The Escape Hatch and the Fire Axe

Today, I am the Escape Hatch.
Temporary-distraction of
digital parchment correspondence.
With the flashing feathered quills,
promising flesh and thrills
through the wireless ansibles
over the hills
and through her heart.

I am the Escape Hatch.
Cotton-comforter-confidant
where She lay bare and recanted
stories of her ill-fitted tilt-stitch-world
where the crooked seams
somehow aligned between

the twisted sidewalk
and her heather-blue dreams.

With each tenuous step
under the cloudy dander white lines
floating through the irreverent skies
as our gazes are fixed on the ever-growing

crack.

in the ceiling.  

I am the Escape Hatch.
Cold-steel-shield and He is the Fire Axe
surrounded by uniforms and flashing
lights after he razed her possessions
and left red marks around her neck
in his obsession
to make her
love-  him – back.

He may not know my name,
but he knows what I am–
The obsidian obelisk
a midst the crops of his happiness,
and he can neither turn me
nor’ till me

so he burns her fields instead.    

I am the escape hatch.
The final twist it took to seal her
entirety for eternity on the other side.

Until the rain ran past
the red rust in the hinges
reduced to ruin,

and the handle immovable,
and the decision, irrevocable.

Goodbye.  Adieu to you.  

 

Bump it with:

The Bridge of Closed Doors

I’ve closed doors that can never be reopened, and on the other side are the unborn ghosts of a lifetime together; big house, big dogs, children, and laughter.   But I know, She goes on to find someone better, to grow old with someone who can cherish her in a way I could never.  And in a way, I did that, with a graceful bow and a sidestep through the curtain, and I’m certain I’ll never be at this point again.  And it’s just as well.  Sad smile, exit left.  Chin up.  No regrets.  

I pull down each closed door and stack them one upon the other on the floor.  Each one raises me higher and takes me a bit further– planks for me to walk, out over uncharted seas in an an ever growing arc of my history, of who I was leading to who I could be.  But eventually it’s no longer one more step’  over the restless black abyss, until we plummet to our death… no it was that last moment until our long lonely walks– intersect.  And our feet are steady, and the wood holds fast.  A bridge.  Abridged. We meet– at last.

Bump it with:

Matchstick Girls

I’ve traipsed my way
through someone’s love again.
Completely thoughtless
to the consequences
and it’s only fitting that the axe
falls heavy on my head.

Because I’m to blame
for burning through good girls
like matches I can’t’ light

All He wanted
was the ring in his pocket
to glitter round her finger
and Her, his home and hearth
for the rest of their days.

And I the dower downpour,
snuffed her like
so many brief indulgences.
Now she’s his soggy tinder,
and I can’t even remember
what it was like to feel her
aglow in my cheeks
and the chill is setting in.

So I’ll stomp my feet and
cup my empty hands
in the shivering cold
on the outside looking in.
And I know.  

I’ll be the kindling in someone else’s pyre soon enough.

Bump it with:

The Porcupine and the Pine Cone

I loved you the way
the Porcupine loves the Pine Cone.
kindred hearts
sharing shape and form,
pressed together for warmth
through the night’s chill.

But between my spines and your spurs’
one of us was bound to get hurt.

So I kept my distance,
closer though you inched
in the growing days.
We wore a groove
in the ground as our tiny legs
made plans upon the looming hills.

But in my heart,
I knew we could never reach them…
and I know we never will.

I miss you,
the way the Porcupine misses the Pine Cone.
I’d carry you with me if I could.
But being born of barbs and bristles,
it’s hard to shoulder anyone’s baggage but my own.

Soon you’ll be taking roots
and kissing thistles to the wind.
So you take the high road,
and I’ll take the one less traveled,
and we’ll see if it makes any difference
where we come out at the end.

Bump it with:

Robert Frosting all over the top of this cupcake.

