Nails by Stacyann Chin

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Now that I am in Madrid and can think by Frank O’Hara

I think of you
and the continents brilliant and arid
and the slender heart you are sharing my share of with the American air
as the lungs I have felt sonorously subside slowly greet each morning
and your brown lashes flutter revealing two perfect dawns colored by New York

see a vast bridge stretching to the humbled outskirts with only you
standing on the edge of the purple like an only tree

and in Toledo the olive grooves’ soft blue look at the hills with silver
like glasses like an old lady’s hair
it’s well known that God and I don’t get along together
it’s just a view of the brass works to me, I don’t care about the Moors
seen through you the great works of death, you are greater

you are smiling, you are emptying the world so we can be alone

Phoebe Bridgers

Time for some poetry!

Sometimes I think I’m a killer
Scared you in your house
Even scared myself by talking
About Dahmer on your couch

But I can’t sleep next to a body
Even harmless in death
Plus I’m pretty sure I’d miss you
Faking sleep to count your breath

Can the killer in me
Tame the fire in you?
Is there nothing left to do for us?
I am sick of the chase
But I’m hungry for blood
And there’s nothing I can do

But when I’m sick and tired
When my mind is barely there
When a machine keeps me alive
And I’m losing all my hair

I hope you kiss my rotten head
And pull the plug
Know that I’ve burned every playlist
And given all my love

Can the killer in me
Tame the fire in you?
I know there’s something waiting for us
I am sick of the chase
But I’m stupid in love
And there’s nothing I can do
And there’s nothing I can do

I Get Overwhelmed by Dark Rooms

Are you running late?
Did you sleep too much?
All the awful dreams
felt real enough.
Is your lover there?
Is she waking up?
Did she die in the night?
Leave you alone?
Alone.

Mirror, mirror.
There’s your crooked nose,
boring hair, thousand wrinkles.
No children just emptiness.
No place like home.
It’s a fucking mess.
Mess.

Twenty messages.
Did you hurt your thumbs?
What a stupid game,
getting nothing done.
With your longest track,
your highest score,
while you crush your back
and lament the war.
War.

All the women
that you want to fuck
on the internet
won’t give you a second look.
Did you fool yourself?
That’s privilege,
that’s power without power,
that’s a business.
Business.

But we know “you” is “I”
and I get overwhelmed.
Can’t sleep at night,
can’t convince myself
to turn it off,
let go.
Gotta make sense
of the fucking war.
War.

Am I running late?
I get overwhelmed.
All the awful dreams,
all the bright screens.
Is my lover there?
Are we breaking up?
Did she find someone else?
Leave me alone?
Alone.

Power by Audre Lorde

The difference between poetry and rhetoric
is being ready to kill
yourself
instead of your children.

I am trapped on a desert of raw gunshot wounds
and a dead child dragging his shattered black
face off the edge of my sleep
blood from his punctured cheeks and shoulders
is the only liquid for miles
and my stomach
churns at the imagined taste while
my mouth splits into dry lips
without loyalty or reason
thirsting for the wetness of his blood
as it sinks into the whiteness
of the desert where I am lost
without imagery or magic
trying to make power out of hatred and destruction
trying to heal my dying son with kisses
only the sun will bleach his bones quicker.

A policeman who shot down a ten year old in Queens
stood over the boy with his cop shoes in childish blood
and a voice said “Die you little motherfucker” and
there are tapes to prove it. At his trial
this policeman said in his own defense
“I didn’t notice the size nor nothing else
only the color”. And
there are tapes to prove that, too.

Today that 37 year old white man
with 13 years of police forcing
was set free
by eleven white men who said they were satisfied
justice had been done
and one Black Woman who said
“They convinced me” meaning
they had dragged her 4’10” black Woman’s frame
over the hot coals
of four centuries of white male approval
until she let go
the first real power she ever had
and lined her own womb with cement
to make a graveyard for our children.

I have not been able to touch the destruction
within me.
But unless I learn to use
the difference between poetry and rhetoric
my power too will run corrupt as poisonous mold
or lie limp and useless as an unconnected wire
and one day I will take my teenaged plug
and connect it to the nearest socket
raping an 85 year old white woman
who is somebody’s mother
and as I beat her senseless and set a torch to her bed
a greek chorus will be singing in 3/4 time
“Poor thing. She never hurt a soul. What beasts they are.”

Audre_Lorde

Day I Die by The National

I don’t need you, I don’t need you
Besides I barely ever see you anymore
And when I do it feels like you’re only halfway there
Young mothers love me even ghosts of
Girlfriends call from Cleveland
They will meet me anytime and anywhere

The day I die, the day I die
Where will we be?
The day I die, the day I die
Where will we be?

Don’t do this, I don’t do this to you
Don’t expect me to enjoy it
‘Cause I really don’t have the courage not to turn the volume up inside my ears
For years I used to put my head inside the speakers
In the hallway when you get too high and talk forever

The day I die, the day I die
Where will we be?
The day I die, the day I die
Where will we be?

The day I die, the day I die
Where will we be?
The day I die, the day I die
Where will we be?

I get a little punchy with the vodka just like my great uncle Valentine Jester did
But he had to deal with those people like you who made no goddamn common sense
I’d rather walk all the way home right now than to spend one more second in this place
I’m exactly like you Valentine, just come outside and leave with me

Let’s just get high enough to see our problems
Let’s just get high enough to see our fathers’ houses

The day I die, the day I die
Where will we be?
The day I die, the day I die
Where will we be?

The day I die, the day I die
Where will we be?
The day I die, the day I die
Where will we be?

Opera House by Cigarettes After Sex

Built an opera house for you in the deepest jungle
And I walked across its stage, singing with my eyes closed
I’ve got a love for you I just can’t escape
All of my love for you cuts me like barbed wire

I was meant to love you
And always keep you in my life
I was meant to love you
I knew I loved you at first sight

If I abandoned love, I’d be a man without dreams
I’d rather be out there staring death right between its eyes now
And I can still hear the sound of you crying through the night
There in the opera house with no one else for miles

I was meant to love you
And always keep you in my life
I was meant to love you
I knew I loved you at first sight