Aug 28

Apartment Alleyway

Aug 22

The Aftermath of Wisdom Teeth

The hole in the back of my mouth feels like a cavern,
something you could hide a runaway in,
someplace you could lose the enterance to.

The salad bowl on the top shelf
in the kitchen cabinet is dark blue 
and reminds me to open a window in the middle of the night
when my jaw is on the floor
and I can't swallow on my side. 

The freezer is now my friend.
I want to shove my whole head in the gap
between the frozen peas and ice cream,
bring a blanket with me and sleep there,
wake only when the week-long promise of healing arrives. 
Jul 31

Tuesday Morning: Kitchen Contemplations

There is always time in the morning
between galaxies
and orange juice. 
If you had a jar with a lid
you would try to save it, 
give it to the girl 
with the pressed lips 
and the eyes that crinkle.

You’re not sure what to make
of half-built cities 
except that when they haunt you 
in your dreams the streets overflow with possibility 
and the rooftop ridgelines are hunched, 
bent at the hip, 
against the skyline. 
You’re still soft in the middle:
both raw 
and burnt 
and never giving up.
Jul 24

A Confession for the Neighbors

I am mostly 
one for knots, broken strings, 
holding things I 
should’ve let off 
long ago. 

I am not a poet. 
I still get lost looking 
for home 
and don’t mind much either.

I collect wandering words
and release my own. 

I found a notebook today.
One that had surely 
been washed from its author 
many minutes ago, 
from some other’s toes,
and probably, if I am completely honest,
tears too. 

I am told to find a map 
and come in from the rain 
without blue ink 
running down fingertips
my feet
are tied to this spot
and maps are better
upside-down, anyways. 

I’m sure you have witnessed, 
in a downpour, birds 
that still sing and a young child 
pulled along by the wind, 
screaming into the sky.
Jun 23


This morning the sun,
beyond the birch grove, 
ripened like a summer peach. 

The river rushed to the ocean. 
My body was a core of closet dust. 

This morning dark stones on a ledge 
descended in handfuls: 
slipping into each other, 
tumbling like an uptight crowd. 

Your gaze drops like a feather
to the wilted corner of the vacant bedroom 
where a pile of ruffled notebooks 
sit slouched, untouched 
in over a year. 

You promise yourself 
not to be static,
not to get stuck,
not to be a moon for someone 
else's planet. 

The boy behind the blue cash register
at the corner store accidentally
circles you in his sleep. 

When you were younger
you revolved around a model
of Pluto, downsized
and jammed into a jar. 

Usually, bookshelves 
hold people adept to looping 
the lip
of sink drains and kissing
May 29

Gym Dust: A Moment of Early Morning Observation

There are puddles of cottonwood
on the floor of my vacant high school gym
one cloudy Tuesday morning,
a few countable weeks before summer.

The soft seeds spread out like a thin layer of ocean foam,
churning complacently with the tide,
as I kneel, tip my nose
to the shiny wood,
close my mouth, and breathe in.

The cottonwood smells like new soil, bare feet,
heat lightning, rivers swollen with rain.

Crouching on my knees in the middle
of that open gym reminds me of prayer and of the dying bird
I held a year before in a garage
the color of tears and burning gasoline.

I had washed sticky blood from my hands 
and couldn't look at myself
and was afraid to catch the plague of unintentional fragility.

The first-period bell sounds like an alarm
and the pink metal door adjacent me swings open,
revealing a mass of distraught pre-exhausted ninth graders.
May 20

Storm Drain

The open street smells like a thunderstorm.
I’m not sure where he went
or where I’m going
or why I’m standing here on the damp sidewalk,
watching the sun creep up on us.

It feels good,
like I should’ve done this a long time ago,
like this is what I’ve been missing my whole life.

I want to come back.
And I want it to rain,
even just a little.

I want to see the way it falls
and the way he looks upward
with his mouth wide open.