“If you could pick any superpower, what would it be?”
When I was a kid, I had so many good reasons
to become invisible.
First and foremost, I could sneak
into anywhere I wanted,
i.e. Disneyland, without paying.
That doesn’t seem so important anymore.
If I could be invisible now,
I wouldn’t go to Disneyland.
I’d crawl into the backseat of your car
and examine the tiny, thin hairs
sprouting from the back
of your neck.
I know what Romeo would pick.
He’d be a shapeshifter.
I remember reading the line
during freshman year
that everybody in class laughed at;
the line in which Romeo
wishes he were a glove
upon Juliet’s hand.
If I could shapeshift,
I wonder how it would feel
to shift into the wind
and let my vaporous form
sift through the dead leaves
resting on your front porch.
Often, it seems that my
physical presence slaughters
the artistry of observation.
Isn’t it true that humans can
never truly observe?
Scientific studies are impure
because we make an omnipresent
impact on the world around us.
If I weren’t really here,
perhaps my fantasies
would evolve into something
that made more sense.
You ask what my superpower would be.
Such a question
remained meaningless until it
emerged from your mouth.
You ask, and, briefly, I consider
the possibility of mind-reading.
And I chastise myself.
How perverse am I
to consider ever escaping the pure
and human cage of ignorance?
You are not meant
to be read so easily.
Could I shape-shift?
And if I could,
could I be reduced to a pencil on paper
that does nothing but
draw you, erase you, draw you,
and erase you, and draw you,
until you disappear?
I wish my false expectations
grew visibly out of my skin
like ridges or horns.
If only the river that
sweeps away my imagination
ran through my blood, so that
if I sliced open my veins, my
imagination would spill out
like water from Jesus’s side.
I wish my fantasies were
stronger than the pooling
clot of shame beneath my ribs.
There is no stopping it, no
plug no plaster no tape no
insult powerful enough to
make this indomitable hope
falter. Why can’t it let
my life unfold however it
has been predestined? And why
do I cling to the thought that
my future will somehow evolve
into a utopia in which my
daydreams blend seamless into
There’s a vision of myself
made wholly out of heaven’s
light. She walks on glass
above her earthbound shell.
She’s an optimist. She’s
immortal. She’s beautiful.
She is blessed with
the gift of discernment
between good and evil. She has
everything she’s ever wanted.
Her world is my hallucination.
If I could touch her, I would
rip her overweening heart out
with my hands.
Spreading your fingers out flat against the table. Friction stopping your soul from falling backwards out of your body and into the maw of hell.
Reality twisting. But what is reality? It’s shifting. This isn’t the truth. God is withholding the truth. This is a simulation test. Soon, the world will turn into focus and you will face judgment.
You love drinking because alcohol is glue and it slaps your halves together.
Is it your instincts that lie to you? Or your insecurity? Or reality itself? Stop thinking about reality. It doesn’t matter what’s real.
When you imagine having conversations, your words flow freely alongside the current of your thoughts. But when you really speak, time freezes like a Tomb Raider quicktime action, only you aren’t allowed to think because everyone is yelling at you to be clever and by everyone I mean you. You hold reality in your hand. That’s a lot of responsibility. And you can’t even keep up with a conversation.
Your instincts are your compass and your compass is broken and there’s no way, there’s absolutely no way, that everyone else feels this incredible sense of urgency.
Aching self hatred.
Stop fucking obsessing. You pathetic fucking worm.
You know if you could stalk people and get away with it, you would. You tell yourself you’re just fascinated by people. I’m sure that’s true. I’m sure it’s normal to fantasize about someone you’ve known for one week. I’m sure that’s normal.
You can’t even fucking kill yourself. Because you’re so afraid of death.
Who did this to you?
you want to envision the whole world
in the brief span of time that it gives you.
to be thrown from the heavens unfurled
cut away from indifference and seen through.
you are translucent illuminating pain
shot through to the hollow and aching
space between your temples. force the rain.
swallow whole every moment that time has taken
away from you. if others exist they are yours
they are yours because God granted you vision.
burn away death with feeling and fire and roar
up into the holy light from which you were risen.
you never asked for this but you’ll take it
whole and wanton and raw and never again
will you allow anything to cheat your spirit.
I’ve found myself struggling to reach a sense of peace.
I haven’t been content since I was a Christian kid.
Dusk felt fresh and everlasting, and on cold nights
at summer camp I would sit by the fire with my
hands tucked into my sleeves. I thought about how
I would die, but I didn’t think about it the way I
do now. I was Christian, so I was guaranteed heaven
when most of the population wasn’t. And I was so
scared that my focus might shift and my worldview
might blend in with society’s until I became part
of the majority that was destined for hell.
Now that’s me, so I haven’t felt stillness for what
seems like a long time. There’s a restlessness
behind everything. Always waiting for peace to come
but no promise that it ever will, just fear and
the intrinsic knowledge that I’ll never really know
anything for certain. It seems melodramatic, but it
seeps into everything. That’s why it’s all I’ve been
able to write about. It’s all I’m able to feel.
I know the answer is waiting for me just out of reach.
It’s nestled comfortably on the tip of my tongue, sleeping restlessly.
The answer to what? I’m not sure I can tell you. Just the answer. The solution.
Whatever wind or breath of life that grants me insight has refused
to give me the final solution. The formula.
What beautiful aching I feel in every silence. What savage loss of hope
seizes hold of me when I look at a glorious sunset or sometimes
a perfectly-formed cloud, traced by the sun with rich yellow as if with
a freshly sharpened colored pencil.
Today I told my mom, it’s not that I’m ungrateful, or that I’m
rejecting what God has given me. Dad thinks so because Christianity
feels right to him. It doesn’t feel right to me. I feel, I know,
there’s something that I haven’t found.
I’m not ungrateful, but I’m impatient. I feel dread because
my time is always running out and I don’t know anything.
Life really feels like a test on the chapter of a book I haven’t read.
Can I be held accountable for that? For not knowing despite my
desperate and urgent search? I’m waiting for the answer, but
it hasn’t revealed itself to me. I guess that means I have to find it
by myself, dig through my thoughts until I find whatever it is
I’m even supposed to be looking for.