Cryptic Notice


Black and White Castle Drawing of Face

that you’re here

in this dark dark
lightness of being
arms swinging
nearly rotating
the event in our minds

a terrible device that laughs at its own misery
and the black seeds that fall on their heads

from the one who walked away
in swift rythms
and never looked back where
the lights flickered

in this stark stark beingness
of light that you are,

i notice you

One after one

Do you know it’s never just you walking when you’re having that occasional solitary walk? There are those thoughts in your head, walking around empty around the curbs. But all the straight lines follow you, and you’re not alone. You’re just never the only one moving around, side to side, shuffling your pockets and the songs in your ears. Sometimes there’s no music, just her voice shuffling, balancing a tripod in your mind, taking a photo of you. And you never wanted it in the first place, you say, you never wanted any of this.

You never asked for the confusion, the irrationality, and the mess, that God awful mess. And you can’t believe yourself, how you got yourself into this, and why it’s tasting rather sweet to you in that awful, sweet way. The way it feels when you wake up to a siren at midnight. It’s startling, that whistle that screams in your ear in the darkness, but it kissed you awake from a nightmare, so how can you complain about that?

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Unpainting You
It’s not that I don’t care about you, dear
it’s more than just a little lust for me.
It is sin I paint, sin upon dirt sin;

pastel blue and white layered on you bare.
I paste it on the tan pores like madness
just to see them sizzle under the sun
with your voice evaporating like wine.

It haunts me, sweetheart, you’re a devil’s wish.

I taste your words like sin upon dirt sin
with ears that, for fun, sing along your tune–
just to see black shorts and pastel run high

all while ignoring my need to paint me
something else, golden fierce, beyond sight and
perhaps even beyond all my senses.

Though, not that I don’t care about you, dear,
I need to paint something other than you.


Not used to writing this fast and in a different form, but this is my second, hopefully more appropriate, attempt FOR MEETING THE BAR ~ RHYTHM & BLANK VERSE. PROMPTED BY DVERSEPOETS.

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Life Embraces

a falling petal by Luis Martinez
Yesterday I saw that photo of a man again
as he threw himself from that burning
silver tower.

I don’t blame him,
he wanted to go fast and not have to burn.

It can’t be called quitting when
he went to work a man, and walked
out of work a diver.

Our kitten never died a cat,
it just stepped on air
six floors happy
to be caught by angel wings,
and it was born and gone a kitten.

So when you turn away so fast,
it startles me.
I’d think you must’ve heard death calling
and wanted to answer her.

In the same way it tickles my scars when
my heart leaps for you sometimes,
the scabs just fritter in their place.

I’m not sure if I’m burning or falling.
To be honest, sometimes I think
they’re the same thing when with you

I burn as I wait for your return,
at times the smoke inflames my lungs,
but I wait in that white haze

and in the way a suffocating person would,
if they told me you were a pink cloud
floating in the cool air outside my window,
I think, like that man,
I’d dive right into earth trying to catch you.


For Meeting the bar ~ Rhythm & Blank Verse , PROMPTED BY DVERSEPOETS.

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Raisins on the Tongue

 - Lila's Twist -

one smoke-drenched heart
but burns for you
like the last shivering-blood drop
on a desert-skillet

the Haleakala-woman
a dormant-lover
ignited by you

And let me tell you,

I panged and panged
(it made news)
and pushed, I just
pushed you in that
well of ice

deeper and deeper
inside me
where all the barriers
split into cubes
glacially-melting in your mouth

I didn’t see the meaning
for a dragon-mouth
to sink teeth in newspaper
and have black-stained
finger tips on the table

with a cigarette,
at least now,
there’s a heart that
burns for you a heart

itself burning within

a heart of a pearl-woman
in your breakfast with
a cigarette butt


For Kennings –the metaphor of Skalds, Prompted by  DVERSEPOETS.

With Your Blind Hand

With Your Blind Hand - By Lila

touching me
gliding fingers over arms

hesitant, delicate
buds of skin

elbows shaking in the wind

feeling my nose stiff as glass on my face
it tells you how cold it is

but i really can’t see what’s happening
with you
it’s like the wind

you can feel it
travelling along your arteries

and my nostrils magnetize it all
like a drain

i inhale cold as death
exhale hot as birth


Writing a poem without utilizing the sense of sight in poetic “imagery,” for MeetingTheBar: The Blind Poet ON  DVERSEPOETS.

I got my poetic license at fifteen

Lila's Twist - Red Light - Lila - I got my poetic license at fifteen

I thought I wanted love like the abandoned. Then, one night, I realized I wanted to be heard. Somehow in the silence and in the dark, it dawned on me that I needed to listen more than be “heard.” Like a shadow that follows the light learns that day and night conceal each other, I learned I was the shadow concealing myself from something.

There’s so much you can tolerate growing up (just living really) before you either choose to continue on being deaf, or accept that you need to “listen,” whatever that would mean. So I tried in the dark to write. To “listen” to that unknown mountain that knew me, to introduce my darkness to the light. And when I listened to the silence, I “listened” long until the silence shattered in whistles. As I wrote everything seemed loud. Everything came undone.

