INSIDE MY HOUSE ~ BY 100 SENIORS IN SOUTHERN NEW MEXICO (class of 2020)

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.

 

Read more "INSIDE MY HOUSE ~ BY 100 SENIORS IN SOUTHERN NEW MEXICO (class of 2020)"

EMILY HOOPER – 2 POEMS

nightmarish

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

happiness

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

easy

i want you to think i’m beautiful

Read more "EMILY HOOPER – 2 POEMS"

JOHN GREY – 2 POEMS

THE TRUNK

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.

 

~

 

THE CIGARETTE LONG AFTER

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"

HOLLY DAY – BLUE CAR

Blue Car

The car appeared outside the house, as if by magic

dropped from the sky into a pile of snow, tire tracks obliterated by fresh snow.

A sleeping bag blocked the back window completely, candy wrappers

could be seen on the front seat.

After a couple of days, my neighbor came over and asked me if it was my car

if I wouldn’t mind moving it so that her nephew could park there. I told her

how the car had just appeared in that spot, and that I didn’t think anyone

had come back for it since its arrival, although

I thought I saw a couple of people sitting in the front seat very late the night before

hands frantically moving in the dim overhead light

but it may have been a dream.

A week or so later, a tow truck came and got the car, probably called by my neighbor

the one who came over or perhaps a different one entirely

the spot where the car had been parked was black and green with oil and antifreeze

dirty snow and a couple of smashed beer cans. I watched the car get pulled

backwards down the street, waited for a door to fling open angrily

in the car or in a neighboring house, but no one came out after the car

no one chased the truck frantically down the street.

 

 

Read more "HOLLY DAY – BLUE CAR"

Michael Lee Johnson – OPEN EYES LAID BACK

Open Eyes Laid Back

 

Open eyes, black-eyed peas,

laid back busy lives,

consuming our hours,

handheld devices

grocery store

“which can Jolly Green Giant peas,

alternatives,

darling, to bring home tonight-

these aisles of decisions.”

Mind gap:

“Before long apps

will be wiping our butts

and we, others, our children

will not notice.”

No worries, outer space,

an app for horoscope, astrology

a co-pilot to keep our cold feet

tucked in.

Read more "Michael Lee Johnson – OPEN EYES LAID BACK"