Be Nice, She Said

Be nice, she said


flailing, pushing

Hands flat, open, extended

In avoidance

Wondering why
He didn’t come closer. 

Be nice, she said

Cried as she brought up

imaginary, claimed forgotten

Perceived slights

From a year and a lifetime ago.  

Which never were,

But damned if she won’t use them

As an excuse to bury herself

In the dirt of hurt

Than she’s planted and tended

On her own 

Better than any lover. 

Be nice, she said

Hid behind her own 


Asking for kindness

Despite, undeserved,


That she begs for

Without words. 


In her ice. 


From her homicide

And her crucifixion 

To her own cross 

I can’t be nice, she said. 

I forget. 

I locked it away. 


Be nice, she said. 

Forget with me. 

Help me remember. 

Be nice. 




Good evening.


Come sit down.

No. Thank you.
I’ll stand.

here we are.

Did you want to-

Okay. That’s fine.

I’ll start.

Are you-


Are you okay?

I don’t know.
Doesn’t seem…

I’m okay.


How are you?

No. Thanks.
I’m fine standing.

I’m still
and I’m happy
It’s a lovely stand.
And I don’t want
to go anywhere now.
But I know
you’re not one
to sit.
Unless you’re
and I’m afraid

I’m not entrancing.

And I’ll stand with you.
But I’m not good
at standing.
Better at standing
than sitting.
Not a sitter.
But not good
at standing.

I need to move.
I like a path
sprinkled before me
to find me
And I see too much
to find the straight line.

You’re a sprinkle,
a splatter,
a far and wide,
see what you can
where can you spread
your colors.

I want to spread
and I can’t
keep up
with your chaos.

A gift to watch
a joy to inspire
to muse
to see
as the first spectator
past the ropes.
But there’s a rope
and that means
I stand on this side.

My colors aren’t
ready yet.
Where we stand.

Where do we stand?

If I can’t get beyond the rope
I’m standing alone
at your beauty,
careful of
the taped-off edges.
at descriptions,
I don’t understand.


I stand.

Staring across the rope.

Applauding on my feet.
Begging to be seen.

From where
I stand.



My novel Drowning Above Water is now available through Amazon. 




I break things.

I’m not careful or

I thunder and plod.

I get bruises.

I get hurt.

I drop precious
and cry over the broken

There’s never enough glue.

I see to that.

So, don’t go in the

Not until I’ve swept it.

You’ll get cut.

I should probably mop too.

And vacuum.

Maybe I’ll just move.

Help me pack the plates?

Fuck You

This one is a lot. As it needs to be.

Fuck You




The ones who think,

no, not me…

Yes. Yes you.

Fuck you.

Fuck Everybody.

The ones who look in your face,

smile and cry with you

and rub your back

and let you relax

and it’s not until

the tip of the knife

pierces your skin

that they just warmed

do you know what

they’re doing.

And fuck the ones

who don’t give you

the benefit of hypocrisy

and tell you hard and plain

when you aren’t enough.

At least some will tell you.

The others?

Fuck you and your cowardice.

Fuck you and your cruelty.

Fuck you for fucking her.

Fuck you for not getting me help.

Fuck me for not asking.

Fuck you for not believing me.

Fuck you for not seeing me.

Fuck you for not caring and

Fuck you for caring too much.

Fuck you for wanting me to change

and fuck me for doing it

again and again and again.

Fuck you for dying.

Fuck you for holding a place for me.

Fuck you for being so perfect.

Fuck you for being too good for me.


Fuck this body for putting up with what I’ve done to it.

Fuck this brain, for telling me lie after lie after

truth and letting me fuck my body

and my brains and anyone

who touched either. .

Fuck me for always pointing

when I should be looking.

For taking on what isn’t mine.

For believing when I should doubt.

For building safety net when I should

trust the fall.

For knowing I should shut up

For knowing  I’m full of shit.

For knowing when I shouldn’t open my mouth

to say fuck you, get out

when what I mean is I love you,

please don’t leave

Please don’t grow up.

Please don’t need her.

Need me because

what am I if you don’t?

And fuck me for thinking that.

