Staring down my demons,
Staring down my demons,
Staring down my demons,
Instead of stifled, stale, sedated
I’d prefer intrigued, inventive, insatiable.
The unquenchable lust stirs within your belly.
Does the sun shine brighter? Does the day feel fresher?
Let me out.
Lately, I’ve been thinking about those nights
During summer, where the nights were warm,
And early dawn lined us with chill and dew.
I’d open my eyes, watching the morning
Slowly glow through the barrier of a yellow tent.
Raindrops echoing, creating a warm hollow space of sound.
Rolling over, the smell of bonfire escapes from our hair,
And together we lay in mildew sleeping bags,
Heavy sighs of sleep protected by the echo
Of rain on our tent.
Until, of course, you awoke,
And I became a stranger.
Stepping on the tepid ice,
I anticipate the fall
A place where I cannot control
Not the first to be selected, but maybe not the last,
Everyone needs a place holder until the time does pass.
Vivacious, loving, and maybe too much fun,
Eloquent conversation, that’s how it’s always begun.
Ready, waiting, for your shadow to run.
Getting there is easy, staying there is harder.
One can’t be alone, and I have company to barter.
Obviously there’s no expectations, I’ve learned they won’t do much,
Don’t hesitate. It’s fine! I make an excellent crutch.
Eventually, you’ll find your shine, the reason that you breathe,
Narrowing your way out slowly, I’ll sit quietly as you leave,
Out the door and down the street, and from the window I’ll wave,
Understanding that this course is meant for women who misbehave.
Good enough for now, I’ll be, and that’s how it always has been.
Harboring this place in life, so others are able to win.
In a question I
Safely stay and now reside,
Waiting for the drop.
The echoes of my steps,
The sound resounding throughout this glowing
Where lights shimmer, and suits cross their legs,
And I’m not the type to be here.
Turning from your liquid courage,
And my courage too,
I wasn’t sure this would be easy,
To see you in this new life, new light,
The stiff, dry embrace required between old lost friends,
Because that’s the only thing we ever were, right?
I recall the scent of burning rubber and hot gravel
Below our wheels, when we were fearless
When the thrill of a secret made us
Inevitable, untouchable, immaculate, forever.
How do I create this space with myself?
What do I need to navigate through this life,
With the carefree fire, the lack of hesitation,
The ability to love so freely, so effortlessly?
To throw your body, your pride, right on the line.
All of you, standing there shamelessly in the glaringly harsh light of day.
My nerves burn, my ego stumbles,
Bruises settle into a permanent home under salt-water tears.
My insides twist while I promise to be braver.
I don’t rearrange words to make them beautiful.
I only know how to take them as they come.
You blow kisses, you make promises and declarations,
And I sit back in awe.
I want to scream, “But don’t you know?”
You fall in love.
Of course you fall,
That’s how you end up face down on blood-spattered pavement.
She slumps down into her rubbery, worn rolling chair and continues to stare at the blank screen. The screen that she stares at all day.
“How depressing,” she mutters to herself. One thing she certainly hates thinking about is how much of her time is wasted staring at a god forsaken monitor.
She’d often contemplated the meaning, the severity, of selling one’s soul to the devil. It was phrase that was tossed around so easily. It’d take 25 years on Earth before she fully understood it’s meaning. The devil was everywhere. The devil liked to slide down the curves in the numbers of her dismal paycheck. He mocked her painfully phony laugh every time her boss cracked a joke. Sitting on the hands of the clock, he’d tick-tock his way through the mundane patterns of her day.
One thing was for sure- the Devil himself worked to mold the concept of the “nine to five” lifestyle. Nothing kills a creative soul as quietly and quickly as doing the same thing. Every. Single. Day. Without fail.
“Caught in the cycle, now!” she spits, as she sits upright. The black hole of the nine to five. Spirit draining bit by bit. I QUIT!!! She smiles to herself. “Yeah, right. My rent is due Friday.”
“Did you know that the Aztecs believed that women who died during childbirth transformed into hummingbirds?”
“Hmmm,” a response meant to only appease rises up from behind his computer screen. Her easel sits in the opposite corner, angled just so that she can absorb the city bustling below their apartment that sits silently on the 17th floor.
“Oh yes,” she continues, paint brush flicking against the canvas, the wildly random drops enhancing her picture with every abrupt stroke. “They’d become hummingbirds, and they’d follow the sun on its journeys.”
The yellow spots land spectacularly next to the wing she’s molding with color. Spectacular wings of fire, rising from the ash, starting anew.
“Interesting.” He mumbles, the click of his mouse echoing against the corners of the tiny room. Her studio. His office. Their shared space. A room of her inspiration, a void for his distraction.
“I just find that so fascinating,” her voice ventures lightly, “Lovely, really. Your soul is sacrificed to bring forth new life, and so you become a bird. Not just a bird, but a bird that’s going to follow the sun. Wrap yourself up in its warmth, and sing a song. You could even look over your baby, if you wanted. Sure, they wouldn’t know you, but you’d be there. Isn’t that a lovely thought?”
“The Aztecs also ripped out people’s hearts,” he spits, still fixated the monitor. “You can think whatever you want is lovely. Ripping apart human flesh overshadows any thought about being a damn hummingbird to me.”
“Birds…” she sighs almost to herself. “And how funny, as I’m here painting a phoenix.” The irony doesn’t escape her. She turns her head, to stare at his back for a moment. Nothing. Just the click of his mouse. Her view returns to the image she’s creating.
“I should be a hummingbird,” she mumbles to herself, but surely clear enough for him to hear. The moment hangs, heavy and dry. Waiting for the warm, buttery words of comfort that should come from a loved one. The moment cracks into dust.
A mix of a little red with the yellow acrylic, and a few more sharp flicks of the brush. The spectacular spots land next to the wing of the phoenix. Click, click.
She stands up, pressing her nose against the warm window, looking down at the city thriving and buzzing below her. It seemed so spectacular.
“Sometimes I can’t sleep,” she states aloud as she presses her nose hard into the glass, until there’s a hint of warm pressure and pain. “Remember I used always dream about flying? I never dream about it anymore. Hell, I can’t even sleep. I read once that flying in a dream meant that you feel free, or happy.”
“I think you’ve told me that before,” he states, as he internally decides he should check his email.
“Probably,” her fingers curl around the cool metal of the window frame and she pushes it open to get a bit of a breeze. “All I ever do is think about the baby. I feel so guilty, sometimes.” The warm city air hits her face, and she breathes it in until her lungs feel like they’ll burst.
“Do you ever think about the baby?” she asks. There’s a sudden shift in the air, a soft gentle sound of a rush. Of a weight? He turns around from the monitor, to find an empty room. The open window stares.
“I hope you can fly,” the bitter words drip from his lips, as he returns to his 4 unread emails.