A Parallel Life and an Ode to a Tree

I am homesick for our house with the fenced yard,

and the dog we raised for all its life.
For friends I made at birth; we took our first steps together,
and learned how to write our names in the same class.

I am homesick for 12 school years in one school district,
and facing middle school jitters with everyone else.
I would see a familiar face in my science class.
It would be fine.

And I wish I could go back to that first high school date,
after he finally asked me out.
where we drove to the beach, or walked to the park,
or maybe we went to the mall.
What would we have done that day?

And I am nostalgic for a room with painted walls,
the only current of change in my life being the posters,
photos, bedspread, and clothes in my closet.

I miss our family barbecues, with dad at the grill,
and all my parents’ friends laughing in the back yard.
And family vacations.
We had annual passes to Disney Land.

I am homesick, of course,
for the greener grass, on the other side of the hill,
that I will never taste.

A parallel life.

*Before any of you freak out, I’m completely happy having grown up all over the world. It’s just interesting to explore what I did not have by; who doesn’t occasionally wonder what their life could have been like in a different scenario? Of course I would have loved all the things I wrote about above, but I love equally the life I had/have. I’m just lucky enough to know how to use my words to explore the idea.*


Thanks be to the trees
that breathe in what would otherwise
poison us,
poisonous air –
and return it as something clean,
safe.
Thanks be to the trees,
tall,
fat,
wide,
bent,
that have given up everything
so that we might enjoy,
books,
paper,
pencils,
and all the things we throw away
without a second thought at the
fact that we are holding,
were holding,
are throwing away
life,
breath.

 

The Apple

The Apple
I have been waiting for you.

It was you I was thinking of
on the hot days
on the cold days
when I was thirsty
or when I could not get out of the rain.

I have been waiting for you.

It was you I was thinking of
when I was green
with the pain of growing
and when I was reddened
unsheltered from the suns hot rays.

I have been waiting for you,
so please
pick me.

A Double

Taken from the “Anxiety Archives” of 2010 which was an exceptionally difficult year. Sorry I am not sharing more “new” stuff, I just realized I still have so much “old” stuff that’s dying to be read.

My shadows and my fears
gathering on the floor
fighting amongst themselves.

Please, kill each other this time.
Things will finally be quiet.

—-

a gray cloud moves across a blue sky
a single shadow casted as it drifts by

not even the sun can penetrate this blockade
heat is gone, and colors start to fade.

a sun that sets and never rises
oh world of unhappy surprises…

give me rest.

Something Happy

This is what happens when I try to write happy poetry. There are three here, to make up for my time lapses [sorry, work comes first and there has been a lot of it].

The Butterfly Effect
Butterflies are literally born
from the remains of who they
used to be.
A breakdown,
a renovation.
But is what they become
really better than what they were
before?
I suppose we should be asking the birds.

The Roses On My Table
A rose,
amongst roses,
with delicate folds
that bend back at the edges,
crisp,
dry,
frozen in time.
Neither here,
nor there.

Little Limón
When life gives you Limones,
watch them carefully,
and notice how they always stop
to chase the birds,
smell the flowers,
watch the fireworks –
and are only ever afraid of
what they know they should not have done,
but did anyway
for the sake of living in the moment.

5 Days of Poems

I went out of town and didn’t bring a computer. Here are five days worth of poems to make up for my lapse.

This is the first poem I ever wrote. I was seven: 

Lovely trees scrape my knees

I love trees they
scrape my knees.
I wear pathes patches on my rashes

Here is my first haiku (God bless my mother for saving these gems):

Spikey little rose
Such a pretty sight to see
There is a small bee.
And here’s this funny thing I wrote one anti-Valentine’s day:

All you need is love.

But love is the last thing you need.
Do you want to go out?
yes
     maybe
                  no.
All you need is chocolate.
If you’re selfless, you’ll give me some.
Okay, love.

I wrote this one after a particularly unnerving moment on an airplane: 

The engines on the Bombardier 700 falter, and the passengers hearts begin beating in time,
a collective jolt and we’ve lost seconds of our lives – which we acknowledge as we meet each other’s gazes:
Are you afraid?
Are you?
The oddly all-male flight crew moves through the cabin with poker faces.
If I die, I will die writing.
If I die, I will die editing these words.
Funny, how we do not think about the fact that we are alive until that screaming, terrified heart in your chest reminds you that –
things fall.
things fail.
Everything is temporary.

This one was written in response to a painting I saw, called Lackawanna Valley:

Industry, sitting on the face of nature.
You ravage her, rape her, deface her.
Industry, you blow your steam on nature.
And when you do, you hurt her. You poison her air.
A child, watching you chug-chug-chug along
Smiles on the dawning of a new era.
Industry, you look so glorious
But behind your mask, you are just a corporate patron
You ravage and rape and deface her for money.
A hit man, a gangster, a terrorist doing only as your told.

The Nature of Things.

This violent episode begins innocently enough;

a game of tag between shades of blue,
which batter and bruise each other into
deep shades of purple.
What appear at first like surface injuries become
internal bleeding; capillaries burst –
blood red fireworks which bleed and bleed
until the crimson blood runs black,
a coagulated scab of a sky
which will be picked off come morning –
a vicious cycle of abuse
called sunset.