TASTE MY GAME: a poetry collection — Poems Nine and Ten.

UNHINGED. (NINE)
Paul’s his name and I’m unafraid of it.
Paul could never imagine how badly
I wanted to enjoy myself – but instead
I remained held up inside my head, sadly,
But he knew me enough to know that
I’m just too hard to know.
I would tell him, “I wish for once I’d just
let the seconds be what they are –
and rid my brain of idyllic delusions
while I simply realize that reality is there,
it’s mine – and it certainly always had its way with me
So, why can’t I have the same power?
I don’t know.

We lied together on a couch and he told me that he wanted me.
I asked him “do you really, though? Do you really want me?”
I found it possessive and I still let him cross all of the lines.
Sometimes Paul’s smile was better than any response
with lots of words, words.
Two of us, tall, dark, and handsome –
Yet I’m stuck in the angles of this triangle as my brain
must always invite itself in.
Trust me, boy, you don’t even like me, let alone want me.
You can see the ugly edges as the image begins to pour out
and I can’t keep everything attractive and social any longer.
Static – it’s all I am. Static, the noise, the unchanged
self trapped in a boundless midnight sky –
They all get sad when they realize I will always be unhinged.

Dead or alive, I will thrive alive inside of my head with
my unerring need to analyze that will outlive you all.
You can try to kill it, shut up its noise.
But you’ll only be frightened to see that
my thoughts are raging and invincible
and my calibrated calculations of those who want me
are immortal and unworldly, strange.
The damn things will resurrect without any ritual –
They’ll just liven to come back for more
and leave me nothing, they leave me unwanted.

ABSTRACTIONS (TEN)
Mend the severed cord
Cut from all of its warmth and left
Writhing to dust on the ground –
Desiccation into these days that are
Congruent with other days.
Minutes multiply like how a mirrored wall
Will create an image of infinity
As they form into the structure of hours
The hours, hours, hours that will, of course,
Become days
Filled with time and its space.
I’m caught in the middle where I own
my very own time zone.
Things happen here you’ll never see.
Slap me in my face – slap my identity.

TASTE MY GAME: a poetry collection — Poems Four through Six.

i was left to rye out your words (FOUR)
Cross my path and cross my heart
Render it to perfection with such bright little surges
of flickering specks of glinting hope –
Maybe your company wasn’t all that I was wishin’ for
Because I could have been entirely here for myself –
The one static person who’s anyone but you.

My hands stiffen into a clutch around my drink
A neat whiskey that settles deeper in the glass
Seething in its piss yellow stink.
I’m reminded of a familiar moment when
I really believed in a person that was real – warm flesh & blood
That could walk into a room to arrive and satisfy my sullen smile.

Except, now, I’m left with July nights that will soon
accumulate to where there aren’t any more –
But a calendar month passed into an August’s burst and bloom.
I calculate more blanketed, quiet nights
Where my sighs of relief will be singular noises in a dark room.

Pathfinder (FIVE)

I’m the one condemned to be slutty, moribund and flirty
Therefore your vices call to abandon a boy like me –
I’m the kind you can desert.
What else can I do with my father’s good looks and my
Clean-shaven face? I can’t help it that I’m a good kisser,
I’ve just always been a natural.
You only sit before me in an assay of my judgments –
Not a fair game when all’s you can claim is the
Tired, bored, glib boy who thinks he’s a man,
Yet he’s not really one at all, he always just stays the same.
Virtues and vices really just squeeze you dry
with your vice’s vice-grip –

It’s easy for me to see it all pouring from you.

Yeah, you’ve heard the talk correctly. I’ve been around.
Ventured many places and
strange apartments, yet your terrain’s a place I won’t
afford to ever give a trip.
I’ve been to it before: it’s a place where I could never get lost –
there’s too many directions – a predetermined, mapped-out
exploration that’s easily explored
just as it’s also the easiest route taken.

Dispassion (SIX)
You’ve got nothing against me,
Yet nothing for me, either – and this leaves me
Unsure of which matter is worse.
Don’t promise me a damn thing ‘cuz I just don’t need
to get my hopes up – what you make predictable
is also equally cruel and unjust. So, I just beg you
to politely tell me lots of lies, lies, and lies
and then leave me alone with them, quietly with make-believe
until it will really make me believe.

TASTE MY GAME: a poetry collection — Poems One through Three.

