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A Fly on the Wall Inside My Mind

Published poet on a good day. Aspiring writer on the bad days.

Diagnosis

I was determined to get out of this small town that closes at midnight,

away from the same people,

the same stories,

the same roads with the same destination,

and just when I was about to make my escape

one word stopped me dead in my tracks

like a deer in headlights that was bound to get hit.

I wasn’t asking for a diagnosis.

I didn’t need to hear that I was sick,

twisted,

fucked up just a little bit more than the rest.

I already knew it,

hid it,

avoided it like a sentence,

smiled

as if it was pretended.

I didn’t have time for it.

I was woman.

I never asked for my expiration date to be handed to me on a silver platter,

nor the advice on how to handle it,

cope with it,

accept it,

and forced to fight it.

No one should be forced into war with the inevitable.

So why should I “God?”
Why me, “God Almighty?”

I never asked to be a warrior.

It wasn’t supposed to be me.

Never in my life did I think that I would be the one.

I don’t smoke.

I barely drink.

I have kids who need me.

And yet, of course, the first thought I had

as a woman

was about losing my hair,

so superficial

but it’s the one thing that makes me feel pretty,

worthy.

No woman wants to lose her hair,

and before you know it you want to discuss stealing both of my breasts.

My breasts I fed my kids with.

My breasts that allow my stomach to look flatter than it actually is.

My breasts that are what makes me woman.

I was only diagnosed a few weeks ago

after years of feeling fine,

and yet you already want to dismantle me

and expect me to be grateful for only losing a few parts of myself.

I say fuck you and your cynical ways.

Let me get a second opinion,

so both of you can describe me as poisoned.

Either way,

fuck you

for talking to me so nonchalantly as if my womanhood is so unnecessary ,

as if I can easily do without it.

I will go to war against the odds

because I have no other choice,

and maybe I will be defeated,

but one thing is for sure

I will show you all how much this woman is worth.

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Oh Valentine’s Day, How I Loathe Thee

I love love, but I hate Valentine’s Day, always have.

 

It began in elementary school when some kids’ paper bags would be filled with more Valentine’s than their just as deserving classmates by the end of the day.  Those brown paper bags they spent an entire week decorating with their childish, innocent hearts hoping the other kids liked them enough to drop a card in it, to the anxiety before the class party wondering if the cards you picked out were cool enough, or if people would make fun of you later.

 

Valentine’s Day is the holiday of expectations and being left with many days after of disappointment, when girlfriends were so sure he was going to propose, when meticulous plans don’t work out the way they should have, when exes fall back into each other for one night only and leave again the next morning as if it never happened.

 

Valentine’s Day is shoved in your face for months with every commercial, every advertisement, every store covered head-to-toe in pink and red, price gouging, overbooked restaurants, a constant reminder that you are either alone, or left with the stress of buying the perfect gift for your significant other who won’t remember it a month from now, if it takes that long.

 

Call me bitter, or label me a cynic, say it is because I am single.  It doesn’t matter to me.  But when you wake up tomorrow, whether alone or next to some body, I bet you can’t tell me you’re not a little disappointed.

Excerpt From Another Unfinished Novel

I left for Illinois on Wednesday, by myself, to meet my best friend of eleven years back home, Vanessa. I met her when I had just turned twenty-one in college still working at a local pizza place that helped me pay my way through.

She was only sixteen at that time, but we hit it off immediately smoking a blunt together in a co-workers backyard. It was an instant connection, my new BFF, and long-term confidant, and one of the few people I still talked to after I moved away.

Thursday morning I woke up on Vanessa’s couch smoking a blunt with her roommate, before Vanessa and I headed out on this epic road trip; two weeks cross country, seven states, with my best friend. What could go wrong?

Vanessa takes a hit, “I ain’t coming back from Cali. I’m gonna be selling oranges by the freeway.”

