Thursday, November 27, 2008


Better to leave
than to get caught up.
Better to duck head
into sand than stand
feeling foolish.
Better to dream
about spitting broken glass
than grind teeth into chips

Not roots but trunk
Not trunk but bark
Not bark but branches
Not branches but leaves
The sky blows away on
the next strong gust of wind.

Tamp down the matted
roots to sever the cords.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Across a Span of Days

She lets me notice
the back of her legs
when she walked
up the stairs.
I wanted to feel
her dark smooth
skin beneath my
fingertips. I dare not
cross that line.

Your language clicks
under your tongue
in the aftermath
of summer storms.

When did we break
contact and become
scavengers? Do you
know what it’s like
waiting for you across
the span of days?

You showed me strands
of your lonely soul
then hid away
in your blanket of grief.

I was her. She was me.
Back then in the past tense.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Seldom do I hear
the whisperings of
the earth beneath me.
Seldom do I trust
the music that
resonates beneath
my skin. I question
the song as it breaks
into a thousand tiny pieces.

Succulent language
tumbles out in neat
phrases. Seldom
do I need convincing
of its own self-importance.

Wires tangles and notions
tremble in the dense night.
Too quick to capture….
too easily forgotten…reticent
to sit and lean quietly
against the night.

Fondling the common themes
that sway in the dead of night
when quiet lays open
with her legs parted wide.
Cheeks bloom red
with shame….as the Catholic
guilt burns knuckles with rulers.

Gather moss in your arms
please…show me your gentle ways
Gather moss in your mouth
so you can quiet the incessant chatter.

Pour a shot for the ancestors…
they are dying of thirst.
Pour a shot for yourself…
your troubles are barely contained.
We hold on too tight to our demons.

Fuck sake, kill the beast
the way you kill the lights.
Don’t ask for forgiveness
lest you can accept it.
This is not a psychological
exorcism drowning
in holy water being prayed
over by a righteous priest.
Casting demons…
casting dispersions…
casting for compliments.

We have lost the ability
to understand each other’s
quiet ruminations.

Monday, November 24, 2008


In a sour country
she stares at
the dying sky
and wanders spiral
mountain paths
where she hungers
for a careless
word. A mild breeze
barely makes
her tremble,
barely leaves her
Time strips her
of her reason
and compresses her
into dense matter.

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Her words tumble
out like broken rocks
Heavy lies the tongue
when she forgets
the taste of affection.
She reclines against
the earth to cool
her flowering fury.
Otherwise everything
around her would burn.

Every stem, every green
budding flower would scorch.
She reverberates like aftershocks.
as she leaves behind
the woman she does not love
abandons her language
with its crushing
capacity in wild
red flames.
The land lies heavy
upon her chest.

Saturday, November 22, 2008


A cacophony
white noise
of voices.
Iron screeches.
Night presses
intimate contact
with strangers
language as
we are forced
upon each other
like captured pawns.

Open wide and take
a thick deep bite.
Sink teeth onto flesh
and taste a story.

All artwork and text © Copyright 2008 Liliana Almendarez unless indicated otherwise. All Rights Reserved. Any downloading, copying or use of images on this website is strictly prohibited without express written consent by Liliana Almendarez.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Lost Behind Cloud Cover

life slips away like silk cloth
between fingertips

light slips behind cloud cover
yet thin strands of light escapes
creating golden lines…

language causes damage
when open-mouth sounds
and staccato phrasing are loosely
spun together

she is a crystal of salt
in open water
drifting with the ebb and flow
careless with the simple life

she is a crystal of salt
in an open wound
burning through waves
careless with golden light strands

lost behind cloud cover
wavering with rains
drifting in open waters
burning away her bittersweet destiny

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

What I Know...

What I know of desire would fill a teaspoon.
Small doses, swallowed whole
Not enough to devour
Only enough to taste.

Sticky baked banana
from fingertips to lips
seducing you with sweets
licked up extra with a pink tip.

I’ve been told I am the type of woman
who would drown in a puddle of water.

Cold glasses of vodka martinis
chilled ‘til our teeth are set on edge
biting ice chips from the canister
on a sweltering July night.

What I know of her desire
scrapes language from my tongue
overcomes the flames in her bone marrow
creates dark expansive space between us
and does not leave orange-scented
tenderness behind

Instead…what’s left are mere shells
of dented armor…to be hammered.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


From the ocean floor
she watches the above
melting world
through rolling water
a quiet thunder
pulses through her body.

Holding her breath,
not drowning,
she lives
in a sweet surrender
drifts in stasis
an equilibrium
a watery embrace.

Forces align to hold her plain
releases the color pellet
her strongest awareness
breaks the surface
when lungs claw.

Salty eyes washes anew
clear perspective
a divine
in a lonely sacred hour.

Monday, November 10, 2008


Sliver of moon
in a dark winter sky
Fingers trace
the outlines of my bones
tears down the walls
my yesterdays
living wounds bleeds
whenever salt penetrates.

Inarticulate cries
when there is no mercy
with forgive me words
Quiet, quiet, quiet goes the song
in a tunnel
of strangled moans
from the ache
of I love you words
in my mouth
on the tip
of my tongue
I dare not
speak her name

The chalice
has been dry
for oh so long
not even a sip
to escape,
nor an answer
to unfold.

