A POEM A DAY

I'm just happy to be here.

Tag: heartbreak

What Ate Charlie Brown Ate Me Too

According to Charlie Brown,
“There’s nothing like unrequited love
to drain all the flavor out of a peanut butter sandwich”

What’s brilliant about this
has to be
how quick
Charlie learns of heartbreaks simple
taste.
How taste is nothing more than
the ease in which a peanut-swimming tongue
decomposes
watches love parachute
disappear
turns to brittle upon exit,
and the nuance of never
having what you want is
now a second language
you can never leave behind.
You chew it, only to feel familiar flavor
vanish with the saddest velocity
swallowed conjugation
changes the root of everything,
settles with meaning you cannot decipher
or dance with, for that matter.

What’s the point of being tender
if all you get is lost in translation?
What’s the point in saying love
if all you get is sad sandwiches?
You speak it, but your breath is left out
bad bread, bad heart weather brewing
the yeast into yesterday’s yearning,
your most precious longing
something you can no longer eat
long gone.

Why is it that we describe the missing
with length? As if losing someone
or something is a matter of rulers
as if losing someone is a matter of rules,
heart breaks break all rules,
despair does not care for the distance
between you and your beloved.
We all know the feeling
the feeling of star-gazing peanut butter
sleeping on the roof of your mouth
as if leaving was ever
an option, and we all know the
feeling of loving someone so much
we cling with every fiber of being
because holding is all we can remember when
we’re this close to being chewed up and swallowed
and we all know what the name
of our beloved does to the chemistry of our tongue,
the way it turns to peanut butter
hungry for roof, a chimney of umami
blooming like lunch time, 

I have counted each syllable of her name 
picked them up like peanuts
and no matter the sound, each fraction
of her still smothers me smooth
then lifts, coddles,
then composes, and I suppose
you expect the same pop rock sensation
to happen from the mouth that says your name too
but you think of her mouth, and what flavor
you bring to her teeth, if you are slush or much more,
so you become comestible, an easy conquest
until you are unrequired
until your love is nothing but quiet
until your love is no longer together
until your love is one unrequited meal

The peanut butter sandwich I made for
lunch has already started to stale, along
with her name still stuck to the roof of
my mouth, the palate being the only place in the mouth
that will tell you the truth. 

Charlie,
I make a peanut butter sandwich
and think of you, I think of how both love and heartbreak
are such easy recipes, and how this peanut butter sandwich
is simple like rain on a sunday
I always say simplicity is conditioned to be everlasting
but you don’t have to be a clock-maker to know
nothing lasts, and even if you love with no questions asked
what do you do when you make the person you love a peanut butter
sandwich, but both her heart and stomach
are fasting?

17/30

THANKSGIVING
or
How I Let You Go On The Most Depressing Day of the Year
and Feel Pretty Good About it

I burned all the leftovers. The pie too.
It is as horrible as I am making it seem and
more. I am used to more but there is no stuffing left,
nothing left to stuff but silence.
When stuffing is the love you shove
into your mouth, what happens when you
run out?

It was the Sunday after Thanksgiving
when I last saw you and when everything
didn’t happen like it was supposed to.
When asked what you are grateful for
all anyone hears is hesitation, air taken by teeth
and you leave a silence so grand I bow
at the base of it. Is that what giving
is?
No, thanks.
The rain came like it was supposed to
and I am still smothered in mud, my
god.

Driving home, I am my own soundtrack
Words like why, again, why, again, why, me
again, why is there always an again
are lyrics
the speakers are familiar with.
Driving home, I am my own carwreck.
I exit the highway onto a country road
which then turns into a mouth of mud
and I am stuck and sad and so oh very
sad at being stuck.

If I count all the times I asked you to come back
I could not trace my way back and oh to be stuck like that—

All it does is take and that is a terrible
and true fact.

A stranger tells me a fact I go home to Google to make sure it’s true.
The first Monday of the New Year is considered
the most depressing day of the year. Something about
having to begin again but this time with follow through. Something about
having to show up and mean it, on a Monday
no less.

Driving home, we are on the phone. Most of the talking
is by me and I forget what I said but most assuredly
it rang to the tune of me promising a safe place to crash
or fall or call home, even if we are all bones or blown to
little bits of I told you so, oh don’t you know
I would have showed up and meant it
every Monday?

Driving home, we are on the phone when I run out of gas.
A stranger helps me push my car to the side of the road.
It is the coldest day of the year, which means it is the first
day we felt our skin sting and suddenly I cannot help but
count the coincidences. This same stranger brings me hot tea
and tells me
Waiting all alone is the worst.
Tells me today is the most depressing day of the year, and how he hopes
how much that isn’t true.

I call you later on the phone, and you showed up but
we both know you didn’t mean it, and so I tell you then
like I tell you now, the last words I will say to you are
I love you and goodbye.

It always ends the same.