A Time Before The Last Time

A time,

sometime before the last time,

or even a little more lost

in a dusty box

the time even before,

I wanted to tell you something, sweet.

 

When you press against my skin,

or hold me at length,

you are wearing, shredding,

tearing and smoothing my very

surface.

I wear myself upon my skin;

internals are external,

I don’t hide behind mirrors or imagery;

magic tricks, pops of champagne,

dazzling details or embellished,

encrusted, coated

and processed

goods.

 

Those who are privileged;

ungrateful and cursed with ignorance,

little awareness for the multiplied demons nesting

in blackened hearts,

sipping sour emotions and rancid feasts,

those are the people who hide what doesn’t need to be hidden.

 

Those who are privileged;

independent and cursed with anxiety,

pressure behind their eyelids at night

and a very heavy head to move and keep

the walls up, guarding against the terrors and the screams

and the glistening shadows, slick with grief and

self-pity, self-loathing and what people judge

as an infernal mental contagion,

but really is just an unfortunate, battle of imbalance and chemicals.

Awry and lost and deep trodden in a mind that never rests,

always misses a beat chasing other beats

and fearing the biggest monster in the fields called mistake.

Those are the people who wear it all like skin, coloured by bruises and patterned

with cuts, carvings,

soothing over the outside and deciding its already faulty,

can wear it on the outside because its already broken,

not really worth protecting

and don’t hide would could and would mostly be hidden.

 

Sweet,

this is me.

I’m rough, I know.

I rest

in your bed

when I’m scared of being alone with myself.

Depressed again and as I lose control,

realising I never really have an end

keep pounding and chipping at

every word I’ve ever though and every feeling

I’ve ever had to succumb to,

I’ve ever always had to feel,

sending for help and working on strength to rebuild,

shoots flares in a black blanket of sky;

lending your little demons the opportunity

to find you.

 

Jealousy is the most dangerous form of punishment for us.

Me.

These people that we are.

We crave respite, sweet.

Out of earth and mind and here and now,

out of beats and taps, clicks and repeats.

Out of straddled cycles and digging into ourselves with

our own fingernails.

But really, I can’t call you sweet.

You’re just the person I imagine

so I’m never caught alone with myself.

You’re just the person I want for myself,

and can’t reach towards, afraid and corrupt and broken to you.

 

Blacking out with my eyes open.

A blank space, a blank knot and a blank guess,

rolling over inside.

Short-term memory shot.

Feeling the weight

and the hatred of my omnipresent self,

mind disheveled, unraveled,

fighting a battle you can’t even see;

takes one to know one.

I deal with my pain,

no one else digging enough to find a spring,

land-locked and bone dry,

questioning the mirage I stumble through a desert for.

 

Questioning what real is,

something everyone can pick and grasp,

smoky cloud and bitter wind to me.

I try and see some reasons,

stumbling in the finding

of plain ground, nothing else.

Perpetually uninvited yet constant host,

parasite,

addicted to everyone else’s company.

Asymptomatic to symptomatic,

mind the bickering beast,

same person, same bodysuit,

but I,

I’m locked inside with you,

yet watching you wreak your havoc,

vicious, bitter monologue ringing wall to wall,

grating and wailing and driving me broken

and twisted and pinned like your own art.

 

This is what I wanted to tell you,

eventually.

When I noticed a break in the internal racket,

a clear view from my cell into yours

I realised nobody wants to hear about this abuse,

not even you;

avoid, ignore, pretend it isn’t real so you can sleep

alone in your cell just one more night, again.

 

I just want people to better understand what this is like.

Why I simply can’t explain it.

Why I can’t tell you.

Why you will run.

 

Now here’s your cue.

Stand up and

Walk out on me.

 

*Photography unknown – this image represents an individual’s impression of what anxiety can feel and look like. It is debilitating so please take caution with yourself when reading this above piece.*

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Starry Eyes

Starry eyes

soft hands

red lips

daring smile

brushed cheeks

 

Cool silences

heated touches

under clothes,

sparks sizzle

mouthing lust

cradling hunger

sucking seduction

pressing desire

 

Stolen glances

furtive nods

open legs

graceful back;

 

sprawled apart

lights off

always are,

fingers invade

hands clasp

playful bites

exercised tongues

mouths explored

rough caresses

skinned alive,

beneath you.

