#NaPoWriMo – Day 12: “On the Floor of Your Apartment”




On the Floor of Your Apartment // by Jennifer Patino


He tells me love is the difference between the green apple & the red,

but hunger makes me ignore colors so I don’t see a difference

until he takes a bite from one


Those perfect pearls imprinting their message

on the fruit’s thin flesh


We walk, dreaming,

then head home & kick out the jams on vinyl,

psychoanalyzing every bleeding lyric


The world is our backyard,

& through the dying and the screaming

we can still laugh

because we’re stuck in the good ‘ole days,


The times of the Catholic veils & the kickball games,

the bruised knees & the muddy playgrounds


We can ignore the current state of animosity

& the humanistic games,

the bruised & battered hearts,

& the filth of the streets

for this one perfect moment

when all that is said to be real doesn’t mean anything anymore


The rain falls down through the open sky light

cleansing our naked souls in purity


The diamond droplets dance on your eyelashes,

your tongue traces your lips,

& our eyes stay open,

mirroring images of each other

as we float on together through this afternoon sun shower abyss




Author’s Note: I went with a revision today because I’ve had this poem in my mind for the past few days. One line in particular kept standing out to me so I wanted to revisit this piece from 2006. I’m a lot happier with it now. 



#NaPoWriMo – Day 11: “See & Respond”



See & Respond // by Jennifer Patino


Through tears
& a numbed heart
from being broken
with every scrolling motion,

I am saying goodbye

When I send a digital message,
I may as well be sending my ghost

Who remembers what my voice
sounds like? Who remembers
my arms waving around
while speaking?

Who remembers
all the breakdowns,
the seizures,
the good times?

Please tell me
you remember the good times
as vividly as I do

Please tell me you can smell
clove smoke in the air,
that you can hear bottles tinkling

please tell me you remember
the sound of my laughter?

I have been in a disconnected desert
for years, crying out

I don’t even know who I want to hear
me anymore

I don’t know what is so important
about my online presence for she is not real

She is a mere inkling

I am a mere inkling

I want nothing more than your love
I want nothing more than to love you
I want to swim in your words,
your deep thoughts

I want to know how you feel about
the lavender sunset tonight,
the sound of the rain I miss too often,
& if you backspace repeatedly as I do
because these typed words
just aren’t enough

I can remember the last time I felt
& it was agony,
but shutting off
destroys my soul

Talk to me
with your voice,

Listen to me
with your ears,

Or remember me some day
& not know where to find me





#NaPoWriMo – Day 10: “We Are Unheard”




We Are Unheard // by Jennifer Patino


Uncomfortable silence
crowds a room

We practice savoring it

We fight our own
urges to cancel out
such a sacred sound

Yes, we can hear quiet

To some, it is the source
of a thousand screams

For others, it is all
they know

Exhales show emotion

Pull apart a breath
and you’ll find a reason
for its existence

Inhales are essence

Heavy air can birth
new reasons to stay alive

Trust is standing
to needlepoint
and not blinking

No words are needed

We speak in shudders
as audio waves appear
on our skin

We listen

The moment passes
and our peace shatters

There is a return
to jarring
white noise
that overtakes us

We become background music
to blend in and we
go unnoticed
by the roaring crowds

We are synchronistic hums
who duck under light fixtures
as dissonance
drones on and on

We are waiting
within the hush
for the next break
in the rush





Reading ‘Equinox’ on the Radio

Hey everyone! I called in and read a poem on Native America Calling today. Check it out along with a whole hour full of amazing Native poets. I read my poem ‘Equinox‘ during the last 15 minutes. You can hear the show by clicking “The Latest“. Thanks so much!



Click here to listen to the show!



#NaPoWriMo – Day 9: “I Hear the Violins”




I Hear the Violins // by Jennifer Patino


Letter paper, unlined,
thoughts scattered onto the splotched page

There is mold in the air,
the humid dankness of the jungle season

Smoke hangs all around me,
dances, tries to spread cheer on the lump

of melancholia I’m wax sealing to
send to you       I’ll cry if I crumple up

another portion of my soul       I’m so tired
of being afraid of myself, dear moon

I’m a moth in this lamp light       I’m dying
in an unloving land       I hear in the distance

a movie score       I watch the floor
more than the screen but the violins

are my favorite part       I hear the crunch
of leaves wherever I go       I see I’ve let myself

destroy a fragile thing again       I put half
of my heart into the envelope       I

will use the last strong beat to mail
the truth away & be done with it





#NaPoWriMo – Day 8: “Mea Culpa”




Mea Culpa // by Jennifer Patino


I lack candor to explain
the warm ocean within me

whose waves bear your name
and whose tides pull me under

I will keep the pull of the
churning water in me to myself

I perform questionable rituals
and await the always apricot sky

that arrives before your storm,
my blurred vision capturing a

hasty confession written with a burred tongue;
Guilt makes me a brambly forest

I have scratches on my face
from scrubbing with frankincense,

finishing with myrrh;
They say only demons can vanish,

then who are you and where
have you gone to? For no whisper

of your moonlit presence can be
detected, the window holds stale breath

I beat thunder into my chest
out of grief, but I have lost nothing

You never existed, the low tide
washed you away; My skin is silt,

my soul is saved; Forgiveness
is baptismal, penitence is withstanding
the lightning crash





#NaPoWriMo – Day 7 : “Take A Ride”




Take a Ride // by Jennifer Patino


Your favorite songs are
about rain, but you hate

driving in it,      You complain
of added pain on these grey days

One speaker is out in your old car
so you sing loudly to make up

for it,     You never know where
you are when you head downtown

and I take a stab at directions
and back up harmony surround sound

Roundabouts make me sick
and I pray the squealing brakes

will hold,     Too quick stops,
hard rights,     I hold on,     You take

your hand off the wheel to
tap the air freshener hi hat

I feel my heartbeat in the loose wheel
beneath me,     When you can’t deal,

When it pours too heavily, you toss
the key to me,     I take over,

You groan and moan,     I drive too
slow,     This is how it always goes