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Sunday, May 31, 2015

Mourning Glory

I wake up to sunlight shrieking
wonder if one day
my bed
will be a graveyard
my bones fossilized between its sheets
there are days when I don’t have the strength to get up
days when I hold my core
to stop it from crumbling
days when the mirror is the nastiest girl in school
I cover up
cover the zits
cover the excess fat
cover all the ugly
swallow
swallow pills to fix my acne
pills to liquidate my pudge
pills to make me seen and not heard
heard the makeup across the counter
coat myself with foundation,
to create a thicker skin
a wall to seal ruptures beneath
this crazy
this crazy bitch
bitching and twitching
I’m a wind up doll dancing out of turn
it is always a dance
a tapping across my flesh
fleshy ants colonizing me
I’m hollow
Wood infested with termites
sometimes I wish I was ugly
had an excuse for the hatred
radiating from colliding eyes
everyone treats me like the kid daddy never wanted
because I am the kid who daddy never wanted
who still wanted to want her self
I have dreams of bulldozing people
aspire to make myself flat
purge my personality
because they don’t want a woman with a personality
they convict me for convictions
say I’m prettier with my mouth shut
that girls this girly shouldn’t act like a man
shouldn’t fight like a man
shouldn’t fight a man
but surviving each morning is fighting a man
my bathroom is a battlefield
I’ve cried in that shower
ripped off skin in that sink
I’ve learned to vomit so it doesn’t mess up my hair
mess up
mess up
it’s a mess
i’m a mess
possessed
by this flesh
by this need to get ready
I wonder if one day
it won’t feel like night at my vanity
I won’t massacre my own face
getting up won’t be going down
to a hell
I call my morning.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Santa Claws


I’m walking through the borrego desert
and a piece of lightning catches my flesh
like a zipper zipped too fast
I do not break
this sensation comes like rain
but since I’ve moved to California
I’m used to thunder outside my spine
I look into the cloud:
an old car with a man inside
a man who looks like my father
or at least what I know my father looks like
a bald head
white beard
round belly
and frosty skin
it’s the tenth anniversary since I’ve seen his face
all I have is a description
for all I know, my dad could be Santa Claus
arriving once a year
I know this is lousy metaphor for my abandonment
but when you’re Jewish
Santa loses jolly texture
no Christmas
no dripping sleighbells
no coal stuffed stocking
naughty and nice lay upside down
empty
check
you are not on his list
check
at the bus stop a boy recalls
the book where the baby bird falls from its nest
and repeats to strangers
are you my mother?
in brooklyn
he says
they ask, “Are you my daddy?”
laughing at my jagged punchlines
the ho ho ho
shuddering thunder at the mall
and the target parking lot
Are you my daddy
the chinese restaurant
Are you
the movie theatre
you
you know it’s the holidays
when you find familiar faces on strange skin
christmas carols shriek hail
pouring down undetermined ifs
if you were a figment
a fig ready to shrivel before
I grow beneath beatings
radiating memories bleeding mourning
it is christmas morning
and a knock echoes through my hollow house
I look through the window
and find lightning bouncing
no it’s snow
let it snow
let it snow
let it blizzard through me
the face that I see everywhere
is blizzarding through the window
finally cold enough
It’s the real Santa
sleigh bells bang
I tell rebecca
get up stairs
get up
float away or drown in ice
Santa screams
open the fucking door you cunt
reindeer gallop and clang
I am so glad we don’t have a chimney
for him to crawl down
no fireplace to beg for coal
mama’s out for milk and no cookies
and Santa Claus
claws at us
less saint and more bear
I can’t bear it
bare bones whispering
you are not real
you are not real
you are just a reel trying to catch me
I’m no longer a fish
I’m a woman in girls skin
skinning this ideal alive
this searching in empty pockets of my lungs
leaving the mall
filling the target parking lot
chinese restaurant and movie theater
washing lightning from my lips

clouds part an hour later
Santa leaves two rolex watches outside
I close the door
realizing it was never locked
I’m 12
and I stop believing.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

United States of Ash


1692
Salem, Massachusetts ties women
to charring stakes.
1812
the British burn DC down
the white house becomes ash
1864
General Sherman
sacrifices Atlanta to flames
2015
Ferguson
New York
Baltimore


combust under the pressure of systematic opression
this is more than a witch hunt



when you feed mountains gunfire
they become volcanoes
you can call them riots
but don't pretend you didn't feed the eruptions
froze beneath the pumice
as we re-colonize Pompeii

when I was five
my house burned down
I came home to a bedroom of dust
learned to run from burning


fire isn’t menacing
When it was never home
When flesh isn't a body just a moving target When a body is never a citizen never a person its easy to drown voices in tear gas without guilt.

and you're hoping
a girl who looks like me
doesn't speak up
because I'm not the one burning

WE ARE ALL BURNING



you say protesters are unpatriotic
you forget
we celebrate independence
shooting infernos into sky
hot dogs in one hand
sparklers in the other
you forget
nothing’s more American
than charring cities
United States of Ash
you forget
we started with a war.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Heightened

somewhere inside by Loui  Jover
my type has always been tall
my first boyfriend was 6 feet in 6th grade
my first kiss on tip toes
my first love shelved his heart yards above me

As a girl with a big personality
I was taught
chase boys I won’t overpower
taught
date tall
be dust
so he can sweep you off your feet
forget the ground
forget standing
forget you can stand
girls with big personalities 
learn to skydive
without parachutes
we are taught
if you want them to love you
put away your stilettos
put away the words wrangling your tongue
be small

I learned to love boys feet above me
plummeting skyscrapers
who buried me alive

I was a continent to be conquered
catastrophe to be handled
A deformity
mouth swollen with words I forgot to swallow
do not feed the bitch
do not brush her fangs
do not love me
only what you can make me into
the right guy could hold my ugly back
Back when I was four
I wrote in my diary
I like Brandon. He’s tall.
Did I want to make him mine
or just become his?

girls with big personalities
grow up growing in
swallowing silence
prescribed scoliosis to slouch our voices
I want to stand up straight
I want to stand up out of my seat
stand out
outside this ribcage frame
stand tall with an equal
not a boy in men's clothing
5 feet and 6 inches of honesty
so grounded I forget gravity
pierce the atmosphere with my own ambition
I'm done making myself small so men feel big.
Tonight I'm going to put on a pair of heels
that make ass look great
even if I’m a foot taller
I’m done reaching down

Contact

Ariel is available and interested in anything creative!
For spoken word performances & workshops, web & graphic design, or other writing/film projects please contact via email at arielsob@usc.edu.
New York & Los Angeles work preferred!