a slosh of rain stirs the gutters; you’d rather a slosh of gin,
some clear liquor made for searing throat and gutting brain cell
but then you remember that you don’t drink, it doesn’t mix well
with the lithium, and i hear your voice through the phone, a tin-

can voice banged out with a heavy metal rod on which a heart
is skewered. you can bandage the wound but it will still fall
to sepsis, it will turn into a putrid black hole and still
we will drown ourselves with vodka and make this a heavy art

where we have clumsy hands and a crooked needle stolen
from a rusted-out compass that never stops spinning
and i suture you back together while the pain is blinding
only to realize it is myself i have sewn up with love so swollen.


post-valentine’s day

it was a white collar
printed with red lipstick
that gave you away
you said we could do it over
if only i could forgive and forget.

if i only i could forgive and forget
a deep red pulse in my mouth
dropped into a bucket of white paint
that we used for the bedroom.
i hate the color pink.

i hate the color pink
some liminal threshold between
red and white that surrounds us
and a dozen empty buckets
in the bedroom.

in the bedroom
where you are in my mouth
you paint me little white lies
i splatter red all over the walls
and it is not paint.

call it even

muscle molts in your mouth, not in your hand. i don’t know how to play cards anyway, except for spit and go-fish, and i know how to do one better than the other. some words that were meant as a diversion were played, and you can’t hide those dirty fingernails under the glare of a brilliant distraction of a diamond puked out of the skin of a ring finger, like it was there all the time, yeah, it was there all the time. like a fucking abscess those words swell in your mouth and i’ve perfected my poker-face even when my heart is breaking. my heart is breaking. my heart is breaking and i have no king only these spades that are trying to bury me. peel a layer of lie off your tongue that remembered a fragment of phrase that keeps a space like a pocket of air caught in your mouth. speak me again and i will make you choke. slit my throat with an ace and we’ll call it even.