the true beauty of white

I like the color white
not the innocence of white flowers or angels
not the brilliance of wedding dresses or crisp fresh snow

No, I like deadly shades of white
the kind of white light that painfully blinds you
white hot rage that fills you up from the inside out
the murderous white of waterfalls and whirlpools
the white fur of a polar bear stained with a recent catch
the wall of an impenetrable snowstorm
the dead eyes of a deep sea fish
a familiar flash of white in the corner of your eye
shaped like the whisper of a ghost
I like white that’s beautiful because it’s terrifying
the kind that could caress you one moment
and kill you the next
the kind that reminds us how alive we are

you only get one

go outside and fuck up your yard
dig a hole and fill it with seashells
and scatter wildflower seeds with abandon
build a wall with a door that goes nowhere
create secret trails in the woods that lead to buried treasure
and others that lead to nothing at all
spray paint graffiti on your own house
buy mismatched dinnerware and serve a twelve course meal on it
wear a ballgown to the grocery store
and pajamas to a restaurant
roll down a hill and splash into mud
rub the wet dirt all over your arms and legs
and chase laughing neighborhood children like the bog creature you are
it’s easy to forget that you only get one-
one life, one body, one shot-
a single chance to enjoy this world and everything in it
so go outside and fuck up your yard
propriety was made up for society and it’s all bullshit anyway
keep reminding yourself
you only get one

to live like children

I wish we could live as fearlessly as children
to roll down a hill without worrying about sticks or stones
swim in the ocean with no thoughts of jellyfish or drowning
to climb a tree again and never once think
about what would happen if I fell
Getting older has made me smarter and wiser, yes
and I’m grateful for what life has taught me
but what I wouldn’t give
to leave the chains of fear behind
and spend an afternoon bathing in utterly careless freedom

empty lungs

the cold sea swells behind you
and you can barely take a breath before
it crashes down on you once again
all you can do is let the waves push and pull you
scraping your skin against the rocky bottom
the saltwater stinging fiercely
against your already open wounds
but the blood and pain don’t register
because all that matters is fighting
back to the surface to gasp in as much air as you can
before the next crash of dark water
overpowers and overcomes you

a dollar’s worth of silence

i want to smash a stack of expensive plates in the middle of the street

and run barefoot through the woods until I’m lost

i want to climb a tree until it sways

and sit there until I’m too cold to stand it

i want to throw rocks through abandoned window panes

and smoke cigarettes until i throw up all over my shoes

i want to drive to the middle of nowhere just to scream as loud as i can

then i’ll lay down in the dirt

and breathe

now I lay me down to sleep

we are all so tired

the collective exhaustion of the world
peeks through my windows every single day
wheedling its way into my body
and settling itself in my eyes and mind

we are all so tired

it’s impossible to shake, this indominable fatigue,
because we know there is a better way
we are sure it is possible to live life
without so many unnecessary struggles

we are all so tired

and even though I have faith-
in people, in the world, in the universe,
in my absolute certainty that, one day, things will be better-

there are many days I want to lay myself down
and let the morning glories in the yard overtake me,
so that my body becomes one with the earth
and my mind can finally rest.