Ode to Chef Boyardee: A Poem


I scrape the last ravioli
from his inner tin walls—his cylindrical ribs
contain my princely dinner.
My fork presses onwards
into the man’s metal viscera, pursuing the mush
of his sweet guts, the succulent cardiac red
of his tomato paste innards.

All day I have awaited this
the way a warring king, after a day spent waging
and wielding, wants for mutton;
I am a royal, ready to ravage
the hidden tenderness of rout’s canned spoils.
The chef, that smiling man—
rotund fleshy jubilance on the can—
is my jester, then, and in my castle,
monarchs dig deeply into the meat of their courtiers.

I empty him into the bowl. His very soul
sloshes into the glass, enriched
iron red; in two minutes’ time,
I will slurp him with queen-befitting greed.
I will cherish each mangled droplet as it sluices
towards my stomach, as the last of his drippings
splash past my omnipotent tongue,

the muscles of my body
a churning fiery machine anticipating
the arrival of his liquefied sinews, the steam
his sacrifice will provide.
All day I have awaited this, and now
I may vanquish what is mine.

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Awake


In the third grade, I had my first stint with mental illness. My only real friend had just moved away, and no one wanted to play with me at recess. I was depressed, big time, and I was also working through grief at the loss of my friend. The stages were evident (retrospectively) in the narratives that went through my head as I tried to sleep. Some nights I would cry. Some nights I would invent stories in which who had abandoned me continued to wrong me; some nights I would scream my anger at her. At eight years old, I would spend some nights thinking seriously about death. But it wasn’t until the next school year that I started to understand that these thoughts were anything out of the ordinary. lonely-child-1024x678In the fourth grade, after she saw me hitting myself repeatedly during tests, my teacher sent me to weekly group sessions with the school counselor.

It’s gotten worse since then, but it’s also gotten better since then. My depression comes in waves. The stresses of elementary school, junior high, and high school all took their toll on me. So, too, has the unforgiving coldness of winter, as well as the unrelenting loneliness of summer. Depression is not a constant companion, but it is a consistent companion.

My anxiety, on the other hand, does not come in waves. They aren’t as bad as they could be, and I’m always learning to ways to negotiate with them, but they never leave. Ever. In fact, I’m not totally sure where my anxiety stops and my nervous personality begins. Fretting is ingrained into my very aspect.

I was born an anxious person. I was also born a sad person. That’s sort of my point, my raison d’être: to be anxious and sad. It makes me see things that other people ignore, and it allows me to be introspective. In that, mental illness is what makes me a writer. I’m only an artist because I was wired incorrectly at the factory.

Maybe I should be grateful. Continue reading “Awake”

The Burial: A Poem


We bury ourselves in the sound.

It is the dirt that rolls

around us, into us,

the dirt that drops behind our eyelids

and pauses lightly at our lips–

the warm soil, the nourishing earth,

here to protect us from formaldehyde

and needles and nooses

and downpour in the heartbreak.

We dig ourselves downwards

to escape the oppressive sky

and the alleged eyes here to protect us,

and the thoughts, so unquiet,

are softened by the song

like wolves domesticated by gentle hands,

like water sleeping in puddles on the sidewalk,

like summer winds at a standstill.

We bury ourselves in a slurry of murmurs

and we swim away, away, far away

from the coffins and tombstones

and we avoid suffocation.

The sound is our home.

Mary Lambert, the queen of my existence

Mary Lambert, the queen of my existence

These Lightning Fingertips: A Poem


tumblr_nn0pdwa42w1rj2bmio1_500

I dreamt once of laying under the strobes of heart

in that dream

the atoms of my body rolled to distant starlights

distant rests

filler!

I felt my toes vanish into the electric sparkling

(peace finally after the struggle) and

that silent firework twinkled its way up

my ankles,

my hips

filler!

When the dissolve (resolve)

hit my lungs

it took my air and broke it up

when it took my heart

it stole my blood

filler!

it hit my eyes and I

gave it my brain

filler!

and when finally, finally

I was scattered

across infinity finally, finally

my useless body knew peace

among the starlight

filler!

A dream indeed

I Feel Sort of Lonely: A Poem


drowning

Today,

I feel

sort of

lonely.

I feel sort of like the world

is on

my shoulders,

or

in my head, trying to

burst

out. I feel

sort of depressed,

the temporary kind,

not that

it

doesn’t hurt.

I feel

sort of

lonely,

although I have people

all around;

I feel sort of

lost, like I’m drowning

in a big world

and no one

can see me,

no one can hear

my SOS messages,

not

because they

don’t care, but because they

aren’t

there.

I feel sort of lonely,

not because

I am alone,

but because

I am very

alone.

The Worst Feeling in the World


Insomnia

I hate the feeling when you have this minute sadness and there isn’t anything you want to do, not one thing in the entire world. You are tired out of your brains but you don’t want to sleep. You don’t want to use so much energy as to cry or stand up or talk. Even thinking becomes too tedious a task. You’re just so bored that you want to cease to exist, if temporarily. You want to push every responsibility off one more day, do everything tomorrow, and just stop existing today. You are exhausted and anxious and the world is too much right now.

That is the worst feeling in the world.

Ciao for now,

Mikki