Home Exists...

Photographer: Scott Martin

Photographer: Scott Martin

A suitcase filled with a place that I no longer connect with 

or exist within

It’s strange to me how a place can absorb me 

and as soon as I leave it continues unflinching 

The clerk at the grocery store down the street from my jungle home 

will continue to stack shelves and work the register. 

As I write this, I imagine the parrots are squawking and the people are moving to the soundtrack of the lively jungle that surrounds them. 

Nothing stops just because I’m not there to witness it anymore.

Life continues on with or without me 

I’m ready to trade out these clothes for something more appropriate

I sift through boxes, exchanging the shorts and bikinis 

for wool socks and beanies.

I once believed home could be anywhere

but I’m beginning to understand that belief to be flawed

and that home, to me

can only exist if I have

the mountains to greet me 

the river to cleanse me

and you to kiss me.

Sweat.

The air is thick with the sounds of the jungle 

howler monkeys sing into the sun dusted morning 

I feel like I’ve been transplanted into a different time 

tiny dinosaurs watch me drink my mandarin lime & beer on ice 

I’ve given up caring about the sweat dripping down my body 

the tico server wipes the water rings from the bar.

I wish he would do the same for my legs; slippery against this wooden bench

Closing my eyes, I imagine home 

with mountains so tall and silent 

Pines blanketed in snow

A solitude that this lively jungle doesn’t know

My trance interrupted as I swat and kick the no-see-ums from my ankles

My legs are swollen with bites from those blood-sucking-bastards

Closing my eyes, I think about crisp cool air, 

micro-brewies, wool socks, and thick blankets

But I’ve got a soft spot for those two rocking chairs 

Sipping rum to the classics Jimi Hendrix and Louis Armstrong 

filling the tropical night with conversations about our pursuit for greatness;

This life away from life is good and all 

but it doesn’t hold a candle to a life held between four-wheels, the asphalt, 

and pouring all this sweat into something bigger than we could have ever dreamed.

Just One More...

It’s easy for you to tell yourself you aren’t worthy

To disappear behind your expensive wardrobe 

and make yourself  believe that a night out is enough to curb your craving to be anything and anywhere else. 

Just one more drink and this will be the best night ever 

Just one more drink and I’ll be happy

You wake up foggy, surrounded by your same four-walls or those of a stranger.

He doesn’t make you coffee 

you trip up awkwardly looking for your lace black panties

and decide their not worth another second of the shame 

Those are replaceable

unlike your dignity

Walking home puffy eyed you think about your number

and begin to count on one and then two hands;

losing count

This wasn’t the first time you left a piece of you behind in unfamiliar calloused hands.

But for a night he was that vacation you’ve always talked about taking

He was the roar of the river and the smell of the pine

He was the fire that warmed you while you sipped whisky

Talking into the night about the lives you use to live

and will never go back to.