the one you like

That girl you like
is outside your favorite bar
breaking up with some dude,
who’s not very happy about it.

That girl you like
has a thousand yard stare
and may be somewhat worse off
for her alcohol intake.

That girl you like
seems like she has problems
that neither you nor any other man
can fix. That girl you like
is such a low talker
that I couldn’t hear a single word
of her side of the conversation,
no matter how hard
I strained my ears.

That girl you like
just went inside to continue her
drinking, with or without
companions. you know the girl,
and that sounds like something
she would do. you know,
the one you like.

lifeline

I’m sorry. I saw the drowning
look in your eyes – the one
I know so well from
the inside out, the one that says
everyone thinks everything
is fine but it’s not okay, I’m
not okay
– and didn’t throw
you a lifeline. I know
how it feels to be the only one
in the room who’s holding
on to a grudge because it’s
been with you so long it feels
like a part of you, so that to
let it go would mean losing
something of your identity,
even though everyone else thinks
you’re punishing the person
for old dead deeds and why
can’t you just get over it
already. you can’t. you’re
not ready. you might not
ever be ready. and he doesn’t
deserve your forgiveness.

you warm yourself
by the fire of your hatred.
I know.

square peg

I used to be that girl,
the one with the knife in her heart
slowly twisting it
getting off on the pain
and the slow poisoning,
using it to make my art
because happiness seemed
in such short supply. I was angry
at life for tormenting me
and at myself for letting it,
but mostly I was wallowing
in sadness. and then
someone offered me
a way out. and I realized
that it was my choice
all along, and therefore I could
choose to feel differently.

all those things
that made me feel
like I was not good enough,
irredeemably flawed, broken,
gradually transformed
into what made me me
and seen through
different eyes, became
lovable.

if you’re out there trying
to hammer that square peg
into a round hole, just
walk away. all that energy
will come back to you threefold
once you release it
from its fruitless labor.

things I didn’t say

last night I saw him,
for the first time
in months, and
I did not speak.

I saw his eyes on me
and turned away,
expressionless,
as if I didn’t even
notice. I felt
his thoughts and feelings,
his dark vibes
and creepy, lonely
emanations
from across the room.

twice I felt some
subterranean urge
rising inside myself
to talk to him, when
the situation gave rise
to an opportunity
to make a joke
or a comment
that he would uniquely
appreciate, but I stayed
resolute and
held my tongue.
no good could
come of it. we’ve
been down that path
before. plus
I didn’t want to give him
the satisfaction
of being the first
one to acknowledge
the other.

yes, it’s petty. I’m
petty around him.
that’s one of the many
reasons I refuse
to go back to the place
where I care
what he thinks.
I lived there for too long
and hated every
minute of it.

I successfully avoided him
until he left. good riddance
to bad rubbish. proof that
if you wait long enough,
the trash will
take itself out.