“sucker-punch” (ONE)
(I)
I woke up today in this city – tired and uninspired.
My nerves, searing like little stringed branches of hot iron
glowing in a faint orange that burns and settles into a deep red, dried blood.
Today, I just can’t take it any longer.
Please, now I finally want my
Gratification – and it can’t be delayed
any longer.
It turns out that everything’s the same
because nothing changes if nothing changes.
I’m alive, hung-over, emptied out by that empty glass –
I’ve been drained dry
Down to the ice gathered in the bottom of a glass, clinking around until
it will inevitably melt.

(II)
Oh, yes, again, it was the same old thing – the
Stupid sentiment that sucks in a sucker like me for
a good, hard sucker-punch right in my gut –
where I feel everything there is to possibly feel.

Once there were things I cared about – remnants and
artifacts that I clutched onto – because they reaffirm that
something powerful was once truly possible for me
and in the stir of my solace, my reverie – I know it’s the right thing to do &
I carry on
with these
pieces, things, particles
into my very own next special
moment that glides seamlessly into my next –
and objects’ weight become lighter and lighter.

“like roadkill” (TWO)
My feeling for you, boy, is rotting right in front of me like roadkill
hot under the midday sunlight – to show you that
all that I could have ever wanted
was ran over and left instilled with the indention of one, long tire mark.
Its surface is now sunken in so’s all you can see is what’s dead and still.

I drove over it and left it for you with a strange new strength surging in me
Yeah, I just might cry & plea before I flee, but I’ll still just walk away
In the opposite direction from where you turned around to leave.
I left it all dead so there’s not anything left for you to ever really see.

“Boundless as the Dark” (THREE)
This boundless black absence between us is more space
than either of us needed.
I can’t kill the void by murdering my thoughts for my feed –
Please don’t bore me with any laments and tangents intangible
Your need for my change came sooner than it should’ve –

Look me in the eyes!
I’m your very own renegade and my plight can’t ever die!

Our time is always measured by your short leash.
Just pull me closer to you again, because I don’t have the guts to grab you
and say what ought to be said.
All’s I can say is goodnight, baby, goodnight.
And I beg for our broken fragments to start forming together,
beginning to mend the night.

TASTE MY GAME: a poetry collection — Preamble-ramble/Intro.

First thing’s first: Here are 10 (ten) finished poems from a collection I’ve just finally rendered enough to end.  Concision, as a concept when writing, is vital, and you must make it the first priority before publication — so here, I’ve done my best.  Mostly everything from this collection is derived from many individual poems I’ve written over the past two years.  Lots of fine-tuning and reinvention went into these pieces & made them what they are right now.  I am excited to share from this collection in particular.  This collection is titled “TASTE MY GAME — a poetry collection — City Boy is Dead” — which is somewhat of an end/death to my previous poems called “City Boys” which thematically explore the nightlife of several Midwest cities I’ve experienced crazy nights in (Kansas City, St. Louis, Chicago, Minneapolis.)

Settings are not specified, the tone is amoral, settings interchangeable.  Key elements to these pieces include postmodernism, masculinity, casual sex, homo-eroticism, and apathy/passivity conveyed during the tender twenties.  Confessional mode/freestyle is the easiest categorization for my style  — I don’t follow any strict regimen for writing these.  My style of writing is very much influenced by musings of my favorite writers: Bret Easton Ellis, Kim Addonizio, Anne Sexton, Sylvia Plath, and Federico Garcia Lorca.  The lyrics of Fiona Apple inspire me to write altogether — nothing else influences me creatively as she does — she is my favorite artist.
All of my material on here is Copyright ©2012 Samuel Swayne.  My work is vulnerable on this site, I know, but please do not re-blog or reiterate these poems in any way without contacting me first. 

SO, LET’S BEGIN:
the city boy was found dead last night, right after the club closed.
But, we do have good news – there’s significant evidence
that he put up a good, clean fight.
he’s still in his party clothes & faintly reeks of cologne
and whiskey sours.
Yes, we checked; wallet and keys intact.
We’ve assessed that he was likely en route
to a kind of sexual odyssey with boys in black underwear
all of whom were known as good kissers —
just what city boy was always known for.

Leave him to rest in peace, but let me warn you –
he’ll prove you dead wrong &
Resurrect – drunk as hell but still good as new – for just one more night.

