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Best Poems Written by Stella Healy

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Paper Dolls

she is everything you have seen in the movies
crayola hair
velvet dress
sugar in her veins
tears glued to her face
she fingerpaints the kitchen walls like a little girl and tapes their polaroids to every surface

he is every music video you've memorized
always humming something sweet
he lights all her cigarettes
writes her into little love songs that she never listens to
wakes up and watches the sun singe the grass

she is always dancing
swallows bubblegum for breakfast
flashes pearly whites with a sharp glare
they are always going somewhere 
always the first to get drunk and the last to get home

she lets him to all the driving 
pushes him to speed up
to run the reds
to trust himself
to risk it all

he finishes her sentences and she finishes his cigarettes
dying is only glamorous when it belongs to her
he says she is so bright
he is scared he will burn her out
she giggles and giggles and giggles and cries
she throws away the self help books, the anti-depressants, the love letters from all the boys before

they sit across from each other on his neon leather couch
stare at each other for hours
no words
just silly faces
they giggle and giggle and giggle until it hurts

and when they scream
the ceiling bleeds
he punches holes in the walls
she shatters all the picture frames 
all the furniture left limp and battered
echoes bouncing back and forth between cracked walls
paper dolls losing balance
paper house burnt down

before he knows it
he is finding glitter underneath his fingernails
behind his knee's
caught in his teeth
she wakes up with lyrics scribbled on the bottoms of her feet
the windows are always open
her hair always twirling in the wind
pretty little pills paint all of the counter tops
empty bottles sitting like molding vases

and before they know it the manic pixie dream girl and the manic pixie dream boy are intertwined all desperate and dreamlike 
they've switched bones and playlists and fur coats
they crash into the room like supernova's
the carpet dyes itself red underneath their feet and everyone stares
she drowns in his drunken paradise
chokes down his charisma
coughs up stardust
and suddenly

she's bored

ties a knot around her neck with the tape from his cassettes
she wants the one she can't have and it's driven her mad
its all over
all over 
all over
and she's gone
a heart-wrenching holograph that will never dance again
every girl he meets will resemble her less and less

and he's alone
paper boy
paper home
up in flames
glitter and smoke

Copyright © Stella Healy | Year Posted 2018



Details | Stella Healy Poem

Four Stages of Fire

1. INCIPIENT
the smell of burning body helps me sleep at night
i'd rather ignite this spark in my stomach than shove bread down my throat
singe this hollow home
choke these lungs with bone dry soil so nothing can grow
and maybe they brainwashed me
or i did it to myself
but all of my dreams lead to being skin and bones
the humming of crackling wood whispers 
"starve"
i listen
the humming of crackling body whispers 
"this is all your fault"

2. GROWTH
this skin is getting too hot to live in
i, the embodiment of a fire breathing dragon
i hunch over
choke on second hand smoke
and misconceptions
there are so many ways to feed into desperate
too many ways to swallow yourself whole
i let this esophagus sizzle and cry
i lie arms spread naked on the bathroom floor catching my breath
a slab of meat thrown onto a cackling grill
fatty and full of blood
sized up and bitten into
violated by my own opinions of beautiful
where bitter
where acidic
where a dysmorphic enemy does not linger
nibbling at my tonsils


3. FULLY DEVELOPED
i am engulfed in flames
these charred hands stain my body with words like 
"bony"
like "thin"
like "sick"
this flesh can't escape the freezing creeping up on my being
the trembling of limbs
the chattering of teeth 
is a physical trophy
"congratulations!" you are one flicker away from broken
winter almost melts me
christmas and thanksgiving
piles of food fresh like flesh mocking me
rotting in front of me
a mirror image of my organs and intestines
abandoned and squeezed
some sort of puzzle 
pieces twisting and breaking
i sit quietly
they ask "aren't you hungry?"
i don't tell them that it is too late for this fire to be put out
or how often i dream of drowning

4. DECAY
a guilty arsonist
i toss my lights and my matches
sweep up the ashes
what is left of my home
and i start building
i blow out the candles
shove my hands into the wreckage and chew it up
i won't spit it out this time
i fill myself up
i introduce myself to my reflection
say,
"hello. i am healthy"
say,
"i've missed you"
a phoenix flies over a body she burned
a city she burned
a world that she burned
says 
"go. go find out what happiness tastes like"

