Blackberry Patch

​It was beautiful, wasn’t it?
That magical evening
down at the blackberry patch.
Now I am wasted,
for all else,
but that evening.
That damn evening.
Cool breeze was right
with the heat.
Twilight showed its skin
and you stayed.​

                       Tiger Lily

Take my hand.
How does it feel to come?
Is it just the same or never enough?
Did my guitar solo leave a bad taste
in your taboo mouth?
Such a pretty orange flower
shouldn’t be so off limits.
We played in rhythm for a while.
Fear kept you from my dark road.
Rainbows just don’t work for you.
I could have stayed, though,
even without so much as satisfaction.
Now I’m nearly free and over
your forked tongue.
Knowing now is better,
more than what was could ever be.
We have our separate song.
You are the girl I used to know.
Living in our learned realities.
My right hand man still on my left.
We were us when cigarettes dangled
from our girlish ruby lips.
I scratch the back of my head,
all of it seems so long ago.
“The girl on the stage,”
I whisper to my right hand man,
“She used to be mine.”

                                                      Death’s Reluctance

 He held the gun up and pointed his finger at the far wall. 
"This is your brain, this is your future resting place." 
I stood staring, not in shock, but in some sort of daze.  I smiled at him. Because I knew this tends to piss off the irrational. 
"What makes you think I care?"
He smiled back, he wanted to slap me but to touch me would have been a Sin.  "Oh, you'll be sorry."
I turned suddenly inside out.  I remembered those words and who had spoken them first. 
I remembered what they meant and how these small little words came to define my life. 
I heard the echo distant but resounding "You'll be sorry! You'll die alone!"
I came back to myself. 
He still had the gun. 
I grabbed the end of it so that it was in both our hands and pressed it to my forehead. 
The tears came now in earnest, "WHAT MAKES YOU THINK I'M NOT ALREADY? WHAT...MAKES...YOU...THINK...I'M...NOT ALREADY!"

He let go of the gun.  I didn't notice. 
Now it was only in my hand pressed against my forehead. 
He looked fearful.  I continued to cry.  Silently. 
With the anger still raging, racing through my veins. 
The man backed against the wall.  His look spoke the fact. 
Killing me wouldn't save me.  Only damn me, it would be suicide. 
He wanted to pray.  He couldn't. 
Except for the tears dripping off my chin I hadn't moved. 
I spoke in a whisper, "What makes you think I'm not already..."​

HD Russell

​                          Gay Bar Early 2000s

 My choice was no choice at all
merely an idea I enjoyed dwelling on

In the dark of night…

                    …Or in the haze of alcohol

                               ...Completely sober

I remember the flashing lights
the smoke and music thumping
 that beautiful rhythm in our chests

We were all just beautiful bodies
Swaying, stroking, embracing

We had no use for the real
those moments were for the surreal

We smelled no sweat only felt the drops
roll between our young breast
as we moved our young bodies

Water after water

          Drink after drink

We were each other’s
Everyone was ours
We were everyone’s
Burning up
Cooling down

I can still feel the beat.