Beds are made for unmaking. Midnights are for sleepy secrets. You watch Dead Poets; you could never be one; you are not a poet and you do not try; you cannot die and you do not try. In your dreams you walk in a straight line off a worn path to only gods know where: you call out a name, sometimes, in these dreams; the echoes insult you. There is much work to be done. There is much work to be undone. The universe does not give a damn but I do and you will never know.

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After the rain, roads are rivers and windshields are universes in miniature.

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lonely nights; solitary walks; cups of coffee; a false sense of security; voices coming and going and lingering; a sudden quiet; if you’re still breathing you’re the lucky ones; a sudden disquiet; wet feet; most of us are heaving through corrupted lungs; dry shoes; an undecided rain cloud; should I stay or should I go?; clumsy is the heart that knows not where it belongs; failure is almost always the default option; doubtful truths, truthful doubts; I imagine death so much it feels more like a memory; choices that should have been made; long gone were the days when I’d walk home under heavy rainfall and feel a kind of peace; lately rains fall heavy on the heart; all is quiet down by the old sugar mill.

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strangers in mirrors; I don’t look in mirrors anyway; a failed science experiment; chances are all we hope to be; if I drink I cough, if I don’t drink I don’t cough; it’s not right for you; I drink anyway; you hate your pulse because it thinks you’re still alive; dear friend, what would I do without you; unlikely plot twist: I survive October; I have forgotten what it means; perhaps I could write; perhaps I could keep singing; Definition of a metaphor: the collapse of what separates us; perhaps I make it out alive; perhaps I could leave it all to chance; I am lonely, I am sad, I am alone, I am lonely, I am lonely, I am lonely, I am alone and lonely; it takes two to fall; long walks home; cups of coffee; glasses of brandy; hours and hours of unwritten melodies; a fragrant memory; please don’t take my sunshine away…

n. time between midnight and noon

The heat of the sun, entering the windows, waking me from another night of fitful sleep. The ringing doorbell; the douchebag rings it three times. Nobody needs to ring a doorbell more than once, least of all at seven in the fucking morning.

The groggy, grumpy walk. Opening doors. There, in the corner, the same bag of garbage the neighbours took out yesterday. A canine symphony in the morning. Gates unlocked, plates prepared, breakfast cooked. The too-strong, too-sweet coffee.

A small bathroom; minutes in front of a book or a screen. Contemplations in the shower; why don’t I think of these things when I have easier access to pen and paper?

Getting dressed is a chore; clothes are heavy, and uniforms are reminders of what keeps getting left behind. The shoe fits, barely, but it will have to do. If I buy new ones, it will feel like entertaining the possibility of needing them longer. A kiss, declining money but taking it anyway, one foot ahead of the other in a long and much-needed walk.


The asphalt road, the bumpy road; if you go through M. Castro fast enough you’d probably get a bad case of neck strain and dizziness. The Hummer, parked on the roadside, and the road is small enough without the Hummer shrinking it even more; who even likes Hummers anyway? They’re the ugliest cars second only to a Prius, offence unintended (but deserved).

The small intersection by the satellite market, the waiting shed home to a shirtless man who always stays there until nightfall, the two large cans of garbage, the line of santan shrubs. Lee’s mum’s sewing shop with the mannequins; I went to their house and stayed until midnight, there were mannequins in the living room, too, the living room was dark, I don’t know how they manage but I suppose it’s all a matter of getting used to it.

The hidden school, the vacant lot that houses what feels like an old chapel; a small stall that sells fruits and baduya; another sidestreet that leads to a dead-end, the one with a trash house; an electronics repair shop that looks just as much in need of repair; a puppy tied to a leash outside a house, playing with dead plants, floppy ears and fat tummy and fluffy fur coat.

The eskinita with the dormitels, the bridge and the traffic lights; the cathedral, still closed, opens at 8am; the sister school; the convenience store; cigarette smoke in corners; a mural by the wall in glaring shades of pink and red; there used to be a laundry shop right next to this plot of land that was once standing ovation; the place is cursed, they say, because anyone who eats from standing never graduates on time.

The guards, the pillars, the bulletin boards, the stairs, a tedious job of reaching for the doorknob to open the door, the sofa, the table, the only place I still call home.


I need to leave.

At the very least, I can talk in my languages.

I do not command them; they command me. They lend me what little of their power they think I can wield, and allow me a modicum of freedom in using this power as I see fit.


