I learned to Lie

I remember getting braces
in 4th grade,
cold winter with the trappings
of many a grey sky,
the dentist,
big white coat,
big white coat,
asks if he’s hurting me
and with tears
streaming down my face
I say,
“no, Im fine.”

The little girl in me
with her pigtails
bouncing through the snow
still lies I suppose
to appease
a room,
a boy,
a girl,
a piece of furniture that
you lost your virginity on,
a job,
a friend,
a character,
a mask,
a voice in my head.

The lie feels fucking good
when it spills out,
this mixture of confusion and adrenaline,
only sometimes though,
when it’s from the inner caverns
of my mouth,
a soft place to land
when I don’t know
how to say no to you
but couldn’t possibly
let my introverted octopus self
hurt your feelings
with honest words dripping
from me
like holy fucking water.

And when my first lover
entered me
without so much as a
warning or even an asking
of what I might want,
I clamped my mouth shut and
watched the ceiling fan
go round and round.

And when my dad died,
after the shock had worn off
for the people around me,
who didn’t even know my dad that well,
others felt I should move on,
oh come on,
move on,
move on with me,
and I found myself detaching from even angels
for the sting of it all and learned to
not speak my loss out,
friends cut me off in mid sentence
so they wouldn’t have to even
hear his name
and I started to lie
about my grief,
“oh Im fine.”

Then in the cancer times,
Jordan getting sicker and sicker,
I spent my days
getting bad news
and forcing out choked silver linings,
lying every moment,
squeezing hope out of a tumor growing.
I lied about trips to
the hospital
because I didn’t want to bother co-workers
with awkward
cancer stories,
I lied about how I was doing,
what was hurting,
what I wanted,
even to my girlfriend
who sat with me in waiting rooms
at all hours of the morning,
holding my hand,
once I became silent
tis such a hard habit to break
even when your head’s screaming.

And now with my brother,
my better half
gone from here,
I feel things shifting,
they have to for survival,
and maybe someday to live loud,
not just coping.
I am teaching myself to speak again,
beginning at least
to learn where the lies
inside me come from,
because they were taught to me in harsh whispers
by cold capitalist machines in my sleep
with the radiator running and the abuser
banging on the door
as I plan escape routes.
Not something innately in my nature,
the lie,
years covering scars
so you couldn’t see
my aching tentacles eight
sticking out at all angles
in the silky moonlight
until the crows
carried me home
on their backs,
to bed,
to bed,

to sleep.


  1. Only you make me laugh through the tears you cause. Ya gah damn poet.

  2. There's a commonality I have, with alot of the subject matter, only on the other pole. Lots of loss, always instant and over the phone.. It's like life took them out of mine? lol. The thing, play, we live in, called life, decided I should just instantly be without my fellow castmate. No kisses, or hugs, or even a picture from within 3 years of the death, in either case.. All I have are the few scraps of pictures and obituaries, which I got when my dad's brother passed away..

    I always have this melancholy.. bitterness and empathy and jealousy towards people on the other pole, who, though got to say goodbye, also had to deal with finality. Where as I was nearly in denial for years.. I almost didn't believe my dad was dead, because I hadn't seen him for years before he died *prison* and.. he looked in no way like my dad.. Also, he could be a shifty fellow, so, I encouraged the illusion at times, that he may have just ran off somehow, or faked his death.. tho, I would be left perplexed as to who died in his stead, lol.. eh.

    Then, other losses, more recent, that I haven't even come to terms with.. Like, someone you've known so close and so long, that even before they died, they would echo and reverberate through other people. Looks in the eye or turns of phrase.. Someone, when you're separete from them, is almost like a living ghost, possesing those around you.

    Anyhow, I ramble and need to work on that. But, I greatly enjoy your poetry, I hope you know. lol, Many people do.