“The Child”

If you want to be with me
Say hi to the child in me.
She gets excited when you smile
And imagines what we’d look like in a while.
But I have to tell her, nothing is ever what it seems.

She only remembers the good things,
Flower fields, hugs, cute animals in zoos,
And feeling like she’s not alone.
I tell her to remember,
Even in company, she is always alone,
That meeting the child in someone is not the same,
A child would not abuse her like that.
She just doesn’t understand,
As children want to live in happy land.

She doesn’t care about the the thousand nights I couldn’t sleep
Over those who did me wrong,
She can only dance and imagine,
That you’ll fit perfectly in her song.

I want to trust her,
I want to let her breathe,
But shouldn’t there be someone to mend her bruises,
And tell her everyone will leave?

The child in me loves the child in you
But our adult selves hardly speak
As adults seem to do.
We make everything so complicated
We feel things but we regulate it,
So no one can see the crazy boy and girl jumping up and down.
We’re not allowed to say we need someone,
We’re supposed to think, not jump.

The child in me is sick of playing by my rules.
Even as I try to take away her sense of wonder,
She hasn’t realized that putting her hand on stove-tops burns.
I hope she never really learns.

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“On Fitting In”

To be in a group is to feel you belong,
To never have to be lonely or strong.
Or so it seems to the one standing by,
All the friends laughing on the grass in the sun,
But to not be yourself is actually not fun.

I don’t think people like me run in groups.
Their love for silence can be misunderstood.
They’d be the ones staring away
Trying to figure out what’s going on around them,
Wondering about every face.

They don’t like to please a crowd,
But rather a soul,
And that needn’t be loud.
Although sometimes, I love my voice to be heard,
When I’m arguing something that can’t be observed.

I’ve tried many times to change,
To fit the description, to round out my edges,
But I keep coming back, and filling these pages.
No amount of alcohol, loud music, and being in bed,
Will chase away the tumbling waves in my head.

To sit here and analyze, and criticize, is to be me.
And maybe many others do feel similarly.
This man with a baby just cycled by,
A look of hopelessness and wonder,
He stared into my eyes.

Maybe people aren’t as shallow as they seem,
And maybe one day, I’ll find my team.
But that can only happen,
If I let my eyes, with realness, gleam.

“The Power of Saying Goodbye”

One morning, I was in a foreign land,
Standing on a platform,
Waiving to a disappearing train,
With a crying mother in its hand.

One night, we couldn’t sleep from too much crying
And hugging, our relationship declared dying.

One afternoon, I got a phonecall,
That now there would be silence on the other end.
And the snow cried too, a sympathetic friend.

The tears are always there,
That is true.
But few know,
Of the quiet liberation too.

Sometimes things fall apart,
For wilder things to be built.
After tears and anger,
Sometimes we need peace.
Nature gave us humans hands,
To grasp and then release.

Sometimes saying goodbye
means you don’t need a crutch.
Newness is pain,
But the adventure is much.

That is not to say that I don’t love.
The problem is I love too much.
But my love for freedom,
For rightness, and for making my gut content,
That spans the greatest extent.

A goodbye not said can eat you out for years,
Can be the source of many many more tears.
Saying some words you shouldn’t have said.
Sometimes, goodbye is less regret.

“Painting Over Memories”

If I had a canvas to illustrate,
It would be one of those expensive paintings,
With random splotches of dye thrown on it.
In real life, things don’t make sense either.

All those memories,
About summers and views and hiding from your parents,
Breathing the sweet awkward fire of first love
And Boom! Another coat of paint.

Prague, quiet nights, the Dutch country side,
And era of intoxicating stability that could not last.
More paint.

Gray skies, shocking phone calls,
Snow everywhere, death in the air.
I throw another bucket at it.

Today I’m still painting.
I don’t know if the colors are even bright or dark.
I can see bits and pieces of the old ones,
And the layering makes an ugly shade of brown,
The kind that wants to make me want to run away.

Why can’t I keep all the colors?
Why this constant creative destruction?
In one second everything I hold so dear,
The next, I’m busy painting it away.

It’s haunting how the paint will always be there,
Even when you can’t see it.
Maybe that awfully simple Rothko painting
Is also a painful disguise of all the things that have once been.

“In Seeking Color”

I’m sick of writing poetry
About my existential dread, 
For people who no longer matter,
Or to appease the messiness in my head.
I want something colorful
The bright crimson of the fruity tea I’m drinking,
The reflection of the sun from the building across right into my window.
The fire in conversation I have with my best friends.
 
They might say, the word you’re looking for is ‘love’ Kristina,
But I say, there is something better still.
Shakespeare’s sappy sonnets do not explain
Why the perfectly misarranged fairy lights on the tree outside make me so happy.
Why when I walk through the crowds at the shopping street on Saturday
I feel as a part of a movement,
Or the satisfaction I get pouring homemade sauce over my rice.
I think if you have to call it one word, I would call it ‘life.’
 
We’re all so afraid of what it all means and what’s going to happen,
Through writings, and movies, and sobs we dramatize it all.
But life is hardly a drama,
When the main thing it consists of is small things, ordinary things,
That is the real story to be told.
 
And yes, sometimes my heart leaps,
And I get lost inside a story,
A future fairytale where everything tastes sweet in decidedly my way.
But while I dream, a visitor is standing at my front door,
Saying, let me take you to the real world ,
You won’t want for nothing more .

Definitions of Home: Part 4, “A Train”

Home isn’t a place or a person.
Home is an attitude.
Lying on the soft tiny bed in this train,
I realize that I’m not rushing to go anywhere.
I have what I need right here,
And it isn’t much better anywhere else.
I have peace of mind, comfort, and I have music if i need it.
Sure my relatives miss me sometimes and there are people who want to see me.
There are things for me to do somewhere.
But that’s all in the past and future.
Not on this train.
Here I am with myself,
And as long as I am with myself anywhere,
Anywhere can be home.
Any discomfort and uncertainty can be an adventure.
I don’t have to be afraid, as here I am just as safe and loved as anywhere else.
The world hasn’t stopped spinning,
I am very much grinning.
I am on the train.
I am also home.

“Am I a storm to be quieted?”

Am I a storm to be quieted?
No, some of us need to scream.

I, I let you tape my mouth,
To prevent offense,
That came so easy with your prejudices.
Even after, I peeled it off,
For time I could not understand,
The new power I had gained.

Inch by inch,
I crawled back up to high ground
And found my voice again.
Here it echoes in the distance.
Though I wish you’d hear it,
It makes me content
That I’m doing something
You’d never understand.

(unpublished archive June 2015)