to hold you to the brightest of lights, to place you dangerously close to that sun

{march 23, 2011 - december 3, 2012}

something i wrote in english today.

the gulls cry here nearly every day, entombed as they are by the bony ribcage of the sky through which the stars pierce dimly like rose thorns.

"i haven’t been writing," i say. you run your fingers over the bowl of my hips, my subtle pelvis-bones hidden beneath the bed of fat preparing for life that has not yet been sown. you kiss the space between my collarbone and my heart, as if you are kissing the space from which my words spring, as if saying you love me even when i am empty of language. i remember in october, when you said you love listening to me talk, and the year before that, when you told me you loved me in the vastness of sky cinematic sunset colorado cloud i am all adjectives can’t get at essence. you look at me now with those perfect eyes, and i know i do not have to say it.

but it is not that moment yet, still two weeks prior, the distance between us trapped somewhere in ivory airplane sky. i don’t want to say i am counting the days, i don’t want my life to be on hold until the next time i see you, but it’s only fifteen days baby, and the stars here glow dim as rose thorns.

i want you like the clouds crave the earth; and our love is like the rain, it pours. 


in the space where we watch a small hanging silkworm doing the universe dance, connecting in its intricacies the tiny usually invisible trails of dusty treesap air with the bend of branches and minute fractal curvature between canvassing treetops canopy cloudcover afternoon, the world is silent and i realize that i’m not forgetting anything, just focusing on something else. existence is only possible through constant and continuous distraction and focus (because those are the same thing). babbling water leads to sea somewhere leads to sky and clouds which are also fractals bending in atmosphere like wispy breaths of cigarettes you do not smoke and never have, the reeds bending in dialectical relationship with the wind each dependent on the other and all dependent on the light like cosmic breaking million miles an hour photovoltaic eruption of plasma on upside down retinas like a ghost of the sun shining in infrared on our upturned and windbeaten faces. 

we laugh at the prospect that we are not adapted to survive in this wilderness (we call it wilderness despite the electrical power plant sending ionized shockwaves into a still infiltrated saturated soil, despite the overwhelming evidence that wilderness has nothing to do with us), and it is not laughter at our own mortality but laughter at our own privilege, at our distance from the earth which we are inextricably tied to. 

"the mayans," you say, "believed in madre tierra. they believe she is punishing us from treating her like shit, that she will destroy us." we walk back through the woods to the university campus where i make oatmeal using an electric kettle. we say we feel synthetic, but it isn’t hard to return. 

i like reading you my shitty poetry. maybe this is what love is— little little meaningless meaningful things that accrue in the form and void. love is just the gathering.

don’t fuck this up. don’t you dare fuck this up.

10-8-12 part two

there is a hollowness like rolling bus wheels, it rolls inside me, it lolls,

and lulls and sings lullabies;

it is a hollowness like trees the moment before they are struck by lightning,

like a bee hive the moment before it is destroyed,

like bones before they are broken. there is a hollowness

inside me and inside you,

maybe just the spaces between our atoms, electrons in their tiny futile constant orbits

and crying to be touched crying for touch crying and crying

and despite this infinite pain the universe goes on.

it’s a hollowness like the ever-expansive atmosphere, like light bent through prisms,

like cups overflowing and the pull of gravity on our frailness and youthfulness,

like wrinkles on old women and the sunflower spines of old men,

a hollowness like bullet holes and bullet wounds

and life sentences served in prisons. not a hollowness like the death penalty, 

but a related kind of hollowness. 

perhaps it is only that i am conscious of my emptiness. perhaps,

as friere says, we are conscious of our incompleteness, and i think we are

remarkably ignorant in that consciousness. 

perhaps it is a hollowness that comes from trying to see the world

"as it really is". a void formed by knowledge, lacking wisdom lacking restraint

lacking the whole. perhaps it comes from the distance between human beings,

all the things lost in translation and the things we don’t say but really mean,

and the way cognition implies interpretation implies hermeneutic composition, 

implies that we will never truly connect.

it is this that i think of, this kind of hollowness, 

each night as i fall asleep wishing your body was wrapped around mine.

there is something in our messy proximate honest physicality that fills me,

and i’m beginning to realize that this isn’t a poem

but simply my own truth.


i think it’s because my self is a place of pervasive solitude—

autumn air between leaves and bare tree limbs, spring seedlings stuck beneath snow, winter comes slow and empty, summer hot and hair in decadent sunlight, sweat

—it’s like wings you know, feathers, broken leaves, stems of plants plucked so they could not grow. like mortality,

and like slips of fingertips on skin. like almost-connection. never quite touching, it’s the longing between two bodies. 

my self.

my loneliness, the things i possess but cannot have, the things that evade me. that evade reconciliation yet still believe in the inherent goodness of humanity. the contradictions in my self. 

—surface dawn and the smooth ripple of sunlight across a cloud-whispering sky in a flurry of warm air and trying to not erase and trying to not backtrack or think too hard, trying to be happy trying so goddamn hard to be happy. this poem is a syliva plath poem, it’s a jack kerouac poem, it’s a love poem and a loss poem and it’s like the story of the eye or some other erotic writing. it’s the current driving what i am saying from what i wanted to say and in this way literature becomes transformative. where would my thoughts have gone if i had not been writing them down?—

searching for the ending line that never comes. some forced finality, some imposed framework. why do we limit ourselves to small things, when the whole is available?

sometimes i get filled with such a deep and sorrowful and heavy sense of sadness, for no reason at all. maybe it’s my feeling of the emptiness within myself, all the extra space that fills atomic nothingness. maybe i am only trying to cope with my own insignificance. tonight i realized that the sun hasn’t set where you are yet, and it is pervasively dark in vermont and the sky feels all hollow and empty and oddly close in this vast vast universe outside our atmosphere. i wanted to tell you to look at the moon but it hadn’t risen in colorado when i thought of it. i am not lonely, but in some ways i am more lonely than i have ever been.