The Frame that Built Her


Meditate on a stair [stare]. Step into each other.

Fall for her.

Concentrate on a wholesome being, a woman you love- then tell her.

Shift your space into your biggest nightmare, tackle it.

Dream about yourself breathing, ruminate on it.

Tell yourself how much you are capable of earnest love-


I ruminate on it. I understand it. I watch Bunah understand it. Her English slips.

She bungles down the steps and I watch her fall. Bunah, get up-

She barely opens her mouth enough to say goodnight-- Bunah.

Only her body moves, pushing her up with the right hand first on the first of the steps. Her nails so long they scrape the wood. The noise deafens her. She’s a big girl, her father used to tell her. The last time she listened for that was the last time she was small. Both her legs are planted looking up at me- I watch from the highest stair. I pat my thighs as if I was calling for a dog. Bunah--


A storming stomp on the first three, four was almost there and five barely touched before her eyes opened with a wail. Bloodshot and panicked. Her breathing compressed, I said walk but she couldn’t hear.


She covered her panic with false strength and tried to convince herself to push through. I watched her struggle. I watched her knees ache. I wanted to pull her up but her eyes were too large. Her nails dug into my scalp, my prayers with her.


Bunah, to build/to understand.

My Bolted Neck; with His Large Mallet


We have been taught to carry ourselves a certain way; lighter than air, look as if our minds are in check and our brains are heavy. Bruise me and I’ll stand erect. Compliment me and I will do the same. And for too long our minds have stood separate from our brains and we have not directly been told. And for too long we let that mind of ours govern us. We cannot speak aloud without appearing unhinged and once we speak we fear our own sound. And we walk through our life reenacting our fears and somehow cover ourselves from them; all the while, our minds don’t show us pity.

Our pitied minds do not show us stillness.

Stand still with her and her troubled mind will ease itself. Her curves will lay flat and her chest will flourish. Her womanly figure will express its tension. And she will emerge outside of herself and her brain will implode. But do not worry because a woman does not need a brain, just an oh so troubled mind. The men will make an incision and find her dwindled brain and feast on it. Enjoy, they’ll repeat enjoy. The woman will rise as if she was crowned Frankenstein and repeat her insanity. Push down her abdomen and fluff her breasts to show off her gender, impress the counter and the chair.


What a woman? What a man.

An opinionated converse.


Our pitied minds, our absolute fears and drowned out voices. But that woman will sing on her way to the market and her counters, the men, will observe. Not her voice nor her eyes, but the sweetness of her large lower lip. The way she licks it after she applies gloss and wipes it down before. Her Frankenstein bolts barely phase anyone because they have seen those before, but her goddamn lower lip.

Let’s erase our minds and fuel our brains because logic has power and power has worth. We, women, we valuable intelligent beings. We will say enjoy as our lovers feast on our naked bodies. We will be the ones to say enjoy. We will stand on our counters and scream enjoy Victor Frankenstein!

Sophia


How your ever changing thoughts come through to my head as if rope was tied between my scalp and yours


Truly

I am yours truly but we have differences that moons cannot explain to their suns

And suns are too hot headed to hear anything at all


Sophia


What did I do wrong to deserve your hand across my face

Hard

Not in the soft way you usually do it when I ask you

Change your mind all the time and the rope tugs my scalp, Sophia


I have very few hair

Few hair

Very few left

Of my hair on my head and you tug at me without even seeing me


Look at the mess you’ve made on the barber shop floor, Sophia

My few hair

Very few hair

Strings like heart strings but less heart and Sophia I promise you my hair will not grow because I am not Samson and I hold no power

Or history

Of us or them or of anyone around the columns

That crash because the rope gets caught on everything

Whenever you walk, I am tugged by your thoughts and by your mind but I am inspired

