fun fun fun fun fun fun fun funeral.

https://soundcloud.com/sariya-iman-okoye

jezebel

show don’t tell. met jezebel in hell. gave her a big kiss on the lips. she tasted like flat cherry coke with a hint of cinnamon. wide awake but are you woke? we were fragile so we broke. she met jezebel in hell. they swapped spit and tasted smells. synesthesia. amnesia. the scent of her skin tastes like peppermint. you forget. hell bent. too bent to get broken. dropping in on a skateboard. backing in to a parking spot in a four door. jezebel rings the bell. a closed door. key is under the flower pot. please, somebody, unlock the chains wrapped around our bodies. our bodies. waiting in screaming hotel lobbies. riding shotgun on a trip to the surface of the sun. burnt to a crisp. wings melted. icarus. pegasus. a winged horse. forlorn yet staying the course. tiny violins playing every time they cry. playing a game that is already in double overtime. will it ever be over? will it ever end? who will win? baskets, balls, rims, fields, goals. walking across hot coals as hot knives slice spines riddled with scoliosis. jezebel give us a kiss. excuse me, miss? you forgot this. a little blue corset, a little red corvette, a black bonnet, a psalm, a song, a sonnet. a wish, a dream. baileys irish cream and coffee. halley’s comet is coming soon to a theatre near you. popcorn, chocolate covered raisins, ripped tickets, screens full of sex and violence. the tiny violins are sobbing. never met a bank not worth robbing. never met a woman more inviting. you are intoxicating. drunk driving a five gear bike on a long journey through an infinite night that sometimes gets bright. time doesn’t exist. jezebel smells of insect incest and nag champa incense. incensed, angry, livid. this episode of life is vivid. pass the chocolate covered raisins. pass the blunt. so honest that frankly it comes across blunt. fourth down punt. baseball player world series bunt for a home run. children run towards home after the school bell rings and class lets out. jezebel don’t pout. what is this about? nostalgia. memories are all made in china. whisper turned shout. lager, ale, stout. mountains, cactus fruit, lizards, bushes. gunshots from beirut. the opposite of the truth isn’t always lies. jezebel sighs. the rock faces of mount rushmore cry. show don’t tell. show and tell. a show on television. surround sound. technicolor. high definition. brother, sister, mother. had a vision. now on a mission. missionaries, rosaries, strawberries, chickpeas, mixed greens, salad dressing. dressing up to spend the night in. just because it came out doesn’t mean it was ever in. nearing the end of the sentence with periods of time like 25 to life. laws are irrelevant and crimes are construct. construction noises cause a cacophony. authentic. real. phony. phone rings; a voice speaks; bad news…are you sitting down? if not, take a seat. tragedy. the revolution will not be televised but it will be available for streaming or broadcast live on a podcast or online. faith. pacing the six by eight cell waiting for the guard to come back around. this existence is a prison. lethal injection or electric chair, which is your preference? which would you prefer? to be clear: everybody is unsure and underinsured. to be honest: the cure for cancer is death. for your information: stealing hearts is more than petty theft.

lash fill

how do you feel?

lash fill.

jagged little pill; alanis morisette
please remind me to forget.
 

what is this new element?

earth, wind, fire, air
struggling to make it into
my black lungs

will you forgive?

(wishing i were still young)

is it fine where you live, where you reside?

i was losing my mind then i lost you at the same time.

i am going outside of outside to have a smoke-

coke is an unfunny joke.

yellows

Yo

Can I bum one of those?

Dressed up all alone
wearing
your
clothes

and my own cologne

I

wish you
had
a
clone

Flipped out
like skateboards
in
the road

52 cards in a deck

in los angeles today waiting on a plane

can’t handle this baggage and all the pain 

at baggage claim wishing i could say your name

to your face 

but i am confused and ashamed 
still

life

of a butterfly in wet paint 

never 
dried 

my eyes
on a cocktail napkin 

wondering when will this end 
and what exactly happened 
to begin with

all i know is: there are 50 states in the US
and 52 cards in a deck
also, i’ve got an ace up my sleeve for a queen 

feeling mean and green like a teen 
and i always keep a tampon on me
just in case i need to clog a bullet wound
or stop the bleed

