August 19, 2015 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

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James Diaz



The life you never lead



Before you ask
is the small of paper wearing thin,
am I writing what I know
or is what I know writing me?
Tear this space into two
be mute as if nothing
lyrical were embedded.


I was waste
but your lightning was a type
of water in my speech
I held on to the beginning
the clutter and the hope finger
bending into knotted stuff


splintered from within


your odd way of reading
near someone else’s light


I won’t always be so vulnerable
the making of memory
is both impacted and compacted
electricity in the child
composing an alias for lion,
sweaty star and a pinpoint
where plot and surface shine through







As we were at some point



Those lives that weren’t lived

where the distance took

hold of some

part of our memory (morning only)

then the elsewhere

no place in or near the body

(water weight) of ungracious

given gift

to be found.


A life chapter, to dance well,

to have the brightest, most complex features,

smile when people mention war

and parties when young

how bold, the whole invisible unaligned beauty

of then and now.


And downstairs

where the music and light is soft,

you’ll find your feet feeling strange,

unattractive, not yours

the body, god-awful- who is it? (whom)

calls us out of our empty place to be grateful for the unseen

sudden world?






James Diaz

James Diaz lives in Upstate New York. His poems and stories have appeared in Ditch, Pismire, Cheap Pop Lit, Collective Exile and Epigraph. You can follow him on Twitter @diaz_james.


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