seesaw

the hard wood seat splinters slightly on her calloused backside
as the red plank with flaking paint moves up and down
IT peers across the seesaw,
grinning, food suck between rotting teeth

“every time you go up, I win a little more
bit by bit, or shall I say
bite by bite?
you are mine. you know this will never stop,” IT snickers

your false wit is not appealing she says to herself

up and down
and again
and again

she knows it is the small or large things, one nibble or gulp here and there
harmless alone, devastating over time
the little lies IT whispers softly in her mind
making her think constantly about food, gnawing down her worth with every mouthful

IT knods “yes, you are getting it right now
you can’t resist the delcious poison, whale
food is your friendly enemy
you can’t just stop, it doesn’t work that way”

she tries none, she tries limiting, she tries in desperation to purge it… to exercise it away,
fuck me, she whispers

up and down
and again
and again

she sits up straight on the seat,
hoping to keep her belly and waist from touching her tightening shirt
breathing shallowly to not feel that material expand
knowing the size up would be much better anyway

“won’t matter, bubbles, if you sit better
it doesn’t change much and certainly not your body shape.
It giggles, your tightening skin and stretch marks are still here.
I’m not going anywhere and neither are the well-meaning chiding of others”

the bastards of well-meaning are not that, she whimpers, wanting to bury her body in the dirt out of sight

up and down
and again
and again

she fights back and promises herself to be stronger
to exercise
to watch was goes into her mouth
yet IT wiggles back into her brain again

“hurry and get that down, you have no time
eat it in the car
you need to sleep this AM and not the gym
you deserve chocolate and dessert…rough day all around, sweetheart” IT coos

she swears at herself, mouth watering at the prospect of sweets

up and down
and again
and again

sometimes she pushes off from thin back up into the sky, because it’s bound to happen anyway
sometimes she fights IT to stay down,
until the monster pounds from above and she relents
IT laughs on the descent,her repeated failure noted with an audience of onlookers

the jiggle of her stomach, breasts and upper arms
the teeter totter slamming up into the sky, her ass airborne again
she holds on for dear life,
blisters forming on her wide palms

she wonders what would happen if she just let go?
would the fall kill her?
would she be on her own?
leaving IT to slam back to the dirt?

“nothing,” IT says, “nothing will happen, my plump pumpkin”

and she pushes off into the sky, believing IT

seesaw

what

what do you see?

a flattened squirrel, its tail waving as cars pass
a scar, still seeping, drawn from the right to left side of a face
hazy, yellow valley smog, tainting living creatures and building structures
dead, marred, polluted

what do you feel?

a roiling stomach of acidic, spicy food daring to reveal itself to everyone
a finger nail broken past the quick, raw, aching, persistent
dog running loose from street to street, nose looking for a sign of home
acrid, broken, panicked

what do you smell?

a person ignored on a busy downtown street, urine and filth a trailing veil
a cloud of green, stagnant pond scum by a forgotten, dilapidated dock
skunk mating season in full swing, the perfume wafts through the air
shamed, infected, stench

what can you touch?

a heaping landfill of the discarded: half eaten food, unwanted things, infested with vermin
an bare hand stuck to ice in subzero wind and snow, unmoving blue and white
Rotting barn, leaning all the way to the right, windows touching ground, gray boards rotting
unneeded, frozen, abandoned

What do you hear?

a rock exploding through a living room window, a jagged-toothed view in an instant
a cloud of flies dancing about a kelp-wrapped crab, one claw gone
crashing car and train, the screech and moan of metal crushing, flesh splitting…dragging
ruined, rotted, maimed

What you saw, what you felt
what you smelled, what you touched
what you heard, what you now know
is me

pond scum

moving on

he works to peel the callous off of her left third finger
a subtle reminder of what was and yet wasn’t for too long
leader for the couple, a donkey dragging a cartload along
never getting to the summit of the hill

no indentation now, but the mark remains, encircling as a faint reminder
no amount of lotion can fix this
she wonders…
will this ever leave her body and go away?

dishes, silverware and his favorite chair gone
empty drawers and gaping closet spaces
one car in the double garage
only a place setting needed for dinner

alone, happier, and so is he
both smiling more
a strange outcome
she knows not often this happens

she should be thankful the ending was so mild
but he has always been that way
not initiating anything often
never fighting for her, even in the end

he said ‘i love you’ with words
without the back up of actions
did she expect too much?
did she force this all to change and he let it roll off into what is was now?

