the girl in the jacket watched her leave

she then sent the flood

two years passed, the girl remembered nothing

“i don’t remember why i felt so sad that day”

the airport felt empty and lifeless

but she remembered nothing.

the other girl felt everything

till this day she knew

--

--

glass shards and infected scars

she was home that day

screaming kids and sharp winds

the town surrendered to pray.

time and time again the street was filled

with dead silence and souls

it all started with the wooden frame

that now collected mold.

but then grew a brave little girl

who was determined to make things right

little did she know that at the ripe age of 23

she would be swallowed by the night.

loosely inspired by mike flanagan’s ‘oculus’ (2013)

--

--

she would live on water if she could

as long as she wasn’t touched by the guilt that came with empty plates and dirty forks.

she would peel her skin off if she could

as long as she didn’t have to look at the mess that she was in the mirror waiting for her in the bathroom.

she would live under dirt if she could

as long as the voices around her didn’t pierce through her body like used needles.

they would give all the love in the world if they could

as long as their daughter learned to look at herself the way they looked at her.

--

--

‘Midnight Fire’ by Stephen Lyman, June 1994.

timeless tracks play at twilight

the sun drowns in the water below

sleep-inducing stories told at midnight

the stars are yet to show.

who knew it would take so long

to realize they were wrong

about the used matches in her cupboard

in a house belonging in the suburbs?

one step forward and all of a sudden her body has caught on fire

the ghosts she always read about are no longer trapped in barbed wire.

summer isn’t so pretty anymore

those who lived have turned into folklore

a land with only roots in place

has also vanished without a trace.

--

--

Me when I was three years old, in front of our house in North Carolina.

a birthplace for one, a hideaway for another

she remembers enough

are the wooden floors wooden anymore?

is the snow still as white as she recalls?

does the staircase still spiral?

do her grandparents remember every second?

north carolina moved on though.

--

--

Marie from The Aristocats (1970)

broken build, like eleanor crain

but she still feels like home

exterior exposed, prone to stain

but she still feels like home

cerulean circles, like grace le domas

and she still feels like home

pretty in pink, an added bonus

and she still feels like home.

for my sister’s cat.

--

--

trigger warning: subtle descriptions of harassment/assault/rape

iniquitous eyes follow

what feels like naked skin

but as soon as you tell anyone what happened

horrible stories about you begin to spin

keys between your fingers

an unnerving fear plagues your mind

“it’s a simple walk in the park” they say

but the patriarchy has all its men enshrined

tears, screams, bruises and broken bones

no area of the body is left untouched

endless fights and misery

but it’s us who have to adjust.

--

--

plants intertwined around her fingers

kept her frozen in place

she begged and begged and begged

“what the hell am i supposed to do?”

does she break apart those roots dipped in memories

or does she let them drain the life out of her?

screaming never helps

and crying only makes things worse

it is only a matter of time before she begins her descent

and melts into her confinement made of cement.

--

--

Quivering fingers hold

wooden picture frames

crimson-stained lips

struggle to utter names.

Mind made of glass

begs for familiarity

skeleton frozen in place

tired of peculiarity.

Eyes search for an escape

in rooms forever sealed tight

no air to breathe anymore

not a single hint of light.

Arms and legs fold

uncomfortably on the ground

old diaries scream memories

devoid of any sound.

Soft hair on brittle skin

gradually detach with time

delicate touches begin to fade

and painful ones unbind.

written on february 16, 2022.

--

--

‘Merging’ by Guenevere Schwien, from Fine Art America.

the trees were hunter green

fresh leaves eager to sprout

the girl arrived at the scene

in time to find a way out.

she drove around in circles

her thoughts racing faster than her car

she dreaded all the hurdles

she wasn’t getting very far.

losing her partner in crime

sent her into a frenzy

now she was the only one doing the time

while developing behaviors that were unhealthy.

the memories constantly resurfacing

felt like being trapped in a mirror maze

the voices wouldn’t stop whispering

she would do anything to set them ablaze.

--

--