Sunday, December 8, 2013

Things I Hide In Blue Paint or Under My Halo

Road construction. And the cheap wine that makes the things
I put in jars relevant.
The way you smell after sex, like soccer.
Dipping my toe in curiosity
Arthur Dimmesdale in 6th period.
High school finger bangs and astrology (especially
you, virgo assholes).
Pine candles just in time for christmas. Being drunk
for christmas.
When you die, handing your mom a kleenex. I'm sure she's
Flying kites in college. Wearing sweat shirts with stains.
Subtle light on anatomy - iliac spines for days.
Naming constellations. Naming constellations
Smoking pot on July nights.

Saturday, November 23, 2013


You have lost faith in something, MoonChild.
loose, let gravity forget, (even just for a second).
Hold soul music in your hands, let those bones
absorb that.

Let the milk turn your coffee
turbulent and shoo them flies away. Don't let
'em eat your skin.

Oh, Moon baby, find the rhythm. Make shit
shift, slowly:
the quiver of summer leaves and the plates
rubbing - lovers in sweat.

Let those big words crash right into your face.
Tides on tides on tides for days. Fight the
fault, baby glow, it isn't yours.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Young Business

Boy at the bar: he
mentions my nose. I know he
thinks about fucking. (make a mark on my bed-
post for the what-ifs. Nick my collarbone with the sex
that could have.)

Hips like Willendorf, he thinks of a baby on my
arm, breasts twice as big. I am the snake eating
the lizard; woman eating the man.

But he has had practice with drunk crescendos; he
croons about my perfection. perfection. perfection. I sip
the bourbon - the deep history I need.

Everything is holy and so
on and so on. And so on.

Forever Young

Listen closely to me. One day I will die.

Let my brothers look through my books first. Even the ones I've borrowed and never returned. This is important.

I want you to touch my dead face. Just so you can take it with you that it's all real. Yes, her cheek is cold. Yes.

Someone tell the story of the first day I saw a loon dive.

If you have my secrets, please keep them. And one day when you're old, you can reminisce about this one time there was this one girl who died. How sad, you might think. And if you remember then, at that moment, tell the world. Until, put my words in a quiet box.

Put them in that quiet box with me.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

I'm That Kind

 I am not surprised. I'm the kind of girl who gets rabies. And who breaks her foot before the race. I'm magnetic in all the wrong ways. I feel things too much in my bones. I fall in love with all vibrations. I feel that blue collar catastrophe, personally. I want a sharp hair line and the kind of collar bone that perfectly spills into shoulders. Maybe beer on the couch is best. Or red wine in the morning, in a coffee mug. And stars beaming through electronics. I'm that kind. The ruiner kind.

Things end.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

What It's Like to be Murdered by Your Muse

First, she lets you remember the sun
on your ex-lover's back as you fold
into each other like fresh
laundry near the window.
She whispers. And you, you remember
the contours as he moves like sound-

Next, she brings out
her weapon; possibly a shank, sharp
like November nights when frost can slice
you slant-wise along your ribs.

Gentle and quick-like, she splits
your neck; a cheap smile to an empty room.
    (Brace yourself, baby, it's gonna’ sting.)

Finally, blood laps against your feet; one last
Tennessee lake as you sit.


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Indiana Shorebird: Part 1

What would it be killing the first Black-
Bellied Plover?

1871 and for science.
1871 and for feathers (possibly
                for hats).
1871 after migration (for food,
                for sex)
Who doesn't run for sex
Who doesn't die for science

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Cherokee & North Highland

After pumping gas I realized I had lint tangled in my braid. How many people noticed?
Probably none.
Instead, they saw the sleeping horses inside my chest; only an hour before,
thundering around my rib cage with no restraint.

Balmy days are best at regarding my confessions:
silent Hail, Mary's until I bleed.
                   sorry. sorry. sorry. sorry. sorry. 
                   and sorry to you, especially.

Picking at the black speck in my flax, my soul remembers:
                   blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs
                   is the kingdom of heaven.
And, I might add,
                  broken are their bones under the weight
                 of grief.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Jellyfish - Post Mortum

Three of them stood erect, none
bending to pay tribute to the battered

Regarding only the moment (wind, sound, sand,
et cetera),
the youngest started walking first.

Some rules, they are
different at the sea.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

On Soft Sand

I was there when night split down the middle -
that sexy divide and maintain.
You know, bubble gum and
pale light and probably
Yanni on the radio.