not acting my age because things
haven’t been the same since you threw me away

in los angeles today 
deboarding a plane 

praying for rain, but all i know is this: there 
are 50 states in the USofA and 52 cards in a deck

i am missing the queen
and praying for reign 

sycophant


sycophant, tell me why you always take advantage of me and where i’m at

a

disconnect between reality and fantasy 

has 

got me breathing heavy 

as

a boxer or mma fighter just less blood and benefits to my health

is precarious, at best, and poor most of the time 

spent

too generously

most of the time

i feel the need to bleed internally and metaphorically 

for all of my sins

are 

just good deeds that took a wrong turn 

somewhere along the 

line

is not made to be crossed but travelled 

and forgiveness is truly a two way street

i forgave you for never giving me a phone call and you accepted my apology
but at the same time wanted nothing to do with me

my dear sycophant, godspeed 

love is a luxury


love is a luxury that i can’t afford

oh, yes, i was old enough to know better
when i shot the bottles and let that green and brown glass
shatter spread atop the rocks of my dead grandparents yard

where and what is the in between of easy and hard?
with eyes shut up tight i go floating down the boulevard
with my debit, metro, and identification card gripped tightly 
in my hand in a ziplock plastic bag

i get ahead of it all as you tend to lag
maybe we’re just not compatible yet a perfect match
watching my ten year old cousin lighting match after match
lightning candles around a dinner table set for eleven 

heading down to the 7-11 for some liquid courage 
and this time i won’t be discouraged 
by the cricket of a conscience in my head

is feverish

i make a wish as a blow out a candle my ten
year old cousin lit
feeling as if the fairy or genie or god that grants
wishes is bored of hearing the same request
over and over

again:

love is a luxury i can’t afford 

new york (from the fifty states collection)

Correct me if I’m wrong but aren’t I always right
turn, right turn, right turn, and right turn
Around till you’re back at the same place;
Put my ashes in a vase or an urn
Give me a nickel for every dollar not earned
it but wasn’t ready and it was so f-ing
Cold it burned
it left a scar just like New York
And my scars will never truly be gone
Like, crack heads beggin’ for change 
On
The subway 
And I’m not talking
About where Jared lost weight
of NYC sitting heavy on my shoulder blades
Couldn’t cut through this pain 
feeling like the Greek God Atlas with the world
on his shoulders; I hope neither one of us 
Shrug
and try to smile 
when they ask if I’m okay
Okay, okay I am too sensitive to live
In the Empire State
And I found that out a bit too late
nights and I’m roaming the streets for a fix
I wake up and go to bed with this syringe
holds devil juice and like count to ten
Then I’m an addict-
Skeletons in my closet and ghosts in the attic
And a pink slip and a sign saying I’m evicted
Feeling helpless- the sky used to be the limit
But temptation is the only thing I can’t resist-
Mom look at your kid
What happened? 
They notice every time I smile so it 
Must not be often
It’s hard with no way to soften it
I try to remember the NY motto written in Latin:
‘Excelsior’ which means ‘ever upward’
We travel
back home, flying through time zones
And it hurts deep in my bones
the snow isn’t what makes me cold-
If it can be bought it can be sold
Out 
Show
Famous people dining fancy
While the poor go hungry-
Black on black crime; people in Rikers
Doing time
is of the essence- people murder for capital
And New York’s capital is Albany-
Look in the mirror and tell me what you see
the beauty 
staring back at me 
Through the layers of ugly
city
Rats so dirty haunt me while waiting for the G train
And nobody can complain-
These tears I can’t contain
Everybody’s got a hustle, just trying to maintain
It’s a whole lot of pain yet they say
It’s just a flesh wound but I see scars on their faces
And Band-Aids don’t cover the wounds
Get salted and dripped on with lemon juice 
What kind of life would you like, you choose
me to get to Heaven please
I’m on my knees
Are bruised from praying
For Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, the Bronx,
Long Island
Iced tea dripping sweat in the heat
And God bless the immigrants that came
Through Ellis Island
No man or woman is
free until they break the mental chains
On their necks worth thousands
But they sleep in the Projects;
Roommates with roaches and mice
Time to put the cigars on ice
is just frozen water
From the Atlantic and if you ignore
The tragic aspects
There is something romantic 
About the big apple
just has a worm in it sometimes
So take a bite of life
And chew before you swallow
The facts: over 183 languages are represented
In the city full of 16 million eyes
see
My birthday is the 27th of January and
New York State is the 27th most extensive, 
Third most populous and 7th most densely
Populated of all the states in the US of A
B, C, D, E, and F poverty-
Jay Z, Nicki, Biggie, Alicia Keys
Are a few of the lucky 
number 13
And don’t let me bring you down
I mean, follow your dreams
Just remember to sleep
Tight
Don’t let the bed bugs bite
And I hope your dreams are as sweet

