Oil

I want to be the man who rescues the dogs of the desert,
but I am not.
I am the desert, rustling drily beneath an unforgiving sun,
that I also am,
punisher of cracked seeds, the beating heat of a purgatory
I cultivated for myself.
But I am also the dogs, running, tumbling,
children trapped in the spiny grasp of an unkind world,
but the world is me
and I am dry
and I am sweat
and I am asphyxiating on the calcified fossils of unsaid words
dipped, acidic, into poisons I feed myself,
where the roots of my soul cling desperately to
aquifers full of toxic, molten, gangrene sunlight.
Tarantino sunlight.
The sunlight that brings death in a bride–
a poached kind of brightness that
bleaches in nuclear fallout the bones of dogs
unrescued.
I want to be that beautiful savior,
but I am the unsaved and the desert,
bearing yellow teeth,
oozing with the oil slick hatred that grows,
abundant
in the dry, buzzard air.

©K Paige Medina 25 May 2017

Unsnuffed

There is an element of sparkle
In the sputtering of flames;
In the moment of extinguishing
Fire yet spits forth her names,
Affirming in the moments when
Ceasing seems most true
The lightness of her being before
Life’s final adieu.
And I guess that’s how it feels
In the company of night
When I’m drowning in my failure
And something deep within me lights
And burns an angry rebel spark
That glitters into being
The forgotten words of truth that
Send my fears and regrets fleeing,
And for a moment yet I’m strong
And whole and ready for one more,
Alit within with stubborn sparks still
Glowing in my core.

©K Paige Medina 25 April 2017

Spider

Spider,
you tried to keep me afraid
but I met Ananse in Africa, and was

baptized in the silk of his tricks.
I learned to sweat out my anger
and not to kill what I feared;

your small spinner’s legs
are breakable too,
and I am no longer afraid of you.

©K Paige Medina 2 April 2017

A Time to Rest

I think it’s time I put to bed
the crawling things inside my head–
the tigers prowling in the night,
that gurgle waiting for a fight;
the dragons hissing in the seas
that spew half-truths sinisterly;
my poisoned sirens singing hate,
who love to drown and loathe to wait.
I’m made of monsters seething low
who strangle hope and cannot go
alone into their wicked nights,
so I must with them fly or fight.
A cursed gift to me they’ve been
weighty in their depths of sin;
yet mine alone to carry are
these monstrous, heavy, broken scars.

Yet light still shines its fragile beams
through unfilled cracks and weathered seams.
I cannot let these monsters go,
but may find peace in light’s halo
while sleep o’ertakes these devils mine
as daybreak crests its stubborn shine.

Not over yet, this fight I face,
but quieter in dawn’s embrace,
I too must rest from bitter pain
To wake, and then to fight again.

©K Paige Medina 31 March 2017


Watch the Video

Witch Children

In the dark you can see them,
smoldering in the muted light,
their elbows smudged in ashes from
too many close calls.
They are evasive like smugglers,
eyes somehow always upturned,
as if waiting for rain
or perhaps a rapture
which only they expect.

I have known them,
these demons,
these churlish half-goblins;
they have come to me bearing
the night of their presence.

I thought for a while they were
witch-children, scared as they were
of quiet and stillness,
carrying their thrumming wariness
in their clenched, bony hands.

We do not speak to each other in words,
but we know
there are things in the world which
all feel,
all hear,
but only some must see.

Our eyes have met, and
these spindly wolflings have
left me to return to the yellow
wallpaper of their invisibility.

But I wonder
if the words they don’t speak
are mere questions–
if they are not born of witches,
but rather of the fearful mediocre,
myself and others.
We left them alone,
to grow feral and hard,
so when they come they bring only
the wildness of longing
as gifts for their forebears.

They are not visitors,
rather masters;
could we have lived peacefully
had I just learned to love them?

©K Paige Medina 7 March 2017

The Last Few Days

Did I give up love
For this arranged marriage,
This stranger,
Cackling,
Broken,
Embracing me with her fear?
What, then, is love
If in the midnight throes of this
Strange body’s upset,
I suddenly feel myself discovered,
Bound up in a mistress
Who is myself
And my wife,
Who is not any of us?
This dark thing,
A creature of my own design,
Brought to life by the echo
Of my own discontent.
Villain of my own heart,
Harpy with my voice,
Must I love you?
Claw out my eyes and make me profess your beauty.
For I am but a soul adrift
In the vastness of your witchery and theft,
Beckoned, drowning,
Down
Into the hell of your heart.

