0

selfies.

I take a lot of selfies and post a lot of shit on Facebook and Instagram because I crave connection and some days, well fuck, I do want attention. I want to know that my presence was felt in the world. No one takes pictures of you when you’re alone, so you do it yourself and say “hey world, still fucking here” or “hey guys, shit sucks actually” or whatever it is you need to share. For as much as social media fucks with connection, it’s also a way to break up some of that loneliness. So if you’re out there posting selfies and looking for someone to see you, you’re not alone. You are brave and you are fierce.

1

1-800-273-8255

in my make believe world,
i like to pretend that veterans
live in two story homes
with white picket fences
with dogs and barbeques
and families that make them laugh;
fast cars and trucks,
farms and peace,
the kind Dick Winters spoke of.
in my make believe world,
i pretend they don’t sacrifice
their sanity for
xanax pills and vodka,
beer and smokes,
PTSD and walmart,
living on the fucking streets.
i pretend they come home
and it was just as they left it.
friends are still friends,
high fives, tailgate nights
such a world, where war
wasn’t fucking easier
than living and coming home.
i pretend they don’t come home
and blow their brains out
in the lobby of a va hospital.
i pretend 22 is just the number
that comes after 21,
not the number of lives ended.
for the ones not existing
in my perfect world,
call  1-800-273-8255.
press 1 to talk to someone.

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tendrils.

He’s like an angry lover
with his hands around her throat
and his whispers in her ear.
She can feel him touching
all her secret places –
her heart
her soul
her thoughts
He’s inside her,
like the devil he is.
He finds the cracks
in her heart and rips
and rips until she can’t
find enough pieces
to make half of a whole.
He tries to suffocate her
in crowded rooms
and it’s so hard to walk
across the parking lot
when he’s dragging her down
like a ball and chain
around her neck.
No one sees.
No one notices.
She’d scream but he’s got
his hand over her mouth
and he forces her words away.
They can’t see him,
they can’t feel him.
But he’s there all the same.
She can hear him laugh,
when she tries to escape.
When she tries to be stronger
bigger
better.
One day he’ll kill her
If she doesn’t escape.
If he doesn’t let her go.
If she can’t shake him –
and she’ll have to do it alone
because no one sees
no one notices
no one.