I am the Enemy, Raise Your Weapon

Ink charred to ash

to scatter about in the ocean

when trying to preserve a winter

where I had lost a sense of self,

and found direction into nowhere lands.


If dust still clings to photographs,

the remnants of words can swim just as well.

These waters can be a home.

There’s no line between where our bone and blood meet

or the difference between the currents and our contents.


Condense the cascade into a buoy

standing upright despite bent backs.

I’m thinking it’s enough to carry for another season

of backwards believing that two pairs of eyes both look back.


Stand upright amidst the roar of a draining hourglass.

The memories are losing your presence.

You become but a ghost.

~

( ❤ Mitch)

You Forget You

Tasting it in proximal breaths.

This is dangerously within reach.

Conducting the fruit down the vine.

It’s nothing to be proud of this time.


Unchecked as ingested in the bitter pill

left to swallow in a vacant bed,

ashamed of memory’s tattoos

igniting limbs to flail fluently in desperation’s language.


Testing it in brushes,

stray grazes at the edge of sin

absent of substance in it but misguided intention.

You’ll find a way to go too far.

You’ll find the opposite solution out of loneliness.


Is it a thrill to spin it around your finger?                       

See it as a blazing thought to open up the mind’s legs?


It’s nothing to be proud of this time,

but for the imaginary scent

dangerously at the tip of the tongue,

and your wayward lust is salivating.

You’ll find a way to ruin her.

You’ll find a way to ruin yourself.

~

( ❤ Mitch)

He Dresses For Winter

He doesn’t bother to brush it off.

Lets the hair stand up in the strands it woke in.

Considers the long sleeve option,

but stops and doesn’t bother.

Who’s watching out for tally marks, anyways?


An echo to rise to from his belly

in the wake of a reflection’s approval.

Tried the store on the way out

and was too sick to feel sick,

but that’s just par for the course nowadays.


He’s got his eyes locked on balconies.

Spends the minutes crossing off names.

Thinks about “not tonight,”

but he knows he’ll attack what’s left of him.

It’s the most of what he’s worth, he says.


Silent alarm to blare in his mind.

The warnings are clearly prescribed.

But a severed branch falling;

do the others take notice?

He’s not thinking so;

so he goes.

( ❤ Mitch)

All the Improper Techniques

And we’ve become green in the face,

not from a flowering sensation

that blossoms in shared tongues twisting in spontaneity.

Becoming ever so green in our eyes

when choked back words are rejected

and our stomachs face an upheaval of swallowed back doubt

rocking about in the acidity of uncertainty

now eroding this tangled ground

where we tried to dismiss concern with enraptured hands.

It’s a speak or die silent scenario.

Release the hatches for the overflow,

or refuse to swim as the passion collects its toll.

Leave the door ajar to let the demons out,

or snap the key in half with our teeth.

It could last the rest of the night.

( ❤ Mitch)

Every Page Unwritten

He lit a candle in a cave untouched through years,

where only photo book reminders colored the sides.

Written down in the margins of coy messages mailed between desks,

something resonated in the angles and the threes.


Even if the letters shrink in the knocking of aging,

you’re cuddled up near the ghost of an ash pile’s warmth.

It was a thought prepared to take up arms when a mind rejected.

Now all that rests is a heart dotted with wax stains.

( ❤ Mitch)

Plain as the Eye Can(not) See

Side by side yet viewing the same things differently.

The portrait suppresses changing though eyes dress up static in costumes.

Be it poor luck or Pollock,

black splashes or testament,

perception is what we ourselves will make of it,

and what we ourselves make is a bridge lined with kerosene.


Staring into painted faces,

I don’t know what I seek for in them,

sending wayward glances to neighboring papers,

copying off reality to merge with the imaginary.


When you transformed your hand into a fist,

crumpled up a ragged piece of parchment,

could it be read as a sign that I’m left out of sight?

I don’t see loss in receding numbers or the observation of a wreck.

I see descending scraps that need but tape and patience.

A small idea sent to spiral out can be reeled in,

or I’m left weary in the gaze of a painted face’s musings,

or the words in my ear are only there when made to appear.