We scored a mini-Grand Jeep Cherokee and spent three hours packing it full with Vanessa’s three suitcases, my two, her two book bags and my three, my dad’s Nascar cooler packed full with Mountain Dew, two cases of water, yoga mats, my laptop, our blankets and pillows, and hidden somewhere in the Jeep was a prescription bottle with eight joints rolled for us before we left.

Vanessa assured me that that was the only illegal substance traveling with us across country. As luck would have it, we sported a lot more, and with those rented Cali Plates by 11:40 a.m. we were finally on the road.

Before we officially left town, I made her stop at my favorite hometown restaurant so I could cure my craving for a classic Scupper with no cheddar, sub Munster, and no ham add extra salami, and don’t forget the cheesy garlic bread— to-go please.

Twenty minutes outside of town we realized there was no CD player. Thank God, or the universe in Vanessa’s eyes, for USB cords, so Tech Nine started us out.

Immediately we got stuck behind a Maroon Odyssey on Highway 55. Vanessa drove and kept talking, “remember when Betty used to call us that at the Willow?”

Willow was this bar we used to all go to before she was even old enough to drink, until it shut down a couple of years after I left. Willow is the bar of memories, so I changed the subject.

“Why the fuck do we have Billboards?” I asked, high as hell, as if I had forgotten everything I learned in college.

The Odyssey in front of us kept slamming on their brakes, but every time Vanessa tried to pass them it sped up next to a Semi in the right lane.

Again the guy slammed on his brakes. We weren’t even riding him that close. Finally, thirty minutes later Vanessa got around him, and as we pulled up on the passenger’s side of the irritating Odyssey, a girl popped her head up from the driver’s lap.

“Dudes been getting him some road-head. Way to go dude.” Vanessa’s stoned ass said and laughed.

Suddenly the Odyssey wasn’t so irritating anymore.

Three hours into our epic road trip, we hit Columbia Missouri. This is also where we spark that first joint of the road and listened to Sublime’s “Get Ready.”

Dew drop.

Tom’s texting me again.

Tom was this guy I kind of liked. We’d known each other for years and we had a few classes together in college. He was the reason I finally left my ex, and it was his hoodie I was wearing on this road trip.

“By the way there’s a partial solar eclipse tonight but you’ll be driving.”

“We’ll be in Denver by Midnight, Denver time. I gain an hour each day since I left Georgia.”

“Well it peaks at 5:45 my time. It’s cool to see.”

“But were running from the sun right now,” my high-ass texts back.

I tell Vanessa about the eclipse.

She responds, “Damn’t man, I should’ve brought the DMT.”

There’s No Place Like Home

Rear-viewed,

cotton-candy skies

blind my southbound windshield headed home

through prairies of dead corn stocks

that pave these winter roads.

 

First times and last times dissipate

like the heat in my car

the more I drive,

the further I go,

and steer me back to packing up sweaters and ice skates

to go back to a job I can’t stand,

a cat,

and people I only seem to drink with anymore.

 

It seems as though I haven’t left all that’s behind—

behind me,

which makes the hills

and the mountains

that much harder to climb;

impossible to defeat the gridlocked traffic,

getting nowhere,

going nowhere,

traveling only with a dog in my backseat

and a bunch of unpublished poetry

that means nothing,

and yet everything to me.

 

So I begin to question why I stay

and yet keep going back and forth

switching every other lane,

when I can turn around and have chauffeurs

to drive me down old, familiar roads

dropping me off at the same old places

I’ve already been,

reacquainted with the forgotten,

the once destined,

sins my pride could never forgive,

the answers to the questioned

“What if?”

 

But I’ve learned it’s easier to get lost in a place you don’t have to live,

and easier to love a place if you only visit.

Home is an absence I’ve felt since I left it,

but I have no regrets, only hard-learned lessons

and too many novels left unwritten.

Dear God

I have found that I don’t like to be sober anymore.

I’ve needed a drink every day for the past two weeks

just to take the edge off,

but I smile,

send an emoji,

say “I’m fine.”

