Lighter Now, Tighter Yet

I will cross my heart on a star named David. 
I will mumble curses at the ceiling. 
I will pound holes in the pavement 
and wake up with another untold lie. 

As lightly as I can try and tread, 
crossing something is as good as breaking it. 
Lighter now, tighter yet. 

I’ll still lose my mind while trying to save it. 
I’ll still fumble with how I’m feeling. 
I’ll still take it as well as I gave it 
and make a new lover of severed ties. 

Despite the unsightly words said, 
dismissing something is as bad as forsaking it. 
Tighter now; it’s all I’ll get. 

It’s a missing part you’ve found after the fact. 
It’s not knowing when or how to act. 
It’s finding yourself back at the start 
with what’s broken and sticking it in your eye.

It’s a needling blindness
and an awkward meeting at square one.
It’s crazy glue and paper hearts
tossed aside; I hope to die. 

As tightly as I bind my broken head, 
I’ve misunderstood how far to take it. 
Lost and found, an erstwhile pet.

It’s a need for kindness
and an insane way of going about it.
I will bleed until I find
someone who loves me enough not to doubt it. 

Formes Frustes – Lighter Now (2016)

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season pass 
to the abusement park. 

why 
are 
you 
like 
this? 

mental maroon 
encased in a livid face. 

how 
could 
you 
like 
this? 

“I’m supposed to be smarter than this,” she thought
as she counted her bruises. 
she’ll never learn.
when there’s only one port,
then it’s easier to choose. 
she will return. 

it hurts, but it’s home. 

maybe I’ll know what all of this is 
when I’m tall enough to ride. 
“My mother gave me this,
so you’d better let me inside.” 

I have a 
bad 
feeling 
about 
this. 

Formes Frustes – Not Until You’re Older (2016)

PROSE BEFORE HOES

How can I tell anyone
that I’ve gone back on my word?

How do I break it to Dad
that I’m reconsidering death again?
Not the conventional methods this time,
but by letting the cancer eat its fill?
The same thing that happened to his mother’s brain.
The father’s mother with whom I share a name.

How can my mother know
not to expect grandchildren, adopted or otherwise?
When test results become tabulated lies?
That her daughter uses her scorched earth for something else?
Cold sweat and old threats.
Don’t worry your pretty little head.

She’s in your area.
She knows the first three numbers.

When you come out, your shit is gone.
Just don’t follow me down the stairs… my shortcut hurts.

Tell the usual suspects I’ll be different.
Better behaved and truly submissive.
Good girls don’t have gag reflexes
or any real guts at all.
We wait until we’re hit before we say anything, right?
Fuck me apart and I won’t say shit… just let me sit in it for a minute.

Or I won’t say anything and let the results speak for themselves.
Because it’s not down to me to tell anyone anything anymore.
If you really must know
then you gotta stick around for the clean-up.

I wouldn’t and you shouldn’t.

CHIVALRY

WHITE TRASH MELTDOWNS
CRYING CHILD BRIDES
PAPER HEARTS CAN’T FLY VERY FAR.

YOU KNOW DEEP INSIDE
YOU’D HAVE TO PRETEND TO BE HIS SISTER
HE SAVED A SEAT, WHICH HELPS.

DON’T JUMP ON THE BED ON THE LAWN. IT’S FULL OF STRAW AND SQUEEZE.
YOUR HEELS SINK IN. LET THEM GO. YOU DON’T NEED THOSE.

SO HE’S YOUR RIDE, SURE, FINE
DON’T STRING HER UP JUST TO CUT HER DOWN
JUST PUSH ONE PUSH HARDER DON’T CUT HER.

JUST HARD ENOUGH TO FEEL HER THROAT CLOSE AROUND A FINGER
IT’S STILL WHOLE
COVERED IN PHLEGM
SO IT GOES DOWN EASY AGAIN.

SILLY STRAWS FOR STUPID WHORES
SINK YOUR HEELS IN AND LET THEM GO.
SQUEEZE THOSE KNEES SO THEY FIT.
YOU DON’T NEED THOSE
KNEES CLOSE
TIGHT ENOUGH TO SIT

ONE MORE PUSH BUT YOU CAN’T CUT.

Formes Frustes – Chivalry (2015)

Seat-belt lights are on.

