Monday, June 27, 2016

James Diaz- Three Poems & Photo




The best thing about us

This carry on racket
I'll go 
where everyone else goes
I'll be in 
after the light
hollows under  
& you'll know it
when you see it

how more than fist 
and elbow scars
carry us across
the interstate
an absolute miracle 
to still be
alive right now

fucking world
won't go 
according to plan

need different maps
to draw the line
over a pulse so ill kept
so inside of you right now
that the outer skin blossoms like a name
you've kept hid
now stealing into the sun

don't think twice
it's not alright

but we know how to live off of very little
how to bleed without a cut
how to track & trace the things gone missing
shove them into our mouths 
full fisted & weeping

so much of the soul is carry-on luggage
what matters most will not fit
three punches in 
& your body crumbles
a voice from nowhere telling you to “just breathe”

it's been called the best thing about us
not knowing who we are.



Human Stuff

Nothing I hate more 
than having to tell you
circumstances
change something essential in us
and
where the light goes
when it's not in your eyes
I have no fucking idea

how many little deaths you'll encounter
before you find the real one

bounced checks are what my mother left me

when it's raining I forget the words for what I've left behind

I hope this finds you unwell
and knowing a great many things you didn't know then

when we loved with knives
and broken curfews
and god is what you called a cab with a busted headlight
drove us home anyway

as it turned out we had no home
dashed from the fare there on the corner
of nowhere at all

I don't forgive you
this isn't a forgiveness poem
it's a “can I borrow 20 dollars poem”
a love song without the love & without the singing

there is fire in me too
you thought my fields didn't know dark days
I came from nothing but dark days

you were always luckier with the light than I was 

you were a half inch taller than I knew what to do with

I was a bad name and I did not know how long it takes to hear yourself when called

it wasn't always shit
just more than we could handle

“human stuff”
my father would say.



The man at the 7-11, leaning in

He said, silence
put yourself in silence
he said, walk it off
until the tail lights deep blue
clings to your leaving 
& every day is more or less
devastation in waiting

until you pull two hearts from your mouth
instead of only one
and you laugh, how life still goes on
after you have forgotten all of the names 
attached to places
you'll never return to 
in one piece

He said, silence
put yourself into yourself
and hold on 
for dear light
is not long in this place

is already leaving without you.



Bio: James Diaz lives in New York. He edits Anti-Heroin Chic and has a few poems here and there like HIV Here & Now, Ink Sweat & Tears and Indiana Voice Journal. 


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