(Broken)

I am not pretty,

I confess;

But I will love (you)

While you ask me to bid goodbye.

I won’t even write about hope

any (more),

yours is a granite door painted-shut,

painted-out.

I won’t write about

fireplaces and your lips on my shoulders

deep long talks about birthing dreams

climbing mountains

a house with lots of windows

laughter

and pillows

hands curling feet by the lake.

I said hold on, give me a second;

And you didn’t wait

not a second, not for me,

but (quickly) filed me away in that category

full of index cards and manila folders,

misshapen lives and unwanted women.

That’s where I belong now,

in a gray metal cabinet,

while you look on with distaste.

Like I am a lemon while all you want is chocolate

lava cake.

Before I knew it,

we were reduced to a plain waste

of a contract, your cold hard math

and unilateral decisions,

like human relationships don’t matter,

like I never once brought you any joy.

Paper Pigeons

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Once

And no
More

Rilke in the

rain
Kissing

In          evitable           tragedies
We

are little boys and         little girls

Who live to
Tell and
weave     s     t      o

r   i   e

s

Of  needs  and               w

ants

Shaped by

fear
And words
gifts                                 trust
respect                            honor;

Watching                       bridges burn
As we

sink;                                singing

Like

Once and

no
more;

And yet, we
dance                               in vases

to                                      gether

and a

part

For                                    ever.

My Benjamin Button

You will always look like this—
In dry-cleaned suits,
Combing your hair to the side.
Wax. Pick. Groom.
Complaining about being too fat,
Too mad, 

sad, bad,
starving,
bored,
disappointed.

I watch you grow
younger
And older, stuck in time;
Regressing, swinging,
The uncontrolled jazz
Of our laughter
And confusion.

Sometimes the happiest music,
Carry the saddest lyrics,
Like dancing sound;
Or my shoes
When they come to your bed.
 
I am that love
Spilling out of your sink;
Like dirty dishes,
Screaming eternal sunshine,
That—
this is home.

You wandered too far,
And I wait in black and white;
While you break things
And invade my mind
Like warm feet on a cold morning.

Now I shoot paper pigeons
Out into the wild;
If you remember Paris,
Or poems,
Or me.

It is silent
And final,
Without your complaints.


My Los Angeles

Los Angeles Basin Sunset

We are getting older. Aren’t we?

Doesn’t mean we get any stronger.

In fact, we seem to break more–

Frequently. At the drop of a hat; the tip of a pin,

the gaze of a lover, the sound of disappointment. Or anger.

Or blame.

More often than not, we mean more to someone than we know.

When all your wishes come true…

Do you wish that some hadn’t?

Music, lies, loneliness, details,

do we just get better at filling up the void?

If I ever see you again, would you be different?

Since the opposite of love is indifference,

I’d rather you hated me.

If you knew where home was, would you come running?

I had known of your suffering,

I did not know how to set you free.

If you wanted to cut the chains, I would help you,

without excuses or shame.

 

Alicia Khoo

My Los Angeles

Singapore, Dec 2010

 

Turned to Salt