Some find god in a church.  Others say they find it in the eyes and laugh of a child.

I look for god in the space where breath meets before a kiss.

I haven’t found him, yet.


highs and lows

He shrugs that the only difference is happiness.

Marked by a foam topping of calm

on the surface of everything he was already

He’s still there, he says.

With a smile from soul to sole and a verse he hums

absently, he says that the revisions please him.

And sure, his low is lower than before

but his high is higher too.

Isn’t that what love does?


I do not know how to tell him

he’s changing.

That he says the same words

does the same things

but he moves just a fraction differently.

Like he’s itching for a fix.

And nothing    and no one   else

can alleviate, gratify, or pacify

the thirst pulsing in his pores

And I don’t know how to scream

at his happiness

that the problem with new boys is

they can do no wrong in his eyes

to his body      to his heart

and so he doesn’t even know it’s happened

until they’re lost boys   gone boys    far boys

and he’s cleaning up scrapes

and washing off dirt

they didn’t just leave on his skin.


He thinks this feeling is happiness

but there’s a grimace  across gaunt cheeks

and he says he doesn’t feel quite well.

collecting dust

He said, if anything, I’d collect lighthouses.
I didn’t have to ask why those cold, cracked, waiting and forgotten representations of longing.
I got it.

So, I began collecting feathers.
Almost a full set of wings, now.
I won’t be waiting around.
I could fly right after you.

I could.

You are like a poem that looks absolutely atrocious on paper.

Only because it’s meant to be read out loud.

But you don’t want anyone to read you.

and you say, “he’s good for you”

on paper — I’ll agree

But, what does that sound like?


He warns me it might be a little cold, and presses the stethoscope to my chest.  I’d like to return the words of caution, but watch instead as he smiles while listening for irregularities and rhythm.  He pulls away with an air of validation, as though to say: “That’s funny.  It doesn’t sound broken.”

But, instead he just says something like, “well, it’s there,” and that’s all he’s asking for, right now.

hold your liquor

It infests our home like spiders in the walls.  No one wants to talk about it, though we know it’s something we’re going to have to deal with sooner than later, and it’s gonna be hell.  He says they finally put dad back together, just a couple missing pieces.  But, if you ask me, he never really had the guts anyway.  So, I smile and nod and continue thinking about the mini bottle of wine in the bottom shelf of the refrigerator door.  It’s been there long enough to have a pulse, but the empty bottle of whiskey in the third bedroom convinces me to leave the wine a little longer.

He’s standing in the inbetween of hall and bathroom when he tells me that he doesn’t know what the feelings are exactly, but he has them for someone new.  “When did you know that?” — “A while now” — “Yeah, but, when did you admit it to yourself?” — “When you told me I had feelings.  You’ve always known me best.” There’s no denying that, even though I’ve found myself wondering lately.  He’s looking at the floor with some kind of guilt or shame or longing when he says he told them and they asked for some time to think about it, and I agree with a nod and wide eyes that it’s quite a bit to think about.  His guilt dials up a click or two and he says with a forced laugh, “I just want to go to a bar.”

I stare at him a long while, wondering if there’s any of dad in his green eyes.  I almost ask if he’d like me to put some shoes on, but instead I hang my towel and finish plugging in my music, reach across the sink and grab one of the two glasses that have accumulated there.  Rinse.  Fill.  I hand him the glass and he stares at me quizzically.  I grab the second glass.  Rinse.  Fill.  Turning back to him, I sip the water and urge him to do the same.  “What’s this?”  He asks, after a sip of water.

“This is you having a drink with a friend.  Without changing who you are.”