The Postman finds his Way

She’s the kind of girl who’s seen the world, without letting the world see her.  Quiet and reserved, with a battery of walls and conditions, few travelers have ever traversed.  The best of her is nestled in the center, Where only one before me has entered, and that’s a woman worth getting down on one knee.  Though we’ have barely scratched the surface, with each step inward I discover how she could be perfect’ and worth this moment and every one to follow.  So we’ll take it slow.  Careful not to step into the pitfalls of where I’ve stumbled before.  As we sit on the playground talking about the ways our parents have aged.  I’m delving into her history to see who she’ll be when the days grow long ahead of me.  Because I already know she’s worth this moment, and every one to follow.  

You see, I’ve been writing you letters.  I’ve been through trials and tribulations to deliver them.  And with my ink-stained palms I take your hands.  And we are free.  

Bump it with:

The Shipwreck Survivors

 I ran aground on someone jagged
who tore my insides out.
With no lighthouse warning,
left listless and wanting
in the middle of the sea.

Do I dare to drink from the ocean
or let the thirst and isolation
consume me?

In the distance I see you,
neither savior nor life-boat
for you are equally, damaged.

barely.
afloat.

Between your battered masts
and my seeping hull.
The ocean rages
to drown us both.

We’re in-congruent shapes;
two ships adrift,
but if you lean in
and I lean against you
we won’t sink.

So man the oars and mind your words:
and promise you won’t fall in love or lie.
But if you must,
do the first and deny the last.
Because the reverse
is sure to kill a boy
where he stands.

Bump it with:

My Last Regret

Had I known that was our last night together, I would’ve held my tongue and just held you.  I would’ve kissed your eyelids and brushed your little bangs from your face.  I would’ve listened to every thing you said, knowing I may never hear your voice again.  I would’ve carried you home in whatever angry state, and I would have put you to bed and watched you sleep.

 In the fading glory of our last morning I would’ve told you how you meant everything to me.  How your brilliance, colors my days, how your smile feeds my soul.  How, when our fingers intertwined it was the only time I ever felt truly whole.  I would’ve told you about our children, that I someday hoped we’d have.  And with their little hands and little faces they’d come running to their Momn’Dad.  I would tell you about the big house, with the big dogs, and the big love.   But you already knew our plans. 

In two and a half minutes, I lost two and a half years and everything that lay ahead. I lost my partner, I lost my best friend.  And I am sorry, to have hurt you.  I am sorry to have broken something most precious to your heart.  In that moment, I myself felt broken, and frustrated and lost.  But never as much as I feel now.  

And in your mind I may be hazy and slightly askew.  Please remember:

I am a boy swimming in the bay, with one inner tube and one snorkel to share
I am a boy, on the long plane ride home, with his girl sleeping on his shoulder
I am a boy eating sandwiches on the beach and drinking champagne
I am a boy cooking breakfast for his sleeping love
I am a boy, learning ukelele with his girl along the ocean bluffs 
I am a boy, your confidant, your analyst, your business builder
I am a boy, talking in a high pitched Chinese voice, “Yooouuu knoooowww theeee ooonnneee”

But most of all, 

I am a boy sitting on the side of the road eating malasadas, waiting for his ride to take him home.

Bump it with:

The Guillotine

I imagine this is what the guillotine must feel like.  A sudden *whoosh* and then spine, nerves, tendons, blood vessels, and veins, all disconnected in a single blow.  What once was a vital and integral part of a living breathing creature has been cleaved in two.  But unlike a normal person put to death, both the severed Head and Body decapitated  are expected to live on in their current state.  There is no amicable division of property; no joint custody of organs or blood or nutrients.  So Body, if you we’re expecting to have a pleasant thought today, you’re shit out of luck.  Head, if you were expecting to go for a run, same deal… you lost the legs in the split.  Heh.  That’s funny, I think.  

People give the usual platitudes, how a numerous amount of cold blooded, glassy eyed, creatures in the deep blue ocean somewhere is supposed to somehow give me solace.   Because it’s hard to think about fish, when I don’t have a Head.  It’s hard to think about fish when I don’t know if my Head is resting in someone else’s bed.  

