arcane clues

by amy sharp


I left three poems on the bus last week
two under the newspaper box downtown
and one on the top of the shiny cigarette machine at the pub
I disguised my writing of course
wrote like a left handed winner
in tiny little loops
kissed each paper
and walked away
it's like I don't even care
to keep them
anymore
they have to go away


 


This is the rest of the advice I started giving you at the gay bar last night.

by amy sharp


 

Someday your soft heart will be smashed. You've read all the books, watched films, seen the way people treat each other in the street. Get ready. Wait for it. Wait for it. And some of the times you will just have to live with it. This is truly the shittiest part. Let the heart wreck bullshit just sit with you for an undetermined amount of time. Treat it like a dangerous pet that you have to feed quickly. Stroke it. Acknowledge it. Tell it to go away but in a sweet little whisper. In French.  Because you have to deal with it or it will never go away. It will bite you. You could die.

And then you will wake up and the sun will be all over the room and you had forgotten how badly you felt. It just happens like that and you may even put your hand to your chest and feel like your heart is bigger. Stronger. Faster. If there is a mirror in your bedroom take a good look at yourself. This is life. You are looking at life.

Make sure you keep giving your love away no matter how stupid that feels again. Give it to all the people. Like sweets, balloons. Paper. A bunch of flowers in your hand.  Not everyone means to be terrible and thoughtless and confusing. But we all do it and we all rise up again in sunny bedrooms. Just wait. You’ll remember all of this someday.  


summer summer

by amy sharp


the space in the middle of summer
holds all of the heat and light
of the entire year
and it can make people crazy
watch out
I was riding my bike
through my neighborhood
and I just wanted to fall into the grass
and tumble like a child
and stay there for hours
watching my elderly neighbor tinker around
in his green garden
he wears overalls and is beautiful
and I wanted to walk right over
and ask him to list out all of his regrets
beg him to whisper them to me
to write them on my arm
like a talisman tattoo
and the sun must have done that to me
must have been real hot


Before Breakfast

by amy sharp


the rain relentless
and I just want to take off my dress
and walk wet
the road here is gravel
reminds me of a movie
I saw when I was a kid
or maybe I just made that up
I only think impossible things when I think of you
I could send you a message with my mind
once I did fly
walk through a wall
tickled myself
stopped time
I can tell you the future
give me your hands
put them on me
I'm a mess

 


1:45 p.m.

by amy sharp


 

I'm all up in three summer ales and Nina Simone is blaring out a boxy little window and my bathing suit top strings are all hanging down and it ain't even 2pm yet and there is nothing that will stop me from telling you things. I love it when the sun licks at me just a little and the sky is a painting and there are people in this world who are not afraid. I think about your perfect passion and the way a whole bunch of days string together like lace. I wonder what you think about right before you go to sleep

 


Spelling

by amy sharp


There is a whole room in my mind dedicated to certain dangerous forces. I've built a tiny dam. Collecting. Capturing. And your name is all over the walls. In capital letters. Swirly script. Scribble scrabble. Absent-minded doodling.


it sounds like music in the background

by amy sharp


sometimes I put my hand on my chest
and try to feel my heart beat
maybe it's a murmur this feeling
that creeps across me
blood over valves
so much static
or it's you and the way
you push past me
and start my motor
kick start
the whole
damn
thing


by amy sharp


and I was thinking of how I would stop remembering you
in a bad light
and instead hold a mirror up
a tiny flashlight to my soul
flicker flacker
it all around
come back down

 


by amy sharp


Your hair smells like the sun.
There is heat and there is light.
I live in the midsummer skeleton of the year.


LUCKY TEETH

by amy sharp


I just found this thing I wrote a few years back. Enjoy :)

It was during the time in my life when I really thought I knew some shit (read- my 20's) and I had great dental insurance. I asked my dentist do a mock up of some bonding to close my gap. My diastema. It was so startling to see my teeth when she handed me the small mirror and asked me to inspect her handiwork. She told me at least twelve times how gorgeous my teeth looked, but something was off kilter when I looked back at myself. I did look more conventional. More like everyone else with nice white square straight teeth, but something was gone and it just wasn't the negative space between the teeth.

