I lost my heart
decades ago,
before mama taught me
how to put up walls.

He wove his way
into my life,
coursed like rivers
through the canyons
of my veins,
and filled every fiber
of my being
with his name.

There was not a space
he had not haunted.

He crashed into me
like waves upon the shore.
I drowned in his embrace.

And just like the tide,
he left from my life
leaving nothing but salt
in his wake.

I built that wall
mama talked about,
a sepulcher for the emptiness
that heavies my breath.

Lay me to rest.

They don’t give you signs
for a broken heart.

There is no warning,
“be careful, be gentle,
handle with care”,
no call for help,
“Aching,
out of use”

There is no way to wear it
like a badge of honor,
“I am more than my suffering,
this does not limit me”
There is no pride to be found
in the struggle.

There is just a heart
broken behind ribs,
buried beneath smiles
and unshed tears.

Strangers come and go,
fracturing off pieces,
leaving it to bleed.

There is no sign to say,
“I am broken, not destroyed.
You did not ruin me”

I never thanked the internet.

When my heart grew too heavy,
it carried the words
I no longer could.
It kept them safe.

I found the bottom of a bottle,
the precipice of a cliff,
and it pulled me from the brink
of my own despair.

I found another’s spilled ink,
I found another sunrise,
I found another hour
until I felt less like falling apart
and more like permanence.

And I lived to write
another day.

I am thanking the internet
for keeping me
when I forgot myself,
for letting others find me
when I was lost.

I don’t have the words
to stitch up my heart anymore.
I can’t use a pen
to mend the torn seams
of my soul.

I lost myself in the darkness
of a setting sun,
I chased after its shadows -
I can no longer run.

I can’t keep fighting
for tomorrow to come.
My strength wanes
with the moon,
my hands are numb.

Lay me to rest
beneath the stars.
Bury me
with all my scars.

You fall before me,
bruised knees, bloody palms,
with an apology on your tongue.

Your breath holds the weight
of a thousand sins,
the ghosts of your past
haunt the tombstone
your heart has become.

I press my lips to your temple,
bury a hallelujah
against your ear,
I hold your hands
to keep them from shaking.

You press your ear to my chest,
hear the fleeting of my heartbeat.
I let you weep against me,
I let you hear the breaking of my heart.

I wrap my arms around you,
I let you tear open my ribs,
I let you entomb your suffering
in the hollows of my soul.

I will be a home for your darkness,
I will open a window
and show you that the sun
can still reach your skin.

And we fell, darling,
two halves too far apart
like the sun and his moon
and the moon and her tides
and the tides and his shorelines
and the breaking of the waves -

tuck the dust back into its grave,
there is nothing that time can save.

Leave me alone, won’t you?

Return my heart
from your chest,
set it free
from your ribs.

Give me peace,
give me sanity.
You can no longer
haunt my veins.

I am not
a walking graveyard -
there is nothing
for you here.

A part of me
was left in winter,
frozen in the palms
of snow.

Kept safe from time
by the coldest of hearts.

I have lost myself again.

The alcohol heavies my words,
the drugs muddle my ink.

I am weeping with willows
and breaking with the waves.

There is nothing in me
that poetry can save.

Seasons change,
time forgets,

Mistakes are made,
people regret.

Love doesn’t last,
wounds don’t mend,

Blue skies turn grey,
days meet their end.

The moon wanes,
the stars fall,

I wonder if life
is worth living at all.

They told me you proposed today,
that you were coming home
with bags packed for two,
I guess I never expected
that from you.

They said she’s gentle,
with a bird for a heart
nestled behind your ribs.

They say she’s a quiet light,
soft yet bright,
and she’s warm,
the sun buried
behind a storm.

She’ll keep the stars in the skies
and the wind in your sails,
everything pales
in comparison.

Return my heart from your chest,
it served as a shield
until yours was healed,
until she found a home
in the aftermath.

It’s battered and broken,
but its beat isn’t gone.
I’m moving on.

They told me you proposed today,
that you’re coming home to stay
with bags packed for two.

I wish only the best for you.

Read this stanza twice
before continuing on,
take a breath, take a breath,
you don’t have to leave
so soon.

Time and again
things break like these lines,
and it’s beautiful
sometimes,
if we call it poetry.

But no one talks
about the end of a laugh,
or the hitch in the breath
when one chokes down a sob.

Ribs keep the heart together
and souls are bound
in barbed wire for tethers,
but what’s keeping you
here with me?

This life is about saying goodbye.
The sun sets
and the moon wanes
and stars fall.

And seasons change,
and things are lost to time,
like this moment, here,
between you and me.

Read this stanza twice
before you continue on,
take a breath, take a breath,
you don’t have to leave
so soon.

Everything is beautiful
only because it ends.

I write for the ghosts,
the ones forgotten
behind time
and sunlight.

The ones that linger
in the shadows
that soften
every sharp corner.

I write for peace,
for clarity,
for the stranger
in the mirror.

I write for  the stars,
fallen from their thrones.
For the waves that worship
the light of the moon.

I write for Autumn,
because she lets go.
I write for Winter
because he whispers goodbye.

I write for Summer,
who buries people in brilliance,
for Spring who gives the sun
a reason to rise again.

I write for the tears
in the seams of one’s soul,
I write for the fractures
that paint each heart.

I know you,
the way this world knows
the feeling
of your steps.

I love you,
the way life lingers
within each first breath
and the ones that follow after.

Stay with me,
read me till morning.
I will remain with you
forever.

Mama the sun is shining
on a different shore,
the sky is tired
of being strong.
It is breaking open
like time-worn novels,
telling a story
of tears and tragedy,
of loss and fallen stars.

There are cracks in the concrete
and tears in the seams of my soul,
my ribs are not strong enough
to keep my heart together.

The ghosts in my lungs
are too heavy, mama.
I am drowning in the silence.

You might as well be a masochist
if you love someone.

And this is how I’ve loved you,
in fragments and line breaks,
in ink that ran with tears.

And this is where I’ve loved you,
in the fractures of my heart,
the torn seams of my soul.

And this is when I’ve loved you,
when the seasons fell to darkness
and time faded all things to grey.

And I love you, still,
even as my heart goes silent,
and my soul withers away.