outfox the fox

You’ll find it rather useless
In trying to simply define
A fine fellow who is so kind

As inner excavations
Reaps ore valued more
Than well refined gold

Keeper of appearances
Sized up for inner solace
Yet striving deep within

So much more than contrived
Notions of soul reminding us
All of what we can reach for

She did not want
To be wanted
‘Cause she was
Clever or kind
But because she
Was a person;
With a heart,
With a mind.
—  poeticallyordinary

And to be truthful, my hands still tremble when
they imagine touching you, and quickly turn to
tight, balled fists when I picture another girl
holding your heart like I did. I grow violent,
crack my knuckles and envision another’s bones
snapping, not our passion.

It’s been difficult lately trying to swallow our pride.
This love requires more compromise than we
each can provide.

And to be honest, I climb into a creaky four-poster
bed each evening and hold a shirt still lingering
with your scent like a lifeline, like a buoy in this
sea of blankets. I am alone in this vast body of
water, clinging to the notion that you’ll pull me
towards shore or we’ll sink together.

Our skin is stained with the color of last
summer, and dear, I’d give anything to have
the hunger we felt for each other then back.

We’re both starving today. We should eat.


i. You don’t have to be perfect the first time. Or the next. Or the time after that. There are a million ways to fail at what you do. There will always be a reason why they still look up to you.

ii. Stop looking at your hands like they are made of papier-mâché. They will not melt just because you haven’t found the right way to keep yourself up on top of supporting your siblings too. It is enough to marvel at the beauty of how every piece of you holds everything together to make your family bigger.

iii. Most rough days will evaporate. You might not even catch a glimpse of them scattering through the air. Sisters and brothers have a way of licking wounds without ever looking at them. Remember to acknowledge it every now and then. Sometimes the bleeding stops where the pain chooses to stay.

iv. Proximity will always be taken for granted. You will miss them when they are one delayed flight away and not reachable through a hall separating bedroom doors. Indulge in shared seconds now when you can.

v. What you do is important. Who you are matters. Just as much as parents and pets and life partners and social circles and a career and a future. You are essential to the equation for a fuller definition of their happiness. Don’t forget you exist for more than the sandbox years when they were just another hog to the toys. Or fight to pick. Or lesson to teach. Or wisdom to learn. Or person to drive. Or confidant to trust. Or kid to love. They are with you for the long run. Keep them with you always.
—  A letter to every older sibling out there
Poet’s Choice of Tea

Today’s Specials:

Lemon Ginger
sunrise, gentle
and warm
in his arms, I wake.

his lips
I kiss, I bite
the delicious fullness.

Green Tea
Smooth soft
twilight evenings
filled to the brim.

his skin,
texture and sensation
fire, under my fingertips.

seeds we chew, together
holding hands, discover
rainforest wilderness.

Black Tea
aching, yearning
when we are apart.

his laughter
that rises
through my soul, stirs.

Earl Grey
misty, smoky
his eyes
my poetry, can wait.

© SoulReserve 2017

When I leave,
Scatter my heartbeats
Amongst wildflowers
And buzzing bees.
Spread melodies
Where my feet
Never dared to land.
—  poeticallyordinary
Always remember that broken pieces still have sharp edges.
—  A.L.L. | A Tattered Journal Excerpt #32
They hurt, you know,
All the things that you say–
You make people feel love,
Then you drive them away.
—  poeticallyordinary
The way you knew me is unlike the way anyone else knows me.

The person I have always wanted to be is the person I am. 

In the very beginning of our love, I had said one of us
is a small town hazard. 

I am living in a city big enough for everyone’s nightmares,
My heart is not just a ticking time bomb,
it’s a clock unwinding. It’s the sound on your nightstand. 

When we first started drawing maps, we were so careful 
with the scale. Somewhere in this mess, I think I drew
my own heart too big. I am never going to stretch myself again. 

By the time you read this, it won’t be quite as sincere. I love
the way you do laundry. If you can wash love out, I hope
it has already happened. 

Do you think some people can see us for who we are?
What happens when they look away?
—  Yena Sharma Purmasir, “EMAIL DRAFT #5″

My fingers know
where to find you
the touch of your
skin so familiar
I know how you
feel in my arms

your scent lingers on
and I can cast
thoughts of you
into these nights
I am restless and you
are somewhere alone

my eyes
seek your form
like sunrise
you rinse everything
in a rush of gold
and I am hopelessly in love,

unknown to you.

© SoulReserve 2018

Time has stretched in your prolonged absence
and I have lost myself between the
ticks of the clock,
drumming in my mind to define and redefine
the boundaries of my confines by
reflecting off the walls that
once resounded your
                                                                  these halls
                                    have become so unfamiliar
         ever since the light of my eyes has left me;
I have long forgotten the light of the chandelier
and can only make my way by brushing
the back of my hand against
bricks that feel cold
and foreign;
I shout your name in order to fill the emptiness
             with anything other than silence;
                    clap my hands to find out
                                if I still exist,
but I only find myself mocked by these fingers
that have all but lost the sensation of touch
ever since I slashed my hands and cut
each nerve ending by smashing
the mirrors that witnessed
      my every
fiber;                                                   these hands
                                                       are not my own,
                                                 this face
                                           is not my own;
                                  all of me has been replaced
                            in a process so gradual I didn’t
           what was going on
until it was already too late.
Now I but blindly wander these halls
            in search of
                              my heart,
                                          my soul,
                                                   my undying love,                  
        only to realize they were never my own,
                  and that they in fact were
                             intended to be
Time has stretched in your prolonged absence
and all the while I have been turned
into an empty vessel –
                                                       a living husk
             that was never meant to outlive
                      the purpose of soul.
—  “One with the void”, a poem by M.A. Tempels © 2017
I am lonely again.
Sitting silently,
The breeze hounds at my window
And rattles wooden frames.
There are birds in the rafters
Making a mess of the plums.
Summer fruit spills
Like blood from the ceiling,
In anguish.
Oh, my heart wishes
That this body was a home.
The way it speaks of silence
Says it all.
I watch through my window,
Four years,
The world spins faster
Every time.
I am lonely again
And I can’t seem to shake
The fruitless winter
That has swallowed me whole.
—  poeticallyordinary

Call what we had an oil spill. Call what we
had dirty laundry. Call how I pulled your face
from the concrete that evening when you wanted
a vehicle to tear open your body like Thanksgiving
dinner, manipulation. Call my name now and you
will not hear an exaltation, but a eulogy of every
negative aspect you can relate to a relationship.
Call your anger venting when we both know it
is you accepting the destruction of your own being.
Call what you and your new girl have pure spring water.
Call what you feel for her awakening. Call it revelation.
Call it enlightenment. Call what we shared poisonous;
ivy crossed with stinging nettle crossed with
nightshade. Call this disastrous persona you
carry something holy. Call yourself beginning anew,
and ending later. Call yourself magic; all starlight and
coal turned diamond. Call our ending the meteor that
avoided colliding with your planetary body. Call my
name a singe against your skin. Call your absence
blessing. Call this end retribution. Call her name
poetry incarnate. Call my aura an alarm you never
learned how to switch off after my leaving. Call this final. 

Don’t call me.

—  don’t // Haley Hendrick