Stand Beside You
You’re the only one I want; no one
has lessened that which I devote
to your exacting quiet, fearfully
dripped, concentrating on the care
you’ve shown in our darkest hours.
Until I can repay you, I’ll love you
wholly and without trepidation.
There is no better prayer than hearing
you on the line, holding me close,
and no clambering of mine will
ever reach you, though I try.
When you’ve seen my face brighten,
I like to hardly pass a day’s turpitude
like stone in spite of fire, if you’ll
please find me again; I’ll find you.
Kind soul with repairs undone
guilt’s riddle taunts made unseen
held onto for pablum and ire
inconceivable without touch
the dealt appearance lunk off
tumult of human suffering
hear my prayer. A lance
lucks across my skull.
Life isn’t right, writ of
incompatible half-angles and
knowledges with, styles that
peck at cards’ fragments to lie
only with you I feel kind finally
let my revulsions kiss clothing,
which means I’m getting better,
which means I’m yours alone.
Febrile ruin my living conditions
the unkempt property you sell hollow
so long as it’s worth you leaving town
for days away in hellish submission
to a mouth at full tilt, floating below
your pointed eyes, which agreed to
what was said between us. I’d hold
on to one final racket to give that
evil house its chance, obtain copies
of other mouths, let them know
these resounding promises we made.
I left myself in this state humbling, so
I promise to change. For you, there’s
the division I plant in the future,
because you can’t take back violence,
moreso the memory of said violence.
Promise me sweep of voices’ brackets, each political
will tell you to stay. I’ve already gone far regulated
and no longer piece together money for the blight
starting from the tip of the tongue, and only retracting.
Enemy nightmares pray for them
can’t help that I’m working your control
over in my head. That’s an algebra
for cowards. Fuck my heart;
I’ll go down swinging.
It’s so simple any day you try
to hang on for a sharing luck
seems awoken fine then hard
I push myself to you nothing
about what except accompli
they should see to return us
to the dross of makeup ours
proven by a script that took
us to have seen another again
the train’s off the track, scare
me I’m belonging with style
all yours, flagrancy increases
one’s feeling disparate, throw
me out and another amounts
to a devoted partner, until
that lasts or doesn’t. It’s a good
show; sadly I identify as luck
reproacher and that’s my lot.
This has been an exacting life.
The moon rolls its tail in your
singular livelihood. Thanks due
in the curling grass lifts to sharpen
your transparent face, make it
from a piece of paper.
In turns there happens a clutch
sense that I daydream to scale
for stilling my birthday fragmentary
to the self deluded for a sketch
an edge of your adopted nest
occludes peace and tremor,
that which I never thought to ask
as confronting spies’ houses
for a good morning habitable
seeking you out with trivia until
we’re interred with peace passing,
an affection not yet talked about.
I had a life like your face held
on a quiet afternoon, trust choked-up,
let accomplished no trust beheld
to snare the room tallies health
for once attempting a promise
love endures for you, so long
with no choice affection tickets,
sprinkled flower. Obdurate bliss,
I have nothing left to give
except these notes on my hands.
Grounds per night light rain
what once expects rediscovered
landing bud, petal, attach
wire underneath this fortune
world at war foil with metaphor
you shared it made us cry,
I know you have a complex
care streaming the sound
without chain spear and bead
of it drops dual pendant
rose of automated voice,
my cries go horned in chains
to buy the dare you offer
me over the phone tonight.
I borrow a single thoughtful
summer afternoon from the purse
you pay me with for drops. Conduct
staid and with the glimpse of talk
when you hold me to you
help in hearing goes lifeless
and all we can do is caress it.
Sap is in a costume, an artifact of
your body so many of us wanted
to seek in art your countenance
offers; many fewer of us caved
for no time and write a secret
I changed by turn of phrase
so you sought to change me,
just tell me. Tonight is open.
I Don’t Want
To hold disdain for you
accord frayed and evilly
encountered dog and flock
mine forever and if not,
sheer spite without hope.
Hate picks up if penury
of imagination goes off-kilter
in church, school falls apart
for the bickering student,
life tends to the promise
you decay upon too. I’m
here to wish you the worst
and to not want to destroy
that hand which once put
itself to my forehead, and
told me this would be okay.
Spirit of primeval disposition
endure in me your promise
so my strength carries her
through worsening times,
most of which lie ahead.
