annapaulinasuszynski

When you rest, you rust.

I Go. I Come Back. I Go Nowhere.

The grass is so frozen

It is ice and knives that try to dive

The flesh on the palms of my feet.

 

I peel my clothes off like dry layers

Of skin and parts of bone stick too

Until they form what look like snowflake

Constellations on my skin with blood speckled

Eggs on the ground, robins blue.

 

I said I would find a place to hide

And yell at the world

Teeth bared and blistering cold winds trapped

In the pink of my mouth.

 

But when I open my lips that are too often

Closed there is no sound. There is no anger.

There is a sadness that I cannot tell you a thing,

Like a heart beating underneath a crystalline ice.

 

Even though a good thing was born in an easy place

I make it difficult to breathe when I clench my jaw

Shut and blow cold rivers into the places between

Your shoulder blades that you thought I held safe.

 

I run into the landscape of white so blue

It hurts my eyes until you cannot find me

This is the place where loneliness kisses

My eye lids whispering sweet nothings

That I think sound like promises.

 

I am here in an ice castle that I have built

Out of words that I never said, they reside hollow shells,

Of my finger nails look prettier in a blue hue

I have an excuse here:

My lips are too frozen to open.

 

But I feel horrible because I do not know my

Way back– I would ask you to help me

But as I try to touch your cheek, I forget

That warmth hurts when you have shut yourself from it.

I say. i Say-

i want to be. a writer– she say with quivering

lipped finger but i was never good

at grammer in 7th grade

ms told me i wouldnt get anywhere b/c

i couldn’t even spell it.

i am good– she say with teeth

like a horse voice; nobody listend.

b/c i can tell you about threaded wings in windowsills

are so beautiful; quivering lips are too

that were wonce painted red

Delicious Apples

remember to retain a quirky voice

with perfect punctual punctuation

these are the days of social. media.

so twit twitter twittering away on fb

until the world screams! you never wanted this

you wanted to {write}

I say. i Say–

i want to be a writer

but the world is softly biting my bone

and that is where I have stored by stories.

 

Spines that Shiver

When sourness and sweetness and the -ness of those Summer

Evenings are cool like skin before bed

Like soup before the stove

Coffee set and waiting, steam on

The bottom of your chin is soft and pointed

Toward the sky, look up

Snowflakes and snow lakes and snowed in

Until we are all mice in a field of white on white.

Every time I open the door

Leaves have spines that shiver

Shake and sea shore of the mountains

High above the apple cider and worn boots that

Are still dripping from when I fell in the snow

It hurt like you loving me hurt

A hurt that has soft landings and a boiling point

A freezing point, a constant point

A point of convergence and diverging

Leaves fall from the last aspen tree

They settle in constellations of seasonal promises

And the threat of being buried

While their spines still rattle

And shiver.

 

 

Sweet Things

I don’t want us to be a poem. I want it to be longer and jarring and hands on my spine. Fingers in my vertebrae. Have you ever felt that? The absorption plan. Until our bodies aren’t just you and me. That maybe there’s a word out there in the universe that’s more than “us”.

Wouldn’t that be sweet. We could be a short narrative. A prose poem with paragraphs of stanzas and pillow talk when your words fall short and roll into my mouth. I can taste them. I can taste you.

But I’ve only written one novel. It turned out fine. I’m still working on it. Working. If I were to start with you. It would go like I miss you. Already. And I like when you say come here when I really want to curl up into my hair and disappear. But when you say come here the feeling dissipates. You say it so softly.

It’s everything. Snow. Early mornings in your car when you laugh at my sleepy eyes. When you had to ask me on two dates because I didn’t know how to say yes the first time. Your head on my stomach. It’s knowing how to care for me. Teaching me how to care for you. Ain’t that a sweet thing.

A New Year, not in a nutshell…

I’ve been struggling with time lately. How to think about it, if it’s even worth thinking about. I’ve been struggling with what I want to do with my time too. I read a book this year and this little girl, the main character, was telling me how to be a time being. She has this grandmother Jeiko who lives on top of a mountain who tells her things about the world. Once her grandmother made her breathe in every moment of the day so she became aware of how many moments really exist, the time lost, the time spent.
The other day I was looking up through the trees at the sky and wondering why I seemed to be filling with dissonance lately and how strange that feels- as if the world were pulling me in two directions, maybe even three and I wasn’t quite ready to make the decision to go either way. So I touched the snow with my hand and let it float to the ground. And as the snow descended I realized that maybe that descent was the part of life that I was stuck in, like Alice when she falls into the rabbit hole and notices everything passing her on the way down. That awareness.
When I think about this year, I think that I’ve grown but maybe not so proportionally. That maybe I’ve learned a lot, like when I was on the Camino- I shared things with so many people and when it was time to say goodbye it was okay for them to leave because we were both leaving with parts of each other. Or when I was in Istanbul and Morocco and they showed me their cities with such openness. The hamam, getting scrubbed down by women laughing at my skinny arms. When I was dancing until six in the morning in Spain and walked home with shoes in my hand and a silly look on my face. Or when Casper told me to sit down on the sand and be quiet as he told me why I was special, that I was a weird quiet person and that was a good thing. So yes I’ve grown, Isa and I biking, man did I grow but I thought I could get rid of this restlessness. But that same struggle with time, with the dissonance pooling and spilling is still here, it’s building again. As if I am breathing in every moment and it’s filling me up.
 It could be a good thing. Sometimes I use it to write and I’m always surprised by what my thoughts look like on a page. Sometimes it makes me sad.
Oh and the people I’ve met. How I miss them. The ones I met far away because sometimes I feel as though the people I came back to aren’t the same. Or they traveled too, but in a trajectory that only moves forward in this straight bold line when I was sprinting and jumping and falling and skipping down streets that sometimes lead me in circles. So I am in between again. In the unbelonging I guess you could say.
 The unbelonging means so many things though. It means you are aware of everything and those around you can’t listen. It means you want to reach out and touch but your fingers curl as if hit by fire. The pause in a song that isn’t really a pause, the song continues, but when the song ends you want to be back in the pause even if that’s where the dissonance resides. The unbelonging is a place of utter awareness and sense of space. The space of time. The space of yourself.
So….Hi 2016. Help me to grow proportionally. I feel as though I have folded into myself again. I truly, wholeheartedly, ardently lived my life this year but tomorrow I must do it again in a different skin. I guess what I’m really saying is I’ve changed, maybe fractionally but I’m proud of that change. Tomorrow I’m going to have to change even more. The next day too. There will be days that I must do it alone and others won’t be so lonely.

