Our definition of success

Rejections and unanswered applications
Were presents for someone so obsessed with
Counterbalancing their lack of worth
With an overflow of work
That would drown
All sense of imposterism

Until the weight of work and the world
Would let them slumber and collapse
And break into a sphere of running in a wheel
That lets one forget
How one got there and how one can leave again

 
Running is followed by hiding from running and hiding while running or because of and running without thinking about stopping

Till a sense of worth is reached
On a Friday night when you fall on your back at midnight
Your eyes burning
Your head heavy
Your thoughts empty
Your work done, and knowing this is no longer satisfying
You’re empty and regard this as

Is this success

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The misery (pt. 1 and 2)

#1
We build cages around ourselves so confidently
Until we see that we
Have unlearned to breathe freely
That we never planned a window nor a door
In the cell starting to feel like something
Close to self-pre-fabricated hell
How dense feelings do become
How you vanish and become one
With the concrete’s cold in winter and its heat right after
As you’ve never learned to counterbalance
Your self-imposed burdens
Poor little creature
Now I see you
Freezing in the corner
Not daring to let a tear drop
So controlled have you learned
To suffer

 

#2
I’m an empty nest
Once filled with all the responsibilities
That let it break
And me tremble
Hanging from a branch
Most between where altruism started
And where selfishness seems to be standardised
Catapulting you into your own ignorant happiness
Centring around the destruction of other life
That wasn’t lucky enough to enjoy the same
Bath in useless luxury
Where ignorance prevails
Altruism has failed
And I don’t know what to believe in
Any longer

White and clean or: Everyday explosions

Every hateful word

carves itself onto my skin

into my organs

 landing where my stomach feels intoxicated

 filled with dynamite

like fireworks clashing against my belly’s inside

 

All the abundance

All the money invested in white walls

All the glittering and polished masks

The clean facades

The light-hearted greetings

Are useless

 

Meaningless

if

what’s more profound

is shabby

 

Golden paint

doesn’t make the broken hut you’re residing in

any better

my friends

Lemongrass

Lemongrass

bit me bitterly

as freckles were spreading

over my pale winter skin

 

And Scotland painted itself

on my mind

while I was negating

the love I would find

if I returned

to the used places

 

I’m just so afraid

the honey won’t last

 

We’ve had a full pot

Now I need to move on

Childhood winters or adolescent nights or grown-up snow angles (To H.)

Flowers of frozen smoke
On your milky window
The night after
Your sheets smelled of softness
White as the streets

 
And you pressed your chin
Against the icy glass
Of the underground train
And saw nothing
But comforting darkness
Rushing past

 
Tones of black
Did exist
You learned that night
Your mother’s red lips
Resting on your forehead
Where a woollen hat
Ought to have been

 
Snowball fights
Spiced apple
Sticky fingers
Red cheeks and icy drops on your eyelashes
Your body lying in whiteness
Cold wrapping itself around your tightness

 
You breathe in
And know you’re real
Because you’re alive

An early Christmas poem

The moon is thin tonight

A tender line

On late December skies

That left traces of blue, light blue, turquoise, azure, yellow, green and purple

Black are the trees

Twinkles in the cities on wooden corners

Windows full of mini lights

Warmth streaming out of old pubs’ doors

 

 

And then I think of all the people

I’ve ever met

How they are still busy

Travelling by train through winter landscapes

Waiting on airports

Wrapping fragilities into lettered paper

Working at small cinemas, collecting tickets

Putting tips into their pockets after their shifts

Writing their sorrows away next to candles

Hustling from store to store in Amsterdam

Waiting for snowflakes while staring into the evening sky

Cooking for their grandchildren and decorating the house for the scattered family to reunite in their Danish home

Being more than six hours behind, carrying flowery hearts through their Columbian flats while humming to jazz

And waiting patiently for someone

From the other end of the world

To text back

Those working on their theses ignoring the festive spirit

Those longing for past times while drinking tea lonely in their flats-for-one

Those travelling down from the very north of Norway to reunite with their families

Those wandering on lonely paths with a decisiveness that is mirrored in them as feminists

Those smelling like cinnamon and having dough all over their hands, baking with love

Those printing photos and putting them into carefully chosen envelopes and kissing cheeks before hopping on buses

Those having curry nights with their beloved ones

Those looking into the far distance of the Aegean sea

Those adding glitter and star-shaped sprinkles to their cakes in Brussels

Those reading in their cosy holes by the fireplace in England

 

Those wishing for more

Those desiring less

Those loving

Those learning to love

 

And those trying not to stop loving

Despite it all