March 25, 2013


I feel like spring,
As if I am Persephone,
But the cold is Pluto
Wrapping his dark cold arms around me,
Chilling my fingers
As the wind roars through the budded branches of trees.
And as I sing,
The petals fall,
Words clinging to my lips,
Falling to the frozen ground
Still caked heavy with decaying leaves.

I have tasted the sweetness of a pomegranate,
But the tiny pits are becoming soured
Causing my stomach to churn,
Like talking about yourself in third person
Because you do not want them to know it was you all along.
I know I must stay here,
I tell myself,
Hoping to remember something lost so long ago.

The feeling of a pulse.
A heart beating faster with every kiss.
Breath heavy against my neck.
Faces fading more quickly than I could recognize,
As we tangled ourselves together
Like wild animals clashing
Teeth and claws exposing
Ripping at one another without flinching.

July 27, 2011

They don't care how it ends.

© Dave Rudin, 2008

i stumble naked
Over fallen branches and stones,
And they are all there,
The Narcissus,
Sitting in neat little rows,
Staring at themselves
Trapped in mirrors.
They are their own students,
Listening to only themselves.
i lean against rocks and debris
Screaming the false hope of a dying breed,
Like Echo,
Holding wasps in my palms
Ignoring their stings.

"i will hide myself away...
And live in fake places."

When the water rushes in,
It will strip the graffiti from the walls,
Leaving them bare and lifeless.
It will put out our fires,
One by one,
Until no one can breathe
From all the smoke.
But it will not cloud up your mirrors.

You are the ones,
The first.
And when you are sitting
behind barbed wire
And tall metal bars
You will only speak
What you always spoke
In an apathetic language.

September 14, 2010

Nostalgia: And the Girl with the Mask Crashes all of your Parties.


She stares out the window,
moonlight kissing her face like tiny silver butterflies,
diamonds in her eyes.
She wonders why the wind is so cold and why your gaze hurts so much,
looking at something no one can have.
Your lips produce words made out of limestone and sulfur,
breathing smoke into wildfires.
They’re in the next room listening,
telling her she’s wrong, they’re sorry,
just hang up the phone.

She’s laughing, they say.

Frost coats the ground, killing the flowers,
ice protruding from their stems.
Oceans recede forming deserts of nothing,
ships sailing farther from her shores.
There is a man with wild hair there,
building tiny girl storms with his bare marble hands.
She feels when you speak,
electric sparks peircing her bruised skies,
crying for the man who isn’t ever coming back.

Millions of tiny bugs creep around beneath her skin,
mud caked under fingernails from years of digging too deep,
vines covered in thorns tangling around her throat.
She remembers his hands on her thighs,
his lips aginst her neck,
butterflies in her stomach.
i won’t run again, she told herself,
never run away and never look back.
i will forget, you know.
i can’t remember your skin,
the smell of your hair like fallen leaves,
your crazy heartbeat,
my favorite things.
i have forgotten your voice,
the way you move your fingers like spiders,
how your entire body laughs.
When i closed my eyes,
you would be there like a ghost behind me,
your breath on my shoulder,
quiet little words in my ear.
You said we could stay in that city forever.

i didn’t need you, just sleep.

September 8, 2010

Nostalgia: Hair and Bones and Hands and Teeth.


A blue little boy watches you,
Wet eyes seeping from inside a windowless room.
i’m running out of air, he says,
The words and sounds pouring from his chest,
Slipping through his fingers,
You never wanted to hear me.

A rain cloud girl stumbles over a thick summer night,
Mourning Dove cries in her throat.
i know i should just leave you there with slipping words.
They tangle in my lungs,
Beat against my chest like the echo of thunder.

The dream looked like a memory,
A house built into the arms of oak trees,
Old mattresses on the floor where they would lay.
Water filled the room and she held her breath forever.
Lilies blossomed where there were once sentences,
Thick red petals for lips,
Kissing her neck,
Whispering their floral words.

The blue boy speaks in his sleep,
Calling names and answering questions she didn’t ask,
Breaking bones that never existed.
You can’t always be here, you know.
You’ll go away again like before, he tells her.
i can’t use those words on you.

Where is it, she asked without speaking.
Over there, he muttered with his eyes shut.

You know they will tear us apart like meat if we go out there,
Ripping the flesh from our skin, revealing our red wet insides.

But we can’t be here forever.
This room is too dark, i can’t see anymore,
i just begin to contradict myself when i speak,
i haven’t felt the sun for days.
And you don’t like to be so dependent, i know,
But there’s nothing here anymore.

If you knew, i would just stay longer.
If i knew, i wouldn’t still be here.
i can tell that your blue boy eyes are the stars,
And that my rain cloud words aren’t the sky.

But the dream was like a memory where she had clung to you in a house held by a tree,
Sitting on a mattress like wet sunsets,
Holding your shirt tight in her small hands,
Her face against your chest full of bones,
Your fingers running through her hair like sound,
Talking to her in your sleep through a perfect cage of teeth.

September 4, 2010

i've Got Nothing Left.

The smoke follows my fingers
When the sun rises,
Kissing my face through the trees.
And i wonder what you are thinking When i am running away,
When i stay up all night,
My body covered with paint.