As your life 

20/20


she walks the sidewalk carefully so as not to crush any black ants
crawling under her feet 
she talks incessantly to nobody and drinks then wears ear plugs
just so she can sleep 
after seven days of being lonely she starts feeling weak and dreary
also a bit leery of everybody 

they are building a dam to keep out the damned it’s bedlam it’s
the new bethlehem 
way down in jerusalem they are flooding the streets in armies as
deep as the sea 
is it still perjury if you are only lying to yourself under oath, under
the mighty oak tree?

what we see isn’t always what it appears to be- it appears, apparently
that 20/20 means nothing
when our vision is clouded by judgement and our third eyes are blind
as a bat during daytime
we sleep and come alive during the night after night and plight after plight
we sure put up a helluva fight 

i am tossing and turning in these twisted sheets sweating and shivering
not even praying 
simply smiling and awaiting the great white light of the ending of my life
is imminent and inevitable
so i might as well drink this poison and get comfortable in preparation for
the end 

she is walking down the sidewalk alongside the tree lined street stopping
every time she sees a dry leaf
the crunching beneath her feet is soothing and the sound makes her remember
that one november with a feeling of relief
that cuts, if only momentarily, through the grief that rattles her teeth and chills
her bones down to the core

life is a movie filmed in color, life is a great show with no encore no matter how
loud the crowd applauds 
or roars for more than before the government is doing us in and it is quite 
a sad time to be alive and poor
but i suppose it beats being rich and six feet under 
the weather for what seems like forever 
isn’t as far away as it used to be 

charades

how could we forget your silhouette or the smell of your wasted breath
that song you would sing will be with us till death
comes
to
those
who wait
standing in a long line like a figure eight that we will never escape
to a new place, dye your hair and paint your face
then call it all a masquerade as you play charades
only to lose
my number
forget my name
maybe that’s what will keep us from going insane with this never ending pain
that we both face everyday when we wake and every night before we wash our heads for bed
hey, if the dead all hold secrets well kept
where does that leave the living
is hard but somebody once told me that there are hundreds of ways to get through the day
say, let me know when you find one that works for you
and i will do the same too

hearse


i liked you better when you pissed sitting down
you liked me more when i was shy and boring
in the next room i can hear her snoring
while they tear down the building and erect
another in it’s place that looks like your face except
it lacks that look of shame and disgrace 
when the only advice they gave was to pray
i knew it had gone from bad to worse 
i remember when you were my soccer mom
carrying cigarettes for me in your purse
i hope in the end that i will be driving my own hearse
and that my casket is made of biodegradable plastic
moon
concrete spoon
the sun at full bloom
an ambulance siren booming through the room
where she sleeps next to me snoring
as he lays awake trying to cry but not remembering 
how
so he makes little mouse sounds and squints his eyes
are not quite blue, not quite green but definitely not brown
i liked him better when he pissed sitting down 

