I Write in the Open, Writing to All and None

February 24, 2021
Pale hand in orangey background
Art by Kim Salac

            The weatherman said we were going to get a good seven or eight inches of snow, but as I sit here and write, all we have is rain. I guess rain can set the pace better than snow, though, as it taps on the window, in beat with my fingers tapping on the keyboard, my pads connecting with the clear silicon cover I put on last August. My keyboard covers never last long. I’m not sure if I want to type quickly, or if I just hope that getting my thoughts out fast enough will make this pandemic and this phase pass by with less ache. All I can do is sit here next to my cat, and wait for peach season to come, when I can intertwine my fingers and feel the summer breeze blow my freshly cut hair into my face, while beads of sweat roll down the bridge of my nose. The warmth of love competes with the warmth of the sun, both able to burn. Here is a glimpse of that burn — from the sun or otherwise, you decide.

 

The warmth of love competes with the warmth of the sun, both able to burn.

 


Lover’s Byline

 

oval-like edges

not snow-white, opaque like office paper

the good kind. 

the bad kind, see-through

what kind are you? 

pyrethrum.*

 


 

The Genie Tricked Me

 

How is it

That I am still standing?

Still among those that were thrown away 

like the utensils that come at the bottom of the take-out bag

Like the crumbs at the bottom of the pie-pan

Like everything I wanted to be, but couldn’t.

 

How is it

That I still dream in flashes, 

even though you’re right here right here right here

(i’m right here).

 

The wishes I threw into the well

Were actually thrown into the dirt

My hiking boots with the ragged bottoms,

Trying to keep me from falling down the ravine,

Like the rocks that people kick

As far as possible

 

I once thought that “as far as possible”

Had no ending, 

I still think that’s true,

But the nuances keep me awake.

Shouldn’t have kicked.

 

The rock in the crevice frees with time,

Space made for it to fall with one gentle blow of the wind,

Smoothed out by the water coating it, not letting it go. 

 

Not to be kicked again

Until that water retreats,

And forces make it forgotten,

Renewed, and undone.

 


 

Wallowing and Wandering (In Fear)

 

Where do I begin?

 

My sand-filled hourglass sat in the wreckage of itself,

The feeling of pride that it was mine that was chosen

Mixed with the sand that now was blown away.

I couldn’t see that far — no one can. 

I sat wondering if it would gather again

 

The reminiscent feeling of four in the morning, 

The beginning that seemed to happen over and over and over

Again! Again, angst and anger and animosity

Still clouding what do I do where do I turn

Who do I cry to (Now?)

 

I was put in the washer on “heavy duty, hot water”

The setting I used to clean my jeans after my knees hit the dirt

Trying to show the others that I can, in fact,

Fall and get back up over and over and over

 

Am I to come out cleaner than when I was put in?

Sometimes the red clay sticks and reminds me

Of what I can do

 

Is that really how it works?

Sometimes the red clay is washed away

No rust-colored stain as a reminder of the struggle

 

Sometimes I wished for neither past nor future.

Because when I did, I couldn’t stop

 

How is it that I’m not happy that I got what I wished for?

I should have known wishes become twisted.

Like the hair around my finger that I never realized I picked up.

 


 

Future-Tense

 

“Listen,” I started to focus

“People ebb and flow.”

 

Four words

Five syllables,

Fury that slowly settled into something

Near contentment,

Still far enough away

 

I had conviction,

A concrete idea of who what when where how

Why?

I tried to listen

My ears perking up and honing in

On the only voice that matters

 

No, not mine, although I talked to myself 

Reasoning with regrets and the 

Rationale laid before me

Didn’t reason with what I saw

 

Four words, what about those three?

Do I pay with money or pain to hear them again? 

Not sure there is enough of either,

That’s why I write of what has been,

And not of what is. 

 


 

Manipulator In Front of Me

 

Tricks that are pulled

Never last forever, 

You see,

The past before the punch-line

Shown eventually. 

 

You thought I was baseless,

No support below me,

Like the trees with weak roots,

No one to look to

Giving way to the wind

With no question.

 

Sometimes, I think,

I can be manipulated,

Malleable to the words of 

“I love you”

Sometimes, I feel,

Like I have a fault-line

And if you are pangea, 

Then you created my faults.

 

Can’t blame me,

But you can be blamed,

My questions laid before everyone

No longer a secret

Everyone knows.

Everyone knows.

 

 

*plant that looks like a daisy, and can be used as an insecticide. 

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