"At some point in my life,
I realized every poem I write is a step-by-step guide
on how to prepare for the end of times.
Sometimes the poems are hopeful,
sometimes the poems are dark,
but the thing they have in common
is that they end, like all of us one day will.
Now I title my poems by numbers,
so this poem is called Death Note 72."
"If you are wondering how I am,
I am fine.
If you are wondering what I am doing,
I am missing you
in the aisles of the supermarket
where we decide which tea
is best and which salad
is best and
look it’s this one right here
because this salad
has rice in it
and we both will enjoy
eating that."
Sarah Jean Alexander (via Hobart)

BURPED, by Sarah Jean Alexander, from ILLUMINATI GIRL GANG VOL. 3

Eructè, by Sarah Jean Alexander.


Traducciòn: Caterina Scicchitano.

sentí una gran tristeza hoy luego de mirar
Eterno Resplandor De Una Mente Sin Recuerdos
por primera vez en mucho tiempo.

no podía parar de pensar cosas como
”eso es muy yo” y ”ojala te hubieras quedado” estaba segura de que soy exactamente igual que todo el resto del mundo.

las proporciones de Kristen Dusnt de cabeza a cuerpo y a tetas 

me confunden una bocha.

en realidad no soy esclava de nada
excepto a los pelitos del cuerpo, creo.
como que toman sus propias decisiones.

te acordas de ese día que nuestras caras estaban muy cerca
y vos nose que empezaste a decir
y accidentalmente eructaste en mi boca

hoy me mire al espejo y pensé
”no creo que realmente vuelva a ser feliz,
mmh, eso es algo hermoso, no es cierto?.”

”no, no lo es, y no lo olvides,
que vos tampoco lo sos



why isn’t every picture that exists of you with someone else
a picture of you with me instead

all of these people are so many people
and none of these people are me


i am sitting in a corner eleven stories high and
i am a very long time away from you


you are drinking my blood in a non-literal way
we laugh but make extremely worried faces
i am being myopic because there is only
one screen in front of me and one screen in front of you
and we are practically touching in here
(feeling real is hard work / moving is even harder)


spring forward, fall back down
i’m trying not to wonder where you are

are you listening to this too


it seems irrational that it is 2014
and i cannot just be in love with another person
who wants to be near me in the same ways
an advance in date doesn’t negate a regard for others
ok i understand but i will try to get what i want anyway
can everyone help

like hello welcome to this place
let’s both just stay

a long time ago someone told me that
it’s not cute to be persistent
(i know you don’t belong to me)
but i am so good at it
i think you will agree


after three hours in karpeles i took a two hour walk
i made myself alone because there are too many books in the world already
and you are too good
you squeezed a sigh out of me when i returned and i felt found


last night i dreamt someone offered me one thousand dollars to close my eyes and sit in a chair for sixty seconds and instead i moved onto the floor, kneeled and retched loudly in front of him. i stared at my hands pressed flat against the floor and lifted them up one by one. i slowly crawled out of the room.



“Sarah Jean Alexander reads some of her poems”

my friend adam recorded me reading at metro gallery this past weekend. i read 1, 6, 7, 14, 15 and 20 from my napowrimo poems.


my general outlook on life is a lot more worrisome now

that i have realized i’ve perfected how to maintain a balance

of not caring at all about how others perceive me

and caring so much that it is all but crippling

when you told me you haven’t stopped thinking about me

since we ran into each other in the doorway of the kitchen

i told you i was smiling through the phone and i was telling the truth

when i told you i predicted we could be very comfortable together

for a very long time i was still telling the truth

everything inside my mouth seems very intentional now

humans don’t deserve to feel happy or safe

but i am open to trying at it for you

the older i get, the less real the world seems

we all cycle through the same four personal emotions

for our entire lives because we refuse to admit

that sometimes we make the wrong decisions


it’s here

This doesn’t have an ending because I got too sad, but I guess the ending is that I am still alive.