Why

The very few

Why the few hair left

Inspired is far from what I want to feel but I do, Sophia

So please

Just walk slowly

And surely; and don’t let anymore hair fall on this floor

It’s overcrowded and underwhelming

Farmer Boy


Fleeting farms

And honestly broken, fucked up scenes

And I’ve never farmed but I could be a farmer, boy


A farmer boy


We could live here

We could rest inside the arms of sheeps

Whose fleas as white as snow

Warms me


You can get your own warmth, Gem

Gem the farmer boy

Who farms exclusively here but

Every so often finds a better field


And sometimes I peek out and find the utmost desire to scream into a plastic bag just so the man at the grocery store remembers me. I’ll send the bag back to him so he can open it during his smoke break. Gem;


Gem, the stock boy


*AH*


He opened it after he lit his cigarette behind the dumpster and even the rats jumped up from their garbage. I sent it around so I could be heard because sometimes, Gem, sometimes I want to scream and I want it to be known. I want the rats in dumpsters to hear my sorrows just this once and I promise I’ll be better next time. I promise I’ll use a paper bag and recycle it.


Gem, the sensitive boy

The newly underpaid cashier

From the fat cozy farm, Gem.


Privacy


November passed and fall was coming to a close. The garbage truck was in reverse and the night was falling dim. Women brought their fur out and fed their cats so they wouldn’t starve. They locked their doors and sat on their front porch waiting for the December truck to pick them up. A fucking trip, they would say, it’s about time. My Russian Blue will feed the kids I suppose.


They lined up outside the community gate, getting on one by one. Betty grab my fur would you, Sandy shouted from her front step running to the truck; that only had a few more passengers getting on. Betty and Sandy ran without a crack in their jolt. They made it just as the doors shut violently behind them.


Sandy’s fur swung low

On the ground of the dirt truck

Sandy’s fur on the old dirt of the dirty ol’ truck

What would the Colonel think?


A thirteen hour bus ride was long overdue and all of the women shouted with their necks strained peering outside, in hopes of seeing the December Colonel. Until they all caught sight of a yellow jacket and they knew that they had arrived.


A yellow coat hung up on a heavy hung manly woman. The women gathered around the Colonel whispering into each other’s ears about her coat and what was underneath.


Silence! Shouted the Colonel.


The furs grabbed the ground, stood tall and let their whispers vanish. The Colonel was here to tell the women where they would sleep; on top of each other in a pile along the river, so that they could watch the stream and remember the November Colonel whose waste was washing down.


Scream! To show me how much you care! How much you furs want to be lucky enough to sleep by the side of one another.

You furs

Washing along the stream

Of wastes and dirty ol’ Colonels

January hasn’t even received her badge yet

The dirty old badge that will sit on her left arm of her yellow coat that she’ll wear to cover her womanly male hair.

God Almighty


And her green, green eyes reflected the windows near by oceans they said. The buildings stacked up really high, so far they were up against the gods themselves. And god almighty stood atop that building and screamed “I can see your reflection in this grand ol’ ocean and I’m as moved as the waves.”


And she walked up every staircase just to stand by him, to gain some of his wisdom.

She made it halfway before seeing the god almighty’s servants who paraded around her with candlesticks and bread asking if she’d like a taste of what the god himself ate. She whispered no thank you and kept climbing.


When she reached the top, she realized she was completely alone and there was absolutely no god at all. She jumped and landed on a red cobblestone road that she walked alongside of, carrying her heavy head and her misunderstood green, green eyes.


The night started to fall dim and her sleeves were rolling up; she prepared herself to fight. Swinging her arms every few steps she took to beat the night’s devil in her path.

All missed swings but hard, fast ones.

Beating herself up over her efforts and her downfalls, she picked up a few red stones to keep in her heavy pockets.


Hearing her name repeated, repeated, repeated

Her eyes- left, right, left looking for the wave

The servants hustling behind, green

She, repeating no thank you no thank you no-


Their candlesticks already an eighth melted

The ocean waving them through


No more offering, just trampling and stealing and the red stones were no more.

The red flew from her pockets to her eyes; her fear finally in its physical form.