I guess the struggle with time is, I’m never sure how to move within its boundary. By calling time, time I am already prescribing to walls, to boundaries, to borders. The struggle is time moves infinitely backward and forward from the very place my feet touch the ground. So maybe 2015 is also moving infinitely backward as I move infinitely forward and I can stretch my fingers infinitely to the side and upward and downward. This dissonance, the moments squandered, what old Jeiko says on top of the mountain are merely symptoms of feeling the infinity of the space we occupy, not the infinity of time because that does not exist. But the infinity of self. Of myself. Of the space I am.

 

So.

May my and your 2016 be filled with in takes of breathe.

Peaks

I sleep under a bed with wood on the bottom

Not the old bunk beds with wood slats

But one big piece of extra long twin bed sized wood

Holds my dreams down as I close my eyes.

Now every night I put my hand up to the wood

I don’t have to arch my back,

And I trace the lines

As if they were a topography I couldn’t figure out.

There are swirls and pools, stagnant waters

Long listless days and stops and turns.

Sometimes thick lines just stop abruptly

With no indication that they were ever growing thicker

And stronger,

But they don’t pick up again.

These darker holes have rings that flow around them

As if everybody else knew not to fall in-

I always loved the darkness.

But I also love the shore and tracing my finger

On the bed above my head until my hand falls by

My side,

Until the wood grain seems to be the same as

My very fingerprint.

Peaks in my hand.

You Ask Me Where I’m From because I Don’t Have A Normal Face and I Have A Long Answer Asshole

  1. My mom grew up on the Jersey shore. All five sisters slept in the same bed until the ones on the end got kicked off by Donna.
  2. My mom said she used to get along with the squatters in her basement because they liked Motown like she did. Then mom’s mom would throw them out.
  3. My dad grew up in Maryland after his parents made it America after being exiled from their country.
  4. His house was two rooms. My grandfather built the rest and even put in a treehouse and a garden.
  5. My parents met in college. They both paid for it by themselves. When dad met mom’s sisters he told them that he was taking mom to see a horror show. Donna, Debbie, Doreen, and Lisa laugh in dad’s face because they think he said whore show. He had a Spanish mother.
  6. I work at a taco/tequila bar. Men tell me I’m Brazilian. Men tell me I’m Mexican. Men tell me I’m Jewish. Men tell me I’m Asian. They think they can tell me a lot of things.
  7. I go home after work to a big stucco yellow house where I have my own bed, my brothers do too. I lay my Spanish and Polish bones down to rest.

On a Bird Dying in My Hand

There is a heart,

A heart of feathers and softness,

Of beating gentleness and wings and suffering bones.

There is a small mouth opening and closing

As if to say something

Two eyes, eyes like points of black paint

Eyes like mine,

Its chest heaves up and down.

There is heart,

Of fuzz and little veins like thread in a needle

Of little lungs daring to take one more breathe

In my hand.

There are two little feet

With two little legs, curling closer to the body

Eyelids close and open, close and open

Eyes turning to me

Wings turning in.

There is a heart,

Of feathers and life close to the moon

Of life letting go

Resting in the palm of my hand.

It heaves in

and out,

Until it can’t anymore.

While I Was Brushing My Teeth

I want to brush my teeth

With you.

I want to see your face in the mirror

And I want to laugh

Spitting toothpaste into the sink.

Wipe it on my face and

I wipe it on yours.

I want to brush my teeth

With you.

Because I am in my pajamas

And so are you

We were both eating chocolate before

You smell like dark chocolate and mint.

I want to brush my teeth

With you,

So I leave a new toothbrush

By my bathroom sink

And hope that you’ll pick it up.

So I make my bed

And put my cleanest t shirt on

In hope that you touch it,

Clean my glasses so I can see

Your eyes,

And smile my squinty eye smile

So you’ll know I was waiting.

My Ocean

I swim out to touch your smooth

Skin like sheets beneath my fingertips

As you wake and eyes flutter open.

Cold to the touch like silken glass

I float over waves of it

My mouth above the water

My ears are below so I stop listening to

The thrum of it all.

Waves come and sometimes I let them

Take me all the way under so I feel the bottom

And the bottom feels me,

Tumbles me, until I lie on the sand

Breathing heavy.

But I go back out and float until

I see the next one,

Hoping it will be nice to me this time.

This time.

There is scratch on my cheek

As I lay my bones out to dry

But I know I will go back.

Salt dries on my skin like waves too

He has marked me.

Little crystal towers form on my arm

As you lick them off one by one.

As he watches me and beckons

And I know this time I will

Swim out and not return.