the moon meets the sun

i've tasted 
fire and ice

neither
fully satisfied.

I taste you

a combination
of heat
and cold

of floral
and earth

and I want it
again
and again.

You are a balance.
An in between
I didn't know
I could experience.

I waited for the moonrise
and you showed me worth
in holding out
for the sun.

Worn

I fell into something familiar
and like the last go,
it ended in
abrupt
explosive
and repetetive
goodbyes.

The familiar no longer
felt like
a warm fireplace.
It burned my
skin
and I turned to look
to something
cooling.

Something healing.

I fell into something familiar
those two years ago.

This time,
I walk into something
new.

Changing tides

I see the water meet the sky’s edge 
I expand, here.
I take in what's changed
what's remained.

I remember the moments 
I came to her shore 
seeking something other 
than what was,
seeking answers. 

Today
I come to her 
with a new request. 

Her waves sing 
and I ask for witness
as I recognize 
my own growth. 

I seek her
expanding memory 
so that when I forget
she’ll remind me
 
that tides change 
and so do I. 

Changing of the guards

I pour a glass of wine
light a candle
my work clothes fall to the floor.
I attempt comfort.

It isn't clear yet,
(to me)
how to write in the calm
in the peace.

(what is this soundlessness)

I eat an entire bowl
of popcorn
I watch the sun recede.
I search for words.

It's 11:00 now.
It was so quiet
I almost missed
the
change.

My hands are clammy
my body overheated.
I am sweating.
Is it muggy in here?

(am I searching for a problem)

Shift change.
The new guards
fresh pairs of eyes
I am angry
I ever let the others past.

I look out the doors
its dark
I still have not
put into words
the feeling
of content
awareness.

(hope feels irrelevant)

I'm going to write
a poem about you.

It won't be a poem
of longing
or molding
or pain.

It will be a piece
about you.
And of what is.

My glass
sits half
empty.
The candle
dances.

I thank the changing
of the guards.

(writing of you
makes you real)

Comparison

Sometimes I
look at my poetry and
see a lack of seriousness,
of trauma.

I hear exceptional writers
describe the oppression
the discrimination
the injustice
the world
provides.

I wonder if my own
experiences
my own hurt
the self-made kind
the mental spirals
my self-reflections,
are as universal
or as worthy
to be shared.

And maybe the comparison
is where the actual fallacy lives.

Is it wrong to take space
in arenas where there are no
rules or
standards
for how much pain a piece
must contain?

What I choose to explore
through writing
is most often
the ways in which
I interact
with intimacy
and the ways in which
I do not.

So maybe
I'll give myself permission
to write
without judgement.
To share without
comparison.

balcony

Water dripped from above
like it was raining
except
the humid air
did not bring with it
precipitation.

I looked overhead to find
the source
and saw the light on
and her face
looking over the railing.

Naturally I wondered
who she was
and what she was to you.

She disappeared.
The light, now off.

I remained below
still watching the water
as it splashed to the ground,
watched it pool
as I walked to the front door.

I placed my key in its lock
and let my own
hopeful expectations
drain.

In the next room

In one room
my grandmother begs for peace.
She cries for her mother,
screams in confusion and pain.
 
In the kitchen, he cooks dinner alone.
Smelts, fresh bread, salad, a beer.
I watch my grandfather as he moves
quiet and purposeful.
 
He fries the fish as he holds back tears.
He hears his wife cry out in pain.
His own is angry, frustrated.
He tells me,
 
“this was not supposed to happen.
This is not how I imagined the end.”
 
He sits at the kitchen table
the Steelers’ game plays in front of him
He does not notice me watching
as he drizzles hot sauce on his meal.
 
He turns, sensing me behind him,
tells me to grab a plate.
I do, knowing this is an important offering.
 
He fixes me dinner,
too many smelts than I can stomach,
salad, and bread.
I begin to eat silently next to him
 
This is his language of love.
 
He gets up suddenly
grabs a glass from the cupboard
pours half of his beer in the glass.
He hands it to me.
 
I drink. I take him in.
I say nothing. Because I know
he needs this. He needs me
to be silent with him, to eat
the food he has made
to accept what love
he has left to give.
 
To do something
anything.