The servants, with their bare palms, removed her.


The wave

The green

And the almighty god.


A Fucking Crane


A fucking crane settled on a branch

and he thinks he has the right to crane his neck?

-as that’s what he is?


So strange to lay on this carpet

when I know all the facts

-about carpet burn

I can write a list

It would be less than a page


Is my neck long enough

to imitate a crane?

Very brief;


If we see someone outside the window of a train, will we ever see them again? If she wore white jeans, will that be my only memory of her? Does that settle well with her? Does she want me to have more memories, fonder memories of her? Does she have many friends? Maybe the mothers of her daughter’s friends. They probably sit in fucking Starbucks and Susan will probably spill her mocha frappe latte on her white jeans and the other mothers will laugh but secretly judge her for wearing white jeans in the first place. Why did they go to Starbucks when there is a fancy coffee shop around the corner that they could more than afford and the baristas are hotter (according to Jackie) but they go to the crappy west side corner Starbucks to pay less and see Janet (a woman that Susan has crushed on but no one knows because there are no gay mothers allowed in the group meetings and why would Susan want to be left out?). Janet has blue eyes but Susan could have sworn they were green last week. Susan isn’t married and her daughter has many friends. Susan gets lonely and Susan is scared to tell the mothers that she wears white jeans because Janet once mentioned that white jeans turn her on and Susan can’t think of anything she wants more than to turn Janet on; while she brews her coffee she wants Janet to take her right there and fuck her over the counter and make the love that she hasn’t made before because Susan never told anyone she was gay but I know. And so I connect to Susan for that brief moment in the lapse of time and try to ask her if;


I can be a crane?

Susan, look into the fast moving train (80 mph) and say,

“That girl, I’ll remember her as

A crane with carpet burn.”


Thank you, Susan.

Trying My Best to Visit


I would never call myself an avid traveler because

I don’t avidly travel but that doesn’t mean I don’t

try to breathe when I sit on long train rides. It doesn’t mean I don’t

enjoy the way the tracks cross or the way the MTA workers laugh and wave at the conductor as he loses focus on the track ahead.


It’s a sensual ground.


I go on trips eight times before staying long enough to say look at me, I just calmly popped off that railway. Forget social interactions and terminals and having wonderful evening nights with the girl you admit to falling for, it was all about reacquainting myself with that leather seat again and the arm rest “that guy” keeps using. I knock myself out with protein bars and water bottles until I feel just as if I’m sitting on my blue couch at home. Imagine the rough leather rips as comfort and the fast pace scenery as a movie my mother turned on. But I memorize the stops, it helps me avidly travel. The traveler inside of me watches the train in the track nearby and looks at faces; “people watches” they call it. The traveler inside of me puts headphones in to take one bud out and tell the girl next to me, fanatically, that her stop is coming up. I frown at my own enthusiasm.


I flip through songs and podcasts I’ve listened to more than ten times. I pull up browsing pages that remind me that I can get on a railway and pretend to be one of these guys. Pages like;


                                            TIPS FOR THE FEARFUL TRAVELER

                                                     EVERYBODY CALM DOWN

                                     5 WAYS TO DECOMPRESS WHEN STRESSED


I now have tips and tricks that create a real person inside of me, less like a pregnancy more like a more improved self. I calm down once I’m on the train home. Not because I like it now, but because I finished the first eight rounds of trips and I can maybe stay a minute, watch a movie at the terminal, ask them to change the departure times to Dirty Dancing. I’ll make a home out of the waiting area where I could put my feet up on my empty luggage.

I try to see the train aisles as ones I remember; like hallways or cafeteria lines. But walking over to that leather seat reminds me of walking across a lunch hall with a tray in my hands and thinking about everyone watching; knowing I don’t fit in with the guys around, the people are stronger and eat more lunch meat than I can stomach. I’d start to bring my own lunch.


