- to my pillow
Free verse poetry
Floating like dead feet against the shore
Wraps seaweed around your legs
Pushes you deeper into your bed
And you wish you had thicker blankets
Put no one above you
But sometimes you wonder if they’d love if they knew
That you killed your betta fish when you were nine
Choked your hamster at age five
Dropped lemon drops in your cat’s food bowl
And still don’t know what the word arsenic has to do with the word lace.
2. to my skeleton in the closet
You think you have your mistakes behind you until they whack you over the head and make
Every single shadow you know seem like the brightest of summer days.
Why do you think your playlists are filled with songs about ghosts
You have enough skeletons in your closet to fill a graveyard
And then have guests enough to throw a party…
I wonder if you’d drink the green tea
Or the gray
And I wonder if you’d use the good plates your mom keeps above the cupboard
Or just opt for the plastic ones your sister plays with;
Uses as cafe cups when she gets water from the toilet bowl.
3. to my mango’s flesh
I wonder if you remember me as a good person
And then I remember you don’t know that word either.
Like the ones Mrs. O'Fishel handed out in third grade English
Was just missing the most important words
Or maybe you skipped class when we went over the ACT practice words
Because after all, you did have those graveyard parties to attend.
Who do you take when you go?
Your teeth are the only part of your inner bones that you wash
But imagine one day that the skin on your fingers peels away like a mango’s flesh
And that you use your toothbrush to make sure the calcium structures shine bright white.
One day when we were younger and you still hadn’t gotten that first tattoo
-You know, the one
on the inside of you wrist that says
Something generic and in Latin or Greek or one of the other languages that people use when they want to translate something or sound like they know the world better than you ever
Yeah well, one of those days we were both sitting
Up by that trampoline that's been shot through
So riddled with bullets that not even the Great Sphinx could decipher the question presented
And you had eaten the last slice of watermelon
But you forgot that I still had a full glass of lemonade
So you laughed and cackled like an inebriated hyena
And I dumped the contents of my glass down the front of your shirt.
Melted quite quickly.
That could be a reason
To why you’re so coldhearted now.
4. to my deleted draft
That click through my body
Your hands used to type
The best written novels
That ever traced a body
The bestseller’s list
That no one ever knew.
Now your nails are strong
Where mine bend in the middle
what can i do about
There’s no use bringing back
What’s been buried
You to me
And I to you
Secrets of days gone by
Memories buried in the gummy bear gas station behind the movie theater
That we went to when we didn’t want to buy snacks for overpriced dollars
And that was always
So that gummy bear gas station is in my recently deleted photos too.
5. to my thunder
If you think of me on your wedding day
I think that you’ll think of me a storm you had to weather
But I’ll remind you kindly
That I was the lighthouse all along.
6. to my not stargazing partner
I wonder if your friends know that when you were seven you thought you were Spider-Man
Or that you still have glow-in-the-dark stars stuck to your ceiling.
The first time I went to your house I asked you about them
And you just handed me another cookie
Because I guess you thought that would throw me off track
But I asked again when I swallowed the last crumbs
And you said, “let’s watch a movie under the stars”
So we didn’t because that’s not what you meant.
7. to my dishes hater
Pretentious as you are
You’ll be writing about me too
But you write songs where
my words aren’t meant to be sung
Rather they are meant to be digested
Eaten off the paper with your eyes or hands
And swallowed whole to stick in your heart like the spit-balls they are.
It’s like when I used to listen to podcasts about sharks while you did the dishes
Even though I really hate sharks
And you don’t care one iota for the dishes.
8. to my ripper
I know you more than you know you
Because I watched you but more than that because I loved you
And how do you stop loving altogether
Even when you know that love is a futile word
One that was included in your dictionary
Beside a ripped in ha*lf picture of you and I
Burned at the edges
Torn at the seams
Realizing what we had
Was never- maybe?- what it seemed.
9. to my reflectively yours
You liked my house best because
Of all the mirrors that lined the walls
And I liked your house best
Because your mom stocked the pantry with the best garbage
She could find at the grocery store.
A sick stomach wasn’t all I left your kitchen with
Because you could have taken a spoon
And poked it through my ribs
And it would have hurt less
Than you saying you were thankful
For what a beautiful friendship we had
Yeah, I thought you were beautiful
But not as a friend
I thought you’d be in my wedding
Not just there as a buddy or pal.
You liked my house best
Because you could look at yourself all day
I thought it might be because I was with you
But it seems to me you were your own best soul mate.
I wish you happiness
To you and yourself.
10. to the next
I hope there’s room left for you in my scrapbooks.