 

Devoured clean

each gasp

shuddering ecstasy

tastes tangy

mouth over

mine whole.

 

Rolled over

pinned down

held up

crawled over

arched high

we come

clean.

 

Long received

wishes unveiled

want realised

fancies overturned

lust cold

power charged

but

empty socket.

 

Leave me

opened up

spooned out

messy bruised

cut bare.

Hollowed out

carried away

with sneaking,

light feet.

 

Wondering lonely

your whereabouts;

touching who

under covers

right now.

 

Lost darling

snatched love

tapered heart

stranded crush;

sing alone

sad songs

without me.

Empty rain,

weak winds,

nothing everything;

you’re lost,

without me.

 

*Artwork unknown- Pinterest*

The Mental Illness

Come with me, all my loves,

all my heart pieces;

scattered away on winds and rain,

and let me show you something.

Insatiable, hungry, ravenous for cravings

until satisfied and full.

 

I’m afraid to say,

you are my distraction.

A ceaseless focal point, somewhere to extend my energies, someone to

take care of because I can’t do it for myself.

I can’t take care of myself, I just live on a perpetual ride;

up down round twist loop repeat.

 

You’re my own heart, of sorts.

I try to nurture, comfort, maintain, strengthen, clean and bathe,

heal you.

Everything I’m denied for myself I place in you;

and the cruelest heart you are when you neglect me, run frightened of me,

abandon and relinquish me.

You never once were grateful for the fresh blood I gave you.

 

You remind me to forget about hating myself, for a time.

You make the bad shadow go away.

It feeds on me in the lonely hours, when I’m not doing something,

with someone, being wholly somewhere else.

 

When I’m trying to leave the cycle of rises and drops…

it finds me.

It puts a hood over me.

I can’t see or sense a thing.

My head is so heavy it’s my own body weight.

You ask me what is wrong, and I can only shape a blank, cold slate.

Blank.

Disorientated and battered, I’m so frightened of the blank space in my head.

What was there before?

What was going to be there?

 

I need you to show me how to feel this,

how to love myself, you, believe, speak, explore, rise and climb,

so I know I can feel it for myself.

People tell me I can only love someone, when I can love myself firstly.

But I don’t know how that’s possible,

I DON’T KNOW WHAT THAT IS.

That is why I cling so ardently, and why I need so many of you.

 

I can deal with hell all day everyday, and I do.

That’s what this is like.

I can develop a mechanism

to survive the hellish torment,

but the unpredictability is what

gets me every time.

 

*Artwork unknown- Pinterest*

Emergency Call

I am astounded.

My cage has been rattled.

I am shocked, disturbed, dazed, fearful, isolated, saddened, used, violated,

agonised, tormented, defeated, sensitive, anxious…..

I am numb to the point of icy pain, hands wrapped around an ice cube too long

or drowsy and burning in the sun.

 

Slowed movements, hypersensitivity.

Tossed around like an angry wind, howling against locked doors and battered, stuck

shutters.

Adrift, skinned like game, on a still ocean sailing for nowhere.

Hunted and forsaken in a desolate crowd of onlookers, puzzled and ignorant of their

games.

 

This is for all the people we have failed.

 

Abused and tormented in sickening places and deserted dreams.

Alone and neglected, hugging the dirt in cold overpasses.

Starving and frightened of the guns that come creeping around the corner.

Intimidated and overpowered in darkened corners and pitiful shelters.

Traumatised and pillaged for their self-worth; their integrity stripped and naked.

Discouraged and silenced from voicing desires and fears and nerves;

humiliated and mortified in feeling a certain way, describing processes and beliefs and

doubts and insecurities battered away like persistent flies,

to masses of individuals too small and petty to understand.

The deprived and vulnerable, resigned to poaching and begging at your feet for some sort

of salvation, some help that you deny.

Those re-abused, broken and prone to retaliation.

The abusers and addicts, with no other faith to follow.

The destitute we turn from;

fear tactics of government and the impossibilities they promote for people.

We can’t help you.

The falsehoods we idolise.

 

The loss of empathy is so whole and catastrophic, lives are rendered pathetic,

belittled, scrutinised and judged unnecessarily for shell-shocked, domesticated,

embittered humans to mock and disgrace.

