The Good Half

When you said you only wanted half of me,

did you mean the top or the bottom half?

Maybe you meant the outside half and not the inside half

Not the half that dives into the ocean but continually emerges the same person,

A salt-covered osprey shaking off the sand,

Looking you in the eye and asking you where you’ve been

Not the half that learned to fight like my mother with words that shoot to kill

No, you wanted the kill

The deer

The fawn falling softly on the mossy ground

Not the hoofs thrashing though the duff, stopping abruptly with her head raised sniffing the air

You wanted the half that flies, not the half that escapes

Fuck You for Dying


gouger of eyes

plucker of stars

clear girl, vanishing in smoke like a magic show


making a permanent mourning cross between my eyebrows

begging you, forever on the run like a wave, not to return the ocean

I have been known to say that yours was a windsong,

tall and stoic like a ceiba,

and dangerous like it too

then suddenly sad, like a long journey home from a joyous trip

Your body inhabited by echoes and maudlin voices,

and when we would least expect it, shielded under the covers with only a flashlight between us,

a bird would shift free from inside you and fly away leaving us both aghast and delighted

You and me–

a conversation between angels 

a violent sob before the sea, sad fury, unstoppable

we were made of everything

Dew Drops

My mother loved me hard enough to break my heart forever, 

to split it wide so that cedar and ironwood trees would root where the fault lines stood

she knew, even as I grew inside her, that I was her wish come true

her little girl

She named me after a soft morning shower, in the hopes that I would bring her peace

Instead, she has often been left to wonder where on earth I came from

and forced to be the impatient steward of my weird

hours spent searching for perfect baby girl dresses

that I eschewed for ripped t-shirts and bare feet

She used to pull me under the covers on Sunday mornings and wrap me up in her sheets

showing me, even then, that I am worth holding on to 

Her love is like sunlight, 

turning the watermark of expulsion and diaspora into something

unbent, beguiling yet somehow honest

shimmering in cloudy water,

the last gleaming thing in this gutted, splintered earth

Everybody Wants to Own Me

My independence looks a lot like fear when held up to the light

My readiness to accept that my hands are only a reflection of the baggage they carry

That I am only human, and I don’t know how to love you past my own risk—

It will get to you

You will want to be my savior, my medic 

And I will let you, I will use you as a door to somewhere out of here

Safe in your arms I will shed parts of me I thought I needed, one at a time like baby teeth 

Until what is left is the deepest naked, 

The final layer of consent 

You will be part of this moment that I chose

Until the next moment when I may choose to not include you,

And in that moment of change, will you have the courage to leave me alone?

Or will your hands clench to the strings of me

Clipping my wings

Stapling my feet to the ground

Tell me I cannot make it in this hard world without you

Will you say that I am only soft because the world told me to be a soft woman?

Or will you see that I am soft despite what this world has done to steal my softness?

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