Wednesday, August 26, 2015


The weight of your tiny little head
sits snugly on my shoulder.

Your hand settled gently on my arm.

I inhale your sweet scent,
listening to your quiet breathe.

I want to remember this time
because I know it is fleeting.

So I rock a while longer
though it is 4:00am.

Thursday, January 31, 2013


Your kicks and pokes and prods
a secret communion.

And I revel in each and every one.

Amazed at the depth of adoration
for the most precious life I carry inside.

Thursday, February 09, 2012


I am standing in the park

little pink shorts and
tiny hands in the air

just a little girl

I think I must have been happy
smiling at you through the camera

I think you must have been smiling too

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


This is what you are.

It radiates from your core
and casts a warm glow.

Sometimes I like to take a moment
to bask in it's light.

Pretending I belong there.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

I Want You to Know

I want you to know that I’m okay.

That my life is filled with laughter and light and
I am loving more than I ever
thought I could.

I want you to know that I cry now, the way
I have always wished for - openly
without restraint.

That I wake up every morning feeling hopeful and
thankful for all of it.

And I want you to know that no matter the past
I know now that you loved me.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Last Words

It is 58 days you've been gone now.

And your number still sits in my phone book.

"Mom's Cell"

Out of service months ago.

Hopeless in my daily attempts to erase it (you)
as if I am awaiting your call from the grave.

And sometimes I dial it - late at night
praying that you'll answer and tell me
what a useless daughter I am.

Because "I hate your fucking guts"
can't have been your last words to me.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Message in a Bottle

I found their message in a bottle
lying in the warm white sand
signed "Mike and Debbie"
washed ashore by waves and undertow
and something they call "rip tide".

The hotel paper (so delicate in my hands).

And I imagine it must have been written
in front of the sunset
this list of hopes and dreams and fears
and flung fiercely into the ocean
with absolute abandon.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009


Is it wrong that I sometimes long for your death?
(I don't suppose it could possibly be right).

The yearning I feel for just a moment - a taste
of the peace your death could bring.

The finality your funeral would provide.

I could throw myself on your coffin
the way I've often imagined

and cry grateful, happy tears of sorrow -

for you would finally be free.

And so would I.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

W(hole) Again

I think I found myself today.

Managed to get my hands on
all the little pieces.

All this time, thinking I was broken
when I was really just lost.

It's time now (I say)
place me back together - all those tiny pieces.

Because I think I am ready to be whole again.

Monday, May 04, 2009

How Perfectly Absurd...

How perfectly absurd it seems to me
that I still desire for your approval.

That I can't help but wander through
my brand new hallways and wish
that you were there - wide eyed and smiling.

"Ohhhh"ing and "Awwww"ing at my choices.

Knowing (even) that upon your exit you'd
likely forget where you'd been anyway.

Saturday, March 21, 2009


As far as I can remember, we never really had much in common.

Never truly liked each other.

You wanted this while I wanted that.

You'd spit word after hateful word in my direction
(hoping for a reaction)
while I stared casually at my finger nails.

And we were never really, sincerely engaged until
we were in your bed.

Because the truth is, the only thing we ever had in common
was a mutual reverence for your penis.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


I see this woman begging
every day in traffic.

Sitting there - lined up in our cars
waiting for the light we turn our faces
as she approaches
cup in hand.

And I wonder if one day I'll
look up and see your face.

And if you'll recognize your daughter
sitting there in traffic before
I turn my face away in shame
as you walk past my
closed window.

Sunday, December 28, 2008


I am not suicidal.

But every now and then while
driving the highway alone
1:30 in the morning
I imagine.

How easy it would be to
take my hands off
the wheel and drift.

My fiance -
"you shouldn't think such things",
he says.

And I wonder what it is that
compels me to stay
within the lines.

When it would be so easy
just to drift.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

The phone rings and for a moment I consider that
perhaps I should change my number...

but my stomach aches at the thought that
no matter what filth you spew at your daughter
through the receiver,

I would rather bear the pain than miss your call.

Thursday, November 06, 2008


I was never the girl who dreamed of a wedding.

Satisfied with the thought of being just I
with you.

