Act 2, Scene 2

He jests at scars that never felt a wound. (William Shakespeare)

I came over and Romeo’d

your weepy Juliet-ass,

hopped the wall,

scaled the gate,

climbed to the window,

called out to you,

grinned and asked–

but your weepy Juliet-ass

assumed

I was playing

and the sun never rose.

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Little one

once, there was a little one who didn’t know the rules of all the saying and the not saying. the rules were not terrible, but some say one must be a little bigger to know them. if you’re not a little bigger–you’ve got to stretch to grow– and there’s not enough room inside of you, your heart and your head won’t have enough room to process the all. an easy solution is to let it all spill out your mouth. if you’ve found the latch, the mouth is a quick escape for feelings and thinkings, especially when you’re not a little bigger and there’s not enough room inside of you and you need it outside of you, you need your ears to hear it, your eyes to see it too. letting feelings and thinkings spill out of your mouth is messy, especially in the case of this little one not being a little bigger yet–
still, the little one was okay. some other ones weren’t scared of messes for different bigger and littler reasons. they’ve learned sit in huddles when it’s cold out and frequently go on very long walks. they hold hands and move slowly, and sometimes they grow, and sometimes they shrink.

I unfriended my granny on Facebook in 2017

granny settles into her chair
pulls out her ipad
scrolls on facebook
shares what she likes:
cooking recipes,
inspirational quotes,
bible verses,
prayers for the president,
pro-gun memes,
anti-abortion anecdotes,
gifs about growing old,
funny animal videos,
reasons to love Texas,
climate denial stats,
& pictures of her grandkids.

I wrote you a letter

little firecrackers will pile up in your head and in your chest if you lack the time and space to quietly unwind and study the kinks and brush out the knots. listen: it is imperative to throw the firecrackers one by one, by yourself sometimes. enjoy the pops and hisses and sparks. if this is not done with due diligence, a pile of firecrackers will grow, and a pile of firecrackers is dangerous. tiny bursts amass. a big boom you can’t control set off by any friction or weight, tiredness or thirst.
this morning you needed to be alone. you had become a pile of firecrackers.
picture it: a few days in a far away place delighting in yourself, in time, in diligently throwing individual firecrackers one by one, until monday came around and the world crowded again.
there was one moment when you were on your own: you sat in a cathedral and heard voices singing. you cried at the way the sound decayed and reverberated through the space and through you. your mother used to cry every sunday, usually during the hymns, and that welling up of feeling in response to sound is so familiar. even now, when the religious connotation isn’t. still discombobulating. you shrunk. some strangers teasing, a friend’s disinterest, your mother insisting it was god tugging on your heart— it made you alone, the lonely kind.
i missed you. you and your yearning for the way a spirit moves atforwith sound.
by the time it was this morning, you were a gaping want. in times of paucity, firecrackers litter the floor. steps explode. not lack of love or desire, but lack. deficient and spent.
the solution: sit alone and smile at the tiny cracksplash of each one. listening and walks help. it’s good to walk, and walk and walk, because your legs will fall asleep if you sit and think too long. that makes it harder to stand.

In Spite of Ourselves (John Prine/Iris Dement cover)

This John Prine/Iris Dement cover is the result of months of half-joking, a last minute Tuesday night cancellation at The Chamber of Commerce in Ditmas Park, and a couple of years of trust earning/building between two weirdos with similar tastes in gently used jeans. I’ve been trying to get him to sing since we met. Only he could coax this out of me/me into this. We switched the verses and pronouns around, Mike added all those pretty sounds, and I hit the piano keys a few times. I’m glad it exists. I’m shyly glad to share it with y’all. Happy Holidays!

My granny passed / before the century changed


April 1

my granny passed

before the century changed 
she hung up on you 

when she was done talking
died in her eighties 

at the end of the nineties 
her name was corey,

a raisin in my memory 
but i remember that she made hats, 

a milliner for the church ladies
even in the bed where she died

she wore tights everyday
all the emphasis on goodchristianladyness

and i suspect a more complicated story
my first period came on her birthday

maybe she’s a witch like me 
they tell me she prayed constantly

maybe i’m a witch like her 
my mom would bring us

to change her soiled tights
hours at her house 

with a dog and a peach tree 
my young eyes threaded her sewing needles

and one time the ceiling collapsed
i remember my mom crying 

in the church parking lot 
when we found out she was gone 

better than i recall her funeral
i don’t know when she was born, 

approximately the year white women voted 
my mom still cries at church 

if they sing granny’s favorite hymns 
(what a friend we have in jesus…

carry everything to god with care)April 1

my granny passed

before the century changed 
she hung up on you 

when she was done talking
died in her eighties 

at the end of the nineties 
her name was corey,

a raisin in my memory 
but i remember that she made hats, 

a milliner for the church ladies
even in the bed where she died

she wore tights everyday
all the emphasis on goodchristianladyness

and i suspect a more complicated story
my first period came on her birthday

maybe she’s a witch like me 
they tell me she prayed constantly

maybe i’m a witch like her 
my mom would bring us

to change her soiled tights
hours at her house 

with a dog and a peach tree 
my young eyes threaded her sewing needles

and one time the ceiling collapsed
i remember my mom crying 

in the church parking lot 
when we found out she was gone 

better than i recall her funeral
i don’t know when she was born, 

approximately the year white women voted 
my mom still cries at church 

if they sing granny’s favorite hymns 
(what a friend we have in jesus…

carry everything to god with care)