A month and a half ago, near midnight on June 21st, I was almost off work. I had closed out my last tab and was waiting for my boss to give me the OK and sign off on my paperwork. Lucy, Gabby and Peter were at my apartment, hanging out and drinking beer, and I wanted to go home and join them. My boss said, “You’re set to go, but really quick, can you get some ones for me?” and handed me 6 twenty dollar bills. “Sure,” I replied, and turned right out of the front door of the bar, walking to Cat’s Eye Pub and exchanging 2 twenties for 40 ones. Next I went to Waterfront and got 40 more ones. I turned around and headed back towards my bar, passing it and crossing the street and into John Steven’s to find change for the remaining 2 twenties. I’ve known the bartender there, Tony, for a few years through other bartending friends in the city. I asked if he had change and he said, “Sorry, Sweetie, we’re all out,” and I said, “It’s fine!” and patted his back as I walked out the side door to head back to my bar. A month later, Tony would later tell me he watched me through the window to make sure I got back safely. Walking around at midnight with a pocketful of cash is never a safe or sure thing.

I stopped in between two parallel parked cars and watched a car approaching slowly from the right. The moving car came to a stop and waved me on to cross the street. I nodded my head at him and stepped out onto the street.

I was floating. I was frozen in the air, floating in the dark. I was just a pair of eyeballs staring at a black road and a dirty curb in Fells Point. I said “Oh my God,” and realized I was also a voice. Just two eyeballs and a voice and “Oh my God,” and then the weight of my body against the asphalt realized and I could feel. I could feel everything. I don’t know who was there first but suddenly a bunch of hands turned me onto my back and I looked up at faces looking back down on me. I don’t remember the expressions. I saw my boss, she frantically repeated “Sarah, Sarah.” I saw Tony and held onto his arm. A girl said, “Sarah, I don’t know if you remember me, I’m Annie’s older sister,” and I replied “Oh my God.” Some time passed and it all felt very fast. The pastry chef from my work said, “I have your phone, Sarah, who do I need to call, I already called your parents. I said “Call John, call John, call John,” and she came back and said “John’s phone is off, who do you want me to call,” and I said, “Call Willie, he is with John, Oh my God.”

A man said, “Sarah, move your arms above your head, can you do that?” and the entire crowd of people surrounding me screamed NO at him. People were talking to each other. I was holding someone’s hand. Someone told me a motorcycle hit me. I never saw the motorcycle, or the someone. I lied on my back and opened and closed my eyes a lot. My face felt very wet. The back of my head felt very wet. I heard an ambulance grow louder and louder until it was so close I thought it would run right over me.

I stared at the black sky and thought, Can I refuse to get into the ambulance, I don’t have health insurance, I wonder if any of these people will drive me to my parents’ house. Some new faces appeared and blocked my vision of the sky, and they said some words and I don’t know if I responded properly but I just wanted to say, “Let me be very clear here, guys, I don’t have health insurance, how much is this gonna run me, I didn’t even get paid yet tonight,” but I didn’t say any of that and soon they were turning me over onto my side and slipping a stretcher underneath me. A pain on the lower right side of my abdomen shot through me, my entire spine felt like it had fallen apart, and the back of my head felt wetter. My hair is very dark, could they see that it was wet back there? What if they don’t check? Something is going on in the back of my head, it’s not supposed to feel like that.

The EMTs lifted my stretcher and for a split second I could see the crowd of people that had formed around me—my boss, Tony, Annie’s sister, and a bunch of drunk regulars, all with faces that made me frightened. I saw $80 in ones scattered around me in the street. I thought, Was this some sort of fucked up robbery?

Inside the ambulance was bright and quiet, fluorescent and sterile. I don’t remember how many people were back there, moving around me quickly in small movements. I noticed I couldn’t see anything properly. I thought of my wet head and face and thought Oh God, head trauma, am I going blind, and then realized my left contact had been knocked out of my eye. I looked at the EMTs and was about to tell them, “Hey, one of my contacts has been knocked out. Should I take the other one out? I think if you only wear one contact for too long, it can really mess up your eyesight and to be honest, I think if my eyesight gets any worse I will be legally blind.” The EMTs looked busy though. I saw them laughing and joking around with each other while hooking things up to me. What the fuck? Was this some kind of ‘calming technique’ they often employed to make the injured person feel more at ease? If they were laughing, I was probably fine, right? They could let me out right here, and we could all laugh about the night, wave off the ambulance and the bill and just agree this was all a big misunderstanding. Let me out, right here’s fine, guys. I’ll walk it off.

