as king

as king, do you ever knock?

as king, do you enter her tower

before she has even let her hair down?

or let it grow long enough at all?

as king, is all that ripens, blooms and flourishes,

just for you to pick?

hanging from the tree

rooted in the paradise you claim to own?

as king, do you treat her like

the medium rare deer on your plate?

like something to be covered in sauce,

to be devoured, like prey?

as king, do you ever mistake

greed for lust?

boorishness for decency?

and bluntness for sincerity?

as king, does your keen eye drift

in boredom as I write,

onto another soft-curved creature,

hedged in the wilderness you roam?

as king, do you ever call out for the queen?

just to hear her voice, hear what she has to say?

and when she answers back,

will you listen, too?

as king, can you sit tight, tighter?

as king can you pull yourself together?

as king, can you surrender to

asking?

your mixtape

SIDE A

 

I THINK (Tyler the Creator, 2019)

there’s a limit to your love (James Blake, 2011)

somewhere only we know (Keane, 2004)

somewhere over the rainbow (Israel Kamakawiwo’ole, 1990)

I don’t know what the weather will be (Laura Mvula, 2013)

although the sun is shining (Fleetwood Mac, 1969)

never seen the rain (Tones and I, 2020)

 

SIDE B

 

And so it goes (Billy Joel, 1989)

late in the evening (Paul Simon, 1980)

all is full of love (Björk, 2002)

I am in love with you (Imogen Heap, 2005)

even though (Norah Jones, 2009)

just like Jesse James (Cher, 1989)

too much love will kill you (Queen, 1992)

ventilator effects

there is pressure on my diaphragm

like right before a free fall,

before I cry, throw up,

or laugh hysterically.

my head hums to flickering eye lids

as there’s a sparkly liquid

running down my spine and stomach wall.

it is coming from my head, I think.

 

these sure are just the side effects

of your new ventilator.

It must have been,

the rhythmed blasts of air

towards our locked hands,

heavy breathing,

and our beating hearts,

that cause me so much pain today.

acetaminophen

I push until I pierce three times

through thin aluminum.

with tepid water from the tap

running down my throat,

I don’t know what loss I mourn.

 

curled up like an embryo,

I used to suck you up as well,

you’d mute the symptoms for a while

until I got too used to you.

until I’d have to up the dose.

 

and thus your impact lingered;

just like acetaminophen, it left

a burning stomach wall,

the ache of missing him,

and craving for you still.

halos in keen unending

I hold my tea cup

a thin thread of patience left

I’m sick of waiting

 

between time and space

there is an alternative

it is you and me

 

a couple of shoes

align and wait to be worn

I am barefooted

 

the grass I walk on

is morning-cold and wet still

I need to warm up

formication

a chain of people holding hands in Lebanon

–dozens of kilometers, I heard–

the book vendor’s voice as she elaborates on some Norwegian novel

–I never read it in the end–

his pink shirt smelling of a wooden wardrobe and Chanel

–it used to intensify toward his wrist–

people singing well on casting shows

–although I really do not care–

Snow Patrol on gravel-grounded morning walks

–sound and pulse and volume–

breathing in snow-pregnant winter air

–I could taste it when I was a kid–

the morning we began this list, high on caffeine and in love

–unlike you, the formication did return–

jeopardy

you are jeopardy,

I am your candidate.

I seek the questions

to your answers

which may well be just a lie.

boredom

lack of interest

weary, restless

perforation,

drill, a hole made

making tired

digging away

loose material –

the one I built

my life upon.

Shakespeare’s vanishing anagram

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?

All damp, I tease you. Shame’s tremor

hums ahead. I act a role, so play me

as you create hell’s metaphor.

I am a sad muse, teach me hope.

Come, I’m all yours, Master

My spasms harm as I rot.

Still, you are there

to hear my praise.

I compare thee

to a red rose,

I presume.

Please,

dare

me.

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