I often fail my languages. They do not — have not, will not, will never — fail me. I fail them through my inability to gauge limits and use their gifts fully; I falter in speech and writing, aware of my undeserving hands and lips, aware of the ineptitude that one so weak is often faced with.


They are rarely benevolent. Sometimes they show me their wonders, but often I am an alien. I am not privy to their secrets. I am only afforded glimpses of their worlds, teased by skirts that hike up ankles sleeves that fall past wrists, but no higher.


I am aware of a great many things that make me unworthy of my languages, but sometimes they make it glaringly obvious. They punish me for it: they invade the forefront of my thoughts and saturate my tongue and fingers with their frustration of me and my silence, my drought.

n. an intense but short-lived passion or admiration for someone or something

They say the author is dead.

Last night you were alive in a dream.


Tell me, why does it feel like you live in the ink and the spaces between words and pages and pictures? I forever rue the moment I caught sight of your face. This will not last long, I am sure — none ever did, save perhaps the one — but it isn’t any less real.

And if I am wrong, then I could always wish you away. I find solace in knowing we will no longer meet, because we live in such fundamentally different worlds and you are leagues away.


In these quiet moments I wonder what it is about your words that got me, caged me so earnestly that I find myself staring blankly at the white pages, caught in the movie in my head that runs through images of tangled wires and footbridges, palace facades and chiseled gods…


A week ago you were in a corner, quiet and unassuming.

A fortnight ago you were only ever a name. . . .

some unfinished business

Some really shitty first drafts; I look forward to working on my writing for the rest of the year, but for now, I am burying these here. Pretty awful, I think, but it could only mean I have room to grow still, if I work on it.


Came to think of it tonight.
I remembered that I forgot your eyes
for a while. You were there, and then
I would have killed to catch their light.

Come to think of it, I might forget
for a while. I remember your eyes.
You were here and now, the day and night.
There is little I would do to not regret.

Come to, think of it,
tonight, I might forget.

— untitled, 2014


sail away, you
on your rowboat for one
to land, to home

it was just a sandbar you think
to console yourself. temporary
reprieve from the tireless
ocean waves that hide home

during those full moons
when the sky feels closer

Sometimes you
miss it in the dark
land elsewhere
stay the night—

sometimes you miss it.
it was still a sandbar
you think.

—islands, 2016


She was obedient. She loved her mother, the old crone, more than she had ever thought of loving anyone else. I am afraid of the old cliches that have haunted affections, so I could not have much to say about her that would not make me feel ashamed of being so weak, but she was so very beautiful.

I had been drawn to the flowers, and so had she.

I walked the Earth only because beneath there was nothing but an emptiness unfulfilled by even the brightest ornaments or the purest golds and silvers and bronzes. I could have taken the dog out for a walk, but his three parts were as untamed as the rest of the emotions asleep within me: one was always hungry, the other always tired, the last one always a little too unenthusiastic. Having all three sorts sprouting out of one body and bringing them up for a walk sounded far too tiring. Even as a god, I did not think such a chore would be easy. Taking their lives would be the easy option, but that would defeat the whole purpose of the process. So I might as well take a walk for myself. A breath of fresh air, or so my brother would say. Lucky for him, he was closer to where the air dance around all day; if he lived underground he would think better than to say such blasphemies.

To be trapped in one’s thoughts, however, was of a different story. I could wander around the Earth throughout the entire day and yet not find any peace at all. My cage was in my head.

— excerpt from a piece about Hades and Persephone, 2013


 

Fuck me.

I have this shocking inability to be okay with things lately. I want to fuck and sleep and blast music and drink a lot and binge-watch Southpark and be set on a destructive path that does not consist of lousy mornings and boring afternoons and sad, contemplative evenings with nothing and no-one to talk to or be dumb with. I hate distance (wow, no shocker, that) and I hate that I just can’t seem to get over myself and accept that nothing is going to change about my circumstances, that I’m stuck and I’m here and I’m going nowhere because I’m so still and static and I am going nowhere.

I have mood swings that last for seconds and I get a whiplash with how fast I go from angry to sad to fucking shit to I’m dying alone and in a ditch somewhere with my thoughts for company and okay, I’ve been doing quite well since last March, but school is starting again and I’m so fucking scared, and I’m jealous of everyone who’s doing well and I’ve tried very, very hard to keep it together and I’ve done so fucking well I’ve even managed to convince myself it would all turn out fine but it’s not, and I’m not, and I’m hungry for something that does not leave and does not fade.

I am, simply put, looking for fucking cement shoes around my feet. Or better yet, a goddamn sarcophagus twelve feet under, because six isn’t too far down.