The difference

The Summer was never peaceful—

Filled with silent worry

Watching from my window

Her skin turn golden brown—

Here’s everything, they said

Tokens for your smile

Just listen to the carnival

and what fun they’re having

How still it breaks my heart—

But what’s a boy of 12 to do

When everything seems pointless

And your world is very small

Knowing no one really listens

To the secret lives of children—

but I had a good mother who tried,

and that made all the difference.

1946——8——2022

In a library, off Verdugo

it’s peaceful, and quiet

besides

the adolescent girls sitting cross-legged

making jokes, and

the occasional waft of homelessness—

clocking in their ten hour shift.

The internet is free, as are the restrooms

so it all makes its own sort of sense.

It’s 2022 and I’m just now reading

letters, from 1946—and on—where the world

described, is that of failed systems

injustice and its people, confused

and troubled and hungry, and mad.

It’s the kind of peace and quiet

that slowly breaks your spirit,

that slowly breaks your heart.

In a library, off Verdugo

is where I understand.

The Primrose Path

We’ve walked before, the primrose path

and what good hath it brought?

It’s crimson skin, and pit of death

the yew forgives us not!

Quite tempting is the flower, bud

who’s poison’s not enough,

it’s beautiful and deadly

how, our lives rely on luck.

See nature isn’t partial,

it doesn’t give a fuck.

We’ve walked before, the primrose path

to learn what can’t be taught.

Nothing Feels Better Than Pain

Haven’t got the chords or melody.

Nothing feels better than pain.

I haven’t got the reasons anymore.

Haven’t got the words to explain—

People living life like it’s a parody.

Everyone to me looks the same.

I haven’t got the reasons anymore.

Nothing feels better than pain—

Prove to me there’s goodness, and I’ll prove you wrong.

Prove to me there’s no pawn in this game.

Talking to you now just feels meaningless.

When Courage gets mistaken for Insane—

I haven’t got the reasons anymore.

Nothing feels better than pain.

Haven’t got the chords or melody.

Haven’t got the words to explain.

It was a morning like other mornings.

It was a morning like other mornings

where if I had a garden, I’d tend to it—

each flower, delicate as the next

sleeping in a nursery.

Watering each bulb, silent

as a field mouse, I’d bow my head

in knowing—

It was a morning like other mornings.

And I was the sun.

The Old Wood Fence

I remember sitting

by the old wood fence

the alley, silent as a whisper—

The birds then sang

like they do now.

And just like a boy

hits puberty, I still don’t know

what’s wrong with me?

I watch the light

claw its way down the alley

and where shadows hide

I look for clues.

In broken bottles.

In rusted metal.

In pavement laced with weeds.

By the old wood fence

with its perfect knots — I scream

to hear my answer.

Two Worlds Within A World

Your world’s in careful order

while mine’s in disarray,

I’ve tried to read between the lines

but there’s just empty space.

When dumb luck gets regarded

for gentle hands of fate,

I sit for hours wondering

whose world has been misplaced?

This fault line, it grows deeper

the longer that I think,

what good are silver lining’s with

prospects neither believe?

Is what I forge through fiction

just white lies for dispute?

I try to keep my distance

to organize what’s true.

Seems when I find the meaning

these worlds they split apart,

now mine’s in careful order

like yours was from the start.

As for that space between?

There’s no room left for me.

There’s nothing to be found

I’ve lived there long enough.

I’m happier with words that mean

exactly what they mean.

I’m happier to be a part

than live in disarray.

If it’s time that pulls the strings

than it’s I who’d rather be,

two worlds within a world

alone—

three worlds to form a whole.