Gnashing Teeth Publishing

| words that get in your teeth

Much I Missed While It Was All Unfolding by James Diaz

Man in a black t shirt with an image on it with his arms oustretched in front of a chain link fence

The Orange rind
Of some days
Gathers down
The sway
In its arms: the beauty of missing
That never were

I’ve climbed that tree
Seen such days
Fall from me
If what is light
Is right in front of me
Then why this dark
These shrouded fawns
Blessed with caution
For the tiniest change
In sound
Could wreck them

If home is what a highway
Brings you to
Then why a road that goes on forever
No break in the turn
Of the long night
It feels like forever
It is forever

I’ve climbed that hill
Seen such things as purity
Deforming at the lightest touch
How could one not fail
To be all one had hoped to be
In a world that’s engine is stalling
And the thick night calling
To be felt all the way through

If what is
Is all there is
Then why, in these hills,
Is there so much light
Fisting through the gloom
I have lived in those rooms
With no door
On the floor
Open window, summer field
Highway with its hindered points of forever
We could live this way forever

But we are so hungry for change
And things change
I’ve climbed that tree
Seen such days as these.

And no one
stays the way it is forever.

I have bathed in that river.
Seen such pain
Just slide right off
The bone
Of my life.

You can feel it
All the way through
The walls
Trying to reach you.

Something there is that is trying
So hard to reach you.

Let it reach you.


James Diaz is the founding editor of the literary arts intentional community Anti-Heroin Chic, as well as the author of three full length poetry collections; This Someone I Call Stranger (Indolent Books, 2018) All Things Beautiful Are Bent (Alien Buddha, 2021) and Motel Prayers (Alien Buddha, 2022). Originally a southern native, they currently call upstate New York home.

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