No one was looking that time
we stabbed the moose right in the neck -
bleating and lowing and
painful white bursts in the cold.
(didn't we grieve?
didn't we talk about the funeral for days?)

You really don't know how you made
lines in the leaves,
how the ancient languages came from your fingertips.
You don't know about blue blue and early-morning-fog.

Should the magpie bring new creation?
Should the ocean give pity?
Should the salt choke you to death?

Please, let the suffering fill all the balloons and convince
the old city to shut down tight the bars
where people fall in love against pinball machines.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

And A Million Other Things, Too.

the holy ghost told me you found my bones,
while dragging the sky for scraps.

he said,
"your words are grass, girl,
stuck between his teeth.
and your hair is wheat in his bread."

I know. I know, I said.

I know.

(and that's what I wrote and sent with him).

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Dead at Dale Hollow Lake. In Four Parts.

Part One.
Fog off the water is spirits, some say.

But I keep mine in a sunfish
near the cove I've named Paradise.

Part Two.
Dead in the lake isn't easy.

My skin slides off, quick like a silk-dress
and catfish, big as chevys,
undress me.

They remember the color of my fingernails as the mud sings
Swing Low.

Part Three.
The crow has found me, right where
the tide said to stay.
My insides are yellowed by the Tennessee sun

and from somewhere,
I forgive your dog for eating them.

Part Four.
My grandmother weeps into the water.

I Rolled Those Words in Honey.

Remember when I would draw on your face with my words? That one time, a buffalo skull on your cheek. We laughed and laughed and Out West, on our fingertips, stayed put.

And once, we touched shoulders in an art gallery. Your voice, my childhood stairs creaking on any given night, adjusted the earth with ease.


And if you're asking, I'm fine. 

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Marriage. A Love Poem. (23.30)

Laying flat against the panes of glass
we will dissect our lungs
to know breathing.

We will squabble about who cuts who first and where.
We will get excited to unfold the pink secrets
of the third lobe.
Maybe we'll find evening on the lake or
my missing black sock.

Our blood will remind us of our dads;
what maybe they could have talked about:
wrenches and oil and
"those damn kids, they'll learn one day."

But we won't.
Our veins will smell of cheap booze
and sex.

Reclaiming Light. (22/30)

Let's do that thing where we walk
the turn of our  ex-lovers' necks.
And eat the foie gras of our transgressions,
forgetting, of course, 
to wipe our slick mouths before we tongue kiss in front of Mother Teresa.

Yes, let's take off our shoes and throw them.
Possibly into the next county.

Monday, April 29, 2013

It's a Goddamned Shame that I Kick Rocks and You Stand On Them. (21/30)

Don't mind me as I listen to the heavy interludes.
And you.
You just sit there, stirring your cocktail with the rolled up words:
Pleasure is a thing.

A Three Part Poem. For Sachen.

Shirts and skins in the park
and the words about your lungs/legs rifle through the yellow hair of a girl, watching.

She may have recognized the noise; no way of knowing.

The spine-curve of the road and me driving it,
seems about right as my lips move your name around.

There are no rules for this.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

A Generic How-To. (19/30)

Step 1.
God, probably, hates the lighter you use.
If he doesn't, he should.

Step 2.
No words is best case scenario -
crushed up diamonds. Ingested then
chased with cheap beer.

Step 3.
Even though I want to say words to make
bluebirds fly off each of your teeth:
I won't.

Step 4.
Recant. Pretend. And see Step 1. 

Dale Hollow. 2. (18/30)

Dead in the lake isn't easy.

My skin slides off, quick like a silk-dress 
and catfish, big as chevys,
undress me.

They remember the color of my fingernails as the mud sings
Swing Low.

Dale Hollow. 1. (17/30)

Fog off the water is spirits, some say.

But I keep mine in a sunfish
near the cove I've named Paradise.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Mad Poem. On Beginning. (16/30)

Don't fall in love with me because my jeans fit like
July sweat
and my breath tastes like night-time whiskey.
I will not apologize for the delicate curve of my tits.
You aren't asking me to, but I'm telling you ahead of time:
they're fireflies.

Mad Poem. On Ending. (15/30)

We both die anyway, so what's the hold-up? And if I remember correctly I'm almost dead already. My heart is yellowed with alley-way blow jobs and my blood is a waning city, old bricks and poison, going straight to this brain.

I'm mostly done.
My maps are folded with creases deeper than graves.