And now here I find myself preparing and
readying for this unknown role.

Hoping that I land with two feet
that I don't fall short of your desires (and mine).

Because I truly meant it that cold winter day
when I said it would bring me great pleasure
to be your wife.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I had a dream last night that the world was ending.

I stood smiling in the kitchen
when I heard it approaching.

The room started rumbling and
soon after came the winds.

And I let myself get taken
swept away into the sky.

Twisting and turning getting further away
and the smile, it never left my face.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Your Pain

If I could steal your pain, little brother, I would.

Just a little each day so
it went unnoticed.

and after a while you'd find you
smiled just a little more often
(and wonder why).

And I'd make room, little brother, if I could.

just a little each day in my heart
for yours.

and before long all the memories would
fade leaving behind only the good
(but you wouldn't ask why).

Cause I know your pain, little brother, I should

I've carried it along side you
held it up, head down
(year after year).

If I could steal your pain, little brother

I would.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


It chokes and suffocates my spirit and
mutates my soul beyond recognition.

And you - the bomb - oblivious (uncaring) to
the wreckage left in your wake.

Monday, July 14, 2008


I often cry alone.

Standing in the shower
forehead against the wet tile
I heave.

Water and tears mix together
so you can't tell one from
the other.

Because God forbid anyone find out

I am human.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

White Dress

It saddens me

the thought of trying on a white frilly dress
all alone

turning around and around in the mirror
in an empty room

and the sales lady - the only one there
to unzip me.

Friday, May 23, 2008


I liked my broken self - I did.

The many pieces

shapes and textures that

(if one had the dedication)

could be found floating in various spaces

and delicately placed together

to make one.

Friday, April 04, 2008

We Were

We were inseparable once.

We carved our names into a rock
on an island way up North.

Wondered aloud how much fun it would be
to come back to that place when we aged.

Maybe I'd be married and you'd have a
high powered career.

I went back to that rock - without you today
and ran my fingers over our names.

We were friends once.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Thursday, March 27, 2008


My grandmother insists that we eat off matching dessert plates

Blue flowers

How absurd we think (it's just a casual dinner)

but before she can speak

my grandfather has already sorted them and removed

all the white ones.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Ricardo Lopez

We watch selected excerpts from
your 18 hour tape.

Armed with popcorn
a can of coke.

And all the while call you disturbed.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

My Rock

I've always been so strong.

Always been the rock, the support beam for
everyone to lean on.

But you were my rock that day.

And I stood there with a straight back
offered my beam with dry eyes and
a sympathetic smile.

They didn't see my hand holding yours -
grasping so tightly my knuckles were white or
how I held onto your arm so tightly on the way
to the car for fear of falling down.

They just saw me - strong and supportive and
wondered how I was pulling it off.

They didn't know.

You were my rock that day.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Time Bomb

I walk around each day with a ticking time bomb.

It sits quietly out of sight, snuggly
lodged between my stomach and
my rib cage.

(sometimes if you get really close
you may even hear it ticking)

And I'm not sure what to do with this ticking time bomb.

Dismantle it or perhaps just allow it
to tick tick tick until it inevitably

(and my insides are left naked and
exposed on the wall beside you)

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Save You

There are some times I wish I could save you.

I lay in bed at night staring
into the darkness and ask for a sign,
the words I could use

anything to save you.

But it's nights like these that make me realize.

the darkness, it doesn't end and
there simply are no signs,
no words I could use

nothing to save you.

And I start to wonder, on nights like these
if there is anyone out there who can save me.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Let (it) Go

I wonder what it must feel like to let (it) go.

To let it soar.

High up into the air and hover above the clouds.

No more panic, no pain.

No control and no fear.

So light and free like wings above the clouds.

And I would soar.

I wonder what it must feel like to let (it) go.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Peter Knowles

Hello I've reached Peter Knowles.

He's not who I meant to call
I must have hit a wrong digit on the phone.

In any case he knows all about you now.

He knows your name and what you look like.
I told him some of your stories.
He knows how you kiss.
He knows you're in my heart.

Who would have thought that professing it all
to a stranger's answering machine would bring
such a sense of calm.

