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paige
Artist | Student | Literature
United States
i grew up just outside of new york city but am currently go to school in boston.
i write poetry and the occasional short story. i'm currently working on a tetralogy called the mads manifesto.
don't take me seriously.

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My neighbor had golden, dried skin
that looked like it were to peel off her body
in the only way the sun could, and her eyes
were hooked like worms, corneas a dirt brown
that moved slow when they moved
to study my arm

and her hand was also there
clasped only in the way I knew roots could hold,
like when my mother’s favorite rosebush had been torn
from its roots, with its red petals caked through the mud
like dried blood.

I was not yet seven years old
and I told myself
in my seven year old tongue
these roots caged nothing
but the dirt that covered my skin -

but I was a little thing
that would hold herself tall
even on the delicate bones of her toes
with eyes wider than the sun
desperately trying to will her body
to understand.

I still do not understand.

My neighbor’s lip curled in vines at her cheeks
and I watched as the worms of her eyes crawled
over the remnants of her garden we stood in
and I helped destroy.

“It’s because of the Mexicans,” she said,
and I repeated, “It’s because of the Mexicans,”
and not because digging my toes into the dirt
had made me understand.

I still do not understand.

Her roots did let me go
and I fell into it, staring at my fingers
and the way they disappeared through the mud,
pale things that did not belong.

I still do not understand.

The only thing I know now is
as you get older, those toes and fingers
will turn into something else.

They are roots.

My hands are still children’s hands
that will never learn, that will
try to find everything they can find
like fingered robins searching for worms
in the soil

and I know my roots are nothing
like my mother’s, or my neighbor’s
and they will not grow flowers.

My Garden is dirty
and has high school secrets that run
through the soil, boys with can-opener hands
shredding metal and piercing the dirt
with sodacan thorns,
nails the color of rusting hair

and its greens aren’t green
but yellow, faces sick
with the color my father
told me to drink that clouded night
in February, milk spoiled and turning
in my stomach like sick carousels,
the slow, cyclic rolling of it

blowing
the clouds strong, the size
of my neighbor’s white gods
commemorated by statues littered
watching the flowers of her own Garden,
pinched by safety pins.

My Garden’s statues watch
its own one flower, the side of a bedpost
pressed brown and hidden,
broken into the spine of a bible
with its own spine snapped

the church pews
willing it to bend to its knees.

At seven, I would say I had healthy knees
but now I know better
because my favorite father
of my church
died before I turned eleven,
and my other father’s brain
had him ill before my eighth birthday

and in my Garden
I will now watch the sap run slow
like coagulated blood
with the color of nine year old bruises
when a daughter was pulled
with the crook of her arm
by bipolar disorder.

I will tell that seven year old
it feels like my flesh had torn away
and now all I feel is the burning igniting
in the crooks of my bones
snapping when they move

and I will warn that seven year old
my Garden looks like
a house was once built here,
but now all you will find is that disaster:
Every color, every littered thing
a warning too late

with charred remains others will find
were ignited not by lightning, a tornado
or hurricane

but a single match.

I will tell that seven year old
that I still do not understand
but my Garden will look like it has tried too hard
like a child trying to straighten her knees
and catch her father’s hands
when he is too high to reach,

that it still grieves like children do,
that still thinks their father is
too high to reach, that is bitter
for another girl that was almost taken
by bipolar disorder at fifteen,
not because she had almost died
but because she had swallowed something else
with her.

My neighbor believed her abusers
were her Mexicans
like Carla, with her bowl cut
and shredded hands the color
of the naked birds we saw
on the side of the road,
a second grade school trip

and Jackie, with the dirt under
her nails, eyes below the fogged glass
of her crooked glasses
brighter than roses

even though I, too, helped destroy
her garden.

Perhaps her bitterness
had bittered me as well,
that the worms of her eyes
came through the bruises
pulled through my arm
when I was nine,

and though I still do not understand
now I know

all my neighbor could do
behind the watchful eyes
of her Garden,
of scrubbing her hands raw
of the dirt

was spit poison
like a snake, leaving broken teeth
all over her own destroyed Garden.

She might not know
but I know
it’s not because of those Mexicans
there are so many battered women,
that

my Garden might not know
how to heal itself, that it is not me
that lit the match and burned
the entire thing down
and

Eve was not the one
who decided to
destroy Eden.

My own Garden was destroyed
by the inhabitant
of my Garden’s house
and once lived there,
the Creator whose hands
had once lived to create flowers,

who once its scales had shed
from a father’s warmth
into a slick black and blue,
the bipolarity of it
making it sick,

that now knows
and hisses with its
eight a.m. song
that I once could not listen to,

telling me
it knows all it can create
is nine year old bruises,
bruises though we know we cannot see
still aches all the same,
aches enough where we all
have forgotten how to love.

