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Dear Cornelius,

I started reading a book on Monday.
I found it at work and now have confiscated it until Anthony learns to chew his food and be polite.
I expect to finish reading it, at least.

I’ve been craving something
You, but not you,
A mirage—
Yes, a mirage.

Like flakes of the pod
in my vanilla ice cream,
It completes the tableau
Walking through the Desert alone

Yes, I have been craving
you, but not you
As time marches on in late February.
I know you are secretly—
Even to yourself—
Afraid of what I am capable of In these jeans,
But I am exuberant
I must get out of my own way.

That, and celery juice, turmeric and chamomile
May be the solution.
Do I add osha?
Do I add lemon balm and nettle and elecampane?
Maybe the latter for the first two months
And quit smoking weed
Cut out everything but
Medicine and roses, leather and a hot bath.
Will you be there—in body alone?

Of course, yes
And where else would you be?
Paris?
Cold Spring?
As you know, I plan to be there or else.
You know what I want.
I can only bend so far and for so long.
Know your worth,
The Sociopathic Barfly Angel said,
And the bastard was not wrong.

Love,
Irene

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Got into the whole
Mid-life thing
Going down like flies
Different crises

Had this happen
Then this guy
Just feeling fortunate

He’s been a long time without a job
I hadn’t seen him in ages
Disruptive
Exhausted
Wasted

Could have gone on all night
The games you don’t play

Do you remember where you saw him?
That street that curves like
Chinese New Year

Reality
Chain smoking
Ten in the morning
Your life laughs

Make me feel like I’m special
I can’t even imagine

Dear Cornelius,

I want to talk about the past
I want to talk about sagebrush and the bottom of a dead ocean
about walking to the Post Office in my Great Aunt Sylvia’s blue shorts and
steak
but you wouldn’t understand
you have never been in love

Instead let’s remember watching movies in bed
playing my grandfather’s Travel Chess
eating franks with Swiss
the things that get lost when I an confronted with the truth

I’ll forget ecstasy
forget delight
wonder, I will forget everything
I.ll just drown in the Pacific Ocean in February wearing my favorite blue jeans
Traverse the sand and waves until I am confronted with the truth

Once, a long time ago, I felt happy. I knew I was free
I was up on a hill watching dustdevils come and go across the valley
I was standing in a shed with him down on one knee
and could I have loved him forever? maybe…
 

Dear Silas,

It is a beautiful day
The trees are chirping and the
leaves are buzzing
I have been juggling for almost a geological age now
watching the water fall down the hill with
the children and the snakes
Honestly, I can’t remember much else as I stand on the grass with my eyes closed
mandalas spiraling out into
the next geological age

I didn’t know what was in those chocolates, but to be frank
when I found out, I just doubled down and ate some more
At first I headed upstairs to daydream about ancient Egyptian gods
out on the terrace
but that was not enough
so I decided to write to my lost grandfather
maybe he isn’t lost yet–I honestly can’t remember anymore
So I was stretched out on the cold carpet
and I thought to go downstairs
Joss was there
the spider venom eating him from the inside and I could see it
I could see his demons right behind his face and it mae me sick
it made me furious because I knew he was a monster
a small, selfish child and I was letting him touch me
it made me hate myself and I had to get away
So now I am out here by the moon-less waves
talking to the squirrels and the bugs
to the flowers and the mountains
now I am outside where I can finally be free

it is a beautiful day
all the hobos are smiling
all the Rangers are kind
all the fruit is fresh and free
just like me

-Irene

Wednesday, mid-February

I woke up to the buzzer
And we said nothing while you slept
You got what you came for
And left

Walked home from my meeting
No one showed
I tried to hold back tears
And thought about snow

Started cleaning in the kitchen
Put the music on full blast
Either to distract myself from
Or be resigned to the past

Later I’ll go to the gym
Pretend everything’s fine
Make some dinner
Kill some time

I don’t know when I’ve been so sad,
I’ll say to someone on the phone tonight.
True sadness may be knowing,
They’ll reply, and they’ll be right

Nutshell

Believe what you need
But I know, I see
Same way you see through me

Beyond the green water
At the edge of the sea
Mine for you and yours for me

Beyond what we say
There’s give and take
The kitchen by night
The bedroom by day

You asked for a poem
that’s simple and free
I know you’re afraid
but you shouldn’t be

smoke disperses
I wonder about the light-up bottom of a cigar stand
from my post at the leather couch
the woman who sold us our cigars
her one blind eye
old lithographs of my town Continue Reading »

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