A poem I wrote when I was twenty years old.

“I’m fine”

I need time to figure out how

I feel.

I need you to know what’s

wrong because that’s how

I measure if you care at all.

I’m dying, I’m dead, I need

to sleep for a hundred years,

just go away.

“I’m tired”

Life is a pile, a huge bucket full of

lead or dead things, and I

must carry it all, no one else

takes a turn, and they shout

and growl at my selfishness,

demanding I share the load,

but it is screwed to my

shoulders and my skin tears

when they pull.

I do not think my life will

ever consist of anything but



It’s not just a “see you later,” we

very well won’t see each other for

the rest of our corn-fed lives, and

if we do we shouldn’t, we’ll just

keep on killing each other and

saying thank you about it.

I never want to leave you but I

have the kind of exhaustion that

perpetuates itself and if I don’t

move from this bed I will turn to


“I love you”

I’m too weak to love myself and

so I give it to others to carry, and

now that I’ve given it to you I

don’t have to work – I can

skate by on the warm air of

your voice, the red words you hush

into my ears, and I will have

absolutely no cares until you stab

me right through my chest and then

I will have every care that ever

existed at once.

I wouldn’t buy myself for a dollar,

for laundry quarters, for the

last egg in the carton.

“Don’t leave me”

Don’t leave me

“I forgive you”

I’m still pissed as hell but you’re

important enough to me and I’m so

used to you doing your life right close

to my life that I can’t keep on being

silent with you so goddammit we

need to get over something before

the conflict turns to a god and

smites us to oblivion, to the oblivion

of cold acquaintance.

I need you to hurt me again later.


One thought on “Say/Mean

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