 

Ignorance and dishonesty prowling homes, and lives and friendships and lovers;

claw marks separating precious flesh from bone.

Those alone, locked in bedrooms, looking down at who they wish they weren’t.

Pawed and petted, fragile girls taken over by ruthless men before they cry.

Even in reverse, the vulnerable boys stripped and used.

Men in chains, abused and threatened and stripped of dignity, in yards and prisons,

in families, in offices and secret hideaways.

Runaways chased, pursued and shooed; harassed until beaten.

 

Turn your head and notice the scars they hide from you, sleeves rolled down;

the red marks and seeping blood from opened veins that you deny exist for people.

How real those demons are, how terrifying and ghastly they are because even you can’t

visualise such horror.

Blackouts ended in crashes and destruction and blood and tears;

drowning bathrooms, locked rooms, dirty floors and painful years.

Nightmares and paranoia threaten safety.

Agonies of the mind can never be realised, internally cutting.

 

You want to know what society is like?

You want to know how inhumane the humans have become?

Don’t bury your head in the sand.

You only ever paint what you wish to see, alone on your raft.

 

If I’ve forgotten someone, some place, some awful truth, you are starting to see then.

You are believing me when I tell you it’s all real.

What are you going to do now?

 

*Artwork by Duy Huynh*

The Ways I Can’t Talk To You

Newspapers are only covered in dirty print;

of despair and distress and danger playing master of our moves.

So I can’t talk to you through that.

 

Paintings are for love songs left unsung;

they are the inner kept journals of unrequited dreams,

scrawls of abuse or lumps of hurt, growing like tumours.

You wouldn’t understand.

So I can’t talk to you through that.

 

Music is only for the sunlit realm of lovers found;

of certainty and confidence and devotion above the sordid,

tangled affairs of wayward souls.

Living in a fantasy to escape the loneliness aching in soft spots inside.

So I can’t talk to you through that.

 

Letters are lost in nostalgia;

a celebration to be had, words unspoken for decades,

births and deaths, reserved for life events detailed in the past.

So I can’t talk to you through that.

 

Movies are just reenactments of dreams;

stunning heroes, masters of skill, justice seekers,

adventures of awe, loves broken but patched together with stronger yarn.

A world of little lies to helps better cope with heartache and grief.

We can’t immortalise ourselves in something

when it runs the risk of breaking.

So I can’t talk to you through that.

 

But I can do something much harder

then writing or filming or singing or painting…

I can give it all up, over to you.

I can trace patterns across your shoulders as you wake,

our special language which tells you I love you, I’m trying to trust you.

I can write you little notes, decadent words and sultry ideas,

and make a trail for you to follow to me.

 

I can be vulnerable in your arms, more than skin and internals

and a framework of bones.

I can be more real with you than I have never known to be possible.

It’s not just me showing how much I need you by the length I hold your kiss,

or how long it takes for us to disentangle ourselves from sleep, how often

we see each other naked.

 

It’s more the heart I dare draw on your skin with my lips.

 

*Artwork unknown- Pinterest*

 

Am I Always Wrong For You?

Am I not pretty enough?

What the fuck is pretty anyway?

Do I not workout enough?

Am I not on the same hypes and drugs and drinks as everyone else?

Am I not on the same rollercoaster of routines and work of sleepless drones?

Do I not live fast enough for you?

Am I not forthright enough, demanding enough, shocking enough?

Am I not tall enough, too bulky, too reserved, too quiet, too confused for you?

Too little to be involved with

or too big of a person to begin understanding?

 

Am I too rigid and formal for you; are you angry I tighten up when

I let you touch me?

Or are you intimated when I make you drip desire all over me

and I make you touch me there?

Am I too sophisticated for you; too intelligent, am I too bothersome?

Am I not a bad girl enough for you? Because you seem to like whatI give you

in the dark.

Do I make too much effort over you?

Do you run away because I fuss and fondle over you when we say we

love each other?

but you pull out too soon for that.

 

Am I too difficult to comprehend, too broad, too much danger and disaster

and sadness and realism for you to deal with?

Do I not change my ideas, swap decisions enough for you?

Am I not a good little lier?

Am I not good enough in bed?

Or are you worried I’m faking it?

Do I not want you enough? When really, i’m itching all over to have you to myself.

