everything falls from me,
coins into a waterless abyss.
words fall as anchors,
hair cords as lifelines
that i cannot grasp
(my arms have also slipped away).
i am floating, weighed down
by the gravity of my insides
which also betray me
by exiting with my breath.
i dare not speak of you.
if i give you a name, if i shout your statistics
(or even whisper them, sotto voce)
you will know me for what i am:
a terrified, thrill-seeking mishmash
of bystander, armchair quarterback, and henchman
praying for more time
so i can watch the axe fall in slow motion.
time is no longer my accomplice
i can’t get away with my own murder
the way i could when days were without number
now each sun is an accursed gift
mine not to squander but to hoard jealously
to protect fiercely from flood and famine
i raise my fists in worshipful defiance
to find that they rest in my lap, open,
waiting for dreams to fall through
into the future of my past
when i think of how i let
escape my lips
i weep as though
the words themselves
drew out the salt
grain by grain
it was an accidental confession
a schoolgirl scrawl
scratched with a fingertip
against an icy windowpane
in a moment of careless dreaming.
it wasn’t meant to be a revelation
and when you saw it, i hid
in the corner, my face in my hands,
in absolute, abject terror,
for though there are times
when your eyes seem to give you away
a part of me fears they know how to lie.
I’m petrified of photographs,
But not from a simple fear
That they’ll steal my soul –
I’m terrified that instead
They will reveal
In fact, I have no soul to steal.
to take it