031p: prettiest (penelope)

what does it matter
i wipe off my mascara
it keeps running down my face
in front of a camera
the satellite antenna
the public feels my grace

suddenly smiling
with fake reassurance
there’s nothing wrong inside
get me home now (get me home now)
i’ll never be brave
i want to run and hide

all that i know
all that they told me
is that i’m the prettiest girl
they gave me a sash and a tiara
and all that i know
all that they told me
is that i’m the prettiest girl

i saw a boy dying
a boy from my math class
he always sat up front
and there he was lying
in freshly cut grass
a victim of the hunt

they asked me his name
i didn’t know his name
i didn’t know their names

chorus

029p: creatives aren’t meant to push buttons and pull levers

creatives aren’t meant to push buttons and pull levers
they are meant to construct new meanings for buttons and draw levers doing silly things
some people push buttons all day
and are happy; others push buttons
and stare out of the window and pine for the outdoors and think about the other projects they’re working on
we’re all creative in our own ways
we all sprout from stardust
we all love the beating of our own hearts and the inhalation of breath
we all sing songs in the shower
to unseen lovers and grandstands of adoring fans
and some of us stare at computer screens in offices
and we sing in our head

027p: sausage stir fry

a tablespoon of coconut oil
slipped off my finger into
the frying pan; the remnants
rubbed into the dry creases
of my toiling fingers.
catapulted frozen vegetables
to distance myself from
splattering oil, a wooden spoon
bought from safeway
to stir the warming victuals.
normally, chicken presides
over this court of cauliflower,
but, bereft of poultry,
instead a substitute of
polish sausage, sliced
like hot dogs in mac & cheese.

it was fucking delicious.

025p: note to mike m. on the way back to work

do you remember me,
winding through
labyrinthine hallways
to attend your audition?
it’s okay if you don’t;
a brief speck in a life
met with many faces.
such investment goes
into passing people you
kind of know on the street.
in a mote of time
a thousand calculations
beyond the wisdom of robots
cycles through your head,
and by the time you
come to a conclusion–
it’s too late. they’re gone.
and you keep walking.

023p: portland

gray encroaches on the city,
pelting pavement with rain.
curlicues of fog and steam
from the tops of buildings
intermingle. the city is alive.
i feel the wetness from my jacket
draped over the back of my chair,
my ergonomic chair, my chair
built to enhance my work ability.
socialism within a capitalist
context; provide assistance
to create the best worker,
not the best human.
the landscape is foggy and gray.
perpetual portland. the top
of wells fargo scrapes
the bottom of the clouds.
no finite line between them,
like lovers in tangles.

022p: sick of it

i’m sick of living on 174th
sick of feeling in the shadow
of those i should be kin to.
sick of wasting years
locked in depression
and anxiety. i long
to grasp the clouds with
warm fingers and palms
stretched. they say that
tall men die sooner than
short men. my life expectancy
is 64. 30 years left. 30 years
to find something to
hold onto and someone
to hold onto it with.
i’m sick of hating the
brunt of my day. sick of
hating myself. tired of
finding meaning.
i make the meaning.
i make it now.
i foster it and i coddle it
and i whisper things to it
that i would never say
out loud. i am encrusted
in depression, and breaking
through requires immense
pain and pushing.
i will push. i will pain.
i will watch the sunrise
for leisure instead of
from a MAX train to work.