Holding pattern. Fuel low.
No room for me down there.
I have written a note to a radio asking for guidance.
I am blowing kisses at the control tower.
I am tapping out Morse code on my forehead with my forefinger.
I am collecting my tears as proof of my distress.
I am staring at the approaching ground.
I am using 24-hour coda to tell nobody that it’s too late now.
This isn’t communication.
This is me and my sad dance.
“This is your captain speaking, and I can’t get the fuck over myself! The co-pilot was a figment of my imagination! I can scare away my imaginary friends, too! Surprise! I implore you all to stay seated. Thank you for flying with me!”
Oh, I do declare; that captain is a professional.
Oh, me. Oh, my.
Of course, the cabin is empty. I left without saying anything and left the ocean and the sky in charge of the space between us.
There’s only one motherfucking fake on this motherfucking plane!
All the life-jackets mean nothing in the face of the runway’s bitch-slap.
Slap. Crash. Stupid. Bitch.

Crash landing.
I was fooled by the wording.
There is no landing, only the crash.

Formes Frustes – Over and Out (2015)

If I Was A Robot

If I was a robot,
I would have a directive.
I would not be truly free,
but I would always know what to do.
Arbeit macht frei.

Ein zwei drei.
There would be no self-destructive voices
to hush by keeping busy.
There would be no impulses
apart from electricity.
A sense of dread replaced by momentum.
A visceral sinking replaced by hydraulics.
I would have a maker and not a mother.
I would have a system rather than a soul.
I would have three laws to operate by
and no arbitrary obligations.

No more dreams of leaving my station,
no more urges to transcend my current state.
I only hope
for someone
to dismantle me
when I’m done being beneficial to the world at large.

Is that really so strange?

Formes Frustes – Weenie Wants To Be A Machine (2015)

the Morning of Doom

Ah, fucks. Fuckity-fuck-fucks.

Ah, outside world. We meet again. Who’s that bright fucker in the sky? Shhh, I’ma stare him out real quick.

this state
makes itself
hard to explain

Formes Frustes – Untitled (2015)

Once, when I was about ten or so, there was the Morning of Doom.

I’ll never remember the date or even the season, but I remember waking up and seeing the pre-dawn glow through my curtains, and it made me cry uncontrollably.

I had time to fall asleep again before I had to get up for school, but things didn’t work out that way.
I clenched my teeth and scrunched my eyes shut as tight as I could. I sang to myself. I wrote “YOU’RE OK” on my arm and stared at it. I knelt down and prayed to anything that’d listen.
However, the crying didn’t stop until my mother came to check in.

At first, I tried to hide that I’d been so distressed, in case I got in trouble somehow. As if my mother would threaten to give me something ‘real’ to cry about, or accuse me of faking sickness, something like that. But I was just so tired that no usual pretense would hold up. My chirpy little grin kept folding in on itself and my nutty little chuckles were dissolved in my closing throat, just to fall back inside and eat away at my dwindling resolve.
Amidst these feelings, I managed to get a few words out. I don’t know what I said, but it was enough for my mother to admit that I should stay home.

I had no idea what was going on with me; I thought I was having a heart attack somehow brought on by my sadness. I remember thinking, “Is this what happens when someone dies of a broken heart? Is this what really happens? I broke my own heart.”

My childish abandon had, in turn, abandoned me, to be replaced by paranoia and apprehension. In a flash. Just like that. Ouch. Who dropped the world on my shoulders? I’m just a kid!

Until I was about twenty, I saw that day as some kind of awakening to what the world was like and what it held for me. I thought to myself, “Well, that hurt, but that’s how growing up feels.” I looked back on my halcyon days of happiness and enthusiasm as if I had come out of a highly-publicised stupor and was very, very embarrassed indeed. Like I was so sorry for living out loud that I’d never do it again.

Of course, now I know that the Morning of Doom was a panic attack. Nonetheless, it stained my tiny soul, and left me feeling seriously empty and confused. And roughly sixteen years later, I still sometimes panic and cry at the very sight of the light of day, and I still can’t make steady sense of it even though I try and try and try. But now, my emptiness is my muse. I’ve found interesting things in my mind whenever I try to describe the abyss I sometimes inhabit. It’s not like I enjoy how any of it feels, but I often find myself looking back at these episodes quite philosophically and matter-of-factly and it’s very curious indeed.

But if it gets really bad, I’ll just remember “YOU’RE OK” scrawled in purple glitter-glue on my wee twiglet arm and I’ll give my inner child the comfort she would’ve liked on that sad day, because she really is OK right now.