no matter, it was over and done
papers signed with not much emotion
the comfort of ‘them’ now erased of the whiteboard
a few quick strokes of the pen, we to “i’s” in seconds

not as in the beginning with ritual, no satin and lace
no flowers or well wishes and toasts
just the awkward sympathy of those who are told
and now, she starts her life again

moving on

roller coaster

buckled in for this ride
up down up down, cotton candy roiling in my gut and throat
no hands in the air to enjoy the wind
eyes squeezed tight on the wrenching drops to depths below
screaming as i plunge towards the murky blue cement pond
relieved in during straight parts and climbing to repeated summits

twists which elevate me from the duct-taped seat, i grip the bar with white knuckles
round loops, looking down at cigarette butts and trampled maps littering the ground
knowing i will always end down there with the trash
the ride slows, then stops with a hiss and a jerk on level tracks
i climb out with wobbly legs, unsteady steps
reluctantly boarding, no choice but to ride this roller coaster

wondering if i will ever cease this carnival ride
this rusted, shaky attraction ruling my days and nights
or if living with this disease will be forever
hopelessly doomed to rinse and repeat again and

again

and

again

roller coaster

farmer

furrows plow across the surface
deep gashes opening up
tender, unprotected space.
the dull tool moving slowly over and over
until the furrow hits liquid irrigation
the marking stops
blood and skin piled up tight under fingernails
this row will not be for planting crops
the cutter finds this better than blades
always readily available
convenient, a fingertip away

as time passes
the wounds slowly close
among the weeds of infection
leaving trails of pink and purple
looking like an accidental scrape or burn patch
instead of revealing its true intention
of shame and hate

a shortened seasonal cycle creating
unassuming ridges and newly shaped ponds
daring another to understand this pain
knowing another fallow field
will soon be chosen again

farmer

showtime

don’t look in the mirror
don’t do it

they coaxed her shower off the days of stink
she did as they asked,a friendly suggestion to rid herself
dirt and shame down the drain

don’t look in the mirror
don’t do it

toweling off in front of the toilet
away from the long bathroom mirror, looking away from the glass at the floor
getting all her clothes on fast

don’t look in the mirror
don’t do it

she sees her shape faintly in peripheral vision
no glasses on as she brushes her teeth, watching water and paste run in spirals
puts on deodorant gazing at the ceiling

now to her hair
who cares if it is styled, she plans to stay in
she puts her chin down and turns on the dryer
don’t look in the mirror
don’t do it

she forces herself to think of other things
her love for green growing like
limes, Luna moths, fiddlehead ferns and granny smith apples

don’t look in the mirror
don’t do —

she catches her own eye in the reflection
in an instant, IT assesses her coldly
“fatter gut I see, what garbage did you put in your mouth today? that exercise won’t cover THAT
still wrinkles and scars, repulsive
never really a beauty, eh? face yourself, face the truth”

she looks away
the clean body now feels the shame of the unclean, damaged, broken
what’s the point? why spend the energy on this task?
to give IT a stage on which to shout at her?

when all she can chant in defense is
don’t look in the mirror
don’t do it
weakly from the balcony

 

antimatters

what does it matter
if i do what they want me to do
if i plan, shop and feed them food
if i get a perfunctory thank you sometimes
if the right words are said to make me respond
if i get online and play or if i don’t
if i skip a blog and stop writing anything down
if i make sure stuff gets done at the house
if i do everything that is expected
what does it matter

what does it matter
if i change my hair
if i change my weight, thinner, fatter, fatter still
if i stop creating
if i stop singing
if i stop trying to think of one thing in my life i am proud of for that fucking therapy list
if i realize i can’t write one thing down that is not soured, spoiled, rotten or ultimately fail
if i stop doing anything else
what does it matter

what does it matter
if i clean off all my personal stuff at work
if i dump all kinds of crap from the house
if i purge the pain of a now unused past life
if i pitch ill fitting clothes
if i trash stuff i don’t create with anymore
if i remove all traces i existed
if i just leave it all for them to deal with
what does it matter

what does it matter
if i cry for the life i lead
if i cry for the life i can’t lead
if i am stuck missing what i can’t have
if this ache in my body wears me down to my core
if despair never leaves even when i laugh
if i can make people think all is good by sucking it up and putting on a face
if all i think about is how i hate what i’ve done to myself, to my life
if no matter what i try, nothing really changes
if no hope is around me other than for fleeing moments left as reminders to torture me
if i cant stop crying at random times
what does it matter

what does it matter
if someone else takes my job over
if people stop guilting me into relationships
if i stop playing online games and reading books
if i stop doing anything else
if i just sit and look at a wall for hours
if i stop talking to people around me
if all there is left of me is nothing interesting
if people go on and leave me behind
what does it matter

what does it matter
if i drive my car into a garage
if i put down the garage door
if i leave the car on and roll down the windows
if i gun the engine and fill the car with exhaust
if i just sit there and wait for it all to finish
if i breathe in and out and sleep
if i pass from this sorry, frustration and fail
what does it matter

what does it matter
if i am gone
if life goes on
if others take my place
if others fill my shoes
if i fade into fleeting memories
if finally there is nothing left to remember
if it comes to the fact that it matters not in the long and short of it
it doesn’t matter.

will you burn what is left?
will you my scattered ashes in the strong prairie winds?
will you let my tempest of last emotion roar in your ears?
will you watch the gray flakes as they settle in the soil to nourish the tall grasses?
will you help me become something that matters?

antimatters