an extra few minutes
Towel wrapped tightly around my unsheltered body
Staring at the floor.
Listening to the last water drops dripping.
Letting the last yellow leaf fall from its tree.
And I want to feel an overwhelming sadness
But only feel
Sometime over this journey,
I turned that switch off in my mind.
Forgot how to feel.
And I want that to sadden me more,
Want to turn it back on.
But all I ever feel
Everything is wrong.
Everyone is a pain.
And slammed doors,
All in my head.
These are not the good days.
When I stare out the window
Watching the world spin around me
Seeing the trees blend into one,
An enormous sea of green.
Watching the yellow lines merge here and there,
The white steeples disappearing
And the forever gray of sidewalks
Going on and on and on…
Ignoring the clanking bus,
The gossiping girls,
The obnoxious giggles.
Let me be.
Please just let me be.
It’s days like these that I live for.
Days when I lay on my bed
Staring at the stickers on the wall,
Staring at the pictures
That once meant so much
But are now so empty.
I wonder if I took them down,
Would the blue wall be faded?
Days when I text all my friends
A funny story.
And even when none of them write back
Music playing in my head
Arms wild and eyes closed.
Days when nobody cares.
When I stare at the single pencil strokes
Of my favorite drawing
Hanging on that faded wall
And I know that it is not the single strokes
That form a picture,
It is the millions,
That make up a moment.
These are the days I live for.
And I wonder if maybe
These are the days we all live for…
I hate to be so
High up because the only
Thing left is to fall.
Sick of “just deal with it”s
Tired of “I understand”s
No one understands
That I am this way because all I do is deal.
So don’t tell me to deal with this
Don’t you dare tell me to deal.
I can’t handle dealing with dealing.
And just please,
When I say you don’t understand
Because quite frankly,
I don’t exactly understand myself.
Pounding all over
Here I am safe
With no worries.
Maybe I can stay here forever.
I think I could handle that.
No one to please
No one to upset
And the water,
And the water.
Yes, I think I could handle that.
When you build a card castle,
You always need more than one card.
You start with two,
Balancing and bending them until they stay up
Supporting one another.
You take more cards
And gently place them on top
One after another
Until the once small figure is an elegant army of 52.
But one wrong move
And the cards come down
So I become stuck
Between who I am
And who I used to be,
Fall, falling down.
Scattered pieces here and there
Most face up but I am facing down.
The diamonds casting rainbows on the fading sun
As the red seeps through the bare feet on black and white marble
And the hearts,
The hearts are everywhere,
The hearts are everywhere.
So close your eyes and listen
To my castle tumbling down.
Close your eyes and listen
To the heartbeats on the floor.
Words are supposed to be universal
So out of the thousands who have been here before
I do not understand how no one has found the words
To show what I mean.
But mostly I do not understand Read more »
I desperately need to take the fall
But I am way too scared to jump
And I think that scares me the most.
You left her there
Practicing in the field alone
Hitting the balls again and again
Making the goal every time
Yelling words she never said aloud before
Each time her stick struck the ball.
You left her there
Sitting under the apple trees alone
Screaming those words again and again
"What the hell did I ever do wrong?"
"What the hell did I ever do to deserve this?"
Each time a tear rolled down her face.
You just left her there
In the grass
She leaves empty
Waiting for me to
Jabbering away and away
So I feel
With “umms” and “likes” and ellipses and question marks
Jabbering away and away
So that when she
I talk over her
A derailed train
Down a hill
And I feel so
At the end of my hour,
Doesn’t feel so
And my muscles
Don't feel so
And my soul
Doesn’t feel so
But for once,
My mouth is very
My mouth is very, very
And I know that
I am not
I am not
It’s when no words can come
It’s when the goosebumps
It’s when the silence is all I
Tip-toeing up and down the whispered staircase
Ever so slowly
Ever so delicate
Ever so pure.
It’s when I cannot breathe
It’s when my hands begin to
It’s when all I need is to
Hiding in the depths of the dark and empty bathroom,
It’s times like these that I know I am not
It’s times like these that I miss who we all
used to be
When they take my breath
I may wish they never give it
But it’s the smiles
and the eyes
and the secret exhilaration
That a heart that’s stopped beating cannot lack
That a heart will never, ever lack.
The clock is ticking,
Closer and closer.
The time has nearly come
For final exams to begin
All of these things
Come with the dreaded tests.
Just a few more hours,
And I will be with the rest
Trapped inside a room
For two hours straight
No leaving that room,
Not even for the bathroom.
Teachers tell you that
You can just pee your pants.
The clock is ticking,
Closer and closer.
Last minute cramming
For the deadly tests,
Praying that nothing
Essential leaks out.
Brains are feeling numb
From all of the
I pray that I can remember everything.
I pray that I will do well.
My stomach is filled with butterflies,
As I wait for the exams to begin.
The clock is ticking,
Closer and closer...