I felt a man start cutting through my black corduroy shorts. He started at the bottom and worked upwards, towards my face. He didn’t stop until he was at my neck, seamlessly cutting through my entire outfit, and he spread open my clothing like a frog he was dissecting. My mother had bought me underwear for my birthday the month before. The underwear were two sizes too big, or something, I don’t know if it was a joke or she thought that was my size, I have no idea, but we all laughed about it. I had worn a pair for the first time that night. Oh my God I am wearing gigantic underwear, I thought with a neutral facial expression as I stared at the ceiling of the ambulance. Nobody made fun of me, which I thought was nice.

The ambulance started moving, and no one rode in the back with me. I guess they all crammed into the front seat. I lied in the back, tubes coming out of my arms, something wrapped around my chest, the lights very bright and my face and head still feeling very wet. I couldn’t look anywhere but straight forward, straight up towards the white ceiling. The siren made everything seem very far away. The back of an ambulance is the loudest and quietest place I’ve ever experienced. It was very lonely.

Once we got to the hospital, I was wheeled out and through hallways, everything still very fluorescent and sterile. I looked into the faces of people looking down on me as we wheeled past them, not caring what I looked like because I knew I didn’t look like me. I knew my face was covered in blood and dirt and nobody would ever know who I was. I was just another body.

In the emergency room, everyone was a lot more frantic and concerned-seeming, which made me feel much safer. Fuck those EMTs and their diligent, quick efforts, their calm, smiling faces. Fuck their assuredness. I’m not okay. Someone fix me. The nurses and doctors poked me in different areas and asked me what hurt and what didn’t and finally I said, “The back of my head, I think the back of my head is bleeding.” At least ten hands lifted me over to my side in order to keep my spine straight. I helped hold myself up by holding onto the hand of a female nurse who had crouched down next to the bed. My face was only a few inches from her face, and even though I knew my face didn’t look mine, she looked at me as if she knew who I was. I felt cold water on the back of my head and someone said, “We’re going to give you some shots, it won’t hurt too much,” and I felt needles pricking my scalp. The nurse in front of me squeezed my hand and said they were going to staple my head, but I won’t be able to feel it because of the shots they just gave me. I nodded and then heard the staples. I felt them against my head, pushing forward and into my skull, but I couldn’t feel the actual staples. And finally, for the first time that night, I started crying. The tears ran sideways down my face and into my hair and I said, “I’m really scared.” The nurse looked back at me and her face was so sad, and it made me feel better because I knew our faces matched.


I felt immense sadness tonight after watching

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

for the first time in a long time

I kept thinking things like

“that’s so me” and “I wish you had stayed” and felt confident

that I am exactly the same as everyone else in the world

Kirsten Dunst’s head to body to boob ratio

confuses the hell out of me

Everyone is just a little bit luckier than I am

I’m not a slave to anything really

Except my body hair, I guess

It sort of makes its own decisions

Remember that time our faces were really close

and you started to say something

and accidentally burped into my mouth

I looked in the mirror tonight and thought

“I don’t think I’ll ever really be happy again.

Huh, that’s sort of beautiful, isn’t it.

“No, it’s not, and don’t forget,

neither are you,

ha ha ha ha ha”
Sarah Jean Alexander


I am only halfway through this novel, but my here is my favorite line so far, Tao’s description of a heart on pg. 40.

When he heard laughter, before he could think or feel anything, his heart would already be beating like he’d sprinted twenty yards. As the beating slowly normalized he’d think of how his heart, unlike him, was safely contained, away from the world, behind bone and inside skin, held by muscles and arteries in its place, carefully off-center, as if to artfully assert itself as source and creator, having grown the chest to hide in and to muffle and absorb—and, later, after innovating the brain and face and limbs, to convert into productive behavior—its uncontrollable, indefensible, unexplainable, embarrassing squeezing of itself.