Letting your ambition climb into the back seat

It’s like the time he didn’t move to California, because he couldn’t bear to break her heart
Under the surface he knew what he was giving up, but he also knew that she was worth it
and that she never would have asked him to stay, which is most of the reason that he did
He had big dreams and had just figured out what they were,
Calling his baby sister from jail on her birthday could have been enough to open his eyes,
but it took a different brand of heartbreak to get through to him
She wasn’t his first love and he wasn’t hers but that’s why it worked
It takes two broken hearts to mend just one, so they took turns
His baby sister was left to sleep with his worn out t-shirt and tell it that she missed him
because three is an odd number, and you can’t call shotgun on a brother
But you can call shotgun on the front seat of the car on the way to pick him up from college for the summer,
and that’s what she did, because for three whole months he was going to be hers
She didn’t know he would spend every one of those nights on the phone
when she had expected him to spend them on the couch beside her, watching re-runs of Lost
and listening to the archive of stories she’s been waiting to tell him all year
She would never beg
Her heart broke a little, she grew up a lot, and she forgave him

My Advice for Disney Princess Wannabes

If you were to pause a Disney movie an hour in
and never watch the ending, maybe you would realize
that the world isn’t as perfect as I thought it was
Happy endings can’t be made with cookie cutters,
because your Prince Charming may be someone else’s hunchback
and there aren’t a lot of Esmereldas out there
If you want adventure in the great wide somewhere,
throw on your little red hood and go looking for it
Maybe your search will take you under the sea,
or off to fight the Huns alongside Mushu and General Shang
It doesn’t matter, because the point is that Gaston was wrong
Killing the Beast won’t get you where you want to go,
You have to remember that life is a circle
bigger than you or I could ever be on our own
We will all meet our own Ursulas and Jafars,
but that’s nothing a genie can fix because first thing’s first
If you aren’t happy where you are then it’s your responsibility to change
Escape the tower, join the army, destroy that gingerbread cottage
Then, if you’re lucky, you will be blinking in the starlight
and your new dream will come true
Just remember, Jane only wanted to study apes
Belle and Mulan took the place of their fathers
and Jasmine just wanted a day outside the castle walls
So don’t go looking for love, and don’t wait around for it to find you
Because some of you will marry Prince Charming
but falling for Tarzan could be even more rewarding
Make your life what you want it to be,
and you will become a girl worth fighting for

Fucking Isn’t Making Love

You told me in the car once that
I could talk to you about it, but also
that you wouldn’t force me to
I never thought that I would want to
discuss that part of my life with you
but I don’t know who else to tell
because I am over him, but that doesn’t mean
that it doesn’t hurt to see who he’s become
We waited, he wanted our first time to be special
and they say that you should never regret something
that you wanted at the time, but
I didn’t even enjoy it
In fact, it hurt like hell but I never told you that
either, because well, you’re my mother
and I just didn’t want you to know then
I remember the day you found out so clearly
You found out that I wasn’t a virgin
and you handled it as gracefully as any mother
could ever be expected to,
I didn’t tell you then, but now
It feels right to tell you now
To tell you about how much I hated it
and how much I didn’t want to lie to you
You told me that I needed to value myself
at more than I thought I was worth
because you know how poorly I think of myself
And from this point forward I will follow that
advice, but then…well I thought I was in love
And that fact alone justifies more than it should
I feel this huge weight has been lifted off my chest
now that I’ve chosen to share the part of my life with you
that originally you tore from my lips
And this is the first conversation we’ve had
in a long time that wasn’t one sided
We were honest with each other,
better than the way we used to be
I felt comfortable telling you that
it hurts me to see him with a different girl every week
but also that the relationship I’m in now
is healthier than that one ever was
I showed you my lace bra collection,
and you told me about how you waited
until you were engaged to make love
only this time I didn’t feel like you were
telling me to be like you
And really, I don’t feel that I’ve ever made love
What I mean is that fucking is one thing
but making love seems to mean so much more
than just the physical actions you take
When I thought I was in love
I thought I was making love
but looking back the whole thing was twisted
my mind was like a rubix cube he couldn’t solve
so he just kept turning it over in his hands
and every time he changed one side
the rest was off spinning
until I didn’t even know why I was fucking him anymore
I don’t believe that my virginity was some sort of precious flower
but now I know I should have waited
because when he tried to force his dick down my throat
I should have stopped making excuses for him
I know all of that now, and the fact that I can
discuss it with you, my mother, makes me feel
more like an adult than having sex ever did or could
Fourteen was too young, I can see that now
and with that I feel I have earned more of your respect
and every time you tell me that you’re proud of me
my heart wells up to my tear ducts,
because I have never thought that I deserved it
But now that I’m starting to see myself more clearly,
I can see you more clearly too
I don’t know what I should have done differently
but I know I’ll never apologize again for being me
I’ll never say I love to someone I don’t
and I never want to fuck anyone again
When I finally make love it will feel different
I know it will, because you’ve told me
and because I feel more at home in your arms
than I ever did in his