Copyright © Stella Healy | Year Posted 2018

Details | Stella Healy Poem

They're All For You

those two months that i pretended you were dead
i was too

now we sit 
like our bodies do not need to play each others

you are just the kind of boy that breathes beautiful
like it's easy
you shove your fingers down my throat to stop my screaming
and i had never wanted to crumble into someone's bones like i wanted to yours

i learned what breathing was in your bed
i learned what living was on sunday mornings
giggling at you dancing around your kitchen
in your big fur coat
talking to yourself
whispering secrets

no one else has ever been you
no one else will ever be you

i hope you remember me as the worst driver you ever met
the naked body running into saltwater at 2 am
the girl who chases cop cars and ambulances with you until morning
the girl who always wants to dance 

not the girl crying next to your christmas tree
not the girl who threw up in your bed
not the girl seizing in your shower
not the girl you sometimes touched
sometimes kissed

that feels dirty now
that feels guilty now

you were the only boy i ever met who made me forget death was an option 

the only boy in the world that made me feel like staying home was exciting 
like maybe white picket fences have a charm about them
like the way a paintbrush feels crawling on your skin
like the way a baby giggling reminds you that being alive is kind of cool
like you were an addict and i never held it against you
like you could relapse any time and i would not run
like you could hold a needle to my vein and i would say "do it" 

you drove under the tunnel and i held my breath

you laughed at me like i was a little girl and i felt like an idiot

but on the way back
you held your breath too
wished for something 

every morning i read my horoscope
and then yours

you can play all the sad songs
and pretend you are not thinking of her
i will believe you
i know you do not love her
you say you don't love her
but you are so used to saving the beautiful and broken

i think i would die if i did not sit in your grey chair every sunday
i think i would die if i did not love you
my skin would take a walk
get lost somewhere downtown
never find her way back
my bones would wander off to some foreign state
get stuck in a bottle
find a hand to fit in
and maybe i could be content
but i don't want to belong to anyone else
and it's all your fault

i hope you remember me as the girl turning into saltwater
i hope it stings your eyes

you'll never write a song for me
everything i say is for you
everything i write is for you

Copyright © Stella Healy | Year Posted 2018

Details | Stella Healy Poem

i hate you i miss you

it took me six months to understand that the songs you sing me late at night
are not unsent love notes.
not unconfessed lust. 

just cliche and plagiarized

just songs that you like
that you want me to like too
because that's a friendly thing to do.

it took me three years to convince myself
not to carve your name across my chest
give myself as an offer

sacrificial sweetheart

spread on the table
warm and melting
crisp and cut open

it took me three years to discover you,
smirking like the devil,
the boy behind the camera,
the boy behind the arsony.

it took me three years to discover that you,
pinning me up like a world map on your eggshell walls,
did not mean that you loved me.
it just meant humiliation, rebirth of mortification,
it just spoke of your need to dangle me kindly,
and you know i will always hold on too tightly when i'm scared. 

it took me three years to understand that you might never kiss me again,
that when you touch me it's not catnip, just collateral damage,
and i know how much you love to watch the girl burn.

you may just be a nomad pacing,
and i,
just something to keep your feet arched,
just someone to touch when you've forgotten how quickly skin can char,
just someone who will always chew the scraps she is given. 

it took me three years to understand that you are the wreckage,
seeing mirrors in the faces of everyone you didn't try hard enough to love.

you are the wreckage,
you are coming undone
i am the love letters,
you are just the paper cuts.

i am three years worth of scar tissue and trust issues and all the birthday cards you waited too long to send.

it took me 13 days to discover that maybe you are just as empty.
maybe we are both too empty,
to fill each other up. 

