white whale

I am wandering, haphazardly at best,

head full of helium and heartbeats running wild

to a hallucinatory rhythm.

History stares sternly at me,

its piercing gaze raising the hairs on

the back of my neck. I’ve

been here. The soles of my shoes

fit perfectly into the craters of footprints

left behind in the dirt. Perhaps I’ve

just walked the entire planet to escape you,

only to return to where I had begun

at the end of my cyclical sojourn.

I wish I could tuck you away

into a password, or a notebook that

collects dust under my mattress,

or a receipt crushed at the bottom of my purse.

But you are my white whale,

an oasis in a desert. Like a drowning fish,

you make me pull my own puppet strings,

even when I’d sworn to cut them short.

I’m drawn to you, hideously and fatuously,

like a wasp is to a beacon.

And on some days, some better ones, the clouds seem to

morph into the contours of your face,

and I laugh from the earth below

at how even the skies

have a little sense of humour.

i wrote this because i was sad and afraid

disclaimer: i would just like to say that i had contemplated whether or not to post this for the longest time ever, because, well, the whole performance/theatre/actor motif is hackneyed as hell. but hey, every time after i read through this, i feel more and more resolute with regards to the genuine emotion i had poured into this. while at risk of sounding like a whiny 11 year old trying desperately to sound deep, this poem truly embodies the kind of act i had to put on for some people for the longest time ever just to adopt a persona i believed that they would accept. so here, hold it and read it and have a share in my frivolities ~


unscripted, this thespian is unshielded and naked.

the curtains, they’re stuck, they won’t fall so

i’m left standing, stricken, in front of an applauding audience

and they don’t stop.

my cheeks stiffen and my lips crack from the sustained smiles,

i bow and bow and bow until my back contorts like a nervously chewed up straw

never realizing that this was a performance.

my vision is bleached from the onslaught of unkind spotlights and

i’m crying but they think my tears are glitter that adorn my eyelids.

the corset’s strangling the breath from my spirit,

but the flowers keep being thrown my way—

they don’t hear me, and they speak to me in roses,

so the blood their thorns draw from my fingertips—i take, and smear on my lips

to make sure my lipstick aways remains bold, fierce and pretty.

that’s the only way i can fight

this illusion into the whispers of midnight,

even when the feathery winds curl around and lift

discarded ticket stubs from the pavement

to a place we don’t talk about.

if i can’t make them disappear then let me.

SIT DOWN, PAIR UP

two white dresses at a wedding will command stares. 
a change of outfit is not granted; 
there are so many skeletons in my closet
that i can’t tell my backbones from belts. 

i can choose to smile and wave like i 
have always,
a rag doll pinned onto a cork board to be 
sliced, diced, and everything nice. 

to iron out my incompatibilities,
a creaseless palm clutching the smallest of 
infinities that persuade me to let go of
cards that no longer serve purpose

for i am a temporary tattoo,
the last page of a calendar, 
counting down to when i won’t fit the 
occasion anymore