Juliet Lauren

An Ode to All I Could Be

My friends and I 
cuddle and kiss alcohol bottles like they’re lovers because we’re the riders of the bright eyes.
Frustration from over understanding.
Salty tears for the oily oceans. 
I gaze at Starbucks clutched students living another daily day
and hear the grind of the machinery and mechanics of life. 
It’s a day today
bleeding the black grey familiarity of yesterday and tomorrow.
More sun and moon lit hours of milking our own genitalia, soul shards, and the vaulted sky.
It’s a day today
and I want to simultaneously marry and break up with my boyfriend for the 7th time this week.
And its true.
I talk of forever when I’m drunk and I often let love be the victim of my entertainment. 
And when I feel like mutual romance is gooey like a combination of Pepto Bismol and honey
I get flashes of brilliant clarity.
Visions of fantastical escapism.
I could join the circus. 
Glittering neon leotards, sparkle corsets, white feathers. 
I’d shed lime green sequins and apply powder blue eyeshadows in a cracked mirror.
My skin will smell of stale popcorn and burnt sweat.  
Crying children and roaring crowds will be amused at my agility or oddness. 
I’d spend all my time in hotel rooms with greasy urine colored lighting and musty floral bedding practicing backflips. 
On the road
outside a Motel 6
sharing whiskey and cigarettes with my fellow clowns. 
Or I could be a striving biology student in Indianapolis despite my disinterest in the field of science. 
Always coffee clenched, dazzling, determined.
I’d take showers with expensive soaps smelling of corporations until the scent of ambition fades from my skin. 
I’d get a boyfriend who’s one of the normal ones. 
Kiss him with open eyes until the disease of normality becomes contagious and I’m properly contaminated so art doesn’t make me melt and I’ll never have a reason to drink. 
Let my ruby and violet sparkle soul melt into the grotesque yellow of Mcdonalds and Walmart signs. 
We’ll name our kids with the help of the first Google search and I’ll clip at rose bushes and paint our picket fence white like a dutiful suburban housewife. 
Or I could bleach my hair and lose fifteen pounds.
Replace softness and curvature for sharpness and edge.
Melt my thigh’s fat with cigarette food and nose candy.
Carve out clean bones until I look as revoltingly hellion as I feel. 
Have people stare at the black blue begging under my eyes and hesitate towards my facial scabs that scream ‘I’m sorry,’ in the shadings of each dried flake of blood. 
Only go to the grocery store to walk past the gleaming ripeness of produce to buy black eyeliner and behind the counter paraphernalia.
Date someone who would sell their morals for a 7/11 hotdog.
Go to music shows in graffiti covered warehouses, sleep on floor mattresses and park benches, impulsively ink my skin, and get high on rooftops with pink haired drugged out deities in my underwear. 
Destroy myself like I’ve always wanted. 
Or I could just drop everything. 
Bank. Cash out. Pack. Car. Full tank. Drive. Road. 
Until I end up somewhere Midwestern and my vision is displeased with nothing but cornfields and void. 
Buy an apartment that’s only big enough for my ego and a few pairs of pants. 
Maybe get a roommate who splatters red wine on the rented white walls and leaves pubic hairs on the bar of soap. 
Read books, eat my fingernails, waitress.
Never finish school.
Kayak to biker bars. 
Vigorously self teach myself everything from quantum mechanics to T.S Eliot.
Always go to the library from the dusk of opening until the dawn of closing.
If I have a good study day go on a date with myself and order copious amounts of bitter coffee, a slice of cherry pie, and a hot fudge sundae. 
Wear too short denim, leather jackets, plaid and gingham dresses like a wild lost little girl until somebody decides to save me. 

Juliet Lauren is an eighteen-year-old part time college student, part time waitress, and emerging writer. Her poetry and manuscript have been awarded in the Scholastic Art and Writing awards. She was a finalist in the Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future contest and a finalist for the Lascaux Review, and she has received other miscellaneous publications in anthologies such as Creative Communications and Poetry Nation