Fuck everyone who doubted

and that was everyone.

That was me.

Fuck my empty back account.

Fuck my empty soul.

Fuck the anxiety that

puts a pill in my mouth

and a pit in my heart

every single day.

Fuck my therapist

that knows so much

but doesn’t get it

and the insurance

that doesn’t pay for him.

I’d say fuck my mother

because that what we always say

about our mothers

because they’re just like us,

but I’ll probably have to move

back in with her soon ,

so I can’t say that.

Fuck her cat though.

That bitch is an asshole.

Fuck the constant struggling.

Fuck that fact that I have it easier

than almost everyone I know

and it’s still really fucking hard.

Fuck the fact

that I don’t want to give up.

Fuck that I still write

and look for beautiful sunsets

want to believe in love

despite every bit

of evidence that it’s as real as faeries

dancing a reel in the dew.

Fuck you for dancing with me.

I know better.

I don’t want to know better.

Fuck knowing better.

Fuck your sorry.

Fuck your it’s okay.

Fuck you for loving me.

Fuck you

for not telling me

to fuck off

when I was


and awful

and that’s what I needed

to hear.

You didn’t say it.

What in the fuck is wrong with you?

What’s wrong with me?

Bitter and caustic are easy.

Hard and closed are comforting.

Shut off and locked away are safe.

Fuck safe.

You know what isn’t safe?


Hope is fucking hard.

It’s devastating.

Like your smile.


Smiling. is hard.

You only smile.

Fuck you for making me smile.

I’m trying to be pissed off here.

I really want…

Fuck you for making me

want again.

Want so much


not want to fuck anyone

but you.

Fuck you for making me think,

fuck everyone…

but you.


Fuck you most of all.

I don’t want

to want you.

I put that in a box

years ago.

Big fucking box

big fucking lock.

And now, I’m sitting here

key in hand, flipping open

the lid.

Fuck you. Really.

It was old and rusted shut

and I cut my knuckles

prying that thing open.

Fuck you,

for kissing it and

making it better.

Because that’s not

supposed to work.

I didn’t want it

to be better.

But it did.

You made it.

And now what do I do with that?

Except not fuck you,

but hold and wonder,

love and trust

and then fuck you.

My new novel Drowning Above Water is available in paperback and Kindle through Amazon. 

Not Hers

Trying to be her.


Not Hers


These aren’t hers.


Hers had shiny icing

and soft, tawny edges,


Not sandy sugar covering

and black, ashed bottoms.


Mine barely fill a plate.

She had enough to reach across

her kitchen.


Where she raised a girl

to do the same

in hers.


Who did the same with

her girl.


Who didn’t.


What did she think?


Of my clothes.

And my tattoo.

My degree.

And my divorce.

My lost faith.

And my dark roots?


My home

that’s warm

and decorated

and has been host

to a mouse and a


and that’s not

the men?





Did she want more?

For me?

From me?

For her?

For not her?


She painted her long

slender legs

and I can’t be bothered

to zip my un-slim legs

into pants.


She raised a salutatorian

and a Christmas dinner


A sender

of beautiful cards

and thoughtful



A volunteer.

A nurse.

A giver of time

and compassion.

Even when she doesn’t want


She raised a woman

who knew how to love.

Til death do us part.

Even though

she had to be both

halves of a

separate whole.


How can I measure?

I can’t even


Not hers. Mine.

Does she know?


Does the one she raised know?


How proud I am

to be hers

and hers.


And how I want them to

be mine.


But I’m green

To their red.


I’m wispy air

To their solid earth.


Indulgent sugar

to their austere,




I want to be hers.




But I’m not.


I’m mine.


My make-believe, my stories.

My comic-book kid

And my pancakes for dinner.


My city stays

and all-black.

My sulking and silence

My burned edges.


But my soft parts.

My strong parts,

the leading and


and surviving parts.

The loving parts.

The believing parts.

The good parts.

The her parts.

The their parts.


The parts I have

of them,

to remember

to never forget.

No matter how I try.


Not hers.


Or hers.



My new book Drowning Above Water is available to read with holidays cookies. Yours and hers. Amazon Kindle and paperback.