I often disappoint myself,
though half-reckoning is
a wreck in the making.
Insensitive interstate a
random number generator,
impartial to chaos. This rush
hour pileup from heart
to mouth. I say I love you
like it is always summer,
but today marks fall. Why this
world spun me into Pittsburgh
eludes me. This is not a yearning
for old light, coated in cinnamon.
I laid my head on your chest
and the rest happened like history.
(originally published in Adelaide Literary Journal Anthology, Spring 2021)
I’ve survived this far to get to fall,
and now auburn trees are nowhere.
Driving long distance– abundance
of green. Or branches, waiting for
that next temporary warmth. Used
to be we’d take a short vacation
to the northeast in October. Now
it’s a dice roll. Can’t take time off
at all for Maine. Can’t lose a single
dollar, lest dead leaves will cover
the lawn, the mouth, the moon.
(originally published in Fishbowl Press, Winter 2020)
The green blanket over your head–
Kimmy Granger gets fucked
by a fake photographer
on your iPhone in my hand.
Meanwhile, you ride me, moaning–
it’s snowing– December’s waning
autumn days– awaiting a kind of fate
under flicked-off lights
in the gray of afternoon.
Before this, we reminisced about
the early days– laying in bed my hand
in your hair listening to music.
Then late July laying in grass saying
the ways we make each other happy.
Which is why I must rewind this clip
over and over to the part where Kimmy
is smiling and laughing before
the whole thing starts and
I pine for the blanket, your
green thread and lint.
(originally published in Ghost City Review, Winter 2018)
in the second month
of our favorite season
and we bake apples
until the kitchen
smells of wax
out black bulbs
to replace our summer
despite the lingering
(originally published in Raw Dog Press, Summer 2017)
(originally published in Bop Dead City, Spring 2017)
Did you know what you were going to get, strolling
through the supermarket handpicking chocolates,
deciding between pecan bon bons, truffles,
and white chocolate shells filled with fudge?
We did not yet know the salt of incandescence,
your caramel smile on the roof of my mouth,
blind with each other’s taste, the lavender
some sickly rose blooming.
We melted together in the sun not worrying
about how our distinct tastes would smelt and swirl
around in our greedy mouths how our tongues flicked
and explored until we were almost satisfied but
every good thing melts the way autumn crumples
at the peak of its most swirling sweetness.
(originally published in bluepepper, 2016)
(originally published in Vector Magazine, Spring 2016)
With every step, the air parted
and spoke your name.
Smog and all, would you forget
the jagged alleys where
we fermented, became wine?
Its knife cut ribbons, red
repelling the pressure of four A.M breathing.
Driving home from San Francisco down the coast,
each Joshua tree prayed
to a vastness greater than the desert.
The long, Pacific vistas became the sheen
of old Mustangs caught beneath shadows
of Wilshire’s vacant towers.
Our heels kicked dust
and browned the sky–
ever were the hours sand
on the beach, infinite and pearling
a microscopic glint…
the ocean still haunts–
its salt so embedded
in our skin.
(originally published in Rust+Moth, Spring 2016)
When there’s nothing special about a sunset
lined with palms, there is nothing special.
Trees jut from behind roofs
like green skinny beanstalks extended forever.
Every plane a UFO.
Breathe the collective breaths of everyone.
Walks should be alone,
watching crows circle majestically
above stacks of garbage
bags in shopping carts.
Soon there are words:
first a sweeping hush,
a low hum.
Then the revving of neighbors
and their chatty sportscars.
The emissions enter the brain.
Then the atmosphere.
Whatever that is
is not what I am looking for.
(originally published in The Quotable – 2015)
Blackbirds suspended in triumvirate.
Clouds in a sea of burnt clay
mold into a blanket, the bed
unmade. Every beautiful sunset,
see the others on their phones
snap photos for strangers,
likers, digital lovers.
Lowball grandeur on a
It’s gone in a moment, anyway,
the pixelation of life,
Palm trees stand as windmills,
stilled, and they cannot fan
the vertical Culver sign,
risen like held smog.
Headlights on cars move
indistinguishably in time-lapse circles,
one after the other after the other.
(originally published in The Literary Commune – Issue #4, April 2015)