We’ve all agreed – on his gravestone we’ll write:
“leave me here so’s I can surrender to my godforsaken
apathy which worthlessness caught me, quickly, and
with my last threads of romance I tried to win over its struggle
in a battle I didn’t battle, but instead, lost — in a good, clean fight –
I want nothing more than to be left for dead under the
blinking red lights and nearby noises in my beloved city night.”

rock the boat

DSCN2184So, here I am, Sam, writing a journal entry here on my WordPress like any other ordinary time — except this time I’m not single.  I’m in a relationship: unavailable, taken, involved, surrendered.  The value of this information is mainly due to the fact that I haven’t been in a “conventional” relationship since I was about 18 years old, which only lasted a couple of months, I think.  That was a bad experience and I always reflected upon it negatively because the guy was a negative person — because I never understood what was his purpose in my life!?  He was just awful.  But, that’s so irrelevant now.  This has been a natural process for me so far.  It’s so much of what I wanted and more.  I am not the hopeless romantic type, but I guess I do have the Carrie Bradshaw of Kansas City in me —  navigating the dating scene with analysis, calculations, and calibrations, ultimately where I treat interactions like life lessons that flow and flux, and the end result ends up written in a journal or written on a personal blog.  Expressed in some way.  Expressing the experience becomes more important than having the experience: than letting it occur, happen in space and time.

Being single, therefore, alone, has conditioned me to be an observer: to observe everything I do and everything everyone else does.  To observe my interactions before experiencing them on my own.  Observation became the key element to how I perceived the world and lived my life — and while I feel intelligent and more worldly with this behavior — the detriments of it are severe, cold, and relentless.  Calculating the world around me and turning it into a game derived from fantasy and delusions trapped me in a mental space with no forward momentum: just observing time and space instead of being inside of it and letting it become livable — my life now has life, I feel reawakened.  Invigorated to explore it more than I’ve ever explored my isolation and analyses that render me to how I define myself, and how I continuously retrieve my sense of self.

Being that this is new to me, it’s still definitely  a matter that occurred with its own timing, and I know the truth of this.  His name is Dominic and he’s a tad older than me, but not by too much.  It feels like we’re similar ages, at least, so I never think of it.  I met him unexpectedly and found myself really intrigued by him.  I am selective.  I am beyond picky, I am beyond choosy or any other synonym you can attribute to my selection process in potential partners.

prof3

Like many people, especially guys of my age & demographic, I have ongoing, perpetual intimacy issues — I am comfortable with monogamous relationships, I am just such an extremist when it comes to individuality.  I do not like when couples become the same thing as an entity — I’ve just seen that as time goes on, people easily lose their sense of self in their relationships.  Sense of self is vital — critical — imperative.  I do not believe you obtain your sense of self through your vocation to identify yourself completely with another person.  I already tend to over-identify with everyone around me, so I hang on tightly to my fundamental beliefs.  I value autonomy — to govern oneself.  I value solitude — to solidify oneself in a private setting.  Sometimes, I even value the practice of self-involvement so that a person is capable of understanding their placement in the world with their ability to process and internalize their perception of reality.

I am not a late bloomer, but I am definitely not experienced with stuff I’ve witnessed my entire life.  My parents are still married, they are not divorced.  It’s a rare matter.  They’ve had previous failed marriages, but found each other in their thirties, and decided to have me — and the three of us make a tripod structure of a decent, small family.  My parents value the things that I do: privacy, autonomy, sense of self, self-reliance, and other behaviors that avoid co-dependence and potential loss of self-preservation.  I am lucky to not have a belief system, religious or political, forced upon me to identify with.  I am very, very different from them — but I highly value the essential, fundamental aspects that I grew up with.  I’m partly a product of my environment, but mostly a product from myself.  Both concepts are entirely possible.  At least, that’s what I choose to believe.

So far I do not feel swallowed up in this with him.  It’s complicated, yet also quite simple.  I do not allow myself to analyze the relationship, I do not try to analyze him.  That’s typically my first action in these situations — but I feel that’s not a behavior I want to explore any longer.  Sometimes, I think I remained single for so long because I do not really like my own behavior.  I don’t like how uncomfortable, standoffish, and despondent I can be most of the time — but mostly I don’t like how I’m too hard to know.  I’m layered with sensitivity and anxieties — I have one foot in the present moment and another foot in the brief lapse of time that just occurred, which my brain will begin to fixate on.  Being too internal like this effects the ability to relate to me because I am already so disconnected.  I can be self-involved, yet I believe that I ultimately thrive in empathy. I find a balance between myself, my interpersonal happenings, and my reality which serves as a place for me to both project and interpret with my sensory mechanisms — all for myself, which I respond to only if I allow it.

