Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Sexy Songs

Dear Internet,

Play these songs for me and I just might fall in love with you.  Or at the very least I'd take off my clothes.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Grief in Five Acts

Dear Internet,

We got drunk and I missed the last night train.  When morning finally came and I was seated comfortably in an empty car, I nestled my head against the glass and fell asleep.  Forgetting how I left you naked.  Forgetting my splitting headache.  And the blisters on my feet.  The train jabbed me awake somewhere in the middle of the countryside.  I pressed the heels of my hands to my temples but I did not move, even when the conductor announced the next stop.  Instead, I traced the trees on the window pane and inhaled the musk of the morning hours.  Not ready to face the long ride back.

It slipped out of my hand and bounced.  Once.  Twice.  Before cracking.  Three even pieces on the hardwood floor.  Three like our family used to be.  I dropped to my knees, pressed my cheeks to the shards, and began sobbing.  Your aunt gave you that dish.  It was for special occasions.  Two apples painted on the bottom with a heavy hand.  I found the glue and prayed it would hold.  It now sits in my kitchen window three seams visible in the morning light but you still haven't come home.  Yet.

You dared me to swim to the sandbar.  It was summer.  The sky was cloudless.  And my nose was cracked and peeling.  I dove under wanting to impress you.  But the water was thick and warm like syrup on pancakes.  It was heavy as I pushed against it.  Halfway there and panting I turned to wave to you but your eyes were on the shore.  I rolled onto my back and let the water pull at me unable to swim back to you or towards the far shore.

I was over dressed.  A Marilyn Monroe on the steam grate but with polka dots and too much breast.  You stared as I twisted the cork, wary of my youth.  My eyelashes and smooth skin.  And when you began speaking there was nothing rational I could say.  Instead, I pulled harder, the cork firing like a gunshot in the small galley kitchen.  A rush of air and bubbles.  Relief.  Although half the bottle was wasted on the floor. I walked away without a click, my heels long ago kicked off.  I still think about you sometimes, on your knees with the paper towels.  But I've never been sorry.

I wrote it all on a piece of paper and tied it to twelve balloons and I let it go, instead of sending it to you.


Friday, November 12, 2010

Well Timed Poetry

The Thing Is

to love life, to love it even
when you have no stomach for it
and everything you’ve held dear
crumbles like burnt paper in your hands,
your throat filled with the silt of it.
When grief sits with you, its tropical heat
thickening the air, heavy as water
more fit for gills than lungs;
when grief weights you like your own flesh
only more of it, an obesity of grief,
you think, How can a body withstand this?
Then you hold life like a face
between your palms, a plain face,
no charming smile, no violet eyes,
and you say, yes, I will take you
I will love you, again.

-Ellen Bass

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Poetically Weird Things I Do

Dear Internet,

Sometimes I spin my forget-me-knot ring around and pretend it's a wedding band.  I hold my hand out away from me and squint at the tiny silver ring.  Then I turn it back around and continue typing.  It's probably better we aren't married.  I don't think I could live with your gray socks and snoring.

I take the long way to work so I can see the foreign kids on the corner smoking cigarettes and laughing.  I imagine being 18 again and wonder why no one ever told me about this place when I was in college.  We could have had such a good time together drinking wine and pretending to be smarter than everyone else.

Before eating a salad I cut it into small bits with my knife.  This reminds me of how the french believe you shouldn't cut lettuce.  Then I think about that night in Paris outside your apartment when I hit you with my pink shoes.  The french have a lot of stupid rules.

When I come home from work I often leave my keys in the lock.  I always think you'll be there to roll your eyes and remove them.  But then I remember the house is empty except for Stella and she doesn't have opposable thumbs.