Just like them

I know that I do not fit in,
and often some well-meaning
person in society finds me,
and wants to show me off.

I don’t fit because I move to
my own rhythms, which change
time and signatures swiftly,
and I’d rather be alone.

You tell me I bring joy,
and that you miss me,
but what you miss is the way
I make you feel when I am around.

You bring me torment, and
when it became clear I brought
with me a storm to rival any
better tempest, a temper that
can only be tamed with love
and peaceful message,
you instead pushed me away.

I’m not upset. I am just not
surprised. I knew it all along.

Thoughts in the Dishes

I wash dishes endlessly, but I do not pay it mind. Torrent thoughts into
my daily tasks, and memories long
forgotten, surfacing above the graying water like coffee cups of every shade.

Twirling in whimzical waxy Crayola
pencils, which we asked
to borrow, and my precious “neon” Gel pens, make a card for her
twelfth birthday.

I handed the crumpled,
sweaty dollar bills to the
camp snack bar attendant for
some Reese’s, and a bottle of
Code Red Mountain Dew,

all a part of a present
that she giggled with glee over,
and she loved the hearts and butterflies hand-drawn.

All she wanted that Summer
was to hike with someone to
the waterfalls, but it was sweltering
in North Texas, so I went swimming
every afternoon instead.

When camp was over we said goodbye,
but being a member of the same church, it didn’t seem so final,
until the day my parents asked me if
I knew her.

Sometimes I still feel the ice cold
sensation, like death itself has gripped
my heart, laughing at my bewilderment
as he spares me and takes those I love.

I splash into the old sink water,
blindly feeling to pull the plug,
and watch dully as water
spirals down the drain.

When a Professor Tells Me to Make Some Friends

How many times have I been told
I am not “something” enough?
Not quiet enough to hold my tongue.
I have offended so many with
flagrant opinions.

My laugh is too loud, too long,
and annoying, one even told me
it kept us from being friends.
Why be a friend to someone
like that?

I cannot stop thinking enough
to relax, and I have killed
relationships by obsessing.

Some take pity, and when I
become too much, they admit
that they were my friend
because they felt sorry.

Others simply stop talking
and weeks will go by
before I realize that it was
nothing, a friendship of utility
not virtue.

I have long wondered
whether friendship was worth it.
Wishing for friends frivolously,
wandering in alcoves of loneliness,
and why shouldn’t I walk with
broken trust, and bitterness?

Despite this, I hope
and in optimism I’ve found merit.
Where true love is to accept
without expectation, criticism,
or condemnation,
and that understanding
is a lesser task.

Though our numbers are few
we are not one thing, posing
as another, and I have learned
that friendship far surpasses
changing for one person.

I’d Rather Be Socrates Unsatisfied

Hope is funny,
like a wiggly child,
excited for something
she’s never seen.

She bursts through
in joyous celebration,
praising every small thing,
forecasting new dreams for
the future.

She never truly leaves,
only staying silent while
Pessimism sours the psyche,
simply protesting with a
steady shake of her head.

Unfortunate that each trial,
stumble, fall, and heartbreak,
makes it hard to wait,
but when you are ready,
she is there.

She seems impractical
as an adult, with effervescent
optimism.
It’s bad enough
to be disappointed,
without her becoming
forgotten.

Un-quiet Chaos

Upon a pier I often roost
there among the soft yellow
swaths of light that dim
the speckled stars above,
sky-face touching sea
laden with heaven’s reflection.

The darkness now treads
above the nervous waves,
like a whispering fog
hovering,
never quite touching.

I felt it mingle amongst the seafoam,
as if tasting,
testing salty breath,
and wondered if it could be anything,
but you.

The lights that kept me safe
now flicker.
One by one extinguished
the same way my interest in you
dwindled.

Soon, I will be caught
in total eclipse,
a net of darkness to wrap around,
strangling my wings.

Tell me, my penumbral fool,
what is this wickedness?
Do you really seek to bind me?
Would you have forsaken your own freedom? For me? For anyone?

Talk and talk.
Leave me in darkness.
I can tell when it is not
a worthwhile pursuit.

Catching Minnows

She wades into the brook,
guiding wayward low-hanging branches from her piled hair.
Eyes and smile alluring,
fingers tracing water’s surface,
as water meets her waist.
Gracefully she peers in,
watery window of fish,
palms gradually submerged,
gently guiding past small bellies,
scurrying away as they’re touched.
Lowering their guard, curious to
strange worms suddenly sprouted,
they nibble,
close enough.
She pulls him up, inspecting him,
praising a handsome fish.
Puts him back, and continues
searching for her next catch.
Dazed and confused, each fish
swims away, wondering what
strange beast had beheld them,
and why she had not held them longer.

The essence of a fool

When I don’t understand something,
make fun of it
because laughing is
so much more rewarding than actually
thinking about how my words affect others.
Words are just words.
I religiously defend monogamy,
and just as adamantly deny the use of love and connection.
Gentleness is weakness in disguise,
and double standards are somewhat
of a specialty of mine.
Also, I will use your emotions against you,
and ask you not to feel around me,
because it makes me uncomfortable to
know that something I did upset you.
I love everyone, but they don’t know how to correctly love me.
Constantly, I will try to sound wise,
offering, people suffering around me
me.
Narcissism prey to vanity, and they will flock to me,
bleeding praise because I breathe and eat the same bullshit
everyone else is using.
Hashtags, swag, and condescension,
because everyone should think what I think,
and no one should think I am not funny.