you sound drunker now, than the first time you called
no one is going to figure this out. she thinks. not you. notme. not the cold silences full. to slow snow mornings of too many hands and feet. and not enough instant coffee. when i was you. and you were wild. and games were all the lies we spilled when we loved. and lost. some.one.else. then clues didn't feel so insane to parse. when worlds spun. to hold. our kisses -- nights. too much. too long. too soon. now. gone.
what's the point of this song? what's the point of this carrying on? he asks and i think.
i've got absolutely no idea.
naked she squeals ankles swummoxed in polka-dot-sheets and jumps up and down on the bed one sugar one sugar one sugar one sugar
i say. quietly. methodical rehearsed. and strange. from behind the locked bathroom door.
i whisper through tongues and grooves. where linoleum cracks at the base of my spine where i sit where i am by myself on the floor.
i don't want this to be like that time you chased me out of the house with a pen-knife.
do you hear?
i'm not ready for that sort of thing.
between being imogen and stranger than fiction and having vertigo
and words written on the body
you left tricks on the back of my right hand
this one word no-nonsense
sometimes i wonder if all these unpunctuated years are going to catch me up.
like palmfulls of midnight bedsheets aching for light.
as if all suddenly
the hard residual edges
my numb mouth on your mouth too full
this tongue sunk disaster me.
on the couch, i sit sipping cold coffee from a ceramic cup i bought at the discount store. before i knew you, and life was filled more with pills for pains than cocks for coffee mugs. this is an ordinary day. filled with the curls of your hair between my fingertips and slow moving moments. of which i have seen me into a lot lately. i sit quiet still on the couch and stare to steel the memory. to shudder click.
on the lowest shelf of the bookcase next to the front door where we drop our keys when we arrive home from work or the super market or playing in the snow there's a cardboard box. half spoken letters from before when i knew you:
11030 S. LAK
you don't know that i know. that
inside is a clear curvy vase meant for flowers. stuffed full to overflowing with coins tossed from the bottoms of things.
we swap. shift. switch. and hold.
like hostage pocket change.
if i were eastern and you were blue. and oceans were the things we screamed into nightmares when we were overtired and not sleeping nights. then maybe things would feel more like cradles. rocking. and televisions wouldn't blare this room madness horrorshows. now only my temples ache. of calves pulse. full veins of blood and stained pillow cases. lust. if i were silent and you were you. cash? and things we screamed into oceans made us rock less. maybe. then;
my head, these days, is too filled with words to write much that makes sense. instead, all i do is take endless sunny afternoon pictures on my porch of someone who sometimes looks like me. smiling. i think i'm trying to collect evidence. of a life less make believe. i'm exhaustedly happy. thinking about just how much i wish i could collapse on your floor with a thick red wine tongue. and trace fingered patterns into the carpet with the stories we could tell.
all night long.
he told her not to forget the mustard
in the cake and baking aisle of the washington street store
on an ordinary gloomy monday afternoon
he carried one packet of cigarettes and tin foil
a dry crooked stranger smile
she remembers now the way he smelled of instant coffee
and lemon meringue
how later she stuffed her fingertips into his skin
like maraschino cherries for wounds
whipped egg white laugher
while they went searching for sugar
met her new boyfriend at the super market
trouble me with your world and i might crack open like raw eggs. built. to spill. to shove you down flights of stairs until all your limbs broke and we'd rung the bell and birds we kept in boxes flew. trouble me strange and unapproachable on a not late night light this. your elbow tips still choked in the back of my throat like stalled tears.
words get stuck and they stick like keys for keyboards or fingers in locks late at night when doors shut and firecrackers break and the loud unexpected noises of life in the dark are like the only thing keeping me close to sanity in this room where i rock and rock alone waiting for no one and nosleep and the tick and tick time bomb of the way everything moves too quickly in the light to slow down to stop the fingertips the lips the eye lashes steadily licking you away from me
got a call this morning from my doctor's telling me that i am abnormal and have to come in for more tests.
like i needed them to weigh in on that particular subject.
on this particular day.
imogen thinks she's going back to sleep, for awhile.