You have my word

One word can change your life.

The secrets my skin will never tell you


I am most alive in that wild moment before death. Eyes clocking every corner for possible escape. Heart racing but my legs not moving. Skin tingling.

I have more than just my name beneath this skin. More than painted skies; more than grey lines and worn out lies.

My veins are just seams unstitched too many times I’m afraid. I am frayed. Made up of needles and string and patches and tears and nobody wants a thing that isn’t whole. I am a blanket of holes.

I plant thorns and grow roses from my wrists. Glorious gushing gardens of delicate petalled tragedies. I have not yet been choked by weeds.

Follow these stretch marks while I tell you how I have grown into myself. How I have expanded to fill spaces others created. You would do well to fill your own space without shame.

Don’t think that this ink was injected into my pores. It has poured from my soul and soaked the silk that keeps all this story in. I am not trying to paint over my sins. I am smearing the start of chapters I’m scared to begin.

God calls this body temple. I call this a temple for the gods. Beautiful, only because the windows are stained glass and my lips are broken cross mounted on the face brick wall. Unmoving.

In the moment before death, I am unmoving whether I stay or go.

The battle, the beer and the beast


I have only ever poured one beer down the drain. It is the only one I have never finished. The only one I never care to taste again. Just like I have only ever wished one person’s death. It’s the only one I do not care for. It’s the only one still in my head.

There are four things to keep in mind when tasting beer: what it looks like, how it smells, how it tastes and the aftertaste it leaves in your mouth. If this person was a beer that would roughly translate to: how they look, how they smell, how they feel in your mouth and the aftertaste they leave on your tongue and under your skin.

I learned to taste beer when I was very young. You could say I have a refined palate of sorts, for the sorts of men – I mean, beer – that evokes bitterness and bile. And yet, give it the right name – “little girl child with a man’s hands in her pants” begins to sound like “there’s a sweet and sour edge but you’ll miss it if you don’t take your time with this one.”

How it looks. How they look. How he looks. How he looked. How he looked in the dark with his eyes fixed on me, no one else, is awake, mom’s asleep, she’s asleep, not a dream, not a dream, just wake up, little girl, just wake up, just wake up, just lie still, just lie still, till he’s done.

How it smells. How they smell. How he smells. How he smelled. How he smelled the first time he laid eyes on me. And he knew that I knew no one else would see. Only me. And him. In the day. Or so he thought. There was him and me and ten different versions of who I thought he would turn out to be. His cologne, always too much in his pre-bedtime ritual. And he always came… back to sacrifice me when the ritual was complete. The smell of stale cigarettes on his clothes, regardless of how many washes or how much cologne. That’s the thing about poison – it doesn’t live in your clothes. It lies in your skin.

How it tastes. How it feels in your mouth. How they feel in your mouth. How he feels in your mouth. How he felt in my mouth. How he felt in my mouth when he rammed a whip down my throat, crushed my body like a slave. Held me down and hoped that I wouldn’t fight back. That I wouldn’t make a sound. That I wouldn’t try escape. That I wouldn’t use my fists. That I wouldn’t find the strength I have ten years too late. That I wouldn’t wake the family. That I wouldn’t call for help. That I wouldn’t pray to God. That I wouldn’t hate him. That I wouldn’t hate him now.

The finish. The taste it leaves on your tongue. The taste they leave on your tongue. The taste he leaves on your tongue. The taste he left on my tongue. The taste he left on my tongue… has not yet gone away. It has been more days than I care to count; more pains than days. More tears than pains and not even my drink takes the pain away. And I don’t blame it. I blame him. And for the first time since that first time I don’t blame myself and I don’t blame God – which in itself is more than I could ever have hope to move past. In fact, I never thought I would be able to move, never mind move on or move forward.

But I’m here. He’s not dead and I’ve still only ever poured one beer down the drain… well, now, maybe two.

Watch me go up in flames


Watch me go up in flames; watch me light the way.

Watch me refuse to be tamed; watch me burn through the rain.

Watch me brand my own name; watch me sear off pain.

Watch me raze; watch me rise again.

Watch me go up in flames; watch me turn night into day.

Will you sit with me for a while?


She calls me “love” like I have her home beneath my skin – like my veins are somewhere she could crawl up into and never leave. I call her “beautiful” like she has gold dust beneath her fingernails – like everything she’ll come to touch cannot remain as it was. But she will remain. She will stay. She will say she is homesick and I’ll know that she wants to be kissed gently like “Will you sit with me for a while? Will you hold my hand like it’s only you that’s keeping me from falling apart?” So I welcome her lips and her fingers like I’m opening the door.

I adore her.

I don’t know if my skin is good enough for her to live in. There are marks on the walls and stains from other lovers and if you run your fingers along certain parts you’ll find dust and memories that haven’t been moved in a while. There’s an attic where I keep the good times and I know if she ever opens it she’ll doubt how good she is. The basement is dark and cold and I hope she never wanders down there alone. I keep my monsters chained up there. I know when they need to feed.

I will never ask her to offer herself for their appetite.

Some say love, it is a river… and there is too much water under this bridge to think of coming up for air. So I breathe her in. I do not think of drowning because this tumbling is immersed in her. We are the other where limbs meet; we are no longer two – too entwined to swim apart. A part of me has always known that this will be our end. A surrender to what is, a dependence on what will be. We will endure. Here. In this home – with both our heartbeats in my bloodstream.

Perhaps this is love.