I know what time it is – the plants on my balcony fade from green to beige to dead-brown.
He knows what time it is but doesn’t want anyone else to know – but they know.
She knows what time it is but doesn’t care about me anymore – her life is on track and going very well.
They know what time it is – time to continue on as ever as the light fades away.
When I was little, Fall was a tall pile of crunchy leaves in the backyard. It was the great expanse of our place in the world made bigger by the absence of foliage – more space to play. Fall was the shrugging on of colorful, warm coats pulled from the front closet with the wide swinging doors.
Look at the girl, grinning. Dream of that girl, dreaming. Back before everything became different.
What do you remember? What will she remember – little sweet running thing, tiny small jumping thing, precious baby laughing thing? What can we make, build, burn, do for her? What did you ever think you could do?
Beauty staring into beauty, fading like colors of Fall, fading like memories of childhood, staring backwards at everything, staring forwards at everything. Take more pictures – they don’t fade as fast.
What is there to say? We’ve said it all already – all of the words. Which of them were useful? Which good? Is there any more good coming?
Still, all we have are questions. Still, all we have are more problems – more and more, piling on top of one another, rotting the older ones into forgetful oblivion, stinking up the inside of our heads, leading to another question: what is that smell? Is it our democracy, dead or dying?
Far away and right next door, a girl takes a white paper flag and covers it in colorful words. No justice, no peace. We are here, we are loud. You will listen. You will hear me. This has gone on long enough, all of it. All of us. Together, we make this. Together, we must change this.
Far away and right next door, a man swears loudly at his ancient television screen. Things are not right. There is danger at every corner. The world has gone mad. If my father were alive to see this, he thinks, well, thank the lord he’s not. Everything will be better, soon. We must continue on, we’ll get there – back to normal.
Too small-minded to see the bigger picture. Too big-headed to have any room for an inkling of: perhaps it should be different. Too smart for this planet, too dumb for this planet. This, as they say, is us.
3. Oh, god, is it Summer already?! I forgot what hot, humid weather felt like! WHY did we want this?!
4. “If not now, when? If not now, never.” was something I told myself/fought with myself about last week. I was so so so scared to do something, something simple, even though I really wanted to! So then I did it. And it was great! SO JUST DO IT, OK, SHEESH. Whatever it is. Do it. You’ll be afraid but you’ll also be ok.
5. I’m beginning to like K-Pop. …SOMEONE SAVE ME FROM KOREA!
6. He was beautiful but not kind. So, technically, not beautiful.
7. I’m getting very tired of having to tell you to GET THE FUCK OUT. Leave. GO. Do something! Go somewhere! Be someone you want to be! People like you fade from my heart. Please don’t.
8. Write a letter to yourself in the future. Say anything. Tell them what you want to be doing in a year. Tell your future self what you had for breakfast today. Anything. Put it in an envelope. Wait six months or more to read it.
9. It’s not gonna be easy but it will be okay. HASHTAGlife.
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The old men in the old country
die with unannounced poison in their bones
cheeks turning red to black,
far past rosy vodka friendliness
whispered slurs of slipping away
wrapped in the same white sheets they were born on
surrounded by ancient grandmother pillars of pillows
soon to be buried next to all previous generations
under neon-colored plastic flowers
and broken china cups of rain water to eternally sip
worn out weary legs bent under hay-making shoulders
rheumy watery eyes and lotion-less skin
big belly gut heaving from the lung stress
sitting splayed on the one one person-sized mattress
thinking of his father
thinking of me
thinking of nothing
semi-encircled by the entire village family
throwing arms in the air clutching vodka swallows;
nothing much is different on this his last day.