Then I finished it, whatever it was. I wasn’t sure if it was a poem or nonsense, but I saw it, I knew it, and it knew me. Then I laughed. Then I cried slow, dimly-lit tears. Then my heart spun like an owl’s head. Then I wanted love like the abandoned.


On the significant moment of change that occurred for me with poetry. SHARED on  DVERSEPOETS for “Poetics: Poetically Evolving.”

I Sleep in Green

“Sometimes the soul takes pictures of things it has wished for, but never seen.”
— Anne Sexton

I sleep in green
enveloping, unraveling
sweet, sweet green
along where the sun rests

flower lilies
and breath
soaking in pleasures
woven between limbs
and arches
of approval
under my skin

it hides
and breathes
in and out
they say,
love is
an internal one
between, beyond, being


crawl in,
get in
sleep with me

a trillion stars

we’ll beckon the lights
and heal our scars
if you surrender
to this

a rose
you like to give
for the bloom

the manic future
that tumbles

and I spell,
like a child,
the word
for us


that you promise
to keep

after you sleep with me
but you never did,
you never did.


Shared as the short and maybe-not-so-sweet love poetry for this week’s post-Valentine poetry challenge at DVERSEPOETS.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Selfie {and The Veils of Identity, Part I}

“I see you through the veil”

You can’t talk about selfies without talking about the self. And being curious about some things, I can’t really talk about the self without bringing up subjects like the technoself, society, and the social web. So here I am, sharing a selfie taken in my bathroom, of course, with my clunky camera veiling half of my face. Can you see me enough, anonymous surfers? Am I hiding enough for you? Should I have zoomed in a little more, or zoomed out? Am I fitting in? Am I following the rules? Do I fit in? Do I fit in? Do I fit in?…

Lila - Photo Challenge - Selfie -litwist - jslila 8 a

I’ve been inspired to share this self-portrait of myself for this week’s Photo Challenge, “Selfie,” in light of some recent debate in parts of the world on the ban of full face veils. Selfies and veils seem disconnected from each other at first glance, don’t they? One closer to exhibitionist, the other leaning towards complete anonymity. Just to let you know, this post isn’t about Islam. It isn’t about women. It isn’t even about religion. It’s all about the Selfie.

Both the veil and the selfie inspire debate–some more passionate about them than others, and after thinking about these topics this week, it seemed to me the core of all these debates about online expression and public privacy is a fear of the unknown. The debates are all symptoms of what I think the real issue is: our problem with defining identity in a modern society.

Selfies, which seemingly are the opposite of veiling, have become the trend in the way of self-expression through online media. Selfies seem to be a way to mask our own insecurities, perhaps, about not being good enough. A techno-veil of sorts that helps us interact with others at a safe distance, where the threat of vulnerability isn’t as intense as it is in the face to face world. Sharing photos of retouched pores, partying, cinched waists, or sexy shots where the messy background of our unmade beds are hiding in the camera’s blind spots. It makes us feel in control of our realities, and maybe even allows us to hallucinate more vividly our own fame by seeing our own photos on major websites. It makes us feel more important, for a minute or two.

Yes these photos can be vain, yes they can be creepy, yes they can be obnoxious, and yes, they can also be inspiring, heart-warming, and even annoying. Who wants to see the same picture of you in three different shades, for instance (like I’ve done in this post)?

Many people have become obsessed with taking selfies and have been criticized for buying a few “Likes” for the price of living in the moment. Even the president of the United States couldn’t resist snapping a selfie at Mandela’s memorial service[Link]

Say Cheese, Mr. President

Is this a symptom of a shared identity crisis? Can we not accept who we are unless others acknowledge us? Is it even about acknowledgement, or is it about recognition and popularity?

In spite of clear criticism of the selfie wave, actor James Franco has written a piece on the New York Times in support of taking selfies saying:

“We all have different reasons for posting them, but, in the end, selfies are avatars: Mini-Me’s that we send out to give others a sense of who we are.” 

He concludes by painting a clearer picture of what it may mean to share a selfie.

“In our age of social networking, the selfie is the new way to look someone right in the eye and say, ‘Hello, this is me.'”

Personally, I have not participated in Instagram until recently– only by opening up an account and uploading a profile picture. That was it, for months. I am still to share anything more. I have stayed away from posting my photos online for a long time, even making it hard to keep in touch with family members who are abroad. There are fears and discomforts I’ve had that are slowly fading away with time, and although this still feels very strange to me, I’m giving the whole photo sharing thing a try. I’m an artist who creates and keeps to herself. But maybe that’s not right. What if I can share something that pleases me to create and pleases others to experience at the same time?

So if I do this, if we all do this, what sort of philosophy are we participating in with the Selfie, “I selfie therefore I am”? This seems to be the proposition here. (Sorry, Descartes.)

Maybe the reason we’re obsessed with taking selfies is the same reason our ancestors have been attached to retaining memories, albeit through different methods like story-telling; painting on stones, and composing songs. If a photo is worth a thousand words, doesn’t that make photography a form of story-telling? It seems like the idea of being in a photo makes us feel more alive, more connected to our past, and more in control of our experiences.

Or rather, it is a reminder that we are experiencing anything at all. Somehow in our vanity, insanity, and normality, we equate the taking of a selfie to existence. In  a wordless way, all we’re trying to say is “I was here.”