Tag: emotion

Predictable Outcomes/It Didn’t It Couldn’t She Couldn’t Who Could No One

This will never work
of course
this is true because I already believe
it to be true but even
if I didn’t it
wouldn’t work

because I can’t change
or at least I’ve not yet
been able to change and
I have little
faith that I ever

I am not a happy man
I am not good at making other people
how could I?
how could I even know how?
if I am anything it’s
deeply deeply sad
for reasons beyond me
or maybe not, maybe I know why
but if I do
it doesn’t matter anyway so
save me if you can
but I know you can’t
and I’m so sorry.

I’m so sorry.

It doesn’t matter please don’t think it matters it wasn’t it wasn’t you it wasn’t your fault


I don’t feel
but I remember what it’s like
and I don’t know but
I can remember what it’s like—
felt this way for a long time
longer than I can remember,
felt nothing
any which way at all
and it’s pretty fucking hard to live
when you just don’t care
I just
not about anything
nothing at all.
It’s not living
not alive;
I’m breathing
thinking, doing, being
but I’m not alive, not living.

I’m tired.
I am.

Please Understand

Please understand
that emotions
are like airborne
one afflicted
with a virus
will not become well again
by spreading it.

A happy person’s
doesn’t diminish
when shared;
a sad person’s
is not made
any less
by making more miserable
the misery of

A poem I wrote forever ago, but one I’ve always liked a lot.



Of course
you can give your heart to
someone else, but it’s a heavy
if you cannot bear it yourself,
how could you justify forcing it upon another?
How could you force a person
to carry your cross
in addition to his own?
It’s better, I think
to instead grow

Learn to love yourself.

What Time Cannot Heal

It has been long said
that time heals all things
but in my experience,
that isn’t entirely true—
you see, time does heal most things
but some wounds are stubborn
and it takes a while, but even time
sometimes loses patience
and when that happens, it’s over
for what time cannot heal,
it kills.

I Do Wish

I wish I had held myself together.
I wish I’d done better,
done more, been better.
Wished I could try,
now wishing I had.
Sure wish I’d spent less time
trying to wish away the bad.
I might’ve been something
had I been anything
to begin with,
but if there’s a God
his concerns are more
than I am.
He didn’t stack chips
upon any
of my plans
and I don’t blame him—
he’d have lost them.
I wouldn’t have placed
that bet
God doesn’t, can’t help those
who help themselves
to repeated glasses of
bourbon and gin
and out from open windows, shout
slurred shouts, swearing skyward, said

“Well, goddamn! I never once wished for this!”


I don’t think time can kill it off completely, that emotion, I mean, but the years do dull it. Maybe it’s like a blade: you can grind that edge down flat in time, but the steel—the thing itself, however impotent—still exists, and a lifetime of effort couldn’t send it into oblivion.

In Spite of Prudent Advice

If you insist upon loving me
against good advice and
for reasons I won’t pretend to understand
then, before you invest yourself in me,
I feel compelled to elucidate the reasons
for which I gave that advice—
you see, I’m quite crazy
and not in the way that most people call themselves crazy.
No, I’m really nuts,
and because of that, I’ve been known
to routinely make irrational decisions
with flagrant disregard
for whatever consequences might follow.
I’m cripplingly inconsistent
which, I am told
makes for a poor financial investment
and an even poorer emotional one.

Simply put, given past behavior,
I’ll likely continue to make
frequent and terrible mistakes
so understand that, if you choose to love me
I very well might
spurn reason and objective thought
and make some short-sighted, careless decision;
I might well eventually do
something rash and awful,
something that would doubtless leave
an irreparable crack in that mechanism by which
you and I both connect with others
and derive happiness from those connections.

To speak plainly—
if you end up loving me
odds are I’ll do something reckless and damaging
something that cannot be undone
something we’ll both regret
for a long, long time:

I might love you back.

General Election

Our posters are fashionable and minimalistic:
white lettering
against a sky-blue background.
They project an aura of calm, quiet optimism.
Certain details are a mute shade of crimson
to elicit a vague sense of patriotism.
The posters were painstakingly engineered
for a large sum
by experts with doctoral degrees.
Their work is excellent—
the other candidates have also enlisted their services
and the firm’s executives drive cars
with interior trim fashioned from extinct trees.

The posters speak typical language.
Broad words assure voters
that I am likable, selfless, reliable, competent,
that their concerns are my concerns
that change is coming, but not too quickly
or too profoundly.
It is implied that
I will bring about this change,
and that this change will be good change.
I use the word “folks” a lot
to demonstrate that I am personable
and to facilitate a sense of personal connection
in voters’ minds.

Implications are made.

Voters are convinced that their ideas are their own
formed independently and unaffected by advertising.
We spend their money in billions
keeping that illusion alive.
We avoid hard facts and numbers.
We fight an emotional war
with words as ammunition
fired at base, unconscious motivations.
Getting things done is difficult and time-consuming
whereas seeming to get things done is easy
so our days are more efficiently spent
crafting and maintaining a convenient fiction
than dealing in fickle verity.

The reality is that no one wants reality.
People claim to seek truth, until they find it—
then they die trying to forget it entirely.
The world is cold and ugly.
It’s difficult to look at directly.
We assure the people
that reality isn’t quite so bleak
that we can control it
and this arrangement is mutually beneficial.
Right or wrong, good or bad, just or otherwise,
how you feel bears no consequence.
It is
has been
must be
will always be.

Delusion is the oxygen of civilization
and therefore is necessary.


You asked for the truth
and I don’t think that’s what
you’re hoping to hear
but I’ll tell it anyway.

It’s true–
living is so profoundly
and death probably isn’t much easier
but we’re alive, for now
and we’ll die someday
and everyone else will, too
and truthfully I couldn’t tell you whether
I’m in love with you or not
or even what love feels like
but I don’t care.
If this isn’t it, then I’d die happy
having never loved at all
because I don’t ever want to feel anything
except for the way I feel
right now.

If that’s not love
it’s goddamn close enough.