It’s hard to think.  

It’s hard.  

Not to.  

Think.

And then I begin to realize, I am not the Body at all.  If I were the Body I could pursue blindly the carnal pleasure of the company of other somebodies.  I could engorge myself on food, I could drown myself in the nectar of drink.  I could  find happiness in activity.  I could go outside and sit in the sunshine, I could splash in the water, I could feel the cold sting of the rain– I could feel anything.  

No, instead I am the Head.   Eyes open, on the pillow, counting every blink and every tick of the clock.  Full of twisting thoughts like a turgid river, constantly shifting and changing in directions.  Closing and opening doors and shutters in my mind, only to find the sharp pain of memories, collected and categorized for some future plans with the Body that simply will not happen.  I am the Head, waking up from fitful sleep in cold sweat clinging to the swiftly tearing edges of a dream where I was running.  Running!  Where there was no jagged scar that went from ear to ear across my throat, no heavy blade that cut me through and through, and I was running, something I had done millions of times but upon waking, I realize– is impossible.

 I am the Head, yet somehow I am full of heartache, though I thought I lost the Heart when the Guillotine hit me, but somehow it too haunts me.  

 So, I think on.  

 

Couuntin’ the Days

Is it weird that I’m counting down the days, not on finger tips or the little hand clock ticks, but on the absence of space in one sided conversations that begin with: “Hey I gotta tell you about…” but you’re not around.  And so I keep them to myself.  And I put them on my shelf organized and categorized in jars and binders labeled “For Min, don’t forget”.  

I never thought to hold my breath’ while the air was running out.  Because I’m not scared of drowning, or going without.  I know that next breath in’ will taste all the sweeter when my lips meet the surface of your water and the air is mine again.  I will breathe you in.  And I will exhale stories by the gallon, and footfalls by the mile, and our paths will twist closed like our interwoven fingers, which have become inseparable knots.  And I will watch’ for the smile that begins at the corners of your eyes and ends with your head upon my chest.  

And I will breathe easy.  And I will count freely.  In the measured beats of our two hearts as one.  

It goes
One to, 
    One two.  
        One too.  
              Me you.  
                    Me you.  
                                                Kimchi.  
   Pork belly.  

                  Ice cream.  

Bump it with:

The Frost Giant

A giant, centuries old, aged timelessly massive in the frigid frothing cold of the northern winter. Hungering hulking hunting, for the flesh of man.  It towered over the trees, eclipsing the largest buildings smashing villages and scooping up their inhabitants in its monstrous hands and cracked them like sticks of straw, slurping the meat from their bones before swallowing them whole.  The monster plundered villages all winter and slunk away before the buds of spring and blades of summer only to return once the cold set in again.

Countless warriors, kings and champions of men braved the great monster in an attempt to rid it from their land.

But,
they,
never,
returned.

One such warrior, compelled by the tales of tragedy and destruction set off against the giant beast. A midst a tangle of wanton destruction,  he found the mountainous monster.

The warrior, atop his mighty steed with sharp steel in his hand he hacked and he slashed, doing scarce damage to the monster’s right calf’.  The giant unhorsed the warrior,  catching the whinnying whimpering steed in its massive talons, before tearing the horse’s head from its thick shoulders, leaving its massive body shuddering doubled over.

The warrior was quick to react, slicing and slashing desperately before being caught in a giant fist and shoveled into open jaws and hungry maw. Deftly he avoided the gnashing teeth and swirling tongue opting instead for the dark gullet that led beneath.  The greedy beast was only too eager’ to devour its meal whole.

so

the

warrior

fell.

Darkness surrounded him.  And there he remained, shaken by every thunderous footfall, and feeling every repulsive beat of the creature’s blackened heart. He swam in a pool of horrors, half eaten horses and pieces of men still in their armor, clanking and clattering together with every howling breath.  Flesh fell from above: arms and heads, torsos and legs and meat too chewed to recognize’ as the monster engorged itself on everything the warrior loved.