Have my bones
turned cold yet?
Has my skin
started to pale?

Having lived
in a common way
Forgotten on a shelf
in the back
of the closet
Yearnings so bottomless
it weakens.
In the presence
of she
who does not
carelessly end.
my walls

What made her think
I had it in me to try?
Her languid woman’s song
in the place where there is no mercy
Where nothing is every too late
and the sound
in the back of my throat
is quiet, quiet, quiet.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Words Flame Open

She watches us with the lens
of an outsider looking on.

She is unhappy

with the lazy sunlight

and the large bumblebee

hovering nearby.

She gives away her sex

with her eyes but not to me.

Instead she gives me

pretty green picture-setting

and holds her words away.

I listen to the sound of

toddlers crying

in the distant playground.

I am too old to whine

but it doesn’t stop

the “but why?”

that escapes my mouth.

I lie down on the blanket

in the middle of the field

and watch clouds skim by

realizing this ending

will be too difficult to bear

she runs too deep within my skin.

And the children cry

in the distance

because they don’t

want to share.

Her pale thin skin

turns red but she is calm

as she seeks shade alone.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


She abandons me tonight
feeling under-appreciated.

I’ll follow her until
she lets me ride her grace
Enslaves my imagination
Fractures me with a phrase
Covers me with dirty little secrets
Scrapes up the language
from my wandering heart and
presses them to the page.

She is the one who
prevents the walls
from tumbling in
Forbids me to walk
the streets alone
when she binds me
with metallic strings
as her wild lovesongs
burns rivers down my veins.

Friday, November 7, 2008

A Turn of Phrase

Winter leaves an ache
in the middle of the body
Radiates into a yellow-hazy night
bent limbs on bare trees

Want to race across the wide span
of a baseball field at full speed but
a gaggle of geese slumber on the path
sun will be up soon.

A hawk’s call arcs
through the ether
Sewer rats skim
the edges of shadows
Murky waters do not ripple
but gurgle
as a thin wind
glides across the surface.

This is what it means
to disappear
to sit on a ledge
and watch the dawn
pierce the skyline
Listen to the distant
traffic rumble
and waking echoes
of stirring lives.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Words Fail Me

I’ve lost my language
deep inside a pair of faded blue jeans
Hand delves deep, I come up with
a couple of dirty coins
and a slip of fortune cookie paper
“a thrilling time is coming
in your immediate future”.

If all things are created equal
why do I have a naked window?
A saffron-dyed bed sheet with
Indian motifs use to cover it.
It was supposed to be a happy color…
it’s not and I’m not.

Big gaping orbs
tease me out of my skin.
It’s been a long time
since I’ve danced naked and
eaten succulent juice
from cold prickly pears.

I get that I’m the one
who walked out.
I get that you’re the one
who’s considered the “hurt party”

But I’ve lost my words
inside your jacket,
the one you let me wear
that last time at the concert
The one with enough room
for my pack of cigarettes,
your eye drops,
stash of weed and
You told me you loved me
in a quick rush of words,
a crowded space,
bodies pressed too tightly
was the only thing holding me up.

There was no quick reply
No valley of twinkling lights
No orange-scented tenderness in return
And no reason why.

You’ve taken the bed sheet away
leaving behind a stark landscape
while the land spins
a little more slowly these days.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


capture from another angle
off-the-beaten path
click shutter exposure
an image reversal

aspire to be unfolded and read
word-for-word uncoiled
yesterday pressed onto the page
mulled over and disclosed

desire to be ensnared
in a web of tender whisper-lies
a balmy undercurrent
pulling down

enslave the imagination
fractured phrases
clings like a measure of music
playing over and over

devour a morsel
consumed whole
a smooth continuous

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Fever Pitch

My ardent devotion suffocates me.
Grasp with strained fingertips to
loosen it from around my neck.

It’s been too long since a deep wintry air
has filled my belly
to cool off the searing heat.

Dark expansive space
before my eyes
within this skin.

Too long since the rains
have come down to quench the fever.
The waters fold in.

The rains should wash away
this corrosive state
instead it scalds
leaving behind
tattered bits,
threads showing bare.

Caustic tongue holds my silence plain
Burgundy lips sealed tight
Quiet the intensity
Subdue the chaos

Monday, November 3, 2008


Desire cleaves to
sumptuous honey droplets

Clings like a measure of music
that plays over and over

Gathers smooth pebbles
place them in deep pockets

Collects slashes of color
from a textured painting

Press yesterday onto the page.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Not Coming Undone

Do not lean against her
a mere ball of unraveling string
she ties herself in knots
to keep from disappearing
as another strand unfurls.

Saturday, November 1, 2008


She swallows her words
in slow syllables

against the sharp consonants

incremental slices.

She swallows whole

her need to be heard

chases it down with fiery brew

singes her tongue

numbs the rage
refrains from grasping
the person she once was.

Where did she lose her sleep?

Sweat slides down

between her breasts

head of steam from the iron

leaves beads of condensation

on her upper lip

back hand swipe

wipes away the wetness.

Her mind

writes away the aftermath

of the day before

month before

years ago

Memories gather like moths in her mouth

and storms forward

the afterlife of sorrow

smoothed over

gathers no dust

weathers the electricity

travels down her body
After-thoughts churn

unsaid words,

unanswered replies

leaves deep grooves across her bones