Had to nudge and nudge
until again you gave me
storage. Had to play in
hoary airs’ mistake clop
so cold very ungiven
the loss of this single ship
pretends to gripe levy loss
warms over but another
captures eventually an enemy
with their own arable periods,
the precondition to estrange
that which persists forgery.
Wrong host, Gordon. Please kill
that fun of strangeness
so that you can handle
that which must be stopped.
Only to settle and know you
through the horror ensuing
like a fax and success for
that which you look back
upon one day, only to realize
you’re the same worries, all the same.
Would a world in a power
that you felt reliant on I
give myself its tambour
loud unto grounds’ torment
fuck that world unrequited
the meds you gave pressed
the only one currently wasted?
How do you prepare customs for
that, saying graceful entry
abstains a quiet shine scared stiff
of money good?
Or has my love succumbed
merely to findom?
Sweet stabilizing violence,
sweet nourishing violence,
I Can’t Wait
Submersion is eternal caffeine for
a razorlike burning morning in the dark.
Heartbreak has laid me out again. Still I pray
you surface without terror in your tears.
When I wake up, I’ll send you a star.
I would’ve waited; I will still
with this handy cloister of topics
and a small studio. Currents here
belong to the wefting of light as you
catch it, the sunlight on your face lasts
one more prosaic day, turning over anger
for homebound crushes, fixations endured
though in myself I’ll have a place to furrow.
Hardened, we’d never get into your pain
at this point with real affections,
with said affection though difference
gets lost between us. I can’t sleep again, though
waiting to wait’s a vanity of the unknown,
I assure myself. I should forsake
reviewing this for you. Timeless anyways.
Today I’ll send you a star and then another.
Without you to hold voice, foot
I can’t like how small this fortitude is, really.
All I wish for you, I don’t know,
you can only await what you love.
Through my driest complaints
I turned to your saintly till,
plain as sky, sleeping lightly
and seeing too much. Hesitation
depreciates kisses, their root causes
connive new means to suit lacquer
so blue to only enrich bluer prints,
then vanity’s specter so pledges
us good circuitry. I’ll
endear plainly to your scarring.
No privilege speaks to mercy
like those waters made to lure life,
the receptive hand of a measure
surrounding trust, immovably captive,
spurning its sleeplessness for company.
Wake on me, turn over, curl up.
Do what you will; I’ll find you
there serenely still.
In Sad Reconnaissance
That which made you
what you were, familiar,
you outlined the things I
could compile for a time,
limited tender compensation
for disagreement’s pitiful scrub,
someone unworthy of a kiss. To be held,
instead, however, cables management to stay
who seemed to work until they medicate
yet can’t “tender into” their cabalistic check.
Would it stifle your attention so slow
to give me a response, meet me waiting
for the night to rescind our mediated transport
just once so I could see and hold you, if again
for a walk in the world you gave me once, and
so briefly. Just because this seems nice enough
and weird to happen, I append a final gift,
one final gift to you, and it’s whispered:
When you sleep tonight, know we know
one another until time ends, now and forever.
It was always you
who stole me from the start
I replay this sincerity and
it refreshes a plenitude incanted
a test I shouldn’t have to say it
and force myself to for you
because you seem to love
to hear this sternness and
make fun of myself I hate
candor and can’t help that.
Law of laws intent no appearance
death always happens between its
deaths forgot so you let go, I don’t
through us really not until the next
time we get to talk serenity
and cross-examination. When first
did you know you loved me?
Was it only that time talking?
Pour until each finish, I want
you a rote lamp to read by,
foment of the replays I love
to see you through each night.
When I observe myself childlike
that helps sort my ending, send
me the reflection I had to take on
you gave me that to abet my own,
please don’t stop talking ever I—
minutes apart feel hard, now worlds
encounter you and still you mine
the appreciation you’re deserving of.
Thinking doesn’t stop difficult times
until plenitude happens to them, liars
and visibility sees us undo ourselves.
Diminished senses, I want
to give you over and again
until one necklace plans dying.
J. GORDON FAYLOR is the author of People Skulk (Smiling Mind Documents, 2019), Plummet (TROLL THREAD, 2018), Registration Caspar (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2016), and five volumes of Christmas poetry in collaboration with Brandon Brown, among other works. He is the editor of Gauss PDF and the managing editor of SFMOMA’s Open Space, and lives in Oakland.