Winter Thoughts

The month of December is the weirdest time of year
where things are meant to slow down,
to freeze,
and all us humans go completely insane
with consumerism,
with
always wanting more.

Drops of rain turn snow
turn bird call south.
Flags fly half-mast.
Wounded souls and soldiers
of this life-battle
are left dusty and frozen over.

Does cryogenics freeze the soul?
Can I keep myself here
in this warm little box of safety
gone denial?
Would you stay with me
and forget the past?
Can we resolve to never forget what happens
when the clocks turn Eastward
and the grass melts?

My heart smells of pine and
the scent of mistletoe burning.
Kiss set fire to my soul
Now darkness sets in
on afternoons where music used to play
on beaches after rain
and the moon was almost as bright
as the sun.

When can we visit again?
When can we play pretend?
Color my sky.
The sea in my eyes
longs to drown you.
You’re my pebble
at the bottom of the ocean.

Can we resolve to never forget what happens?

EJZ 12.28.2015

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Cover (up) Girl

Maybe if I make my makeup perfect, streamlined, or
Curvy in the right places,
they won’t notice
I paint my face with lies

My smile

Is my future bright enough?
Do the fluorescent lights shine loud enough to blind you from my past?

My soul

Does the blood bleed ruptured red enough?
Can you make the latest new bold hue from the color of the circles in the creases of my eyes?

Will you love me when you see me in the morning?

EJZ 11.04.2016

I thought I was a hopeless romantic – It turns out I was just an addict

Feeling feelings alcoholically, wasted
time on perpetrating men,
victimizing brain cells
to drug and hand
of batterer, filling
veins with silly
love songs from guitar, avoidant
wanting what I couldn’t have,
having what I shouldn’t want,
and always more of it.

The wine tastes sweet when you don’t know what you’re drinking
and even when you do…

Disease of extremes
filling my lungs and choking
me to death, I thrive
on self-destruction
and the voice that wants to kill me sounds
an awful
lot like my own.
I can’t get any better for I’ll never
tell another soul,
for surely that voice of malice, death, destruction
will become theirs and then
and then…

A self-fulfilling prophecy
of no one is going to love me and
“Is someone going to save me?” and
truth is, I can’t
see around me what I can’t see
in myself

so the world looks dark and gloomy
for I am
blinded by the absence
which seethes through every pore
of my body, gone withered,
gone missing

Until
I half-open eye
dwelling somewhere in my spirit –
Banner on linoleum wall, reading
“You are not alone anymore”
Hand, reaching, saying
“You don’t have to be afraid
anymore”
and so I whisper,
“I’m sorry”
to a child
living in my body
and she tells me,
“It’s going to be all,
alright,
just don’t leave me here again.
Start at the beginning
and finish when you’re done
and you’ll know when that is
because you’ll look around and see
how many people you are helping
by drinking
from cup of truth,
not only savoring,
but sharing
every
last
drop.”

EJZ 02.11.2016

Feeling uninspired

tastes like
dust
collected on the vegetable
platter left out
because you didn’t care enough
about yourself to put it away,

smells acrid, like
it should burn your throat
to inhale
but you don’t feel
much but your body,
languid,
releasing quiet cough

sounds like
you’d expect a cave to breathe
when you walk in
just to find another rock wall,
concrete and
final
looks like
surrounding steel bars, old
enough to rust but just
fading, still holding back
the spirit caged behind them,

feels like
the vibration in your fingernail
as you scratch the wall –
designate another day
but leave no mark.

EJZ 12.30.2015

The Ghost of Denial

I took a poetry course last fall and one of our first prompts was to write a poem with a title structured: “The [Concrete Noun] of [Abstract Noun]”. I came up with “The Ghost of Denial”.

The Ghost of Denial

Everything’s fine.

No, well
yes,
but really – Everything’s fine.

Yeah, I cry
sometimes
at night
most nights
every night
when no one can hear me
but
it’s how I always got to sleep
so I’m used to it by now.
It’s like
my lullaby.
It’s okay.

And yeah, he’s drinking but
it’s just one
bottle
and he’s young, you know
he can handle it.
He’s got a good tolerance.
He’s okay.

And yeah, we fight
but everyone fights
right?
It’s healthy
to fight
and I just get him so
angry sometimes.
It happens, you know
And I am pretty stupid
like he says, you know,
He’s not wrong.
It’s okay.

No, he never hit me.
No,
of course not,
well, that one time
but I really got him angry that time.
I shouldn’t have broken that glass, you know,
it was expensive
and I just get him so
angry sometimes.
It’s okay.
It happens, you know.
It’s okay.

Yeah, I’m bleeding but
you know,
my body,
my soul
just does that sometimes.

And yeah, I’m here
but
not really.

EJZ 09.24.2015

I am a love addict.

and that may sound romantic
but it’s a torturous hell
and my heart and my life
are an endless, bottomless cavern
that cannot be filled.
Never enough to be quenched, my thirst.

You know, you can’t hold water in your hands
but you try and you try
to form yourself in such a way
to become a vial, yourself
and you’re vile, yourself
but you can’t tell
because all your mirrors are broken
and you can’t see yourself
in the water you’re still trying to contain in your hands –
the ones that couldn’t grasp to begin with
because you think it’s your life force,
your
all that’s left on Earth
and you forget the fountain you strayed from
before you set out on your quest for that unattainable goal
which had you scrambling through mazes and missions and conquests, untenable
and you dropped your key from your back pocket
and it drowned in the water
which slipped through your hands
as you desperately tried to contain it
and friction won’t help
and frantic slits throats
and stupefies –
Losing your head
in the water,
slipping through hands
like time on the shore
and nobody told you
the power was not in the key,
in the water,
it was in you
but you had to let go to find out
and then you find out
there never was water,
just hope
and your hands couldn’t grasp what they never felt
so you’re left empty, forlorn

but there is a fountain

still water,
contained,
the key, floating
and yours
if you choose to look in
and grasp
and say –

I am a love addict
and that may sound romantic
but it’s a torturous hell.

EJZ 09.17.2015