I am forever in your debt my dear Peter.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

I'm Not Going To Write Anymore

I decided last tuesday while I was
brushing my teeth and plucking
stray hairs from my face

I'm not going to write anymore.

For no particular reason except
that I felt the need to decide to
decide something.


But by thursday my head was filled
to the brim with words that needed
to be put on paper.

I'm not going to write anymore.

I thought maybe speaking aloud
would stop the madness that was
taking over my brain.

"a flower"


"red on white"

" a bird"

But soon I realized that I could no sooner
will my heart to stop beating than
stop the poetry that flows in my veins

and so I

retrieved my pen from a drawer and
carefully placing it on a white sheet
I wrote in long swooping sweeps:

I'm not going to write anymore.

Sunday, December 02, 2007


I can handle your lashings like

no one you've ever seen.

Your needles and knives they've

found their home on all the softest parts

of my skin.

And I am comfortable with that.

I am a masochist

and I know you approve.

Monday, November 19, 2007

I Am Not Like You

I am not like you.

(though it pleases you to believe that I am).

And I realize that it must make the days appear
much more accommodating if you can imagine
that there is someone else out there
just like you.

(and perhaps there is).

And though I am almost perpetually uncertain of who and
what it is exactly that you are or when and
where you may have come from.

(I am sure of one thing).

I am not like you.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Monday, November 12, 2007


I often suspect that you're still out there, still living,
still breathing while being the person you portray
and so desperately struggle to be.

And I see you still...

wandering forth and stumbling back
with a torn and tattered map, a watch that
can't tell time and a broken compass.

Still ravenously devouring misplaced souls
and documenting them with beautifully
written black and white rhetoric.

Still watching yourself with callow eyes as
the world unfolds and folds again around you...

still living the lie you've disguised as the dream.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


It breaks my heart - the way they talk about you
as if you are nothing more than a failure or
a disappointment or
an addict.

Turning a blind eye to your pain, never considering how
difficult it must have been failing to meet expectations
while everyone around you was
exceeding them.

Seeing only the mistakes and the blunders and
all of the cuts and the bruises that your
transgressions have left on them and
ignoring your own.

But I see you - a person (in pain) who stumbles and falls
but still rises each morning as a man, as a father
a soldier.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Friday, October 19, 2007


Many nights while lying quietly in bed
wearing only my underwear, book in hands

I feel your eyes on me.

Watching me, admiring as if I were
a painting, a piece of art perhaps a watercolor.

I feel your eyes on me.

And for just a moment I know what it must feel like to be
a Monet or possibly even a Picasso.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007


I awake most mornings to the smell of you getting ready
dabbling about between the sink and the bedroom
quietly opening closets and putting on clothing
so as not to disturb me.

But it's your smell that wakes me so
gracefully wafting into my subconscious
not soap nor hairspray nor the pot of coffee you've brewed
just simply your smell - indescribably you.

And I think to myself how tragic mornings would be
if I were forced to awake to only the smell of coffee.

Saturday, August 18, 2007


He rides swiftly, valiant from place to place
rescuing the lonely and the orphaned.

Large arms strong, tattooed, (not violent)
perfect for hugging a son or a daughter.

Today he says be strong, be who you are,
be proud, be yourself (and I am).

Later he'll sit quiet, alone in the dark,
needle in hand wondering where he went wrong.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

This Rock

I stood there, heart griping, hands racing
this rock on the side of the mountain.

Rapids flowing beneath me.

Halfway between sudden beauty and
breathtaking death.

"They" always tell you not to look down but
I put my face right in the water and drank.

And I stood there, soul stepping carefully, feet searching
this rock on the side of the mountain.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

The Loon

Her voice rings out across the silent lake
and I lay there in the dark listening
wondering who she sings to
and why.

If maybe she's looking for someone and
if her song is happy or sad...

Or if she cries out simply because
her nature compels her to do so.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


...and you stole my quiet heart last night
when you turned in a sleepy haze toward me
kissed my face in the dark and
called me "my baby"...

Monday, June 04, 2007

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

I Loved A Poet Once

I loved a poet once.

Not the man nor the body that housed him.

The poet.