Prayer to the RedWinged Blackbird. (14/30)

You wear the blood of christ on your shoulders.
Prophets can't preen, tiny baby,
prophets can't fly.

Forgive the dust we create and
feel sorry for the land-bound biped:

we know not what we do.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Seven Small Love Poems (13/30)

1.  I would watch you shoot hoops -
and I've never said "shoot hoops"
without laughing.

2. Smoke. In between us.

3. We give nicknames.
I give blowjobs and
you pump gas on cold days.

4. Our books are not in alphabetical order and
our bills are unpaid.

5. You put salt water on my cuts -
in the best way.

6. "Did you see his under bite?"
"Yeah, man, it was bad, but I've never had better
mac 'n' cheese."

7. The Golden Record, I'm sure of it,
tells the story of how we met,
wine stains on our teeth.

Thoughts on a Freshwater Mermaid (12/30)

I hear you harbor all the bluegills in your blood and you spend your nights collecting gull feathers and fish hooks
too old to use.
Your fingertips calloused.

I've never seen, but heard, your eyes go on and on with scales and holiness.
The algae has gathered behind your ears.

Do me a favor and put those arms straight up; let the worthy see the gills that slice, slantwise, your ribs.

Why didn't life let you drown?

Friday, April 12, 2013

There's Blood Pooling in the Paint. For the man in California. (11/30)

Maybe he just walked in to buy paint for his bathroom.
     Gray Haven, Steel-Cold Pistol, Nearly White on White,
     Crushed Bones in the Sun, Crossroad Stone, Springtime Sprigs.

But that hack-saw, that hack-saw in aisle 9: a mistress to take his heart.

Fuck that bathroom and her it's botched up walls -
He wanted to feel.
Or die.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

From A Fly-Over State (10/30) (A Letter Poem)

Dear [redacted],
I want to start with the weather, but everyone does -
so I'll start with -
I talked with him the other day
(you don't know him;
it's fine) anyway, he said
You're going to run away.
One day, I'll wake up, and you'll be gone. 
Yes, I said
with a heavy turquoise tongue.
He knows I belong broken apart in the sand.
I suppose I know it, too.

Don't worry, I'll write if I leave.
Don't worry. You can wet the paper and paste your heart back together.
Though, I'm sure my absence won't be harmful to the spinning of the sky, to the birds of prey, to the downward turn of the horizon.
To anything.

Anyway, it's raining here. Three straight days.
And the price of milk, goodness knows when that will level off.

Hope all is well,

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

My Counselor Says 'Don't' (9/30)

You're going to run away one day,
he said.
I said,
with a heavy turquoise tongue.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Day Approves of the Choices I Make (8/30)

Childless on a heavy night means whiskey again
and a perfect waist.

Here's what I'm thinking:
it means a few holy promises:

One. to fuck like run-wild
Two. to sleep like paper next to jesus.
Three. to taste your smoke-heavy lips.
Four. to praise cotton for laying on my tits like light breath.
Five: to give you birds, like fire from flint.
Six: to stand on books and sing under low light.

So on and so on until the day settles down inside my room
under the covers,
slathering itself on my thighs.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Bible Isn't Bothersome. Or Our Own Song (7/30)

1 Of course my panties are on the floor, souvenirs from the nights, drunk, 2 we couldn't be bothered with anything else. 3 My second skin, peeled off and lifeless;4 laying face up. 5 Remember how sometimes trust is bones, broken in nine places? 6 And the salt our bodies create the salve? We iron out the bamboo leaves and cover our eyes. 7 We run the blood out of the night. 8 Remember how sometimes trust is bones not broken. 9 Of course we'll put my panties in the hamper. 10 Of course. 11 And the sun will hum to the creases of our 12 skins.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

I Die Everynight (6/30)

Part One:
I dreamed I dropped the hatchet.
The water was clear so I could watch it bury itself on the bottom.
My brother, disappointed, reminded me that mom wanted to keep that.

The stones were as brown as my body.

Part Two:
Use the boat hook to drag my body to shore.
The slate rock will slice me open.

Speculation (5/30)

Maybe when you find out
you'll put your hands in your pockets;
the sun will shine on your face when you think of mine
busted apart by the windshield.

I (probably) didn't think of you.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Tiny Supplemental (4.1/30)

Take me closer to the clouds,
while someone celebrates with fireworks by the river.

Secure Your Own Mask Before Assisting With Others (4/30)

Let's say, I'm dead.

