Still Breathing

He laid covered in a white sheet, his favorite plaid shirt on, eyes closed, lips purple and hands carefully overlapping each other on top of his hard chest. His eyelashes were as long as ever, his fingernails blue, cold. So cold.

I touched him to confirm to my brain what my eyes already knew: he wasn’t there. He wasn’t sleeping. And even if he were, this is a dream I would never see him wake up from. Not this time.

So I kissed his lips. I laid on his chest. I spilled my tears on him as I told him I loved him, one last time. As I thanked him for everything, one last time.

And now I cry, still. On public transportation, during breaks at work, on top of my lovers and pillows, over my phone and cards he wrote me in perfect calligraphy. I cry and scream at how unfair life seems. The good always die young and the young always die good, and I’m still alive and not well, and nothing is good about the way he went.

This clocking in and out doesn’t feel real. The mealtimes and pastimes and friends’ laughter feels like a fog, just a part of all the non quintessential things that make up my life these days.

I’m not dead, but I’m not alive either. All I know to tell them when they ask if I’m fine is this: I’m still breathing.

That’s all I have. That’s all I know.

My breath is rising in and out of my chest.


I cross two things off my to do list

2 out of 7

Then pat myself on the back, saying on the inside:”Not bad for a monday, pal.”

Those five other things can wait.

until I’m done waking slowly, rising languidly, letting life take my body and soul over again inch by inch, breath by breath;

until my limbs have collapsed on the floor, sweaty, exhausted, sore and alive

all at once,

and my mouth has drank and sung and kissed… until I’ve listed all the things I’m grateful for to myself and whoever else might be listening, counting as the sun rises outside, the many blessings found in the mere fact of being alive.

Life. Live it.

Don’t waste it with the mechanic, the automatics-

The joy is in the journey

Don’t forget it.

Airport Bar

We’re pushed together, packed like sardines at the bar

He sees me reading and strikes up a conversation,

Friendly fella sort of guy.

I place my book down to indulge him-

we’re both, after all, just trying to survive

the next flight,

the next trip home.

“You could fit hundreds of books in a kindle,” he tells me, as I begin stuffing my book in my bag

And immediately

I regret not telling him to fuck off.


That One Little House

I stay late to write

I don’t even know what about-

Life feels like a hurricane at times, and I,

feel like that one little house on the block

who crumbled when all the others stayed strong and upright-

no defects,

perfect and strong.

What the fuck is up with that?

The universally accepted truth is that life isn’t fair,

that it isn’t easy,

and the promise attached is that it’s also worth fighting for.

But if you crumbled and your bricks met the ground,

it takes a lot more strength and courage to rebuild yourself than if you had just stayed in shambles,

And that’s not an universal truth-

It is mine.

Sometimes all I can do is be

the shattered pieces that this life has made of me,

even with all the courage inside to rebuild my walls.

But for what? and for whom?

Pretty houses on a hill…

I just don’t belong in that world.

I’m gravel in shambles, shards of tile thrown across the floor

and in time, I’ll be a mansion

But darling, that time is set on my watch

not yours.

Unsent Letters

When I had my first heartbreak, I wrote hundreds of letters filled with things I felt I needed to say to him.
I never sent them. They sat there, occupying the space his body used to take while serving as some kind of therapy, a cover to my silences. No one seems to get it, but sometimes, some people aren’t worthy of hearing the pain in your voice, the shaking your heart sends over to your vocal chords and which you just. can’t. disguise.
So write. Write your feelings away until there’s nothing left to write about.
I write, still. Letters that no one reads, that no one sees. Once I get it out on paper and I hold in my hands the emotional weakness my heart seems to be able to admit, then, and only then, I can begin to let go of the pain your non reciprocated love seemed  to bring to me and these blank pages, scattered with words and nonsense and feelings I can’t understand nor define.
But darling, don’t feel special. You weren’t the first, and you certainly won’t be the last to break this heart of mine. There will be other subjects, I’m certain, so enjoy your time in the limelight.