Some of you may already be aware of my current project, as I made a post about it about a month ago and have reblogged it a few times since then. However, I figured it’s about time to make a fresh post!
"Confessionals" is a project I am working on where I ask people to tell me something they haven’t told anyone else (or, if that’s not possible, something they’ve told only a few people). Then, I write a poem for each person who “confesses.” The final product will hopefully be a poetry book or collection, whether I get it published by a publishing company thing or self-publish it on my own.
If you’d like to help, you can submit a confession to my askbox or via the submission form. You can also send me an email (links to all of the above are at the end of this post).
The submission MUST include your three-letter initials in order for me to write you a poem! If you don’t have a middle initial, that’s fine, but if you do, please include it. Your initials will be the title for the poem. Nothing else about your identity will be revealed, including your original confession.
By submitting a confession, you are consenting to me possibly publishing a poem written based upon your confession. If, after reading the poem, you don’t want me to publish it, I will of course respect your wishes! I’d love to include everyone’s poems, though.
IF YOU WANT TO READ YOUR POEM, YOU MUST GIVE ME A WAY TO CONTACT YOU! You can leave your email or your Tumblr URL (although I’d have to be following you for two weeks in order to fanmail you the poem). I WILL NOT BE POSTING ANY CONFESSIONAL POEMS TO THIS BLOG.
Thanks so much for your anticipated help! (: If you have any questions, consult the FAQ first and then come to me!
I. The first time you scrawled the words onto a college-ruled page in a spiral-bound notebook. I’m sure you tore out pages without telling me because I tore out pages without telling you, but when you wrote you loved me whether I was Rachel or Red I wanted to gently take the lined page and fold it up into a paper crane because all my 11:11 wishes had been granted with a few strokes of a ballpoint pen. Now I wish I had torn that page out, too, stapled it to my heart so I would’ve known how it felt for your love to hurt, so I would’ve been prepared for the inevitable moment when you would hurt me.
II. The second time it was over phone static, before the line went dead, before I had the chance to register the words you had spoken, almost whispered, before you hung up. Maybe it was the sudden impact of my feet hitting the ground after jumping off my mailbox or maybe it was the adrenaline rush of my pounding heart hitting my ribcage, but either way the words you gave me found their way into my rattled bones and racing bloodstream. You were a drug, a poison in my veins, but back then I would’ve sold my soul for you.
III. The third time we were laying under the trees I write about too much. My head was probably on your chest and your heart was probably echoing in the space between my ears and we were probably sweating in the heat, but all of that disappeared when I said something along the lines of “It’s moments like this when I know I love you.” The words came out in a rush, as if not saying them all at once would mean they would never be said at all. You replied that you loved me, too, your voice vibrating in my skull, resonating in my spine, making its way from my head to my toes. Now my entire body feels empty without the vibration of your voice to fill my hollow bones.
IV. The fourth time was with written words again, but this time I didn’t read them in your handwriting that I no longer recognize, this time they weren’t lovingly placed on college-ruled pages, this time they weren’t your heart, this time I read them as pixels on a screen, digitized text in an email, and they weren’t a new beginning, they were an end. This time you said you loved both Red and Rachel, the order of the identities reversed, and this time you said goodbye.
V. The fifth time was over screens, again and again, reassurance that you loved me despite twelve hundred miles. But then the distance between us stopped being the hypothetical hours spent in an imaginary airplane and became the all-too-real days wasted waiting for the next I love you to come. The miles got longer and the gap got wider and the hole in my chest got deeper, and then finally the waiting stopped with four words instead of three: I can’t love you.