Love Hurts (A poem that’s not as cliche as it sounds)

“How could you do this to me?
How could you not tell me the truth?
How could you think that a dinner party
was more important than my only daughter?”
I was curled up in a ball, tears
streaming down my face, as the poison
filled my veins, he screamed
out of love, love that hurts
because it’s just too strong
for me to break, no matter how hard
I try to push him away but he won’t allow it
because he’s my father
“Are you still lying to me, that time
it was bullshit, but that’s okay,
because I love you”
I cried harder as he tried to apologize
for what I had done to myself


Coming Out

“Ya know, it takes more than just being
attracted to girls, to be a man”
My dad jokes, but I can hear the underlying
tone in his voice, the one I can’t distinguish
between love and disgust
He says this doesn’t change anything,
that he will always love me, and that
I will always be his little girl
but then there are these comments
snide little remarks, that make all of that
hard to believe, especially when he makes them
in front of these people that I’ve hardly met
These people that are my family
(though I would never think of them that way)
because I’ve only met then twice,
and how’s it their business anyway?
They only care about me when I’m
material for their gossip, which I haven’t been
until now, when asked if I have a boyfriend
by the aunt that has no right to inquire
I casually respond, “a girlfriend actually”
I can see the shock on her face, though
she tries not to let it show, and she somehow
manages to make a remark that is both
racist and homophobic at the same time
My father doesn’t back me up
the only thing he says makes it that much worse
and that’s what makes me wonder
if his love for me has changed in any way



My Only Grandfather

He says his bed became a sailboat
and he sailed around the world
all without leaving his hospital bed
I said I a fairy spoke to me,
and I was painted like a warrior
without ever leaving mine
we have sixty-seven years
between us, but maybe
we’re not so different, after all
I’ve never been in the military
or gotten married, but I have fallen
in love, and I don’t think he’s ever attempted
and I’ve never lost a loved one
but there’s something underneath
that makes us the same
and no, it’s not because
we’re both attracted to girls
even though that’s what my dad would say
I just wish I could be around him more
often than once every three years
I wish he didn’t look frailer every time
I get to see him, I just hope this wasn’t the last time
I love you Papa

The Cure

My mind is quiet, for once
as we walk along, chatting
about coffee shops and hibiscuses
The salty smell clears my head
I’m so glad I got out of bed early
this morning is perfect, the beginning
of a week without worries
The air is warm, and the grass is green
This is the cure

I’m Bleeding Again

I’m bleeding again
not the way that you would usually think of,
there’s no oozing red blood
It’s another kind of hurt
It hurts because I’m afraid
Afraid to be happy,
and afraid to be as unhappy as I’ve been
but mostly, I’m scared
because everything’s going so well
and that usually means that it’s about time
for another crisis, another attempt
I’m too untrusting to be hopeful
and my arms are healing,
but my heart is still bleeding
with fear of the unknown
because I don’t know how to be happy

I Can’t Wait

I’m tripping over my feet,
the way that I usually stumble over my words
but even though I’m light headed
I feel like I’m headed in the right direction
Maybe it’s working, maybe
this time things will go right for me
Right ahead of me is a stress free week
and I just can’t wait
to be free

What I Can’t Really Write

I woke up so early that my stomach was still churning,
from the night before when I couldn’t fall asleep
and I know exactly what my first thought was
but I can’t put that down on paper
So I’ll just skirt around it, not as gracefully
as I would wish, but there it is
It’s four in the morning, and I can still feel
that drop in my stomach, when you kissed me
unexpectedly, and maybe I’m not prepared
but I’m still rushing into this
because I desperately want to be happy
and the medicine isn’t doing it’s job
so, I’m doing what I can,
and what may end up hurting me
because I desperately want to be happy