                                                                          ***


My ninth train ride over, I’m finally getting out, moving a few feet away from the terminal. The plan was set. Did I want to go to a movie in a theatre or lay in my lover’s childhood bed?


Several hours later, I’m on the train home.


The stops seem to pass faster. I’m tired from trial and error.

My stupid eyes can’t close, I sip on my water and listen to the same song I heard this morning. I know the workers now, they know my name and my state of mind. They smile and show their accomplishments on their caps. I photograph the beauty in my phobia,

the long railways with all those unlabeled boxes and silver containers.

The beautiful pins the conductor flaunts.  

The orange vests reflected in the dark tunnels with bright white smiles from exhaustion.

The platform steps.


                                                                       ***


I think about the next time I’ll lay with her again. Maybe how I’ll stay the night and brave a weekend before sitting on the “home train.” Maybe I’ll feel the pinches in my chest again for this. Sit on ripped leather and fight for a well rested left arm again for this. I like hearing the name of the last stop, how perfectly heavy it sounds.


The Autonomous Woman


Greatly, I sit in the center of an empty room

With my legs cradled, I rock

Back and forth

Until my stomach settles and I can stand again.


I worried once for three hours straight- unable to sooth

Buried under a heavy branch

Whose weight confused my legs


I was able to tip the branch and crush it’s thorned spikes

Stepping through it’s stormed wood

Breaking it’s only stemming root

It took me sometime, but the strength was incredibly self-rooted


Though no matter how many I push through I keep cutting my ankles

And the spiked thorned crunches get louder under the speakerphone


I will benefit from the crushing self pity and I will develop a fantastic boon.

I tell myself every morning

I am strong

I am worth while

I am elegant


The branches weight diminishes at times

Quite a lot

Until I can truly barely feel it.

A long happy streak with a universal “hell yeah” shout.

No one’s words are calling me down.


I tell myself every morning

I am fervent

I am strapping

I am able


Rummaging through old notebooks I see my progress and my unique stance of brawniness.

My parents become distant voices and my own gets picked up by the megaphone

I am able, I scream, beginning my morning routine.


Boon.


I tell myself every morning

I am inspired

I am beautiful

I am the autonomous woman.


notes on: Infatuation


To be possessed by someone; a miserable inconvenience.

I am possessed and miserably inconvenienced.


                               I DREW HONEY FROM YOUR LIPS WITH A SYRINGE.


Your eyes cry only dry tears that I turn wet when I turn you on.

I’ll run away from home with only a bag of lingerie. Hey lady! Put some clothes on- they’ll yell.


I impress myself by the impressions I’ve made on you, my muse, my tulip garden,


It grows when I think of you,


What if the bees gather? From all that honey I dropped on the back of your neck from admiration. I make mistakes when I stare. A hopeless romantic hopelessly drops honey on the back of her lover’s neck. What a headline. The bees attacked her;


I think of you even when I can’t think. There’s power in that you know. When my thoughts are clogged drains; thinking of nothing is inspiring.

You possess my inner being, you make a monster out of me.

Next best headline;

Woman turns into creature out of the ordinary, her brain looks clogged but I think we could manage. Her eyes have turned to black ink and we’ve written up a pattern for obsessive blinking. Drip dropping ink from her tear ducts all over our pages of investigation.


My monster grows and he needs honey to be kept alive. He needs to stomp on the ground a few times to be kept alive. He needs a tulip from your garden to be kept alive. He’s at a loss for words and he wants yours. He wants to take your words, will you let him? That’s awful,

Self-aware

Possessed by an inconvenience


A muse’s muse

I can tell by the nectar dripping from your tongue when you kiss me-

When you slowly wipe your mouth from how good it tastes and look at me with convenient misery.