VI. The sixth time was in a hotel room in New York, over the phone again, me crying and collapsing inside and you saying you couldn’t talk because you were at dinner but you loved me, you loved me and it was all going to be okay. You called me Red again that night, and you decided you loved me again that night, and I don’t know why I believed you but I did. I believed you even though a month later you said you couldn’t love me for the second time. I believed you even when I said I was going to hate you because it was better that way. I believed you. And even though I shouldn’t, I still do.
august 22, 2014
warm hands on my waist
our thoughts in decay
we’re buried six feet underground, love
but our pulses remain
our heartbeats race
i wish you could’ve stayed
i wish you were near
were you ever here
with your body next to mine
could you dive into my eyes
ask that question again
never leave, sail the seas
would you return here and stay here
if i could give you a reason to be here
phantom neck kisses, missed 11:11 wishes
voices echoing in the distance
i want you now
i want you near
i want you here
silent lips, passion unspoken
addiction to love, words unwritten, devotion
your touch could become my religion
your warmth, my crucifixion
i was dead, i am risen
are you there
or just a vision
come be with me
i need you here
i love you dear
i crave you near
no stars, no sky, no air to breathe
no words to speak
just you and me
no space between
i swear to you you’re what i need
your touch would be divinity
come closer to me
August 21, 2014
I must’ve snapped the spine of the universe
Just to watch it glow
I guess I didn’t know how much it would hurt you and me
But we broke a wishbone together and you got the bigger piece
God knows I didn’t expect the sky to come crashing down
I only wanted you to hold me.
August 20, 2014
Was it love to you
Or did you just want more
When you asked if you could kiss me under the trees
I didn’t reply in time so you turned away
But I was scared to death that beneath those words
There were other things you wanted us to be
But was it ever love to you?
I’m wondering because the word “girlfriend” never existed
Until you felt the need to superglue the adjectives
Onto the beginning of the word that now sounds like it shouldn’t exist
Was it love or was it just
A whirling obsession, spinning around in a brand-new dress
Butterflies in my chest cavity and dizziness in my head
Was it a hurried confession, abrupt I love yous before leaving again
Those words always came out of my mouth in a rush, almost as if
If I didn’t say them fast enough they would never be said at all or
If I whispered them too slowly they would not be heard
There was no perfect in-between when loving you
And you were always leaving.
Was it love?
Sometimes I think it was simply
A hurtling addiction, one more hit of you, just one more hit
It was always just one more hit
A hit from the words that still sit comfortably on your abusive lips
A punch thrown at three am, when you said you couldn’t love me
God, you could have loved me
Don’t you dare fucking lie and say
You no longer have the capacity within your heart
To love a girl whose only desire for the longest time was to be loved by you
Who once upon a time would have died for you to call her your girlfriend
Something other than Red
Because one primary color was not enough
But was it ever love
If the world “boyfriend” still rests uneasily on my tongue?
But maybe that’s just because
I was never your girlfriend.
August 18, 2014
The ocean is deep and unknown, who are we to judge
Whether she intends to drown those who swim too far out
Or if she’s just lonely
And in need of someone to tell her
That she’s never quite as alone as she feels
I know I’m selfish for wanting someone to tell me I’m not alone
Make me feel less like I’m drowning in the deep end
And more like I’m swimming towards the light
I guess in my desperation to float to the surface
I dragged you down to drown in the depths of the ocean with me
But don’t you think that maybe a hurricane doesn’t mean to hurt people
Maybe when her stormy tides come crashing upon the shore
She isn’t thinking about the damage she will cause
She doesn’t realize how destructive she will be
She just lashes out with her wind and rain because she’s been hurt herself
And while hurting others, her own hurt is all she can feel
I know I hurt you
I’m awfully good at hurting people I love, see,
My heart is like an ocean and sometimes it is calm and clear and blue But sometimes it turns dark and stormy and I should have warned you about
Getting caught in the midst of my hurricane
I should have told you that if you did not evacuate in time
You wouldn’t make it out
In one piece
But I’m here to tell you the storm has passed
And now that I can see your wreckage on the beach
I know I won’t ever be able to fix the damage I caused
An ocean has no breath to give to the drowned and
Crashing waves have no hands with which to rebuild the things they have broken and
Hurricanes only know how to destroy but
Storms can ask for forgiveness
By letting the sun shine the next day.