After Three days, the Warrior passed through the tract of the beast, emerging filthy but thankfully intact.  And so, gasping in a smeary pile of fallen champions– he swore revenge.
The beast disappeared as spring began, heading north into the colder winter lands.  The warrior went without rest and instead’ saddled up his fastest horses and set off in pursuit.   The chill clung to his cloak and stuck needles through his bones, the frost froze his face in a permanent grimace, with the only thing keeping him warm– revenge.

He found the giant sleeping in its frozen cave; a massive hole in the rock face, the sound of its powerful snores reverberating off the walls.  As he approached, the giant opened its golden glittering skittering eyes.  Mouth open wide, with a tremendous roar the giant lunged.

The warrior took off on horseback, with a fistful or reigns’ he and his team of horses the prey the Giant chased.  Its massive head blocked the faint sun, it monstrous arms toppled trees as it ran, and its thundering towering legs shook the stones free from the earth,  as the warrior lured the giant from the North.

When the giant tired, the warrior circled back slashing at its right leg, carving cuts upon cuts, strike upon strike.  Over time those wounds enlarged;  tiny nicks became scratches became valleys became patches of flayed flesh, and a lattice of criss-crossed blood loss.  The giant slowly lagged and limped.

As his horses exhausted and wore out from their continuous run, the Warrior leaped to a fresh mount.  The giant clamored  for the winded horses, catching and consuming the most tired ones, reducing the warrior’s herd.  But the shrewd warrior had packed his saddlebags to the brim with poisonous herbs.  As the slain horses dissolved in the monsters stomach the toxins emerged.  Leaving a frothing foam, sloughing from the Giant’s open maw– its insatiable greed, its ultimate downfall.
Finally when the warrior was down to his last horse– he halted.  The vibrant blooms of Summer surrounded the fragrant floor, the chirping of birds and the warm breeze blew gently against the warrior’s cheek, as the giant gave its final roar.  The warrior turned to face the beast, and made a final pass, swinging at its open calf.

A beautiful slash.

A wound deep, and lasting.

The Giant bent beneath its unwieldy gait, a mangled leg unable to bear weight, and only one good foot, lost in the slippery tangle of the fresh birth of Summer.  A stomach full of poison and ill intent.  The beast toppled, slowly from its towering frame, down to its battered knees and then laid flat upon the fragrant flower plains.  Down the giant went, and the earth trembled, and then was silent and still.

The warrior approached, his boots crunching a carpet of colors,  petals and stems of flowers.  Before him the Giant lay toppled and sprawled, Horse meat and toxic foam dribbled from its greedy open mouth.   The void that had once taken so many now  shuddered with each lumbering breath– awaiting its bitter last.

the warrior steadied himself, raising his steel overhead for the killing blow —

— he was pricked by a sudden pain in his ankle.  A small stinging creature at home in the flowers no bigger than his thumb had buried its nature born lance into the tender flesh just above’ his heel.  Without so much as a thought the warrior plucked the creature from his skin.

The monstrous Beast lay fallen before him, the strikingly small stinging insect crushed in the warrior’s hand.

The warrior paused’ moving from the giant’s head down to the great Beast’s bare feet.  A pair of blacken soles twice the height of a man, each toe as thick as the warrior’s waist.  With expert precision, he cleaved each toe clean off, one by one.   The monster howled and moaned struggling to escape.  The warrior sliced off its cruel and crooked fingers.   With two heavy cleaves he severed the bones of the Beast’s filthy mangled jaw full of filthy itchy mange and bitter yellow rickety teeth, leaving it hanging like like soggy deadwood from a broken tree.  Lastly, he cut out the monster’s tongue.

Leaving the beast to crumble and decay, unable to stand, unable to feed, and unable to get away.  Slowly consumed by it’s own terrible greed, eaten from the inside out.

And with that, the warrior returned home.