I like the hour just before…


I laugh. When all of my sadness rushes through and I cannot imagine the fill-in. I like that hour because I know of nothing better, of nothing at all except for what I hear my mind scream. How I will never smile bigger than my frowns can drown my mouth out. Like a water gate that pours out of its gaping hole. The hour feels long and helpless and it makes my water gate’s holes run dry, somehow. It makes my tired eyes heavy weights, my mind it’s commander. I pour ginger ale down my veins and crushed ice in my lids and let it ravel around me. A slushie like substance that I have created, an inventor I name myself. Creating drinks through my sadness and waves in my nodding. I love that hour rather, an hour of glum. Sometimes I sit longer in it so I can create drinks for my friends. Only sometimes I throw around names and create new sadness over old dumps and pull the roots out so I can inspect them because why not? Why not look at the dirt ground roots, dirty rooted ground roots and tickle them until I crush ice. I make the roots cold. I make my dry eyed holes of the fucking gaping walls. I make the drinks, I mix those drinks. Friends, I’ll name them until I laugh.


Stung by Sensitivity


Kevin has always been stung by sensitivity.

Like bees, sensitivity has followed him everywhere- through his life he walked with burning skin and rashy thoughts.

Kevin has never been stung by a bee but he bets he knows what it would feel like.


Kevin cries for help but his parents tell him at 36 he should have his life together. Recently diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, Kevin cannot make up his mind which bee he would rather be stung by. He sits outside with a beekeeper’s mask, hiding his skin from both the sun and the harsh words his parents scream at him over the intercom. He believes he was just born with a sensitive skin, like his brain, that can’t quite sit light.

Kevin sits heavy.

His heavy thoughts sit propped up against his eyes, hanging on his lashes like weights. A disorder is far from what he is, he deems. His eyes close while his mask scratches at his cheeks. He smacks himself, does a 180 and sees a gentle bee sitting by his bare white chair. He leans toward it, welcoming it with his lips, the now only moving part of his face. He considers this bee his only friend and starts to speak. Wondering how he has made it to 36 with absolutely no help with two opinions on his interior. He is bipolar. I am bipolar, Kevin says out loud to the bee. It is a disorder, I am a disorder.


He starts to scratch his mind, it gets rashy again. The bee sits on the bare white chair,

Unlike

            Bees

                      Do

He listened to Kevin’s rash.


I was born with more emotions and sensitivity than others, and it has made my life extremely difficult.

The bee flew under the beekeeper’s mask and stung Kevin.

Kevin did not really know what it felt like to be stung by a bee until an actual bee had stung and

                   His Rash

                                   Came

                                   Again




Fireplace I


This fire is crazy

    It burns hot and my skin can’t take it

    Maybe not can’t

    They tell me don’t can’t

Can-can like a dancer running

Toward emotional torment

Breaking in my head like my

Shoes and my thoughts like

My toes / they break I told

    them

               Who told me to can

Who can without calm toes and a

steady shoe?

but hey, crying isn’t the answer

    sit up in the bright light and

    let yourself simmer.

The fire- it’s crazy

    My head feels like it’s being

    clamped closed so I stutter in

    my simmering.

It pounds and gets revenge on

me for the few hours it let me break.

I don’t want to run but I

so very much can

can run / not face my broken

    toes

Don’t sit where it kills me to can’t

a frayed edge I was told

I’m only frayed

    small danglings making up a

    choir

    can-can strings that very much

    can’t

It’s a fucking crazy fire


Fireplace II

I am a burdened fellow

    ‘You have to get over this’ fellow

I’m thrown from steady coasters

An unheard of spiteful ride

    Some spin out of control

    Some don’t begin with control

If it spins fast, do you spin or

    Glance at the space you’re

    Meant to ride next.

I’m a fellow when I’d like to be

    Partial to blood, sweat and tears

I’m a dirty bloody crier whose

Screaming is caught by a

Quick flash

                      Thanks for riding


A fellow has to rest from strong

    Rides

    A bloody crier is nothing to scream over

Sometimes I’d rather toss my coins in the fire

Than ride this spite

They tell me ‘you have to get over this’; spite

‘Get the coins from the fire’


Sometimes not a can-can dancer.


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