I can still say this
and truthfully, I still do not understand

but now
standing in my Garden
with my gasoline
in my pale fingers washed
of the soil, and knees
healed enough to stand
and run

I know I can love.
it was the end of summer before the tenth grade, and the last time i spoke to you. you smelled of cheap weed and the familiar must before rain, sweat covering your hair that fell over your eyes like vines, and remained even as you looked at the birds as they scattered into a waltz through the brass thicket of the trees.

i remember you as this boy who wore sneakers with year-old mud on them, that always seemed to find himself in the creek by our old elementary school, even years after we had spent our recesses searching through the mud when we knew the adults weren't looking. to me, your eyes were just as blue -- the kind of blue that you fall into, like wells of water surrounded by the dark gray of stone, and your voice was soft and uneven, a stutter like careful strings on a violin, but the birds were different.

they were afraid.

they were afraid of you in the way only those familiar with survival are, that know how to survive before they are born, somewhat like those who know the smell that comes before an impending storm.

i was not afraid.

what i really dream about is the wood from your porch splintering into my legs when you lean over mine, a whisper that comes from your mouth like the wind that comes from the rolling clouds of a storm passing, that comes from the river by the cemetery we grew up by, the kind only we knew, with thousands of old dead friends to play by.

but these chills are incredible, indescribable, impossible, just as they are familiar.  

adults say teenagers are too dumb to understand the concept of death, that they only know it like those things we see on tv, that we hear on the news, an old affliction that the old and the sick had caught like a disease. but even then, i knew what i wanted.

my skin ached. goosebumps came over me with a shiver, the hair on the back of my neck standing up like blowing leaves, like every cell in my body was trying to escape your lips when they touched my ear, so soft they made me want to scream like those girls in those old black and white horror movies we used to watch when our parents weren’t looking. but i didn't.

i sought it.

if your words were death, then i wanted it like i wanted to walk into traffic, and they did come like complete, total, cataclysmic, traffic.

but this danger was only noise, impenetrable, strangely holistic, and i felt it crash through my bones a hundred of thousands of miles per hour. i only know this because i remember it all only the way i shouldn't, in the way you think you've made it all up because it just felt so good, and i could say nothing—absolutely nothing—because a breath burst from my lungs just as fast and as hard, and i fell even deeper into the splinters, so dizzy the trees swam into the sky.

my body was a highway, and you took it with this secret.

it rumbled in your chest, violent, as contradictory and unholy and holy as sex in the dark.

it was.

you said this as your eyes climbed the trees, the blue flickering red like tiny flames.

“burn them.”

burn them, you said.
a letter to a boy who won't read it
full title: a letter to a boy who won't read it and a confession to those who won't understand it


people change. a lot. sometimes in ways you wouldn't think. 

caredful.tumblr.com
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i know that
when that day comes
i will
wake up
screaming

and not the kind of screaming
that you see on TV and in movies

but the silent kind
without all the blood and tired allegory

where you open your eyes
and you’re so dizzy
you’re expecting the world
to be turned on its side,

the TV to still be on
from the night before
with all these pretty women
staring back at you
like they can see
like stone crashing through
your bones,

that their voices
will somehow find you
breathless
through the darkness,

that their pale arms
will find your skin,
their fingers sweet
metal bars,

but you stare
and stare
and stare

and all you can ever see
is the static reverberating
like smoldering leaves,
its voice burning colder
than anything else.
a big thank you to anyone involved in me getting my second daily deviation yesterday fav.me/d7onwrl. i know i'm not as active on deviantart as i used to be, but these sorts of things still mean a lot to me. it gave my poetry the most validation it has gotten in a long time. 

just a side note - i'm usually on tumblr nowadays. my personal account is here: jonswno.tumblr.com/ and my poetry here caredful.tumblr.com/. you don't have to follow them. i'm just letting you know they're there if you're interested in doing so.

nowadays i'm really working on my prose, if anything. i've been writing a lot of non-fiction and have been doing a lot of editing/copy editing for college, for one, but i have also been working on my own novel. . . as some of you know. . . for a long time. but, you know, it's coming along. and it's the kind of thing i write for my own sanity, anyway. BUT if you are interested in reading a bit of the first draft, it's here www.wattpad.com/story/4202734-….

but that's it. thanks again : )

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:iconladylincoln:
LadyLincoln Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Happy birthday :heart:
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:iconthegamer499:
Thegamer499 Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Happy birthday!
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:icontangled-tales:
Tangled-Tales Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! ;D
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:iconmisseridanampora:
MissEridanAmpora Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2014
happy birthday doll ;)

Congratulations on not dying this year!

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(1 Reply)
:iconsammur-amat:
Sammur-amat Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2014   General Artist
happy birthday, sweet pea! :iconlachoirplz:
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