Autobiography · Poetry


We dance and scream and get sweaty.

We forget everything happening
outside of those crackling speakers
in that tiny basement club.

We remember what it feels like
to be safe in our own skin.

We become a unit, an undulating mass
of hands and arms and stomping feet.

We do not exist outside of this.

We are invincible.

We are free.

Photo courtesy of Hannah Rodrigo .

Mental Health · Poetry


I go around and around with this one.
Nicotine patches, toothpicks, gum.
“May I please get a pack of Newports?”

Tell myself it’s better than
the alternatives.
As if I absolutely must be
smoking, drinking, or dead.

Smells revolting. Tastes disgusting.
But it grounds me.
I’m solid. I’m standing.
I’m safe. I’m free.

Logically I know it’s a rationalization for
doing something I want to do that’s
bad for me.

But standing in the rain,
cigarette between my fingertips,
I catch myself thinking at
least I found something to
make my mind peaceful.
Even momentarily.

Photo courtesy of Cameron Kirby.

Autobiography · Poetry · Relationships


Fingers busy.
Knitting yarn, stringing beads.
We create and teardown simultaneously.

I slept until noon on Monday.
Haven’t done that since…
I can’t remember when.
Nadine said I must have needed it,
but my headache disagreed.

I skipped showering two days in a row.
Planned the next four months, but did mostly nothing.
Ate M&Ms and finished watching Breaking Bad again.
Let myself take it easy.
Forgot the idea I have to earn downtime.
Just breathed.

We shared a dinner and played a game of rummy.
Family time has taken on new meaning and
I curl up into it.
Wrap it around me like the scarf he’s making.
Wear it like the jewelry I created.

I go to bed before Andrew, but
he joins me.
Gently climbs in and pulls me to him.
All arms and legs and sheets.

The world is softening around me.
Rose petals peeling back and
revealing smells of sweetness.
When pollen tickles our noses
we all feel the same thing.
And I’m surprised when I’m not afraid of it.
When I let it climb over me.

Photo courtesy of Jared Doyle.