"I wanted to murder him, but his body kept getting in the way." (a poem for you)

A new poem for you today, originally featured as an Editors' Choice in Brain Mill Press' Student Poetry Month contest. This is a raw lil piece, a snippet of collapsing thunder, but there's something I adore about it anyway. A hard ache, like a right hook, like the period at the end of a sentence.

Please do share your thoughts on this poem with me in the comments, my loves—positive & negative feedback are always welcome. This week has been full of squalor, my health dipping up & down, hands shaking like a hurricane, bones singing to pieces, nerves chewed to unrecognisable shards, & perhaps this is why I'm choosing to share this particular poem on this particular subject at this particular juncture. I hope there's a bit of truth here for you to hold. xx


When My First Boyfriend Learned I Was on Anti-Psychotics, He Laughed & Told Me He Always Suspected I Was Crazier Than I Let On

I wanted to murder him,
but his body kept getting
in the way. We learn to
live with that sawtoothed
loudness, caught halfway
between the wonder &
the wanting. & how I
wanted. I wanted his eyes
blue & razed shut. Wanted
apology like unbent knee.
Pulse cold, childish. How
much can a thing whistle
before all that’s left is air?
Such a strange syntax we
live inside. Waltz through
aurora. Gulp down bullets
instead of the pills that
could make this all better.
God, I am tired of writing
poems about sickness.
When he spoke, I heard
my father: you know I only
ever wanted the best for you.
As if I were afraid of
leaning into wounded.
As if I couldn’t gut him
& run, easy as birthplace.
Easy as the voices finally
shocked into silence. A
kind of hook here, say it:
careful, darling, you’re
showing your hand. So
many times my body
has been more ache
than human. In which
direction must I search to
find a name for the curdle
in my throat? Slipping
on melting beasts, forcing
open memory’s jaws. &
how I wanted. I wanted
to snap that lovely neck
the way a gun cocks into
song. I wanted not to hurt
anymore, my kneecaps
halfway shattered, the
dark consuming itself
over & over again. Just
once, I wanted reciprocity.
I wanted not to be the
crazy one. Just once, I
wanted the sky to wake
up on time & remind us
of the little mouths with
no names except erasure.
I could have lived on that:
every angle a limb could
break. Every way his body
yawned into my grasp,
treading the bloodstream,
light going limp, his eyes
that swum & stunk of