1.I am the olive pit
I extracted with my cracked
stone lips from a different story
now sitting in my throat
like poison in the spot where I cannot spit
and I cannot swallow.
2.You never know how close you are
until your toe is a toe’s length from the
yellow edge and the tv monitor says 1MIN,
and the subway pushes the smell of urine
coating every passenger on the platform
until you see a rat return home under the rail
until you catch the conductor’s eye and
smile, wave Hello.
and you take a half step back
that you didn’t need to take.
– “2020 Vision”
3. remember when your heart turned red brick
and apologies clanged like pennies against it.
What was it before?
remember how it turned into a garden.
remember how it turned into a graveyard.
remember how it turned back into a garden.
What is it now?
– “This Metaphor is Tired AF”
4. no, you are not the taylor swift of poetry.
(yes, you should still get published.)
no, you are not the water bottle to his Kanye.
(because that would be stupid)
yes, he maybe liked you a little bit.
(and maybe not a lot, and that’s actually ok
but maybe more than you thought, and why does that hurt)
laugh like a bark like a dead tree
– “Humour, The Sharp Kind”
5. there is no room for sadgirls.
cut the bitch loose, already.
(“I’d like a last night”)
let her fill the cracks in some sadboy’s heart.
(“Will that help?”)
she is a throwaway line in a Sampha song.
there is no room for sadgirls.
(ask for another finger inside you to make yourself feel better)
step off the platform.
(suck his cock to make yourself feel better.)
walk into traffic.
(joke about baby names, your nose, his hands to make yourself feel better.)
think about tomorrow, when the universe is trash.
(shower with him to make yourself feel better.)
Pity fuck, fuck pity.
(but it worked. you do feel better)
there is no room for sadgirls wailing
there is always room for silence
and silence is meditative
cut out her tongue
and close her mouth
and sew her lips with it.
(maybe you *are* the taylor swift of poetry jesus christ)
– “ShadowDemon/Old Friend”
6. “What would you tell your daughter? I’d lock her in a room”
“I’d tell her to never take to heart what men do, to always know her no and have it close, but to have her “yes” even closer, that negation is not as powerful as transformation, to know she has her witch mother’s Voice that will send them scattering, that a man’s violence is not something she has to carry; is not her burden; is not her fault; is not her fucking problem, that her heart will always heal, that her body is the universe, that she takes them in and offers protection and not the other way around, that she will always recover, that they may never after her, that she can make any mistakes she likes so long as she learns and grows, that she will have my wings but she must learn where to land, that it is never too late, and also never too early, that she is loved, that she is love, that she has a duty to herself to always be around people who value her, as she values them, as she values herself, that balance is the most important thing in the world.”
“Wow…that…is great…I’d still lock mine in a room” – “Conversations with a Friend”
7. “Will you miss me?”
“Will you leave?”
“No 🙂 How could I? ”
-“Conversations with a Friend, 2”
8. Be a friend to everyone. Yes, even him. Yes, especially him.
And if you can’t – remember it is the season for tiny things. small saplings. shoots of something. Grow something green in your ash stone dust heart. Care for a new thing a you thing you are not a thing.
Touch yourself. Bathe yourself as you would an idol.Sing in the shower. Rub oil into your skin. Let your fingers rest respectfully trembling against your arm. Move to your nipples like a feather light touch from your wings. Remember to approach the demon carefully before attempting to hug the demon. Shiver when you do so because it’s natural. Remember how to hold yourself. Remember this is all you have. Remember that when you are in your solitude, you are allowed to be desperate, humiliated, tiny, small weak, pitiable, naked, disgusting, needy clingy bonkers crazy stupid ugly a bitch a whore a slut and:
that you are your own home, that no one can take you away from you.
Remember the gifts of the universe are small and precious: sunlight, small moments of happiness, the smell of rain in your hair, the fragile smile you only ever feel on your face when you’re by yourself that no one has ever seen you when you tell yourself – and believe – “It’s ok that you were wrong. It’s ok that you didn’t know better. It’s ok that you were hurt again. It’s ok that it didn’t mean what you thought it meant. It’s ok that it was better this time – and it’s ok it was not as better as you thought it’d be.”
Remember you are whole, you are enough, you have enough to give. Remember you, by now, have more scars than skin and that means you know how to survive anything, you know how to hold a demon like a kitten, and the smile on your face means you know how to live well.
Be a friend to everyone.
See? It’s easy.