Yellow Lines (Poem)

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Yellow Lines

Honey-sunset sky
reflects on stained cold tar
while cars shake the anxious Earth,
with headlights like a thousand falling stars.

Life roars by too fast,
in lines ordained by human hands
and faded yellow paint.

All chipped at the edges

and ready to crash.

Squinting Shadows (Poem)

eidy-bambang-sunaryo-517370-unsplashSquinting Shadows

We clench our lights in closed palms,
afraid to show our colors—
afraid we’ll shine too bright—
so we cling so tight,
to our gray cloaks—
our first birthday gifts.

The world wants to mold—
not teach—
drawing you into the dark
where only your shadow
—your simplified silhouette—
remains:
conform, it says,
play your part, it says,
your role was cast by
norms
before you were born.

So let out your light—
show your flames
and wash the shadows away
from the others like you
—and cast the world in color.

Make the shade-sowers
shield their eyes.

If we all shine bright,
if you shine bright,
if I shine bright

perhaps they’ll go blind.

Earth’s Emotion (Poem)

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Earth’s Emotion

Rain taps the roof
with desperate little fingers.
A chorus of tears
sent from the weeping winter sky.

Wind whistles by
Singing a song too sad to tell.
It sighs, sobs, screams
shaking the world to its core.

The snow falls so soft and slow,
shards of the gray endless above
reaching down to touch our cheeks –
beautiful yet cold.

The hail pounds our havens –
hundreds of furious fists
without forgiveness,
eager to kill.

The ice paints mirrors over familiar sights –
reminding us of our unwelcome,
yet shimmering
with stars in the night.

Chills seep in,
casting shadows on skin.
What a selfish thing –
this season.

Still I’m safe,
watching wonderland through my window.
Candlelight flickers and wanes –
always stronger than the darkness.

I’m not afraid of winter –
of Earth’s dark emotions that swarm outside.
Is it not true,
that the most bittersweet plays are the most moving too?

One Song (Poem)

(Poetry: Every 2nd week of the month, I’ll post a poem or atmospheric piece.)

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One Song

Stars flicker uncountable,
like the notes in a silence song
sensed only on the outskirts of hearing,
even while our bodies play the melody with
our drumming hearts,
and with each    rest    beat we exhale –

every decision we make
is a step in our dance,
watched by the wondering Universe

while we write lyrics with our life story
and send the    echoes    into

everything.

Last Night on Earth (Poem)

(Thoughtful Thursday: Every other Thursday (or so) I’ll post a poem or atmospheric piece.)

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Last Night on Earth

and we sit below the sky
as the sun dips down and goes to sleep,
and we know it won’t wake up,
not this time,
and though we ache to feel it just once more,
we remember its touch on our skin,
we breathe it in, taste the cold night air,
and sink into the wide open stars
cradling this world like a palm with
frail, loving fingers still holding on
until the last breath comes,
and we wait,
immersed in stories that seem to stretch time –
our echoes won’t ever fade.

 

Ember’s Wings (Poem)

(Thoughtful Thursday: Every other Thursday (or so) I’ll post a poem or atmospheric piece.)

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Ember’s Wings

Sunset
Set me free
Rainbow of firelight

They pushed me away
You told me to stay
I became as one with you

Colors like coal
My mind ablaze
A spark that lights my soul

Smoke, fire, ashes
I’m in love with the sky
I’ll abandon the world

On ember’s wings I’ll fly


I’m working on a poetry chapbook with plans to publish it this summer.
Feel free to join my email list for a discount when it releases and a free copy of my novel, Night Plague.

Breaking Windows (Poem)

(Thoughtful Thursday: Every other Thursday (or so) I’ll post a poem or atmospheric piece.)

Night Sky Window

Breaking Windows

We pass windows as we walk.

We want to reach out,
touch our fingertips to the cool, smooth air

– the skies –

on the other side,
but are afraid to smudge the glass.
We ache to break through,
but don’t want to hear the sound

– the shatter –

to see what we knew in ruins,
and know we can’t repair it.
After all, the world on the other side might be illusion,
made of poison,
where the rain falls like fire.
We don’t know where we are isn’t better,
so we keep the windows closed,
their latches locked.
We keep walking,
turning away,
scared of our own reflections.

When I stop
and put my palm to the glass,

– so cold and fresh on my skin,
like a thirst finally sated
by the season’s breath –

the window cracks.

