Baš volim za rođendan pobjeći
U drugi grad
Nazdraviti s neznancima i slaviti
Još jedno veče kao i svako drugo
Baš volim okretati
Volim reći kako sam za naš
Kriva ja i to što sam otišla
A otići se moralo jer noge ne znaju da stoje
Volim reći kako bi me sigurno
Da sam ostala
Ma bi sigurno
Da sam ostala
Sigurno bismo imali psa
Išli na piknike
Da sam ostala
Sigurno bismo zajedno birali tanjure
Išli na more
Ostajali doma petkom uveče
Da sam ostala
Zavoljeo bi me
Naše poglavlje bez točke
A ja ostajem sigurna kako bi zapravo
Ti oceani pa te vatre pa ti svemiri
U čemu sve mogu da se nađu
Nimalo me ne čudi što smo izmišljali
Božanstva za svaku divnu stvar
Čudi me što smo prestali
Pomerila bih zvezde da mogu
Skakutala po njima ko
Po kamenju što izviruje iz potoka
Doskakutala pravo na tvoj prag
Uvek sam najviše voljela
A nikada nisam mogla da naučim
Kako da pustim i
Što onda znači kada ti kažem
Da si me upravo to naučio?
Baš dobro što zvezde ne mogu
Da se pomere
Naše su točno tu gde i treba da budu
Obraz mi je krvav, kao i njene ruke
Od one vaze što ju je bacila na mene i nazvala me kurvom
Želim ju zaključati u vrt koji se prostire kilometrima
Pozvati vjetar i ptice da utišaju njegovu jeku koja joj govori
Da je luda i paranoična
Djevojčice, žao mi je
Dok je rasplitao moje kose zaboravio je tvoje ime
Kada je uhvatio moj struk, zanijekao te
Božanstvo u tebi skupilo se malo, praktično
Da stane u stražnji džep
Pričam ti o danima kada sam bila mlađa od
Prvog puta kada si se ti zaljubila
I čovjeku koji me naučio shvatiti kako
Me ti sada mrziš
Dajem ti ljubav u krhotinama stakla
Jednom sam o sudoper razbila cijeli
Set vinskih čaša
Gledala crno vino kako prlja bijele zidove
Ja nisam znala njeno ime ni
Bi li ona mene tješila da je znala da sam
Djevojčice, žao mi je
Sve tvoje uvrede zabijaju se tupo kao
Noževi u pijesak između nas
Sada ti želim dati svoje ruke, založiti
Svoje grudi i zagrliti
Te kao što nikada nisam njega
Ovako postajemo sestre
Ovako se rađaju majke
You will look at him like a savior,
You will pray for the resurrection,
Pray he can put your trembling bones back together
Like straws of a bird’s nest,
Like ashes of a house burned down to the ground,
Like dust under our squeaking beds.
You will clasp your hands together saying
Lord, please save me
Every time you see him in your apparitions.
He will let you crown his head,
Although his knuckles will bleed
Every time he runs them down your spine.
You will wipe the blood of your dresses
Wash them over and over again
Try to wash out the bad taste he leaves
Every time he leaves.
You cannot wash away the shame.
The shame - like a moist, black crow
Shrieking outside of your window
Every night you try to dream of him.
Have you forgot how he took an axe
Rammed it into every tree until the whole forest was gone,
Used the wood to light the fire
Under the house he has built you
Out of promises and dreams
As empty now
As your shattered bones
Whose ashes he shoved under his bed
While fucking another woman
At the rooftops of your hopes?
I meet her on my third night there. It is around 4 a.m., but in here, you know no one is asleep. White noise gets a whole new meaning here, how it is never silent. But you get used to it, the moans and the sighs, after a while it just seems like winds blowing through the bars of the walls as through the hollows of my ribs. I spent my first night trying to decipher the sounds; are they crying, or masturbating, or ripping their nails off with their own teeth? It doesn’t matter anymore, it is just wind.