Prop me against any tree while you notify the crows.
They know what to do, but I should warn you:
my eyes are sweet berries in the sun.
my soft belly, theirs for the taking.
my hair, golden rigging for nests.

It's okay. I'm dead. I don't mind. 

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Supplemental Read to Last Poem or Shit Has Changed: (3.1/30)

Goddamn that holy spirit - always waiting on an invitation.
Doesn't he know that's not how things are done?

These days we Snap Chat pictures of
our tits, (mostly perfect)
and text things that are short for other things
and cartoon pictures of fireworks for, like,

I'd understand if we each had two hearts
or if true love really waited in the corridors.

Dream on, dove. Fly away.

Shit has changed.

Throw Dirt in the Grave, the berries will say (3.30)

The serviceberries tell me it's time to bury our dead.
The sun has matured the pulp and warmed the soil.

Amazing grace! we lived! Amazing grace! my teeth!
My skin prickles as we dig the graves in my bonnet.
Do not say:
"too soon." The berry bush says just right.
Don't let the holy spirit steal the show.

Get the spade - say the prayers -
the serviceberries say:
"They're going home." 

Monday, April 1, 2013

A Creation Story (2/30)

She circled, pulling her hair and
gaining with want;
running and busting up the earth until her feet were blood and bone. 'Let me catch you and hold you and allow me to eat down the pain that causes heart burn' she sang with the sweet hum of darkness.
and so what else?

Heavy and worthy of ancient hands, he signed on.

And after the feast, she pulled each tooth still sweet with his flesh
and planted them in the north, once without snow. 
     She planted them in the west, without soil.
     She planted them in the east and south, close to the ocean and in the mountains' veins.
     They grew without water, though water fell from the sky.
And those, the first people, they chased each dawn;
moving across the bellies' of our lovers.

Questions for my Friend's Priest (or Deacon) (1/30)

Will whiskey provide any absolution for the sins
   I've embraced with [redacted]?
   How about wine?

What exactly defines "mortally wounded"?
   Does it have anything to do with melancholy love
   Or sexting?

Is heaven anything like skimming my hands on
top of the lake I loved as a a kid?

Are you busy next Thursday, baby? Because,
basically, I might be dying.

Please advise; my blood is turning solid. 

Sunday, March 24, 2013

A Very Small Thought on Guilt.

Don't force me to watch the dying deer -
her legs trapped like tar.
Let her rest on the leaves,

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Meth Makes Your Teeth Fall Out

How are you supposed to feel
when you hear about a dead baby
in a duffle bag,
packed away like an over night stay?

We looked at each other with a concise disgust,
probably shook our heads
full of clean hair.

And two hours later, we got lunch at Wendy's.

Cheeseburgers and frosties.

Maybe fries.

Monday, March 18, 2013

One Poem. Four Parts. (part three)

Let the light do it's thing
on your face.


(I'll try not to notice)

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

20/31: my hands don't smell like sex

my hands don't smell like sex.

and if i put them in my mouth
i only get the subtle sweetness of holding a pen and
yesterday's left overs.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

19/31: It was Already Playing; a poem in 7 parts

I. You own a room, specifically
the room I am in.
and every word said, the floor and my anticipation.

II. The earth is new.
Can you believe it?

III. And then there are places that only belong
to you - like, my hair and that space that moves before you,
and the space that follows.

IV. I only use your first and last names.

V. :: omitted by author ::

VI. I ask.
You answer.

VII. I ask, "What's unholy?"
and here,
maybe you don't answer.

Monday, March 4, 2013

18/31: why the cicada sings

Tiny muscles:
constricting, releasing, vibrating
and screaming low.

Sometimes the corn is tall, the night air oppressive
and the bush-cricket
drowns under the cicada's song.

And here's what I want to say to you:
Nothing like this was planned -
the biology of it all.

17/31: on showing our baby the dead cat

Words are hard -
You said 'death' like you knew, your little tongue made noises like you understood,
but, honey baby, you didn't.
Wrapped in a ragged sheet, the cat's blood turned to rust
but not before you asked to see her.
That little head moved just a bit in the re-adjusting-
her shroud let light in one final time, and you, little baby,

cried in the yard
for days.

We say 'death' because we've learned
(or we pretend we have).

This, our legacy, will one day be yours.