Romanced, seduced, inspired by his uncultivated ability

to place words one by one

beautifully on a page.

I loved a poet once.

Not the person nor the flesh that held him.

The poet.

And someday perhaps they'll ask with eager ears

"tell the story of your heart's first love"

at this I'll just smile and simply say,

"I loved a poet once..."

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

I Look

I look around myself




a landscape of lives and dreams
a bloodline of failures and damages
strewn every which way




and I think there must be a plan
all of this carnage, it can not be in vain
so I turn my eyes to the sky and I look

above myself

and ask for the courage to look


Monday, April 23, 2007

Red Soil

The red soil is impossible to get off of your skin.

No matter how much you wash and
scrub and wipe

The white towel you dry off with still
has streaks of red from the soil.

So you use an extra bar of soap and
wash twice instead of once and
eventually you get clean.

But with so much red soil it's impossible to get it all and
eventually you find that it's found a way into the

little tiny places you can't reach with a bar of Dove and a Q-tip.

And you come home and after
6 months or even 8 there is no trace of it left
and you realize that

the red soil is actually not all that difficult to scrub off your skin
but there is just simply no way to wash it from

your heart.


My last night in Nairobi I lay quietly in the dark.

Frogs conversing outside my window.

Thinking how nice it would be to get back to water pressure.

reliable toilets


a full stomach

The plane ride home felt like months.


And now here I am, in this place (my home) with

a full stomach and a toilet that will flush

wishing more than anything that I could find a way back

to torrential downpours

dusty roads

chocolate skin and

a satiated soul.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007


Though it has been many nights since
I've slept beside you, curled
in your warm embrace,

my lip still trembles at the thought
of another long haired beauty
lying comfortably (unknowing)
in my place.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007


You said I was like fire.

Hot and searing,

my eyes blazing with
sex and violence.

Destroying everything that crossed my path.

Igniting, consuming.

And you,

you tried to be water.

Gently pouring yourself onto me
trying to douse my flames

only to find yourself scorched and dried.

And my fire,

it fiercely burned on.

Sunday, February 11, 2007


I still remember the way he always tried to hide his hands.

He'd pull them up into his sleeves ashamed of their condition.

The disease.

I would bring them to my face and gently run my lips over them.

They touched me with grace and softness

and followed the curves of my body with ease.

Tasted like cherries.

I never told him then but

I always thought they were beautiful.

Thursday, February 01, 2007


At times dear boy it's
simply the thought of you that

tends to leave me with
the insatiable desire to

pat you on the head

hand you a lollipop and

send you off to bed.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007


I am beginning to suspect that
at some point in the
not so distant future

They will remove our hearts and
replace them with

tiny little

multi function


mp3 players.

And we will all be faced with the
critical task of choosing
which song

(fast or slow)
(happy or sad)

our new heart will
beat to

Sunday, January 21, 2007

This One Ends

Please forgive me if I'm not
sitting on the very edge of my seat
eyes focused
and eager

I already know how this one ends.

I truly apologize if I'm not
shuddering in anticipation
at the thought of your
mouth on my mouth.

Blood rushing to my tongue.

And do excuse me for not
being overcome with excitement
at the suggestion of having your
heated body on mine.

Devouring you with each breathe.

You see I've played this part once before and
as talented as you are at
spinning a

I already know how this one ends.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

A Cross

It makes people
so very
this tattoo
that sits
bold and beautiful
silent and strong
on the inside of
my wrist.
my Faith
a sign
a symbol
a tribute
a prayer
A Cross.
And they stare at it (the religious and the non)
with uneasy eyes and look me up and down trying to decide
if I'm
a "real"
or something
much different.
How silly,
how profound it
seems to me
that people
(the religious
and the non)
become so
in the
precense of
A Cross.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Perfect Perfection

You don't know very much about me.

my favorite



the most secret wishes of my heart.

But you're so very good at make believe...

creating the daughter you want me to be and

patting yourself on the back for spawning such

perfect perfection.

You deserve a gold star.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The Sanctuary

red wine

pillow cases

worn out pages

leonard cohen

Thursday, November 23, 2006

The Pill

I have to take these pills
three times a day

so I don't get sick.

