OUTSIDE – a found poem 


I have an issue going outside.

I just see myself getting tired.

A bright beautiful glaze of sunlight hitting my porch.

I step outside into my backyard. 

That’s as close to a public place as I can get. 

Nothing much to see. Dry, peed-on dirt. 

If I climbed out onto my roof, I’d experience a lot of different things.

Sunlight, for one. Very tall but dead palm trees. 

A desert meant to goof around in. 

Dirt needing to be played with.

Small families of quail, 

groups of 6, running through the desert. 

Meows of newborn cats crying for attention.

Middle age men doing yoga in the dog grass with weights.

Weight has no purpose—

Then the trampoline of broken dreams.

A Police officer conducting an investigation.

Black pavement. 

Goats inside a chain link fence.

Three dark shadows on the grey tile.

Drive by shooting victim.

House being robbed.

Man on oxygen. 

Red roadrunner on a moving trailer. 

The snails are cute

Salt salt salt.

More importantly, I’d see a curve.

A point, where the sky and dirt meet, 

and neither wins.

The sun sits in the center of the sky just staring. 

The sun is quite rude in my opinion. 

My intention is to look up at the shining sun 

and be blinded for a second 

or become one with it.

I finally saw who I got my attitude from

Hint hint it’s my dad…And as I come back around 

I see A pig hanging by the neck from a tree,

Dad’s big red truck parked further back in the yard. 

So many sculptures. 

I see myself in the door window again, 

I see the yard behind me, 

and I remember the days before with my friends.

I see the spider expanding her spiderweb 

between the legs of the grill. 

Wind swirls around me,

A Tiny dog hides in the bushes

under the giant pecan tree, 

roots creeping from the ground 

like the kraken attacks an enormous wooden ship 

and drags it under The grass that’s been freshly lawned. 

No cop / No stop

Tia wants to plant some grass knowing it won’t last. 

1 by 1 people become the ground.

Nature is happy at the absence of man. 

Animals walk the paths joggers used to run. 

Nature deserves this win. My intention is to adventure like the animals do 

when they leave the cage

listening to country music or their favorite corridos. 

My intention is feed the animals so they don’t try to kill me.

As the sun sets i can taste the clouds 

browner than crap 

throwing punches at me…… hitting me directly.

It’s terrifying and peaceful to walk around at night 

and the loudest thing is your own heart beating 

and the thoughts in your head

like a tornado blew through. 

Who taught you

to unlove yourself

so sweetly.

Am I happy or sad, no, I feel free a little longer, 

but it’s gross, the hovering moth. 

Blue breeze comes from under the pink dragon 

on the back of my kimono. 

I see stars, wait, is that a fire in the distance?




INSIDE – A Found Poem


This couch has a permanent ass print on it.

A doorway that goes to a magical place 

called the bathroom. 

My mom’s vacuum 

that has been sitting since after we used it 

to clean the confetti embedded in the carpet after Easter.

All the toys around the room are scattered like flailing fish.

Wow, look! It’s my cap and gown! 

My head twisting three sixty

just saw my snapchat 

someone’s selling weed for sixty.

A lavender plant is high on vinegar. 

The next living room is occupied by my grandmother 

watching her favorite christmas movies over and over.

My grandmother’s ashes sitting alone.

Mother’s religious crosses, big as the wall.

As I turn to my left, I’m greeted by my PS4, 

my only form of social contact. 

You avoid the actual problems. 

That is if you can count 10 year olds 

screaming into their mic because they lost a game.

I yell every time a motherfucker kills me in Call of Duty. 

Seasons pass like menstrual cycles 

with a staircase leading nowhere stuck in between. 

TV overheating having seen thousands of movies 

and wayyyyy more youtube videos 

because after i fall asleep 

it just cranks those things out 

like the engine cranks the pistons. 

A messy bed i lay in for 20 hours a day.

 I see a backpack hanged. 

A closet that looks like a faucet. 

It feels as if i’m a rock that has been tossed into the ocean 

of my own house.

A man in torn clothing 

stumbled out of one of the facility’s testing rooms, screaming. 

My intention is to stop being a slave for this house. 

I stay secluded with my own actions. Let’s move on.

Doors everywhere, Specifically two.

One leads you to the outside world,

And the other leads to a smaller one. 

I’m brave enough to open them

There’s white butterflies all around

Flying in a green meadow 

cast over by an endless blue sky 

at the end of the coffee table. 

I open the red door,

It’s my mom’s room again, but this time more familiar

With red curtains,

The curtains—

I say my goodbyes to the lion, robot, and vacuum.

I step through the door-

hear fingers hitting keys—

Light and dark piano with its black and white keys—

Shoes hitting the floor in a slow rhythm

You start to feel the cool breeze 

coming from the blades on the ceiling. 

All these Christmas lights, still shining.

Puzzle pieces scattered everywhere. 

Parents walk in then leave. 

It feels like I’m alone and no one’s ever not busy. 

A signed jersey by Jj Watt in a frame. Dusty cords on the floor.

A strong loving feeling with a newborn boy sleeping next to me.

Then back to the TV with Johnny, Moira, David, 

and Alexis Rose, and Back to Computer Screen One.

Two. Then Three On top of a foldable Table.





how does the girl

with the loudest voice

disappear into

the background

how does she disguise

her crowd drawing smile

with the tired faces

around her

how does she

slip away

why is she forced into

the abstraction of


how does she explain

to her loved ones

she doesn’t want to be here

how does she hide her tear stained cheeks

from those who expect

her to move mountains




5 quiet roses

above my bed sitting deliciously

each a gift

withered from many beatings

by the pillows, stray hands, possibly

a cat that has snuck into my room

however they remain pinned

by their sturdy stem

whose struggles remain unknown

each rose is me

stripped of their thorns

because women are prettier when they

don’t speak

and remain pinned to the wall

petals weep

on their journey to the ground

each petal a word

i chose to bite into

and slide down the back of my throat

like a jagged, salted syllable

an unpleasant experience if i’m being honest

so why do i continue

to prick my throat with thorns

that i strip from the roses

rather then using the vocabulary

i was gifted with


i want you to think i’m beautiful

Read more "EMILY HOOPER – 2 POEMS"



I nudge aside some old poems

to get at the real poetry:

love letters from a former flame.

I’ve no idea why I’ve kept them

only that I’m a hoarder,

even of affection.


There’s something of nostalgia

to them,

like the Marvel comics

in very good condition,

or the copy of Sports Illustrated

with Larry Bird on the cover,

celebrating a championship.


The writing is neat,

the passion likewise,

nothing, I’m sure,

like the long-trashed missives

I sent in response.

Reading between lines is called for.

But, to be honest,

I find more neatness,

only it’s invisible.


From memory,

there was no great passion

between the two of us.

It’s what comes of listening to Yes together.

And decking ourselves out

in bell-bottoms.

But they’re part of history.

And, to my mind,

must be preserved.


But I throw in a few

more useless items,

bury those letters deeper

going forward.

It’s enough to know they’re there.

No place else would have them.





A double downer:

I feel dirty as soot,

sheets smell like dumpster fires.


And here,

on a motel side table,

one cigarette burns a long, neglected ash.

No need to smoke it.


This room’s like a cigarette

with me cocooned inside it.

You and I shared this roadside hideaway.

Years ago.

Before there were flat-screen TV’s.

Before there was flat anything.


Now I lie on a lumpy mattress.

staring up at the nicotine-stained ceiling.


My teeth grind the grit

of what was once desire.

Read more "JOHN GREY – 2 POEMS"