FEATURED POET: ANNA SERAFINI

god drowned himself in a bathtub fully clothed while my heart sunk further into my chest

last night i got a cup for my tears and drank them all down.
they tasted like salt. it was gross.

here is me looking at you and slipping under the water table
so i can drown and be buried alive at the same time.
my air goes blub blub blub and i am choking.
no one can hear me and that’s okay.
i tie a bag over my head because i don’t want anyone
to hear me choking,
and i whisper to myself
“it’s okay it’s okay it’s okay”
as the bag fills with water and dirt.

i jab the back of my mouth with the head of my toothbrush.
i need a new one because the bristles
are sticking together and hardening, i think.
i am trying to brush the taste of salt off of my tongue
but it lingers like the frustrating stain on my sweater.

now my stomach has seized up and i am ignoring my responsibilities.
i bury myself in my blankets and try not to think of anything.
the fantasies of warm boys with soft hands have soured, i think.

i need to get off tumblr.
i need to do something productive.
i need to get better grades.
i need to keep my job.
i need to take harder classes.
i need to rehearse for my poetry slam.
i need to rehearse for my poetry slam.
i need to rehearse for my poetry slam.

oh my god oh my god oh my god
i’m so sorry.

please give me a shovel for christmas i am digging
a hole down to the water table and it will be okay,
i promise, everything will be okay.

ANNA SERAFINI IS THE WORLD’S SHYEST INTERNET “PERSONALITY” AND THE BABY COUSIN OF ALT-LIT. FOLLOW HER ON TUMBLR AND TWITTER.

INTERESTING IN SUBMITTING A POEM TO FLASHLIGHT CITY BLUES? FIND MORE INFO HERE.

About these ads

CALIFORNIA, STOP SWALLOWING MY FRIENDS

you’re a monster! a monster, i tell you!
you lure them in with your nihilistic theme parks
and your caustic beaches
the promise of Hollywood and the west of the American
west
in the night, your ocean reaches its bony hands under the covers
and digging its polluted claws in, it drags them anxiously
through the fires of Utah and the flowerless graveyards of Las Vegas
i watch all this sleepless from the fragile glass window of my Colorado home
in the swaying arms of my humble mother
rocking me to sleep in a Rocky Mountain high
but how my friends tried to grasp on to those mountains as you grasp them in tantrums

you need so much god damn attention

the blonde-haired blue-eyed boys and the sexual shape of video cameras
this one goes out to the friends i’ve lost
desperate and scared amongst the grey smog and the pedophile buildings

i can hear you laughing at all of this, California
stop swallowing my friends, California
your jewel heart fell into the Pacific Ocean
and my friends are lost, manic and drugged in your vicious riptides
you digest them in your swollen valleys
they waste away, going nowhere in rush hour traffic
listening to catchy horror music on the radio

oh, the California radio! it tastes of silicone
it burns like vodka tonics and the Beverly Hills Hotel
they are all just prisoners there; of their own device
into your guts they go; an assembly line of starry-eyed followers
into the factory; to be printed like Marilyn, to be loved like Jackie,
to be shot like Kennedy
i can’t stop them
they are scared and horny and thinking with their adolescence
they are less reckless, and more self-mutilating

California, i can see the scars underneath your breasts
i can taste the cheap boxed wine on your breath
your eyes are busy telephone wires for crow’s feet to rest on
you’re so skinny
i can see right through you
i don’t care
just please
California, stop swallowing my friends

“Denver is lonesome for her heroes,”
and you are just hungry for your villains

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “ANXIETY AT THE HOUSE CAFE”

SELF-MUTILATION

round 2
i enjoyed this
enjoyed me a taste for some flavor
a flavor
for some bravery
a way of approaching this
that i loved. it
changed my perspective
from introspective
to outrospective
my hands reached out
like trees growing in fast motion.

i don’t know where these
these yellow lines down
the middle of the road
lead me
but i know
i know i like where i’m going.
the ground is tall, the sky is
black, above my head.

i am a prisoner
of ecstasy,

you
you are a frustration
channeled through
a page
black blood
that drips through its gauze
and onto the other side
of reality

this.

this. freak show. this.
carnival ride. this
buy-one-get-one-half-off
coupon. this
is something
we created
for us.
it’s what time
has led us to, this
irreversible decision
of happiness based on
impulses of decades of young
idiots.

that’s what we are.

that’s what we’ve become maybe
always were, but god;
the light is shining out of us now

but i tell you.
these fucking weaklings
these
opportunists. these
people who make love
when it’s convenient.
these hard-working, employed
men
and women of the world.
why?

that’s it.

why?

why are you doing this
to yourselves?

READ “THE OBNOXIOUS SOUND OF MUSIC UPSTAIRS”

HOW TO SET YOURSELF ON FIRE

step one
look in the mirror
you owe it to yourself
to have one more conversation with the person who knows you best
we have this inability to truly move on from anything
without saying goodbye

goodbye

*note: when setting one’s self one fire,
i suggest you make an itemized list
of the necessary items
these things take preparation

1 costco-sized bottle of lighter fluid
1 lighter, any brand, may supplement matches for classic effect

in addition to these two quintessential items
1 should make any necessary preparations
to make sure others do not get burned

step two
if you are seriously dedicated to setting yourself on fire
buy a notebook in whatever color you prefer
locate a pen and

make a list of pros and cons
i.e.
pro: dramatic, incendiary death at a time and place of your choice
con: serious burns, death (debatably a pro or con), this is an irreversible decision

it’s just the responsible thing to do to discuss this with your friends and family in vivid detail

note: sometimes we burn in pairs, holding hands, as the world watches

step three
relocate pen and pad
and write a letter to everyone you care to inform of your decision
there are several sources in written and digital form to assist you
with proper letter writing format
essentially you can decide whether it should be formatted as a business or personal letter
tell your mother you love her
tell your brothers and sisters you’ll miss them
tell your stepfather fuck off
tell your ex-lovers it’s all their fault
tell yourself “i’ll go to heaven
or i’ll just be dirt in the ground
or i’ll be reborn as a phoenix
or i’ve accepted the fact i will go to hell”
i can’t tell you which is the truth
but it’s still worth considering
tell everyone you care to tell
you’ll be setting yourself on fire

step four
dress for the occasion
the tricky part is
if you wear your favorite band shirt
it will get ruined
and that band may get the impression they were involved in this decision
when you and i both know never hearing them again was on your cons list

note: before moving forward, it is important to consider who will be the one to sweep up your ashes.

step five
drench yourself in lighter fluid
it is more difficult than you would think to do this by yourself
it will be cold
do not be conservative with the fluid
you only get one chance to do this right

note: as i walk through the valley of the shadow of death, i will fear no evil

step six
i suggest counting your final breaths
you can countdown from 10 or 3
essentially it’s up to you, any number is okay
but i do suggest you do this
these are the last breaths you’ll ever breathe
make them count
breathe slow
close your eyes
escape from reality for a second
trust me though
these breaths are worth counting

step seven
click the lighter

step eight
your final breath

step nine
the last thing you’ll ever see

step ten

step ten
touch the flame to the fluid
set
yourself
on fire
you will burn until you burn out
but first you will have a short time
to relish in how it feels
to live in one thousand degree celsius temperatures
eighteen hundred thirty degrees fahrenheit
you will burn
and you will be missed
no longer engulfed in reality
you will burn and burn
ashes to ashes
dust to dust
flight 11 to l.a.x.
first degree
second degree
third degree
murder
burns
like wordstogether
bones’ dust
splayed across the earth
charred debris
in an urn
you will burn
until you burn out
you will be missed.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012