They come in a huge bottle.

"Take With Food"

in bold letters across the label.

I stopped taking them once and
thought I could control it
mind over matter

liberating myself.

But after a while I found myself
hunched over with nothing in my stomach

but crackers and apple juice.

And I was told I couldn't survive like that.

So now I swallow the pill each day with a meal.

Because sometimes it's just easier to take
the pill and eat bacon and eggs

than to suffer it out with nothing on your stomach.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


Today I realized that...

We're not in highschool anymore and
you're not the person you once were and

It's become apparent that...

you're feigning ignorance and
hoping that I don't see through it and

Clearly I am a moron...

Monday, November 06, 2006

This Love

Lately I find myself lying around in the midday
sun on my couch thinking of
this love.

And I find the thought of being without
just as unnerving as the idea of
being with.

And I wonder if somehow my subconscious shall find
a way to sabotage us (you) as it
always does.

And I pray with all of my strength that this time
my heart will not deny
this love.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Shame On Me

There was a time when I couldn't see
beyond the boundaries of my own suffering.

Until I met a woman.

HIV positive

And this woman, she held her head high
and she danced.

Shame on me.

Until I met a boy.

Torn clothing
No family
Bare Feet

And this boy, he held his head high
and he sang.

Shame on me.

Shame for crying when I had
so many reasons to laugh.

Shame for not realizing how
lucky I truly was.

Shame for thinking I knew what real suffering was.

Shame on me.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Amani Ya Juu

It was there that I found it.

In the middle of a violent rain storm
a run down jeep with a leaky roof
open space surrounding us.

It came pouring down from the sky
soaking me right through to
the depths of my soul.

I hadn't even realized how dry I was.

Someday I'll take you back to that place...

the place where I found

Amani Ya Juu.

Friday, October 13, 2006


Just below my navel where
my pants meet my waist
sits the tiny purple bruise
you left there last night
with your lips.

And throughout the day
I can't help but run my fingers
gently over it, smiling at
the memory of your mouth
in that place.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Thank You

I was taught a lesson in humility by
a little boy no older than 6.

Broken and tattered,
dirty and torn

He took my hand and smiled,
walked with me for a while.

Never said a word,
his tiny hand in mine.

Then just like that he let me go and
walked gently into the distance.

I am overwhelmed with gratitude.

Thank you little one.

Thank you little one.

Thank you.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Sunday Afternoon

I found true love on a warm Sunday afternoon.

Sitting on your bed wearing only
my bra and
your boxers

playfully strumming your guitar while
singing to you of
bones and
bedframes and
whatever else.

And you watched with a smile and
you listened without a word and

I sang to you for hours

on a warm Sunday afternoon.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Sadness Personified

Sometimes I fear I will lose my words...

that they'll just stop coming and I'll be left
with nothing but a blank page.

I'll look out into the landscape and
instead of poetry I'll simply see

a tree

a cloud

a fence

For what am I if not a poet...

and can I still write with a quiet mind
and a calmed soul if I am no longer

sadness personified

but just simply and perfectly myself

Monday, September 18, 2006

Forever Purple Skies

Forever purple skies...
and red blades over rolling hills.

Falling asleep in soft yellow laughter
and waking to blue morning dreams.

Your pink evening whisper and
soft green caress.

They sing to me of orange tear drops and
forever purple skies...

Friday, September 15, 2006

A Poet

The girl in the line in front of me
cannot understand how her friend
could love a man like him.

"It's all words", she says.

And the friend desperately tries to explain.

But I know what it is to love
a poet

Seduced by the writer inside of him.

So I smile knowingly and stare
into the distance.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

The Choo

I left my misery somewhere between
the Mara and Narok.

Stopped to use the washroom -
a cement room with a hole in the ground
crouched down hugging my knees
trying not to piss on my shoes.

I think perhaps it fell down
into the dark abyss in the earth
while I was pulling my pants up and
trying not to breathe too deep.

If only they sold therapy like that
for $70 per session back home where
they put you in an outhouse for 30 minutes and
had you scream your affliction into the toilet.

Perchance I'd have discarded my misery
long ago.

Thursday, July 27, 2006