We slide past the parks
Past the gates and the exit signs
Through the boulevards and avenues
Through the promenades and Rivieras
He sings in chatter and speaks in breath
He breathes in fog and breathes out Rome
Holds my hand through dark nights and empty alleyways
When yellow moons anchored in the pavement
Light up the rivers of gray
His traffic lights like beauty marks
Coloring books of both December and May
My steps are oracles
Ecstasies every time I touch his face
My fingers are still learning
Sliding over his every crevice
We talk late at night
When I turn my balcony into a confessional and
My cigarette into a rosary
He tells me stories
The way he talks in breath
I let my heart sink down, through four
Building floors, right into his chest
There is a cat screeching outside in the park. A thousand lighters
click in the night, fires start
There are ten moons following you home tonight. They trail
behind the car, balloons on strings
There are flowers that breathe only in the dark. A lover walks
home alone, her heels in her hand rubbing against
There are jazz bars that come alive only for the after-after-parties. In sound
proof basements, ten stories down
below, where you can see
These streets have not known the sun
And this girl has not known love
She waits under the tilia tree every morning
Right at six
I watch her
Strolling over rooftops
A cigarette in my hand
And me, bound for bed
We talked about love last night
Politics always goes to love
And that one old rag drinking himself to death
A lesson on what happens when you let her get away
She waits still
And the cigarette has burned out
I turn around and head uptown
Let her wait
Love is sweeter when you do not get it back
He cuts me open without anesthesia.
Comes into my house under the moonlight
And waits by my bedside until the sunrise,
He holds a silver dagger and a touch of gold
Makes an incision from the soft at the nape of my neck
Painting red between my breasts
Over my navel and to my other hairline.
He puts all ten fingers inside of me
And opens me up,
Looking for a way to make room for himself,
To make of me a drawer for the things he cannot take home.
He tells me a story of a home
Of a family,
Tells me he is here to stay
Inside of me
And I will never feel lonely.
When Frida Kahlo fell in love with Diego Rivera she had already had her heart broken and had made her peace with a life full of pain awaiting her. The trolley accident she survived as a teenager left her spinal and pelvic bones in shreds that will never come together again, and herself unable to have children, something her soul will never heal from. By the age of twenty, Frida had already experienced love, the loss of a never-existent child, the cage of a body cast, the freedom of a paintbrush in her hand, and the ever-present pain.
In 1967 my grandmother's father built a house on the outskirts of an old coastline town on Croatian Adriatic. It looked towards the sea and the industrial port some kilometers away, from back when there still was a promising industry in Croatia, back when Croatia was still Yugoslavia. On its right was the brick red railway that has been silent for long before I was born, leading to somewhere North-West in Europe, somewhere better. He was a railway man, my grandmother’s father, taught to respect all things red, although I always remembered him with silver white hair. We called him Dida, a colloquial name for a grandfather, although he was not a grandfather to any of us, and that colloquial expression did not come from our dialectical region. For years I thought that Dida was his actually name, today, that is the only name I remember him by.
He forgets her name
Forgets the date
Forgets what was happening that weekend
Forgets why I kept on asking,
Why I wouldn’t let it go.
He calls her honey colored hair blond,
Doesn’t know her age,
Doesn’t know her town,
Doesn’t care of her past.
I bet he never knew the color of her eyes
That’s the thing with dark bars and heavy alcohol,
He remembers that.
Some nights I hear footsteps in an empty hallway
Some nights I see shadows through the cracks of the doors
Some nights I mourn the dead that have not yet been buried
The dishes are washed and stored
The trash bags are empty
The wine and vodka are safely at the top shelf in the cupboard
The cat is strolling along the furniture
And the clock is racing through the night
I deleted all of the numbers
Locked my fingers into shackles and my mouth into a muzzle
Put up a calendar for a new year
There are dates written in red pen
His birthday, graduation, anniversary, that wedding
What if I forget
And do not spend the day nibbling on my own skin and cigarettes
And that bottle of Absinthe that is always a bad idea
Write his name on every cigarette in the pack. Smoke the whole pack with a bottle of red wine. Light them up. Watch his name burn and turn to ash between your fingers. Inhale deeply. Feel his name, the smoke, scratch its way through your mouth, your throat, your lungs. Keep it in. Let it degrade you from the inside. Let it kill you, slowly eating out your body. Exhale. Put it out. Let it go. You have let it burn for long enough.
You say you are a brave man,
Jumping off a cliff into the ocean
Going into a fight to save your brother,
Without even thinking twice.
When I hear your name I hear:
Going, going, going.
Like drips of the morphine in those last hours
When you know the life is so far ahead of you
There is no way you are going to catch it by the ends of its robe
And keep it with you.
The airport queues have never been so short.
