May 21

Sisters

The Holy Trinity
The Three Musketeers
The Three Stooges
The Golden Trio
The Three Graces
And us

The flirt
The social butterfly
The awkward one

The student council leader
The perfect example
The team captain

The flawless make-up artist
The passionate painter
The imaginative writer

We grew up together
The three of us
Bound by friendship
Bound by love

Two of us sisters by chance
Another adopted into the group
Before any of us were even born

A tripod of support
Each of us ready to push the others up
To lift them into the sky
To lift them to push new limits

Thank you both
I couldn't have done it without you
May 20
poem 1 comment challenge: ListenUp

What You've Said, What You've Done

People always tell me
You’re too young, you don’t understand.
You don’t need to hear this.
I’ll explain when you’re older.
Leave it to the adults.

You know what?
I won’t.
I refuse.

I turn eighteen in less than a year.
Do you want me to be uneducated?
Do you want me to be naïve?
Do you want me to make mistakes I could have avoided
If I had only known better?

You throw up the firewalls
But I’m hacking my way through them
Fueled by anger, by determination
To be better
To be smarter
To be more educated

You ask us why we’re addicted to our devices
Tell us they cause depression
Maybe they wouldn’t, you know
If we had anything good to read
In the news
As in, where we read about how you
Are screwing up the world

And we are preparing
For you to hand us this pile of crap
And say, “good luck,
It’s up to you now”
May 20

Recovery

Alone in my room
Laying on my bed
Eyes closed
Breathing slow

Sunlight is streaming in
After last night’s storm
That rendered me broken

The birds are singing
Their voices no longer blocked by the thunder
That rattled through my ears

My room is bathed in natural light
After so many nights of searing light bulbs
That only made it worse

And I smile
Because everything will be alright
The hurricane is over
And it’s time to rebuild

I get off my bed
Walk out the door
Take a breath
And get to it

No one will do it for me, after all

 
May 03

Still Here

My breath comes in sharp, hot pants
And sweat is rolling down the back of my shirt
It’s loud with shouts
And there are people all around me
And I’m running, running, running

But for once
Not running away
Not getting out
Not spiraling into “you don’t belong”
”You can’t be here”
”Just go home”

Running, instead, to the ball
Breath in pants because I’m the last one in
Sweating because I've been playing for so long
The shouts are for me
And the people are crowding to watch us play

And I smile
As the ball flies through the net
I’m still playing
I’m still here
I’m still in the game
Apr 30

Quiet

She looks...quiet.

She's sitting on a bench in an airport in Athens, bags scattered around her. There's a few people lingering around where she's sitting, quietly chatting or scrolling through their phone. But she's just staring at her hands or out the window, her earbuds in but her eyes glazed and unfocused on the music. Her expression is solemn, but every so often it cracks and she looks a wreck. There are bags under her eyes and her hands are trembling.

She looks like she's trying to hold herself together after a long night. She looks like the sky right before a thunderstorm breaks, like a cracked piece of china held together by scotch tape. She looks like a nuclear bunker with the door cracked open unintentionally. She looks like the sound of ringing in the ears blocking out the sounds of war.

She looks quiet.

Until someone turns to talk to her. And then she smiles and acts like nothing was ever the matter.
Apr 17

Trust In The Pilot


This wasn’t easy for me, you know
To place my heart in your hands
To trust that you won’t mournfully give it back like the last one
Or laugh and push it away like the one before that
But care for it and protect it from harm

It’s a leap of faith for me
Like stepping on an airplane about to carry me over the Atlantic
And putting my trust in the pilot to keep us in the air

But then, I suppose
If I can trust a total stranger to keep me from falling to my death and drowning in the ocean
To protect my life
Then I can trust you with something just as precious
And stand back with baited breath to see what you will do with the heart I’ve placed in your care

Please
Don’t break it again
Apr 17

In A Van To The Airport

Through dead grassy fields

And tall dry trees

Through murky lakes

And a hot harsh breeze


It’s not that fun

But I’m thrilled to be here

Because the next step

Is drawing ever near


The airport, the plane

And the whole new continent

Thoughts of the future

Keep me more than content


So I sit in this van

Unaware of my home

My mind across the sea

And my heart in Rome
Apr 12

To Be Here For You

Tears drip
Lip quivers
Eyes show pain she will not word

As much as it hurts her
It stabs me
To see her cry

I want to hunt them down
Scream at them for what they've done
For hurting her

But instead
I take her hand, squeeze it tight
Hold her close

Because while I would go to the ends of the earth
To protect her
She needs me here right now
 
Apr 04

I Remember

I remember a time when I thought the world was a beautiful place.

I remember thinking about villains in stories and movies and laughing because everyone nowadays is so nice. How could anybody be that cruel? It didn’t make sense.

I remember history lessons, and the way we learned about war, discrimination, hatred. It seemed so far away, as if they were fairy tales told to scare us. The deaths, the victims, all of that was just numbers to us. An annoyance to fit so many zeros onto that one line we set aside for statistics.

I remember watching the news with my father half-heartedly. I didn’t understand what the person on the screen was talking about, and I didn’t really want to. I just wanted the person to stop talking about whatever he was going on about so we could switch back to Disney Channel.
Audio download:
I Remember.m4a
Mar 08

Home Once More

The clicking of keyboards
The murmur of voices
The rustle of paper
The scritching of pencils

Light, shining through windows
Laughter, exchanged between friends
Words, more than one could imagine
Worlds, coming alive in my hands

The library is my safe space
I know it inside and out
No matter which one I enter
I recognize the atmosphere

Of quiet
And peace
And ease
And happiness

I slip into it
As if I am donning a cloak
And smile to myself
For I am home once more

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