Something about me looked wrong.

My subtext was shifty.

I was off kilter and a little bit more ordinary.

I did not have my gap closed.

It went in and out of my mind over the years. Sometimes I would be in a line someplace like a bank or a bar and someone would yell out, "I LOVE YOUR GAP" and I would immediately throw my hand over my mouth and remember that it was there. Kids would point it out and giggle. Lovers would stick their tongue in it. People would always say things. It is like a curse and a medal. I have felt ugly at times with it, but other times when I see photographs of my mouth, half opened and lots of lip, I see something beautiful. Something rare.

There is a whole documentary on this called "Gap-Toothed Women" and it explores the mystique around the gap. I am dying to see it as I just think there is something there. I wonder about the historical allusions of gaps and sensuality and Chaucer ladies and all that. What is the root? What is the allure? I have been reading that the gap is back in vogue. Models have them and people find them sexy again. It all comes around. I know I feel better about my gap than I used to. I feel better about my looks in general and isn't that funny? Now. When the world beats down on me and tells me that I am starting the descent into age. Now when I have wrinkles and less than perfect eyebrows and skin that doesn't want to glow every single day like it used to without a thought. Now when I weigh too much and take care so very less. Now. It's like that Indigo Girls song lyric {every five years or so I look back on my life and I have a good laugh} I think.

I leave beautiful fierce marks in apple skins.

I can squirt water like a perfect stream through my gap.

But it's not all about teeth.

Even though the French- those ever chic folks- they call the gap tooth thing:

dents chanceux

LUCKY TEETH {OMG LOVE}

It's about choices.

I am just starting to choose to like myself a little bit more and it is epic.

Are you?

ARE YOU?


oui

by amy sharp


you don't know where you're going
but I do
it may come from years
of surrounding myself with sparklers
shiny ones
this little light of mine
all the people who glow
or it may be that my grandmother is a soothsayer
and some of her magic mixed in my blood
and I can howl at the moon and tell you all the true sentences
that line up and make sense
if you'd listen to them
I'd say them slowly at first
then in French because you'd pay attention
life is harder than we expected
things take time
we are all a little broken
raise your hand if you need help
yell Bingo
put your arms out
even if you feel like walking
you should probably run
the future is waiting for you
there is nothing but sun



 


pleats

by amy sharp


you live in the pleats of my red heart
I don't have any sort of plan
how to get you gone
people say we carry things with us
until we forget to remember
till something else makes us forget


 


when the young ask for advice

by amy sharp


I suppose the wildness of life
lives in the unknown
will we meet a wolf
submit to the woman at the top of the stairs
tame a dangerous man
say yes in the back of a throat
have you ever woke
twisted in sheets
everything in the air like
paper
the red of your lipstick
gone because someone
kissed it away
someone ate it up


 


city bus #31

by amy sharp


on the early bus I let myself think about you
for a quarter mile or so
over trouble asphalt
and through a tiny pocket of pretty
I linger on your shoulders
the way you touch people
when you talk
the exact color
of your mouth
and the bus bumps a lullaby
a soft song buzz


This is a tiny truth.

by amy sharp


I'm not sorry for the way I feel
about you
or the moon for that matter
you can't stop a train
bees fly right at you sometimes
we all fall down
 


by amy sharp


I am one grand gesture when it comes to you. There is a movie playing in my mouth. A song comes out of my eyes. Can't you see the way I shine. I almost glow. I am a boombox above my head. I am never going to make any sense.


all her favorite fruit

by amy sharp


It was probably the day you and I were sitting in slices of sun
over by the park nobody ever visits
we had that big old talk
and it was like everything
was possible
open
allowed
true
and when we ate mangoes
from the tiny cooler
some juice spread across my face
your sticky sweet summer hand wiped my cheek
and then your mouth just followed
and that was most likely the moment
I learned time can stop
you can actually slap time still


 


wulf

by amy sharp


I let you be the wolf
but I was never a sheep

she says
and looks out the window
tapping her finger on a dangerous bare leg
and for the record
some people like being torn apart