Virtual Open Mic V

young joints, or a sonnet for someone i think i know her graceful hand, more fragile than the rain, like a call to the angry heavens above, more melancholy than an artist's pain, holds soft. yet tightly. onto twisted love. her nails are crescents like the hiding moon, her thin fingers are lavender and thyme, with joints that know no work and are immune to this mad world's evil prime-time war-crimes. she cages all her laughter in her heart, keeps a sophisticated look always, but palms tell truths when lips don't ever part; those hands don't have to beg or even pray. un-calloused, innocent and fortunate: she bangs her fists in nonsense and regret. malachite the air is thick with the silly mala

Virtual Open Mic IV

HIGH CHAIR We are drooling love-eaters Love lands on our trays in bite-sized chunks Some of it stringy and fibrous and other chunks sweet and plump We squish love in our fingers We cram it into our maws Can we ever ingest enough to want down from that chair to feel a belly overplump with the basic nutrients? Like celery our bodies burn love calories faster than we consume them We are often picky leaving the greens and vitamin-rich portions untouched to grow stale banging our dangling feet against the plastic footrest the treble shill of objection our desperate grab for control Just mewling bottomless pits who eat love out of house and home EVERYTHING HOLE She takes orders like punches each i

Virtual Open Mic III

HONESTY IN CHAOS I. A dusty garden of radishes So hot they burned my tongue My dead father’s deader dreams Long gone—and yet, I pluck them up Dig through and crack the clay Til my fingers bleed and I can again Feel the fear of losing everything I’ve worked so hard to build. II. I’m afraid—hide under the bed and Wait for monsters to come and devour All I am, cover my ears to block out The thunder of wanting you I can’t eat, can’t sleep, can’t think Of anything but wanting you And losing me, of trusting you And losing myself I can’t say whether I’ll advance, will stay, Or will crumble, bits of earth, Shattered clay, Scattering to the winds. III. Yes, I have read,

Virtual Open Mic II

AFTER LIFE will ties of kinship mark us like scar tissue tracks the deep blade a surgeon slid next to the spinal cord--carving out the known tumor, shoving nerves aside--not even an outward bulge at the site, just a pink divide knit back to look like one body, while within a persistent ache, deep in the middle of your back pulses, present, always present- yet fails to exclude, keep others at bay, the way a surname once sufficed? Such recognition might dawn like the realization that the bulbous-nosed, rosacea-strewn woman with the starved hair sitting in your mother's big pink chair, white piles of kleenex stuffed down her bosom remains tied to you through her marriage to your great Uncle Jac

Virtual Open Mic I

SILENCE I know I’ve never listened as I did yesterday to anything like the compelling seduction of absolute silence while sitting in my chair reading alone with my cat, curled on one thigh; I discovered nothing sounds like the complete absence of sound, not even the words in my book made me conscious of any sound, as I surmised where the author was taking me, I realized I may have missed a foreshadow, I did not retreat to reread previous pages, I didn’t want to interrupt the completeness of silence; I sensed peace travelling as I did in my mental journey and asked if the whole world stopped for one moment, perhaps just one hour, ceased simultaneously making sounds, just listened to the silen

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