Basically, I have a protective shell that is condemned to many as my “shyness.”  I struggle to let myself feel some things that are emotional — whether it be pleasure or pain — and if I allow it to get to a place where I react to it.  Most of the time I am disaffected by my surroundings.  Pettiness, drama, immaturity, lack of intelligence, and constant low socioeconomic environments make me just shut down and I just feel nothing but irritation, which is exhausting.  I become limber, numb at times — disgusted with the stupid stuff that I’m forced to associate with and somehow accept it as a part of my life, when I really don’t want to.  It makes me sound like a snob, but I choose wisely in regard to what sort of interaction I participate in.  I do not waste my energy on someone badmouthing me or whatever, because it’s just another reminder of how dumb everything is.  So.  When I uncover something authentic that causes affect upon me — sometimes against my objective will — I really become intrigued by it, and I let it happen.  I simplify things by letting in the good, the positive.  Otherwise, I work hard to reject everything else.

I’ve never said “I love you” to a guy before.  Never even had the urge to do so.  Casual sex is how I learned to function in a detached, tender, sad, and disaffected manner in which it feels socially acceptable, therefore social rules become what I abide by: I don’t abide by my own rules governed by my autonomy.  I realize this now.  I realize there’s more beneath the surface of what I’ve been trying to crack for so long.

When I said this to him it felt so raw and true that it made me realize that life is about that exact thing — what is raw and true, so much to the point it makes you physically react.  I became so emotional with my delivery of this, because it came straight from my gut, and everywhere behind and beneath my heart.  My intentions with that saying was wholehearted — like a drop of elixir of my pure, true self.  No more could I hold back anything any longer — love conquers all inhibitions and sees through all of the bullshit we’re so conditioned to live within.  Honesty at times can feel dangerous.  I felt like saying that was dangerous — because it is.  There’s a reason why I’ve waited almost 24 years now to ever experience that physical emotion, the inertia of its impact, the unyielding nature of its validity.

I am not a sap, I am actually quite an objectivist at heart — not entire an Ayn Rand convert but some of her tactics feel naturally acquired in my lifetime — and therefore I pretty much view with my eyes an objective lens; and my objectivity cannot be compromised because it feels so right, so accurate — versus operating & functioning solely & only on my basic feelings and distorted perception of the moment.  Basically, I try to  not fuck it up.  I try to see the moment through an objective clarity — and then I let it in.  It’s analysis, I guess.  I don’t analyse what was communicated between my boyfriend and myself.

I don’t analyse him, nor our interaction, nor what occurs behind closed doors, or in all private moments.  I treasure all of it for that place behind and under my throbbing heart, and ultimately, to my gut — where I feel everything there is to possibly feel.  And now I’ve felt this.  And so far, everything is just fine.  I’m still here, I’m still myself, I am still a separate being from my relationship.  I could never be intertwined & coaxed into an entity with someone because no one would be able to handle the handful that I am — so, there would be no desire for that.

Space, breathing space, head space, body space, emotional space — all of the space is necessary, not meaningless or even perhaps selfish.  The space I’m describing is like negative space that draws the contour lines that make up the figure: it’s necessary space that creates the structure.  Negative space, in art (painting, drawing, charcoal, etc) is noticing this space in an image and how it functions inverted — is critical when understanding the full image, the big picture, the grand scheme of things.  So, I am lucky to embark on a self-selected relationship that is built upon importance space that provides us structure and also keeps us at a perfect distance that allows us to be individuals — to be separate but sharing the same image.

That way, if the image gets broken, it can be mended  to fold back onto myself, and the line structure changes to support the image of myself that I project.  Stability comes from within yourself — I’ve learned this the hard way with my struggles with bipolar disorder.  Balance is something that can be extremely difficult to establish, sometimes you’re so far off course that it’s going to take some major remodeling to get it back the way it was, and that takes time.  Lately I’ve learned that for myself: major things like balance take time.  I’m not going to get balance right away.  I wouldn’t know what to do with it!  I’m so accustomed to being in an uncomfortable, unbalanced state that I just do my best to navigate in whatever condition I’m in.

My mood no longer controls everything.  It controls a lot, but not everything.  I am not in charge — my insides are in charge.  Not entirely the insides I love so much in my skull — the the insides that I call my guts, my inner-workings, my intuition below and above my belly.  My heart beat generates a blood-jet of life that works hard every waking moment.  These places are protected, sacred, safe.  Places that exist within myself — no matter what.  I cannot share these places with anyone, but they will tag along for the ride.  The ride: because I just ride, ride, just ride.  I just ride.  With everything I can carry.  Weight distributed in all proper places.  Calibrating into a state of balance, a state of stability.  Not an immediate reaction or interaction.  Just something that happens.  Involuntarily. Like breathing, and breathing in my own space, shared in the same bed in a sun-lit bedroom of a Thursday morning.