The fact is it’s a lie.

I’m losing my fucking mind,

and I know myself well enough to know

that my self-destruction is my only form of self-control,

so here it goes,

 

Mental Breakdown in

5.

4.

3.

2.

1.

 

I bang my cigarettes against the bar like they owe me money,

drink a beer and sip on whiskey until

I can feel my body stop shaking and be still for a minute.

 

I light up,

inhale.

 

My thoughts slow down long enough to order another shot I don’t need,

and I know that is my limit

but I say fuck it and order 3.

 

Then I leave the moment I realize I’m getting tipsy

because I’ve learned when my demons want to come out and play,

so I get fucked up with them and try to drink them all away

but even after the bottle finally puts me to sleep for the first time in days,

I wake up from my nightmares,

flat-lined,

with no hopes of any change.

 

And when you open up to people they have nothing to say,

or they give you some cliché,

which amounts to the same old thing,

just pray.

 

Well Dear God,

Can’t you see I’m not okay?

How much longer do I have to wait?

There is only so much one person can take

before they finally break.

Condemned Human Sin

Sculpted as everything I am not,

and everything I want to be,

he is chiseled like a God I want to worship.

Hell-bent on hands and knees praying I can serve him in all the ways he deserves.

Still reminded that even the devil was once an angel.

Still not sure if he is my destruction or my savior.

Still falling to earth.

He is not pure, or holy, by any means

but he doesn’t blow smoke like my demons,

although I can see the fire inside of him,

powerful enough,

to bring death into my world.

He is consequently condemned human sin

I want to wrap myself in and get lost in his religion,

the epitome of temptation wreaking havoc on my moral afflictions.

And maybe he is just another corrupted version of my book of revelations,

maybe just the Islamic description of having no other power

than evil suggestions onto the hearts of women.

But maybe he is my atonement, my forgiveness,

for all those times I refused the forbidden fruit from that God damned serpent.

Maybe it is the day after Judgement

where hell ceases to exist

and good prevails evil when the war with Satan finally ends.

Or maybe, he is just that malevolent, super entity,

spawned from my own imagination,

at that point in time when I lost all hope,

and now I need something to believe in.

Maybe he is all the answers to my questions,

but only time will tell in the way it will be written.

Dear Narcissistic Ex

Dear Narcissistic ex,

You do not really want to be my friend, as I can assure you I feel the same way. You see, you never understood the deep meaning of me describing you as a narcissist to begin with. You only see it as a name I called you, not for my psychological analyzation of you to the point of identifying you as nothing but such.

You do not want to be my friend. You only want to tell me what is going on with you, what is wrong with you, your future plans, or your great achievements, but you never ask me how I am. You want to feed your ego, and for some reason you want my approval, or forgiveness, the fact is I only say, “We’re cool,” because I gave up trying to explain myself in hopes of you understanding long ago.

Sure we can be cool from a distance, but no I do not want to be your friend.

I do not want to kick it, or hang out at some random bar making bad decisions with you again. I do not want a constant reminder of someone who burnt me every single day of my life, with a share or a like on Facebook, with sporadic comments on my Insta, from someone who still always has something to say, to random once a week texts in the hours a little before booty call hours, just so you feel as though someone is still there for you and cares for you.

I do not wish to be friends with someone who doesn’t listen to what I say, doesn’t care how I am doing, who only talks about themselves.

So please, get over yourself, because I did.

No Use For Politics

I’ve never had a problem with giving them something to talk about.

It’s never bothered me to be the topic of conversation.

I never feel the need to try to explain my situation, or save face,

because I’ve never been one for politics.

And you will never catch me kissing ass, or gorging on it,

just to fit in or get ahead,

or to make life easier.

If I don’t like something about my environment then I just fucking leave it.

In the meantime, if I have to cut ties and burn bridges so be it,

because I will never have a use for ulterior motives and hidden agendas.

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