Tuesday, October 30, 2018


you say
and i hear promises that never left your lips
i see futures so clear they feel like memories
iʻve lived a hundred times over
i taste your breath again
like you never left
i smell your skin on my fingertips
someday you say
and i feel, instead of think

you say
and i remember
all the somedays i collected that never arrived
all the visions that faded
all the beautiful women iʻve loved and lost fiercely
who left me behind
who i gave gave gave to
until i was left with only my shadow
and the whisper of my own voice
how i had to crawl back to the forgotten mountain of myself

you say
and i am displaced
and everything i know is suspended in past or future tenses
i am floating back and forth between expectation and my failure of reaching aspiration

you say
and i remember the first night i kissed you
how i tried to get
until i had no walls
no skin
until i was an ʻauwai
flooding you away from me

Someday you say
but this time not to me
because there are miles caught between our lips
and though i can love you from a distance
i far too near sighted to imagine you doing the same

So instead, i said someday too
and it poured for 30 days and nights until my home became swamp
and the water caught in all the cracks i made with somedays
and so i sat and sang and overflowed with our favorite songs
and said your name, over and over until the falling water knew your shape,
until you both were one and the same

so i said Someday too
and i whispered my aloha to the wind, asking her to bring you back to me
and sometimes she did
and sometimes she didnʻt
and both times, i was here
with the wind, and all the water
still moving anyway

and this is how i know
that someday the rain will fall
and the breeze with blow
and maybe you will be in my arms
or maybe
you wont

and someday
maybe my yard will flood
and these trees will shake and shatter
and it will not conjure the memory of you
here and it will just be me
and the rain
and the wind
together again

with or without you

Sunday, October 28, 2018

The One

There is the one who got away 
The one you pushed away 
The one who helps you find your way 

Only the luckiest get the third woman last 
The rest 
Go looking for eyes that commit 
On the faces of women whove run off before you can beg them to stay 

How did I 
Always waiting in my own wings 
Giving away curtain calls 
To whoever shares a shimmer 
How did I 
Of what used to be
Projecting futures 
In What could have been
Neither a story worthy 
Of me withering 
For women who will not return
Who should not have left
But did anyway 

When did I forget the part where the woman sets me free 
The part I walk on my own two feet 
When did I forget 
The shape of myself I held 
Before my skin
Knew her hands
Before my lungs
Knew her breath
Before I was worried 
She’d forget 

When did I 
Agree to be 
This shackled skeleton version of me
In the waiting 

When do I 
Speak in present-tense again

Friday, October 5, 2018

Mai Poina: Aloha

The haole say:
Aloha means goodbye, 
But you and I know better
Aloha is the way i say: 
i am always with you, even when you choose to leave
Aloha is the way i say: 
you used to live outside of me
And now, i feel you etched into my every breath
Aloha is the way i say: 
Iʻve pulled mountains out of the sea to bring forth the world you deserve
Because Aloha is the spell i whisper into ever gourd i can find, 
Hoping it calls the right wind to bring you back to me
Aloha is what brings you back to me

Aloha is what i say, 
because it is the only word audacious enough to try to hold you
And aloha reminds me
Thats there is no word for goodbye in our language
Our kupuna have no map for me to understand 
this kind of departure

So instead I say
I love you 
Even when you are walking away
I say, 
I am waiting for the day we are we again
I say
There is a dance between wahine like me and you
Its as natural as the tide’s insistence to rise 

Aloha reminds me: 
I want to speak to you the way our kupuna would
With language pulled out of this dirt, fished from our sea
I want you to know 
What i mean 
When i say: 
We are a moʻolelo i heard long ago but never had the courage to believe 
& today aloha is choosing bravery for me

E kuʻu wahine aloha. 
Eia au e kū nei me ke aloha pau ʻole 
Me he ʻaʻaliʻi kū makani mai la 
ʻaʻohe mea nāna e kūlaʻi 
E hoʻi mai, a moʻolelo nō kāua 
I mea e kono i ka ʻoiaʻiʻo mai kēia pō mai
Mai poina
ʻo ʻoe no kaʻu i upu ai
Mai poina 
ʻo ʻoe nō, he lei mau no kuʻu kino 
Mai poina
A hui pū hou nō kāua
Mai poina


Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Notes on missing you

I cannot remember the last morning i woke without your words
or voice
you, my love, are far too sacred to be called routine
instead you've become ritual
and loving you is now
my favorite part of morning

but today i wake and you are not here
and i wonder how long its really been 
I know it cant be long
i can still smell you on my skin
in my sheets 
your breath is still stuck under my tongue
you never really leave
just linger
close enough for me to feel your distance
your quiet
in all this silence 

i play music over the loud speaker until it makes my bed frame shake 
I am trying to remember what it feels like for this house to be alive 
i am trying to remember what it feels like for you to be by my side
without question or reservation
i am trying to remember 
and you are moving 
further and further away 
and every day there is more and more quiet for me to lay in
and i am forgetting your taste 
the vibration of your voice
so i turn off the speaker 
close my eyes
drift back to sleep
tell myself to try again