The bus isn’t late for the first time in a decade.
I have forgotten how to say goodbyes.
I feel the wooden houses in my stomach crack at the base.
I try to fix them with duct tape,
With a little bit of gum and good riddance.
Home isn’t supposed to be empty rooms filled with howling winds.
Tonight I counted every star
At the bottom of my ceiling.
Said the numbers with every rapid breath I took,
So fast I started seeing constellations forming on my floor
While trying so hard not to think of you,
On top of her
Pushing her onto the wall,
Hoping so hard it was at least a different wall.
I died my hair black yesterday.
I am afraid of finding her blondes
Between your mattress and pillow.
Afraid of running my fingers over your back
Feeling scars that I didn’t make.
After 43 missed calls
And 10 times more unanswered texts,
I bet you wish I hadn’t stopped writing.
I bet you wish I hadn’t shoved my inspiration under the foundation of an old house,
Stepped on her neck and put a handkerchief down her throat.
I bet now you wish I would stop talking to you,
An empty growing silence that has been screaming into my ear for days,
And instead start spilling onto paper knowing I could never expect an answer.
I stopped writing when I learned about the destruction I never meant to cause,
When I learned of the arrogance in my poems.
My arrogance was just,
But hurting the person I love the most never was.
My words have eaten my alive.
So much to say and no one to listen
Will make you howl at the Moon and weep when she does not reply.
What do I do when the Moon stops?
The only thing we ever trusted,
The only thing we could both see at the same time,
The only thing that does not change no matter which continent we are on.
What do I do when she stops
And I keep on spinning?
Close your eyes, sink into the chair,
You are at home,
You are at home,
Tell me what you see, tell me where you are.
I do not like cats,
Mice are all gone,
I can feel them inside of me,
Their little claws up and down my throat,
I can feel them climbing up my legs,
I am the mice,
Up and down my throat,
Up and down all day long.
I never thought much of the ocean.
It was always too cold for me, too windy,
The ocean was never my thing.
Until I realised just how beautiful drowning can be.
But breathing for the first time after so long.
It was like you took a scalpel in your right hand,
Made a cross at the bottom of my throat
And I started bleeding,
But I started breathing.
Have you ever felt like rebirthing?
Because tonight your eyes were oceans on fire.
I rose from the ashes like phoenix,
Bathed in your waters
And cried you rivers.
I forgot how the words go
I forgot how to stack letters one after another
Or one foot before the other
Sometimes, I forget how to breathe.
Sometimes, I forget you are gone
My mind still glitched on passed upon memories like an old VHS tape
And nobody wants to watch this
Nobody wants to admit that we had it better in socialism.
I want to tell my mother about the man I have been seeing.
I want her to stop asking about the boy
Whose name is not welcome in my house anymore.
I want to erase the look she had in her eyes
When I sat with her, gulped down a glass of wine, and told her he had left.
I want her to believe I am fine.
Mama, he is a good man.
Kind and funny,
His teeth are white and straight
And his arms are strong.
Mama, he does not drink.
So on the nights when I am lost in nostalgia,
On the nights when I put in my best
To distort the picture of him,
To make him smaller and lighter,
And his arms rougher,
On the nights when I blur my vision just enough
So he might seem like the boy whose voice I am beginning to forget,
You do not have to worry,
I will still get home safe.
My favorite part of the weekend
Is preparing for that first date.
Taking an hour-long shower
Shaving my legs above my knees
Putting on a face mask
Using that special auburn eyeshadow
And that Russian Red Mac,
A test whether he can kiss me without ruining my lipstick.
Preparing for that first date,
Flaunting everything in front of my roommates
From lingerie, dress, shoes, and coat,
Asking for approval- I am sorry, advice
That this is just enough,
But not too much.
Preparing for that first date,
Opening the top drawer of my kitchen cabinet
Choosing the sharpest medium-size knife in there
And putting it in my bag,
Just in case I need to defend myself.
He asks about my ex
And I want to say the truth
I want to say the mainstream we wanted different things,
Forget to say that I wanted to marry him
And he wanted to fuck other women,
Forget to say that I left somebody who needed my help
And I do not know if he had a drug problem or a he problem
Drowning in the ocean of lost currents
And maybe this is why the Atlantis sank,
But I used up all of my life rafts and crashed my hollows over too many hidden cliffs
To be left aimless in the center of whenever.