Archive for the Rebellion Category

Notes on Madness

Posted in Prose, Rebellion on April 23, 2011 by melissa merin

Madness- much like any other drug-

is appealing because it never

seems to end.

In the unconscious, I think, there is

a desire to hold, unbending, to

a system of desires.  Longing

comes to mind.

The pattern of an ambulance

siren seems to sync up to

the pitch – the highest pitch

that the ear is capable of holding-

at the exact moment that

one can no longer hold anything else

within the tubes that carry thought

from one place to the next.


it sounds like a screaming baby.

I kept a diary of words

organized in a system that

I called poetry.  When I

was younger.  I tried to

commit them to memory

in an effort to make the

meanings (I assumed)

being conveyed last as long as

I possibly could.  Apparently, I was

only supposed to live to be 18.

As I forgot the word-systems,

I realized again and again

that there was no such thing

as a fact when in referrence to

matters of the mind.

Madness, much like a ticking

clock, is intimidating.  It can

end without warning.  You might

feel suddenly as though you

were caught in a line at the DMV

with no pants on.

I recognize there are many

instances in which I failed to

let go of grief.  Grief is

worn on my body like the

skin on my back; often

unattended to, ever present,

vital to my survival.

Breath is captured in the lungs

for a fraction of an instant

(a subjective mental fact).

Held long enough, it can cause

injury to the brain.

It’s dangerous to let go

of something at the last


It can also be dangerous

to not let go at all.

I wrote unanswered letters

to people I never intended

to receive them.  I was  surprised

that my breath could catch on

disspointment.  I believed in

building my own emotional


Madness. In layers.  Held

beneath the folds of the brain;

straining against the skull.

Bright light in a box.

When last I challenged these

systems of words, to produce

long-lasting meaning and effect,

I was still growing.  Child like.

I didn’t want to go into that room.

All of the beautiful people and the

colors and, the weary application

of optimism.  Behind the door, I

was perpetually 16.

In front of the door, the girls

were always laughing.


My back creaks now.

A rusty door; a condition

of age, hard living, bending

to nurse broken and

compressed bones…

The first time it went

completely out

I was having good sex.

Releasing air in waves

never before realized by

my lungs.  I had to stop.

And I held my breath again.


Okay, Samantha

Posted in Poetry, Prose, Rebellion on June 24, 2009 by melissa merin

Okay Samantha, strap yourself into me.

I sit to write about you and forget my words.  20 billion miles above the planet in a ship that simply should not be, my body moves along at a slightly unfathomable arc over clouds (which, even here, can’t be pure.)  Sitting perfunctorily still, I can only utter something that ends with ‘each other’.

When I start to write, there is you and your hands on me when you got back in the car; or your hand on my knee when we were crammed onto that beer and piss soaked couch…then there’s me and there’s Grady, his head shaking like a pendulum regardless of time or tears.  His hand on my head and my head on his shoulder, shaking.  My hand on his head and the tender way we touch each others faces and necks and hair wondering, is this what it takes to love each other?

And I feel guilty Samantha.  Like I might have betrayed you.  How many times have you told me you love me?  How many times did I truly listen?  Was it very often that I figured you’d pull through this or that fight and then I’d find you again?

When I shuddered, when I recognized that I’d have to call our mutual friends, tell them that you left for good, I broke.  How to tell your story?  I refuse to talk about you in terms of people who’ve died before you.  I’ll not only tell your punk rock stories.  Be prepared world!  The stories about bottles breaking on our backs on Bartlett street, or the timid way you announced your triumphs in Jimmy’s basement will ring out with the bath water.

You’re not a punk statistic, not a friend I met in a bar once a lifetime ago.  You’re a person.  Real.  You love me and you told me so.  And I love you.  Ivy says, Let us not forget!  We radiate!  You do.

I’m writing these words from an airplane, a little before the wing.  The first time I was ever in the air this high, every snippit of afterlife moshed through my brain when I realized I was above the clouds.  Now, they look like the aftermath of millions of micro-explosions- they are everything at once;  the debris of life, people, our thoughts, our lives.  They’re vapor now.  Are you?

Careening just below the atmosphere, I would imagine this is what your head must have always felt like flying above your body, but what do I know?  I’m the one who can’t take comfort in your peace right now.