playing with fire 

i find you in warm places. i find you on the tip of my tongue after a sip of morning coffee. i find you at the bottom of the bottle at the end of that same night. i find you in the flame of my favorite candle and in the smoke that floats from my mouth and into the air. i find you in things that only poison me. you float in the clouds above me and i let you. you’re always so down and so grey but stop taunting me, wouldn’t you? if you’re gonna pour, do it now while you have the chance or don’t do it at all. you’re like a drip of rain in the middle of a long, hot drought. you’ve always been such a tease, haven’t you? (and not just in a good way.) because your glass used to overflow. you used to flood lakes and rivers and i always thought one day your love would have me lost at sea but look at this mess you’ve made of me. it’s scorching. i feel the burn in the back of my throat as i bring the bottle of my lips. your touch was always too hot for me. burn-my-fingertips kind of hot. i didn’t used to mind blistering my hands for you. but this water has never tasted so sweet. and i no longer sweat in the heat of you. i don’t long for the summer to come. not now. and not ever again. (don’t play with fire because you are bound to get burned. and you always will. you always have.)

never stop inspiring me

just a few new york towns away using the same metaphors absentmindedly. not thinking of each other. but thinking nonetheless. thinking of love and of loss but never of each other. it’s easy to remember the long things. the permanent ones. but the short ones, the hot ones, the happiest ones, those memories are a little foggy now. we don’t remember each other like we used to and my metaphors aren’t for you anymore. nor yours for me. yet they are still the same and have found a way to become happy, and that is the most comfort i could ever find. 

coughing fit

‪if i say a word enough times it always sounds like your name. you’ve turned my favorite songs sour. i didn’t know sound had a taste but give me a second. let me wash my mouth out. scrub and scratch and gargle and spit. you’re the tingle in the back of my throat. the stupid spec that lingers after a coughing fit. i can’t get you out of my mouth. i just keep saying your name. (they’re gonna wonder what’s wrong with me) i say your name because it is the only word that brings comfort but why the fuck do i cough up blood every time i speak. i leave trails of it everywhere. it’s on my walls and my bed and my floor and to me it’s paint. i’ve never been much of an artist but i swear that i made this for you. and it’s beautiful. and i swear to -i swear if you don’t come back after all this. i swear. my clenched first will fall off my heart will burst my eyes will roll one hundred times over my bones will collapse to the floor and i don’t know where i’ll be. where i’ll go. maybe i’ll disintegrate. come back to me. ‬


maybe if my bones fall apart and sink into the ground you’ll start to miss me. when my bones turn to dust and the rain washes my remnants away and i turn the dirt into a beautiful flower. into something prettier. maybe more delicate. something like a daisy. maybe somehow the planets would align above us and after a steady rainfall that washes away the cold winter and every memory of me and you, my flower will poke through the clean ground. the clouds will part and the sun will shine and there you will see it. in your front yard. the wet green grass and a small white flower. no longer dust on the back of your bookshelf mind but something pretty. no longer bones. no longer pricks and pokes. no longer beating around the bush not being able to say what you feel. it’s there. in front of you. no words needed. straight forward and only one thing left to do. pick me up. in a garden of beautiful things i would always pick you. and i know that daisies never did it for you. they’re too simple and small and trip over their words and you always go for the beautiful. the boldest in the crowd. so go ahead and pick it. pull the rose out of the dirt and prick your fingers on each thorn and bleed until you forget how to do anything else. but don’t come back looking to walk through pretty fields and pluck each petal off of me contemplating if you love me until your raw fingers bleed because red never did look good on me and i will never be the rose you need. my old bones created me a daisy. and that’s all i’ll ever be. and he always loves me not.

remember me

look back and remember me as a raindrop on your favorite flower. water that gets soaked up. easily soaked up by something red and something beautiful. remember me as transparent and small but prominent. remember me as an element. one that can ruin. one that can destroy. that can whip through your town and rip it apart faster than you can say “i miss you” because i won’t forgive you. not now. remember me as a hurricane. destructive and uncontrollable but so intense. the damage looks beautiful somehow. doesn’t it? i wear the same kind of damage on me now. head to toe and wonder if anyone thinks it beautiful like you used to. somehow your fire complimented my rain and i burnt my fingertips and soaked you in as best as i knew how to but i knew. i knew in the back of my brain that water distinguishes fire and some things are too good to be true. especially me and you. i wear my burns now ten months later with pride and sadness and remembrance. and i hope every time the rain falls in our small town, you think of me. remember me. 

modern baseball (for vince and skyler)

my favorite band announced that they are “taking a break today”

some of my favorite memories i’ve ever lived had this band in them

a summer well spent

on back roads with my best friends

in my favorite car that doesn’t run anymore

and all of the miles we put on it

the hours we drove

and the hours we spent looking for parking

and the red fucking car we almost hit (fuck that guy)

all the snapchat videos

all of the memories we shared with each other

and the random places we stopped at to eat (even when we weren’t hungry)

all the cigarettes and laughs and tears and the yelling


and all the alcohol we consumed

the hotel beds we slept on

putting on temporary tattoos with milk at a waffle house in allentown

so far from our hometown

but my friends made it home

this band made philadelphia feel like home

and for some reason i know

that nothing may ever make us feel like that again

and i know that all good things come to an end

i know the game by now

my friends live here and there and everywhere

but not together anymore

and maybe music is the one thing that makes us feel less apart.

“and you, you ask if i gotta leave,

and i wish that i could say no.”



don’t stand there in the silence like water dripping from my bathroom sink. water that never seems to stop. water that can’t stop. don’t stop running. run back to me. make me feel whole. make me feel worthy. put your hands on me. gently. touch me with elegance. look into my eyes like a lovely bit of prose written by your favorite poet. your favorite author. your favorite something. i want to be on your list of things to do. the list of things you love. tell me how to be that for you. listen to songs you love and think of me. i hope it breaks you down. i want the best and absolute worst for you and i mean that in the most endearing of ways. i miss your eyes. the green that i despise now. i now wear green on my skin head to toe because of her. because of you. i’m a monster now. your name still makes me clench my fists and grind my teeth. i’ve turned into this behemoth. a beast that wants to destroy her limb from limb. you don’t think of me now. i’m nothing more than an old dress shirt hanging in your closet that you never wear. nothing more than the dust on your shelves or books you’ve never read. so why am i still here. why am i still the annoying drip of water from your bathroom sink. why am i so wasteful and why am i still waiting. for you, of course. all of this is for you.