On the Night You’re Left Alone

And you don’t realize until months later

When it hits you like a train without brakes

The stark memory of one blurry night

When he tucked your tangled hair behind your ear

And said “I like it when you’re kind of a mess”

But never stayed to clean it all up

Another Man’s Treasure

Sometimes, I find it hard to stay asleep

When the last photo of us together on Earth

Is out there, somewhere we’ve never seen

Probably the pieces tangled in a breeze or scattered in a landfill

Like Nostalgia sprinkled confetti on your going away party

Like she doesn’t know that you’re not coming back

And knowing this, I am somehow both

Relieved and aggrieved

 

Next Time

I wish I had paid more attention

When you called me things like “beautiful” before “interesting,”

When you held my waist instead of my hand,

When I said I loved you and you just said “me too.”

The Hidden Significance of the Moldy Strawberries in the Back of my Refrigerator (Inspired by Trista Mateer)

I can’t bring myself to throw them away

because they’re the only thing you forgot to take with you

They taunt me from behind the grapes

(I stopped eating strawberries

the day you stopped bringing them to me)

Because as the days pass the green fuzz grows

and that is the only part of us that continues to live

And how could you get rid of

Something so alive?

Landmarks

I navigate the city

Through landmarks we made

The place we first had dinner

The street we first held hands on

Walking down the promenade

 

I have been away a while

And decided to return to town

Just to reminisce and look around

But in the time that I was gone

Half our landmarks have been torn down

 

Now I’m lost without a map

GPS says don’t come back

Almost like only one of us could stay

Just to keep the other away

It’s funny how distance works like that

 

On the Cutting Room Floor

“Who hurt you?” they say

After reading my poems.

 

My mind flickers to still frames

  • Falling asleep last
  • Sleeping towards the wall
  • Waking up to find them gone
  • Ignored texts and missed calls
  • Breaking up in cold parked cars
  • Hoping the ache wouldn’t last long

And then I think of how

I’m still thinking about it

In the first place.

 

“Maybe I did.”

Further Proof That Rain Is Good

And I think the way we loved

Was like summer’s best thunderstorm

The way the clouds give the earth everything they’ve got

And the earth trembles with gratitude, changed

And then they part ways and the sun comes through again

To console their inevitable separation

And I quite like that

That we are drawn by a phenomenon

That brings the flowers to their knees

And drowns the grass in life

It makes the rain feel less heavy on my back