Your vocal chords move in such a beautiful way,
every word with feeling,
stabbing my chest,
blood filling my lungs.
And what would you think?
The photographs fading in water and sunlight,
My mouth screaming silence.

i found you like a cat,
Licking wounds,
Catching mice,
Another diety.
Your mouth opens in a whisper,
And then i remember.
i remember how i knew about you.
You were a little boy,
your dark hair hanging in your face.
The branches of the tree finding your arms, legs, feet.
Rough against your skin.

i want you to find me again,
Hiding in the woods,
frogs in my mouth,
dirt caked beneath my fingernails.
i want you to catch me chasing girls with ribbons in their hair,
running barefoot over autumn.
The air brushing against my skin,
words coming from places i cannot explain.

Music drips from your palms,
Orcestras fall from your lips.
Lovers die and are reborn in my chest as words,
sobbing incoherently,
growing like weeds.
It was a mistake not writing you poetry,
meaningless sentences that mean so much to me.

September 2, 2010

Nostalgia: Dryad.


The girl crawls between boulders covered in wet moss,
Shoving her feet into the cool dirt,
Rooting herself tightly under the surface.
Ivy with thick flat emerald leaves tangles around her legs,
Creeping between her thighs like a lover.

An owl questions her,
Gazing through her with his giant new moon eyes,
His head twisting with extra vertebrae hidden behind a mess of feathers.
So she watches an orange fish swim beneath a loose net of exposed roots,
A small brown snake slithering into a crack underground between her ankles.

The boy sits at her feet,
Hair wild like a lion,
Thick dark honey curls against his forehead.
When are you going to tell me your stories, he asks,
His voice echoing the ripples in the water,
Running his hands over her bruised hips like her ivy lover.

Her body was a seed, she told you.
She covered herself in mud in November,
Hid beneath leaves all winter waiting.
The sky began to weep in spring,
Making the air smell wet,
Heavy warm drops kissing her face,
Washing away dried cracking dirt,
Her body looking like a budding Chrysanthemum.

At night she clung to ash colored trees,
Holding her small body with their huge fingers.
They told her about the wolves who traveled alone,
Hunted instead of hunting,
Their ears low,
Exposing sharp wet teeth,
Flowers that became people,
they danced in the morning,
Covered with dew,
Apparitions of lost wet eyed girls,
Their thin white gowns covering dirty feet.

Summer brought her boys who threw stones and mud at her,
Holding her down because she wouldn’t fuck them,
The hot silver pavement burning against her back.
The girls with bodies made of glass,
Bones showing like sillhouettes in their hips
whispered about her small breasts and messy hair,
Their mouths full of plastic daisies.
A man put his hand between her legs,
Told her that she was beautiful through the glaze of drugs,
Only to pretend that he forgot he said it later.
She felt like a rotting flower,
Like she would become brown and dry,
Only to wilt after being trampled by the monsters,
But it was a woman with hollow cheeks and a thin face,
Magic in her eyes kept her alive.

She forgot how to sleep,
But Night came through her window,
Her eyes covered in stars,
Warm damp skin the color of untouched ocean.
She brought him in a dream,
The boy with constellations in his chest,
The voiceless papier mache birds in trees made from her bones,
Starving red girls wearing masks,
Looking like little wild foxes in a thin prison of forest.

Your heart is like a terrible car accident, she said,
Pressing her hand to his chest.
i can see the painful twisted metal,
Taste the cuts from peices of broken glass,
The smell of gasoline dripping onto the pavement.
You’re still alive,
i can feel the pulse in your lips.
There are sounds stuck in your lungs,
i can feel them sometimes,
Like they are rivers,
Like they are the heartbeat echoing in my veins.

We count the ghosts in my bed,
Their fingers running through my hair,
Cold blue lips on my shoulders,
Digging their nails into my back.
Their voices are hollow and sick like poison,
Whispering into my neck,
Convulsing like death in my arms.

i am the earth;
The trees and mountains and oceans and rivers, she whispers,
Her voice made from honeysuckle.
And you are the sky;
the heat from the sun and wind that kisses my hair.
You carry the sounds of the birds and waves inside your body.
i can see it in our eyes.

Then why do you doubt so much, he asks her,
His teeth like the skyline behind his lips.

In the morning the boy leaves the girl,
The smell of him clinging to the sheets,
His heartbeat like vertigo in her ears.

August 31, 2010

Nostalgia: Not a Mortal Wound


She drives through the rain with the windows down,
The glass drops hitting her face and thighs and shoulders.
She feels like the little deer in that song,
And you are the hunter,
With arrows so neat and sharp.

i cannot move when you are around, she says,
But i feel wilder, now that i think about it.
i just want to be there when the world is over,
And if i die, i want to do it with my ear to your heart,
Remembering every little detail.

She knows that everything is in his body,
That his insides must look like how he sounds,
His hands tracing over faces in photographs,
Reading her secrets because she can't stand to keep them.

She asks him if he has seen her lately,
Her dark hair making her look like an angry beast
Lips painted with red.
She really does try hard not to think about the hunter,
About his perfect hands holding perfect weapons,
The hunter who let the silver arrow fly through her body
Splintering bones.

i cannot get rid of you, she always says,
Her voice sounding more like the broken music box,
Full of her mother's jewelry,
Missing words and notes as she speaks.
You left me with the the tip of your arrow inside my lungs,
My footsteps strange, my heartbeating the speed of death.
But i know that it was an accident,
That your fingers slipped from the feathered nock.

You are in the kissing marble statues,
The music in indie films,
The smell of the sky before it rains.
i see you in impossible places you would never really be.

When i'm really quiet i can still hear your voice,
Feel your fingers against the strings,
The pulse in your wrists.

You never thought to ask me why.