The golden light of longing
In the dark of discontent
Has led my feet too many times
From the path for which they’re meant.
The call of something better
From beyond a wayward turn
Sets my heart to promises
And my restless feet to burn.
It’s the strange impossibility
Of hope beyond defeat
That keeps me walking forward
Towards mirages in the street.
You called yourself a prophet
But the harder task is still
To calm my heart to silence
Through sheer force of will.

Romantic though the thought may be
To wander on forever,
There never was a lonelier road
Than this, stretched, ending never.

It’s the fire knowing it is not the smoke.
It’s like all the yeses in the world saying no.
It’s being all alone at night
And saying this is still alright,
That’s called home.

We’re just shadows of ourselves, darling.
We sit and stare at the beginnings of ourselves.
And when we look into the sky
And we’re only asking why
When we’re waiting for the answers
Then we’re home.

It’s like watching the rain
And seeing oceans.
It’s like when we laugh and all we hear are tears.
All the patience that we’ve given,
All the faults that we’ve forgiven,
Are we moving toward the end
Or are we home?

Don’t tell yourself you’ve never been in love.
Don’t wait because it’s never been enough.
When you’re wishing for a dream
That never asks for being seen,
If you’re looking for yourself,
You look for home.

©7/15/2016 K Paige Medina

A Heart of Water

I hold a heart of water
In the caverns of my chest,
Whose beating waves keep lapping;
Who never stops to rest.
Its coolness tells a story of
Both depth and bitter pain;
Of sinking into passions that
One heart cannot maintain.
This heart I hold is far too wet
To stand all on its own,
But far too changeful, regrettably,
To be another’s home.
It moves in tides and shimmers still,
A lovely siren’s heart,
That sings through night tides wistfully,
“Oh, let us never part.”
But in the morning it is plain
This heart is now too shallow,
For love cannot find purchase here;
The pools are all too fallow.
The lover, disappointed, leaves,
Feeling restless and betrayed,
Impatient for a calmer heart,
Whose songs are quieter played.

But this heart of water bears the pain
Of each unfettered guest
And each new song sings more deeply
Of regret than all the rest.
So if you find yourself adrift
In this heart’s stormy seas,
Merely listen to the songs of love
And do not fear the breeze.

©K Paige Medina 7/10/2016

Poison

It’s the poison smell of morning
In the hinterland of night
When my eyes are shot with spears
By the promise of daylight.
Will I ever dream of winter
Without feeling so alone?
Can I brave the heights of mountains
Without thinking once of home?

It’s the sharpened chill of wood
Edging deep into my heart
Like the words chained to my spirit,
“Let us never be apart.”

©Kaitlyn Medina [6/22/16]

I Didn’t Expect

I didn’t expect it to be so lonely.
Cooled by the dry air into cracks,
The fractures of a life
Lived too much
Too eagerly
The cracks and wrinkles of age at 25,
Wine in the morning,
Tears at night.

God I didn’t expect it to be so lonely
Sipping on the liquor of my disappointment,
Flicking embers from my fingers—
That impartial anger—
Singing the edges of words
And the corners of blankets
With the heat of the country that bore this—
Whoever she is—

I didn’t expect this loneliness.
Alone in the afternoons
Silent in the sealed houses,
The rooms full of glass
So impertinently unbroken,
So mischievously whole.

I didn’t ask for this loneliness,
God knows I didn’t ask,
Followed by ghosts into the dark spaces of my past,
Whispering in the unhurried way
Of ghosts
That quickening of the blood,
That little lick at the back of your throat
That says
Hush and hurry
Don’t linger too long.

I didn’t expect it to be so lonely,
Calmed to pieces by the lull of paved highways,
Friction between tires and road
Gleaming along like the shell of an egg
Like the calm of a morning
Unshattered by church songs.

It’s the loneliness of smooth surfaces,
The solitude of preservatives,
The isolation of efficiency
That I didn’t expect.

[5/6/2016]


Watch the Video

The Clock Breaks

Clocks are very lonesome things, as
their tireless ticking shows;
what other thing holds time itself
in regimented rows?
Its hands are stiff and even,
its face is round yet sallow,
its purpose simple yet mundane,
its love broken and fallow.
And yet it keeps on ticking,
marching out to dust the time
in metrical perfection–
its sisyphean rhyme.

A clock does not ask questions
nor ponder why it moves
time from life to seconds,
as its ceaseless slicing proves.
A clock could never face
the senselessness of time
were it alive and breathing

imperfectly.