Monday, February 18, 2013


I will yodel and climb and plant a flag and hunt for the village and milk the goats for my neighbors.

but first, let me put on my pants.


how many ways are there?
to stand and to sing and to
exhume the skeleton ships that
have been french kissing the clams?
how many ways are there to bring in breath
and to face west 'til the lord comes?
how many rules for the moon?
how few times can we count sitting,
swaying alone?
how many kinds of strings
are there that world can boast?
how many rules for my hands?
how many ways are there?
to live and to fuck and to die?

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

14/31: an accidental poem. an edited email about surgery

Here is exactly why I'm so nervous:
because I might die.
I don't know what that would mean if I did.
Or what if I don't die? but my body throws me in a coma
and instead, I'm stuck between the walls?

I don't have a living will. I should.
I really really should.
I think it would read:
"[He] gets to decide everything. Just let him. Don't fight him.
[They] have every right to dead me and my items and all my love."

So, there you have it.
I'm anxious that I'm going to die.

And that's the long and short of it.

Sunday, February 3, 2013


Walk those lines like a towpath
to the river that washed my sins. Didn’t we have a time when we rubbed mud on them?
Not all, just the ones that burn with air.

Bang those woodblocks, get a rhythm.
How many times did the mountains fall down?

Monday, January 28, 2013


I make my best decisions topless.
and I try to get fresh tomatoes
when I can.
Reading famous poets makes me hot, but not
Tennyson famous,
Transtromer famous.

Sturdy jaw lines prompt me
to question your motives -
I mean, testosterone can't handle my tits.
(they're nearly perfect, you know).

I always try to translate my dreams
into deeper-meaning. Always.
And Carl Sagan speaks to me,
but so does Beyonce.

Other things aren't okay,
but, seriously,
these things are.

Friday, January 25, 2013


i wear jeans the way i wear jeans
because i don't know how else.
i can tomatoes,
hold my pen,
and drink my whiskey the only way i know is right.

there's only one goddamned way to talk
to your grandmother,
so, i do that.

and i let boys touch my boobs,
that can't be wrong.

and i pine for the moon with the universe in my mouth.


i had a dream last night that a cardinal
asked me (telepathically)
while i was on the roof of my dead dad's barn,

"what am i?"
"what color am i?"

i answered the bird
he flew away.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

9/31: how can i tell you about perfect time?

This is what I'm doing:
picking apart your mermaid scales
and interpreting that damn song of yours.

and in case you're wondering, it's rude to say the things you say.

I'm also deciphering the code. It's not real.
the code can't be real.
it's just a curly headed california sunset;
a son-of-a-bitch illusion.

This is what I know:
It's okay to stand on the concrete embankment,
taller than real life
under the pinks and blues.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013


Verse One

i can maneuver Indiana country roads like
in between the sheets.


i can exhume the entire carcass
from it's flimsy outer shell;
tail and all. And if you know anything
you know the tail is the hardest part.

it requires skill -
a delicate concentration.

and after it all,
the beheading, the deveining,
the amputating of each limb,
the poor creature sits on my palm

as gray and dead as a dead man floating.

Thursday, January 10, 2013


i wake breathing air and fall asleep the same way.

i move about the day with these feet;
clean with these hands.
vinegar, maybe, in the sink,
chemicals on my mirrors.

it doesn't matter -
my point is i'm living and soon, will be dead.

like jesus, like dahmer.

Monday, January 7, 2013


don't we all have a song about a porch swing?

bare feet sliding against the grain of a dirty floor
occasionally, the rusty chains clink, like rust does
and mid-day cars just go and go, oblivious to the lemonade summer.

fuck those cars for not knowing,
for not slamming their brakes
and standing on top of their Buicks
and screaming praise, loudly,
like idiots.

Saturday, January 5, 2013


i stand at the sink differently than someone
who doesn't want -
the way i hold my pen, and put on
the seven ways i calm myself before
i pay bills.
the way i use my ATM card
possibly even in the way i text.

everything has a trace manifestation
of a lonely concerto.

but seriously, how?


i'm a lady
so i won't talk about the sweat
and skin, your face, my face and the promise of your loft bed.

Thursday, January 3, 2013


i have all this skin.
you do, too, i know, but mine is
and it fits, perfectly, my bones.

and we're both okay when it comes to skin,
but if you wanted it, mine i mean,
(not to be direct),
but if you did,
you could have it.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

a small thought on creation.

a trillion suns in a tizzy
lining up alphabetically and preparing for
their baccalaureate. straightening their bow ties for,

and then, just like middle age, we're all standing around kicking the dirt.

how many times can i hold my breath while i take down my panties?
how many times can there be first sex?