Paper Flowers

The smell of paper flowers breathes softly around my once meandering visage
It indents and permeates the very thing that is my roiling center

I have smelled these paper flowers

I smell them still

I smell them always

Their syrupy fragrance
Thick and dripping
Hangs about a deceived sense of self purpose

Lies that steel stolen sentiment against a pitfall

The scent leaves

Paper flowers bear false fruit


Of Two Minds

These two gaping minds cannot acquiesce
Their unceasing blustering has been flayed open before me

As a lie
A farce of the greatest treachery

It is not the glib filly of another
But the willing deceit of the self
That moves this solid ingot in my core

My flesh recoils from itself as though shamed at the naming
It rends itself as though flagellating under debt

I querie my two minds
I yank at the roots of my scalp
And bellow my resentment most heatedly

I have taken happiness from my own grasp

And set in its place

Bound. Pining.

For Rachel.

Through these long nights
That conceal no triumphant repose
I am forced to face the dark uncertainty

Amidst the frigid and the bleak
I find myself suddenly comforted
That ease settles in to the deepest nook

Those languid stretching thoughts
Of fingertips and eyelash
Of navel and arched back

The moments slide through teeth as whistling breath
But the warm breathy memories
They carry the beautiful stain of together

And the dark ruthless bits of moment
The bits spent fighting waking thought
Are imbrued with that stain

They ward from the unconscious with a fierce tenacity
As though the dreams that take my nights are not filled with you just the same
Inescapably bound in pining

And though my bonds are tight
They are welcome
They are joy


She plays me like a baby grand
Pounding my keys with a profound delicacy
The melodies that are her thoughts dance around me like dandelion tufts
Comforting me and bringing me to dizzying heights

Her pedals are my lungs
With every inflection or emotion she squeezes the air from me

And yet
Among the harmonious crescendos
There are streaming screaming discords

Had I the knowledge of the future
I would see the end of this
Had I anything but the barest knowledge of her music
I would know my fate

Because you see I know the dangers of loving a pianist
They bent the very world with their souls

And she is no different
Because she plays me like a baby grand
Pounding my keys with a profound delicacy


This black cannot be washed from my trembling fists

It cannot be scraped from my jagged nails


Through my action it has permeated meat and marrow and fiber and…




The smoldering mote of a mind

Or perhaps the shattered fragment of a soul


My center is imbrued with the darkest shade

The very deepest taint envelops me now


I scratch at the stain till the shell is torn

And I lie bleeding among the rest of us


Once again the floor rumbles
It shatters as I finally find equilibrium

We have met before
This falling and I


In a time sharp and bloody

The walls that were built then
To break the blades of icy breath
Hold no safety for this fragile sentiment

I am…

It is in the present
In the unabashed now
That I stand quivering before the flames
They lick at the rafters with famished tongues
Slavering teeth snap at my toes

These half truths
This misgiving circumstance
Have beckoned once and again

Like sirens to the rocks

And the wheel continues to slide in my grasp