Or are you scared I’ll start using you for sex and desire and

lust

like you do me?

Am I not tattooed or scared or brazen or daring enough?

Do I not try and meet your friends, while you hide them away because I

can’t get too attached?

 

Do I look too lonely for you?

Am I not needy enough for you?

Do I not party like you?

Do I not make moves like you do?

Do I look beaten and bruised and battered and scared of you?

Because I have every right to be.

Sometimes I need to hit myself with spirits to remind myself how unpredictable

and unbelievably cruel you can be.

 

You get to slide your eyes all along me when I walk past, on my way home.

You get to ask me questions that are only designed to pry my legs open.

You get to glide your hands around me and daddy me long past bed time.

You get to buy your way in to get me closer.

You get to make your intentions too clear, and no one stops to question you.

You get to wait and watch and steal a glance or graze your fingers up my skirt,

without a flinch.

 

You get to own me whenever you feel like, send a text or blow a kiss.

And I’ll be a fool to cave in, and be blamed for doing so.

You get to use me for your rough release; i’m left tender and raw and you love seeing it.

You get to push and pry and tease and taunt,

just fuck me already so I can cut these damned strings. It’s all you ever want, even if you

tell me it surely isn’t.

I’m your animal, your toy, your prize and your trophy.

 

So fuck your opinion.

Keep your approval personal.

So fuck your designs; your proof I’m dexterous and skilful for being fun, not for

commitment.

Keep your work in storage; placate me and say they’re failures.

 

So I ask you, am I pretty enough?

Or am I too self aware of your righteous bullshit?

 

*Photography unknown*

I’m Scared Of What You’ll Do

I’m so scared of what you’ll do to me.

I push you away at the start because I care.

I’m all cold fingers and neck as you inch closer.

I know that giving my heart over to your hands is delicate and dangerous;

I realise having it injured by you is more fatal than another, more blood loss,

more bruises, more painful blossoms.

 

I always want you nearer; no one can comfort as you can,

until you turn off the lights

for the night

and all I see are abandoned impressions of you around my room.

But I need to stop you. Right here.

 

I need to keep you an arms length apart from me;

stop you kissing and touching me.

Not because I don’t want you;

I will always reserve a place for you, always part of my dedication.

I want you all over, from head to feet.

But I need to stop myself from falling into the one abyss

I know too well.

 

I need to prevent you from loving me for a time,

or at all.

To keep you from breaking the blissful illusion I conjure;

to keep you from lying to me about why you can’t love me anymore.

To stop you from taking me over.

 

To stop you from making me believe you are like all the others before you,

inked and stabbed on my skin like knife cuts.

 

To keep me from imagining you were never there;

a dream that swirls with reality where it has no place.

To ensure you don’t start picking me apart with your teeth, while I sleep,

and you begin to fade.

 

I don’t want to meet the same river of conclusions, fussing and moaning and

screaming about the agony as you pull me apart one final time.

Take what you need and run.

Scoop it out like melting ice cream and disappear somewhere out of my reach yet

close enough to invade me again when you need to.

 

I don’t need to feel this again.

With you of all people.

 

So.

Stop.

This.

Now.

 

*Photography unknown- Pinterest*

It Shows Itself

It shows itself in the mornings, too brisk to leave my bedroom;

soft tumblings in bed fighting to scrabble for warmth with a body like ice.

It shows itself in the lines and creases on my face;

prematurely carved in stone and worn rough with care.

It shows itself in the dreamy daze I wade through;

I stumble around you and on into some frightful collage ahead.

 

It shows itself in the strings unravelling behind me,

that you follow until you’re inside.

It shows itself in the pages of unseen messages you keep,

the ones you ignored or purposefully forgot, asking if we are ok.

It shows itself in the way I can never afford to be calm,

never around you at least.

 

It shows itself, the way it pummels and pounds the inside of my skull.

It shows itself when I can never sleep, like resting on a pillow of

broken glass.

It shows itself through my eyes;

the way they rest on the floor and silent tears

fall down around me, leaving silent stains that disappear before you notice.

 

It shows when I twist away from your lips,

but then instantly move to pull you close, on top.

It shows when I love you, and begin to let that fall from the window,

to somewhere else.

It shows when I learn how to love myself, then proceed

to wound and maim myself;

because I left you dangling on my line, my fishhook buried in your side.