The comfort that I feel is the embers of a severed connection,

for I’ve learned to construct meaning out of the fleeting,

gathering ashes in buckets and making castles out of the remains,

fortifying memory against the grain.

What burns now is the warmth of guessing games,

for I’ve learned to dream away fears by repressing them with escapes,

plunging deep into infinity where realities diverge,

life plays by multiple choice and all answers are checked green.

It replaces you and we and our.


I am the product of the blueprint unintended.

I am sustained off of what could have happened if you didn’t shake your head.

( ❤ Mitch)

It Was What Wasn’t, and is What it is Not

Fleeing light darts out of a moment.

A flash instantly integrates into history,

having captured shifting time on memory’s copper plate.


I rush to seize what attempts to disappear.

I stab at seconds with ink,

fervently hoping the emotion will dry,

for the sun will never hit your eyes as it did then,

and I cannot bear to lose more of what you were.


Clock hands chirp out desperation.

Once a grand plain of all things possible spanned from minute to second,

now minimized to the reality of brevity,

a dull tone the closing call at a shaded corner.

The chairs will never find the same position.


The conversation is a dance where steps are improvised,

the blocking an investigation into the meaning of touch

and the feeling of the sound of delicate phrases;

that which fiction have imbued with the weight of affirmation.


Evenings alone in the mirror’s glow helped rehearse the perfect lines,

straightening speech to match the idyllic view of youth,

marching into cold lakes and skipping trespassing signs as a birthright,

the consequence inconsequential.


Evenings alone erected a tall figure luminous with confidence.

Trading the reflection for the affection of a spirit that recedes into collapsing seconds,

I’m hunched over,

my arms to myself,

pressing organs together as if to squeeze out the thoughts

or to hold them in,

using fragility as a collaged solution to insecurity.

Alone in togetherness,

I’m laden with thundering nerves,

and practiced poetry lacks lips to leap from.


I will to motion but find no movement to inspire,

my fingers drumming incessantly at my sides,

hoping that anxiety will learn morse code and tap out what I can never say;

that if I could articulate my thoughts this day,

I know your flickering hair will fade,

and never again will this room see it as it were,

and never again will I know it as it were,

for a breath is ever and always temporary as time,

making the fluctuation of emotion a foregone finale.


I could confess it now,

knowing all too well how interior design functions,

though when challenged with cue cards on blank expressions,

the uneasy mind is quick to retreat to the cold it dwells in.


I travel in new steps through days,

through months,

through years,

in different ways and places,

yet I wear the shoes that stood in a quiet second.

I stab at the surface with ink.

I want what I leave behind to mean something in time.

( ❤ Mitch)

Congratulations

The recognition is distant,

yet I can promise I am reaching.

Awareness of a lack of faults that I claimed ownership for,

though never being involved.


It’s a span measured in years,

the rings on skin the marks of age

and brushes against the monsters in mirrors,

tiptoeing specters in the hallways

with cold fingers exploiting insecurity.


It’s a span still to be finalized,

though it’s in the process I find the strange truth

that the hatred I’ve felt was never of me,

but a construct of mine.

It’s in the process I find

there was love, after all.

( ❤ Mitch)

Everyone’s Invited

Stop the vagrant irises that glide across my body.

Forget the number you puncture in the twilight.

Leave alone the strung-up emblem of derision.

Be honest in this presence:

I appear golden only if you’re rusting.


Cast out the thought that transitory equals substance.

Retreat to barstools you sit by in crowded solitude.

No more are you to force company out of your inaction.

Be honest, if only once:

I’m only special when you’re not sober.

( ❤ Mitch)

The Artist Against the Observer

I see elegant swipes,

dances in moonlight

across empty landscapes

filled with only tangled bodies

enjoying a private canvas

of intertwined starlight:

A mirror of imagery I pull from the romantics.


You see the blankness

without its name.

You’re drawing conclusions

while I’m scratching in annotations.

You enjoy a private canvas

as the sum of its parts:

The product of the romantics detached from our age.

( ❤ Mitch)