 

(Wake Up) Yesterday (Poem)

(Thoughtful Friday Thursday: Every other Thursday I’ll post a poem or atmospheric piece.)

(Wake Up) Yesterday

I want to wake up yesterday,
when the sun seemed warmer,
when snowflakes were falling stars,
when the crickets were a chorus.

Old words,
warm and strange,
I want to read familiar pages like they’re new.

I want to sleep backwards, to
when summer lasted longer,
when winter was a journey,
when the sunset was a theater.

Old songs,
soft and cruel,
I want to hear familiar melodies like they’re new.

I want to wake up yesterday,
when the garden was a jungle,
when I could close my eyes and fly,
when everything was new.

If I watch the same sky
who can tell me that time has changed?
I’ll believe I’m just a child
but it still won’t be the same.

A warm ache,
Pleasant and painful.
Can’t swim against the tide of time.
Can’t stay here in yesteryear.


I’m working on a poetry chapbook with plans to publish it this summer.
If you enjoyed this poem, feel free to join my email list for a discount when it releases
(+ a free re-release of my novel, Night Plague, in June).

NaPoWriMo: Final 3

NaPoWriMo WebsiteIt should go without saying at this point, but I ended up letting the NaPoWriMo challenge go after the first week (I’ll write another post about this and Camp NaNo soon).

Nonetheless, I did decide to pick it back up during the last three days, to get the total amount of poems written during April up to 10 (or 1/3 of the original goal). I’m admittedly not particularly happy with these, but I figure I may as well share them. Even if I only ended up getting 10 rough poems out of NaPo, though, that’s still ten I might never have written otherwise, and I did enjoy the challenge. I’ll be back next year!

Day Twenty-Eight: I Remember Color

I remember red
Love and hate
Passionate
Angry
Intense
Hot as a fire
The glow of a sunset

I remember blue
Kind and cold
Soft
Soothing
Dark
Flowing with the endless sea
The sky of the night and the day

I remember green
Open and free
Beckoning
Comforting
Home
The robe of the world
The herald of spring

I remember yellow
Energetic and warm
Bright
Refreshing
Upbeat
The shade of a smile
Shimmering beneath the sun

I remember violet
Bittersweet melancholy
Heavy with slumbering fantasies
I remember orange
Hungry and bold
Burning with unspoken dreams
I remember indigo
Climbing the horizon
Each dusk and each dawn

I remember color
When did everything turn grey?

[Read more…]

NaPoWriMo Week #1

NaPoWriMo WebsiteFor the third year in a row (after 2013’s success and 2014’s failure), I’m attempting NaPoWriMo – the challenge to write 30 poems in 30 days, one each day in April, and optionally post them online.

Because this isn’t strictly a poetry blog, I’ve opted to collect all of each week’s poems into one large post, instead of posting them daily. This one is for April 1st – 7th.

Some of these first drafts are a bit cringe-y, but I guess the point of NaPo isn’t so much quality, as is it experimenting and letting loose. One thing I noticed, is that several of the poems so far seem to share themes and motifs, especially the poems written immediately after each other. Perhaps that’s an effect of writing them in such close proximity.

Also, a note about the long, first poem for Day #1. I almost didn’t post this one, because it’s pretty personal. I had a really bad experience at a writer’s group I attended a few years ago. While in the context of the writing craft, it wasn’t a critique or anything like that, it was a very specific comment (what I now recognize as a microaggression of sorts) that really messed with my head, both as a writer and as a person. I wanted to do something unique to kick off NaPo, so what I wrote is a sort of imaginary open letter to that group, about what I never got to say, and about how I wish I’d reacted differently, without wasting so much time worrying.

Day One: The Hiatus

You broke me
In an instant
A few simple words
Laced with poison
From a sweet, old smile

You told me who you thought I was
The way that you saw me
My writing, my world, all wrong
You said
I hadn’t realized it yet
I was simply naive

Replaced my words – my world – with yours
This was the way it had to be
My essence, defined by my body
You said
A good writer with wrong ideas
You only wanted to make me better

It didn’t hurt at first
Numb, like a missing limb
When it came, it smoldered
An author silenced
The pen fell from my fingers

I didn’t want to be angry
You spoke with good intentions
You laughed with friendly ease
Sometimes I wonder,
Did you?

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