Tagged: pretense

when i am in your

when i am in your
arms, i pretend to know what’s
what, take great gulps of

confidence, appear serene,
a thing you can hold onto

i am more and less

i am more and less
enamoured than i pretend
to be – when i come

up for air, hold me to it,
against everything, truth and dare

it’s not working, this pretense.

it’s not working, this pretense.
i fire off missives to the regions
of my body that are still slow,
hiding from the signs, as though
everything is fine as long
as the message cannot
. there are
whispers in the blood-
stream that sound like
fish or cut bait.

on days when i have to

on days when i have to
keep my chin up, i do
it, like one of those
chinstrap penguins,
climbing out of the
antarctic, ready to find
anything that resembles
a foothold on those steep
slopes. you are never
ready to hear this, i know
it, by the way you smile
so innocently, try out
jokes to conduct the most
favorable light. i make
the decision for you,
yes, sorry, just like that,
you are not allowed
to comfort me, i keep
my chin up, helmet on, look
for the next solid step

i am pretending

i am pretending
to know something about your
loneliness – it takes

a good forty-five minutes
for the painkillers to kick in

with the luxury

with the luxury
of painkillers,
we pretend
our bodies can
endure anything –
a migraine,
a tooth extraction,
a pulled muscle,
the passage of time

day after day, not