 

There is a chaos.

Inside my head.

Are you prepared to face it?

It’s a raging ocean and you need to want to swim in the tides.

You need to know how to float on a sea of rubble, crushed up words,

sanded-down motivations and crashing waves.

It doesn’t soak you in salty coldness,

but the dark relief of being numb. No sensation.

Just observing the world from a tiny crack in the wall.

 

Are you alright, steeled enough, to try with me?

To brace against it all when I come tumbling at you from nowhere.

Are you strong enough to try and understand the chaos?

 

*Artwork by Elliana Esquivel- Instagram*

The Simple Rose

You place a rose in my hand to

tell me you love me.

It blooms, a single rose;

luscious petals of red and pink and hues in-between.

The folds and intricacies, the frailest branching veins and roughened stem.

 

It ages.

Softness becomes dry and crisp beneath the pads of fingers.

It rustles together, sheets of parchment with your words of love imprinted

on blossoms that stick together in the dry, stale air.

I watch it everyday.

Through the smiles, the laughs, the moans and whispers,

the tightened holds, the anger, the confusion, the lies and the tears

you litter across my bedroom;

desiccated, broken petals of faded pastels and trust I take back and

hide from you.

The thorns draw beads of blood whenever I touch my flower.

 

I place a rose in your hand to

tell you this is dangerous, and that I can’t love you.

It crumbles, this single hunched rose;

jagged fragments of petals stuck together in the heat of

hot breath between us.

The cracks, the disappearing veins don’t trace the fragile openings.

 

It has aged, beyond repair.

The stem a dried, rough twig in my palm, I hold out

to you the dusty blossoms that fall straight to the ground.

It’s light, incredibly pale and thin and cold today.

One flick of my finger breaks it’s stalk in two; one for both of your hands.

Thorns scratch your palms, twisting lines on your skin;

scars that remind you of the flower you brought me

and what happened when you let it degrade.

 

Time dragged its sticky corrosive fingers over it.

 

*Artwork unknown- Pinterest*

 

The Physical Loneliness

I’m worried for you.

I’m worried about what I’ve done with you.

I’ve buried you in the sand, grazed your skin with fingernail cuts;

half moons pattern your arms and back like wallpaper.

 

I shouldn’t succumb to this.

I’ve dragged you into a pit and stored you in a hollow.

I shouldn’t need to pick a random lover, I shouldn’t need them now,

urgently.

I shouldn’t crave the physical I know you yearn from me behind the silence

that snakes around the room.

Behind the intensity and firmness of your face.

I wish I didn’t see it all so keenly, a sensory power I dredge up

from secluded stores and hidden vaults.

 

I shouldn’t have fallen into my own snare every single time you

pull closer, warm breath and lips and teeth,

and I push your chest away.

 

I don’t understand why I have to do this.

Puppet pulled on strings to do strange and filthy acts;

gaining strength and poise not necessary but pleasurable,

lying with you knowing I’m with company but feeling so alone,

so cold and dusty and dirty on the inside.

 

I lose myself in a moment, spending all the time

thinking in the moment.

I’m so wrapped up, I don’t hear you mutter to relax.

I will not do this with you, because it means

ultimately hurting one another, in particular you.

I will not try to encourage you, because me lying next to you

knowing you will hand yourself over, is like slipping on ice.

 

I taste blood in my mouth.

I think it’s yours.

I bled out years ago, over the bedroom and into the bathroom;

showering off filth and wetness and bloody handprints.

That lingering, thick smell of sweat and fluid and nothing.

 

I’m so sorry I can’t be strong enough to resist my shadows,

my faded lights and creeping tongues;

I’m so sorry I set them on you, like vultures given

the scent of already culled meat.

I am your predator, hunting amongst the heaving animals,

long into the stillness of the empty dawn.

I’m so sorry, sweet, that I will reach around and take something from you.

I’m so sorry I tried to protect you and betrayed myself.

 

I wanted to embrace you and welcome how you felt in my arms,

I’m sorry I just couldn’t express it.

I wanted to make sure to uncomplicate us; secure that safety you felt

with me guiding you too all those vulnerable places to touch together,

I’m sorry I just couldn’t express it.

 

I still long to try again.

Will you let me try again?

 

*Artwork unknown- Pinterest*