Cigarettes and wine

ben bruce

He is made of cigarettes and wine, broken glass and summer sunshine. Cracks of light peer through his soul. But his head’s full of the darkness he stole. He’s a taker, a giver; he makes her legs quiver. A bad boy with good intentions, an ashtray full of apprehension. Someday he’ll right all his wrongs. For now, he’ll dance with danger to his favorite song.


silent partner


While you were building a cage around your heart, I entered just before you closed the door. I thought I’d be welcome there. Thinking perhaps you may need me, I decided to stay, silently. Not making too much noise, I lived quietly behind the bars. Was my presence too small? I went unnoticed. Then I realized you weren’t looking for a silent partner. You were looking for someone who would rattle the cage, break down the bars, and set your heart free.

My love was easy, too easy. It didn’t make you feel. It didn’t break down any of your barriers. It was just there, sitting, liking a silent bird in a cage.



Never knew loneliness until you came

Never answered a call

Until you called out my name

I said I needed space

You let me be


You listen so obediently

So stir me

Cause you’ve shaken up my insides

I don’t feel guilty

But I feel a need to hide



Promises and Memories


He is made of promises and memories, piled up newspapers and undrunk cups of tea. His heart’s been a mess since she walked out the door. He can’t bring himself to do much more, but to think of her from night to day. And contemplate why she walked away. Was it something he said? Did her dreams go unfed? He switches back and forth from anger to grief. Inducing himself with sleep for some relief. She promised him tomorrow but she left before today. He asks himself repeatedly, “why didn’t she stay?” He is made of promises and memories from a girl who left so suddenly.

Do You Like Keeping a Personal Blog


I struggle to keep personal blogs and for the longest time I thought it was because I was too lazy to maintain the demanding upkeep, but now I know the real reason: I don’t like writing autobiographically. I don’t mind if I show up in my work indirectly, but to sit down and write of my own existence bores me. Maybe I’m too private; maybe I just don’t have the eloquence to make my day to day life seem interesting. It seems pretentious to want to even display my life in an interesting manner. I read other personal blogs and feel a kind of envy like when you see someone looking good in the same top. I wonder if their perfect string of words comes from knowing themselves or knowing how to present themselves; it may be a case of both.

I tell myself it’s good to keep a blog simply for the memories. Write your thoughts, just to see what kinds of thoughts you were having. It helps to show you how you’ve changed and all the ways you’ve stayed the same. But the moment it clicks that someone besides myself might see it, I suddenly become manipulative of how I want the world to see me. No, it’s not that I want them to like me. If it were only that I’d write about myself all the time. It’s my need to be understood. For a writer to be asked to be understood is to tread into dangerous territory. Life is about interpretation and perception. How you judge me is based largely on your own personal experiences and interactions with the world. If you read someone’s writing, you’re more likely learning about yourself than you are about them.

This knowledge stifles me. It keeps the words under my skin, like my veins that pulse and are racked with feeling but are invisible to the outside world. I said I’d try to share my thoughts this year, but I’m not interested in my own thoughts enough to force myself to share them on a constant basis. Additionally, ghost writing killed the art of self expression for me. When you’re trained to write without giving yourself away, it becomes difficult to tap into your own voice.

However, that is one of the reasons for this blog: to find my own voice again. Because despite not having an immediate interest in my ongoing thoughts (or being too consumed with them to translate them) I do want to undertake an exploration of my heart. Writing isn’t just a mental activity. It can free you from feelings, bring you closer to a deeper understanding of what moves your soul, and on some occasions save you. Writing has saved me. It brought me back into the light; it made me appreciate the dark. It gave me a reason to connect with my heart. So for that reason, I keep on writing; maybe not autobiographically or even introspectively but conversationally with my own heart.

Pic: mine

Chose to stay


A series of events led me to you. But it was my choice to stay. Your laughter made me fall in love. But it was my decision to stay in love on days when you couldn’t even muster up a smile. And we are holding each other like the universe planned it; like it was fate. I bet all lovers feel that way; like this thing called love was made just for them. And that every moment in history was simply so they could find each other. But in between all those moments of divine intervention is a choice—a moment when I could have said goodbye, but choose to say hello, again. Love is more than a feeling that occupies one’s heart. It is a lifestyle, full of choices that, if you’re lucky, keep leading you back to the person that made you fall in love in the first place. 

The longest winter

Bones dry as icewinter

heart is frostbitten

veins frozen

it’s been a long winter

ah, but now you’re melting

spring is coming

she could save you

she could set you free

she could dampen your bones

Take the chill out

Bring back your colors

Warm your interior

Starve off the winter

I dreaded this winter. It seemed to enslave me, making itself my enemy. I’m not usually this bitter about the season but this year I felt such contempt for the little flakes of white I could have screamed. It bruised me, bit me through my core, it made a mess of me and you know what? I’m glad. I’m glad I had this hateful winter enclose itself in my life. It makes me appreciate the coming of spring even more. It makes me feel resilient. And forgiving. I forgive you old man winter for sending shards of ice through my heart. I can hear it beating again. You did not destroy me.

Neat and Orderly

He struggled to keep up the routine that made everyone believe his life was fine so no one would worry about him. He did it. He had everyone fooled into thinking things were neat and orderly, but each night he wanted to break down to someone to let them know that everything was falling apart around him.