Copyright © Stella Healy | Year Posted 2018

Details | Stella Healy Poem

Honeybee

i love the early morning rasp of his voice
the birthmarks and burn scars
midsummer skin
i love the sticky rash of lust
the way a heart ticks until it implodes
the sugar soaked kisses

i do not love the way he smacks my face
the way he pushes too hard
the ways he does not love me kindly

i do not love my swollen cheeks
my bruised hips
my blood
i do not love my blood

i love the touch of innocence in the morning
before i have upset him
when we bask in apologies and ignorance of all our yesterday's
when the whispers are not wasps nests and he grins like greek god
when everything is beautiful except i say stop and he doesn't listen.
everything is beautiful except blood vessels clawing at the surface.
everything is beautiful except trying to scream when you've forgotten how to breathe

"please don't" puts him at ease
"don't touch me" doesn't mean anything
"i love you" tosses the dice

i lick arsenic off collarbone
slice the tongue, gargle blood
say goodnight like it's the last
could be the last

he cracks my bones between boulders 
between fists
there is no difference
between matchboxes and kisses
seduction and resistance
him and his father

i feel like the guy that plays the flute
calls the snakes.
he slithers around my body 
like intimidation
like he's sizing up the prey
like all those secrets in the wasps nest have been beaten out
swarming
buzzing around my head
like he makes me call him "honey" because he knows i'm drowning in it

and the one stinger i have would change nothing
who strikes first dies first
and i'm feeling courageous 
feeling like a death wish

he paints me in blacks and blues.
violent hues.
the canvas colored in control is quite the masterpiece
and she's tired of being sculpted
tired of being the victim at his hands
cold and cracked.

i do not love the aching of nostalgia
the dry empty palms
the fear of hearing his footsteps in the middle of the night

but i love the fresh faced stranger in the mirror
the skin that does not rip itself off
the comfort in silence
in safety

i love sunsets that look like honey and breathing in
knowing i'm not drowning anymore
saying "you will never be a real man"
and knowing
knowing
i have stung him

Copyright © Stella Healy | Year Posted 2018



Details | Stella Healy Poem

Ode to Peach Amsterdam Vodka

you are the sick
the disgust in the swallow
the cringe in the choking

we are the same in our affections
cheap and quick
taste and spit
we are the same in our forgiveness
heavy and grieving
a bathroom floor bereavement 
a curved spine casualty
empty

unflattering and unforgetting in all your doing
i lie heavy 
a fish bowl of a stomach
a stomach of a body
solemnly swaying

you were the stranger at the first funeral
the child poking my body thinking i'll open my eyes
not knowing the ghosts would come for you too
or how the bitterness would travel
or how quickly you must stumble to stay safe

you held my hand
dragged me to the cold tile
dropped me to see if i would bounce or break
bent me over the sink
and drenched me unholy

you were the sheets suffocating me that night
the pillows i've chewed through
you were the fault of it all
the downhill spiral
and the homesick
and the earthquakes
and the heartbreaks
the crying and the spilled milk

you are the hunter
rifle in hand
coward in eyes
you were the wind chasing that bullet

you were the stranger at every funeral to come
picking and prying and smacking and slicing
and sometimes i worried you would not show up
would not tower over my body 
watch me gagged and restrained

but you always came

thought that being dizzy made me prettier
you never missed a party
if you knew i'd wake up bruised

Copyright © Stella Healy | Year Posted 2018

Details | Stella Healy Poem

tiny

i will never touch a christmas tree again.

the bristles, serrated. the bristles, poisoned. the bristles, double edged.
the ornaments shatter between my fingers.
i clean up puddles of blood and say i'm sorry.
at least it matches the color scheme. 

your christmas tree, covered in candy canes and mini skeletons and cigarette smoke and shiny things and OCD and now, my blood. 

you said it looked like it was dying.
i said it looked like me.
twisting under the pressure.

i can never play the guitar again.
the strings, screech. the strings, breathe. 
you sing the songs your ex girlfriend wrote and i am so guilty.
i am shrinking.
i am taking something that is not mine.

and your tree is wilting and you sing so beautifully.
i am shaking.
mocked by the ghosts in your home and the bones that you hang on your tiny little christmas tree. 
i dropped cigarette ash into the cushions of your favorite chair.
i did not tell you.
as you sang me your blues, i buried my bones there too.
do not dig for me. 
do not sing for me.

and suddenly i am crying for your ugly little christmas tree.  
this room is caving in on her.
this room is caving in on me.
i'm only bones and smoke and blood and the humming underneath it all.

this is the third year in a row we do not speak during december. this is the third year in a row i'll buy you christmas presents and keep them. this is the third year in a row i feel so small. so silly. so ugly. so tiny.


Copyright © Stella Healy | Year Posted 2018