teenage heart attack


i dreamt a basketball hoop on a roof

there’s a ringing in my right ear that is causing all kinds of fear

like that i’ll pull a van gogh and mail it to you 

searching for the truth in the fairy tale of a lost tooth

under a pillow

is soaking wet from tears

for my many wasted years

up at dawn, with decaffeinated coffee and herbal tea

masada, qumran, enchiladas during break fast at ramadan

ein gedi and a serving of mom’s spaghetti that we are never gonna eat

your heart out

go on, get it all out, laugh at me

i’ll be laughing back from the dark black of a teenage heart attack 

i dreamt a basketball hoop on a roof

running to the edge with all bets hedged 

i often dream of her or you, it’s a rush of lust and a gush of love’s guts 

are all twisted in knots

like the kind used to tie a noose

around your neck is one way to gain some respect

is not a four letter word

on the street is that you’re flying so high you touch the sky

is a weird shade of gray and the sun is just a crack of white

powders, pyrex, and a pipe of glass turned black

paid the piper more than twice just to get it all back 

seat of the car is a teenager falling into the dark trap of an heart attack 

seizures


seizures and fits of melancholy drive me on diesel all the way through this valley
searching for something, anything, to calm my nerves and give me a feeling
that i think i deserve
to be healthy, at least
we long to be happy
but instead we have a feast on thanksgiving day and say grace
ungracefully as we stuff our faces full of tryptophan from turkey
and carbohydrates and such
sometimes living is too much
and it seems just like a promise i have to keep
threatened suicide in a xanax vodka blackout
at a shout or a fever pitch but the question is
did i really mean it? 
i had gotten some bad news via text message 
and lost my shit
is getting normal these days
when the 45th president took the reigns 
it all felt insane
but now the tweets and speeches are mundane 
and this causes me more pain than any thing else
than your absence 
wish i were a cop so i could write you up for truancy
on a relationship you just discarded so cruelly 
the days pass, i wonder if i’ll gain weight in old age
or shrink into nothingness 
but i’ve got my listerine, i’ve got a pack of matches, 
i’ve got a grin to disarm even my worst enemy
is myself 

fagged and fashed


bitters and soda water, she was someone’s sister, mother or daughter
go on and build your wall, i’ll just help to build the ladder 
is it the former or the latter? she’s eating a falafel platter 
as i’m trying not to retch at this table set for three
years ago there is a sad and terrible story to be told
33 years old as of two days ago 
ain’t it a wonder how time can move both fast and slow? 

if you were here i’d dress up in high heels and put on a show
dumb and silly but funny enough to make you laugh that 
wild and wondrous laugh full of beauty and a bit of insecurity 
going through security at jfk i realize i forgot to take out my pocket knife
and razor blade
i’m pulled aside and frisked down as they ask me my name
which doesn’t help

sariya in arabic means a cloudy evening or a realist, iman means faith
and okoye is just a nigerian surname who’s meaning i’ve never known
what it’s like to be an outcast but i used to listen to ‘hey ya’ and dance
with sagging pants that were skinny nonetheless 
i guess i’ve always been into skinny jeans since my teens 

i recall playing bass and singing in a punk band ‘the horrorshow droogs’ 
based on anthony burgess’ language from ‘a clockwork orange’
it meant ‘good friends’ 
with my eyeliner on i’d sing songs 
that now in my old age i mostly forget 
except something with a chorus that went ‘dynamite, dynamite, i’ll blow your mind’ 
and the intro to ‘fagged and fashed’ (also based on burgess’s made up language) 
that went ‘shoot it up and take it off, hurry up i’m taking off, sniff it up, then pop it down, 
before we begin please turn around’ 

and around my head goes 
but not in circles
in figure eights
so my thoughts create a deranged loop that goes on until infinity 
…i suppose you are living proof that i have an affinity for neurotic women
who are about a perfect ten
but just can’t see it

isn’t 
fate
i know

you said you needed space and i violated your wishes
now as i take out the trash and wash the dishes 
i realize, like a mini epiphany, that space frightens me
and lack of closure is terrifying 
either way, i hope you are living your best life sans me 

worth the wait/russell street


made you a mix tape in 2008 or so, didn’t give it to you though
i was too shy so i wrapped it in foil then hid it in a book
when you moved out i hoped you’d find it but maybe that book belonged to alex

i cry for that night with a pout because i did look back
and didn’t see you chasing after me

but you followed me down russell street only you took a different route
than me

happy halloween, happy chanuka, happy new year’s eve and hopefully
2019 will bring you all that you were missing

you 

like crazy

i am crazy i guess
just paying bills, cashing checks- how’s your college debt? 

the novel you sent for my birthday i kept
but i have only read half of it

i’ve been a junkie before but now i’m clean and sometimes it seems a bore
me 
with a story and i’d be so grateful and happy
or tell me about your past, about growing up in philly
about your sisters and your brother, your father spencer and your mother
harriet 

when we were speaking i’d always forget to ask questions important
instead i’d get caught up in your voice, your laugh and the sound of it
all

being great

march 26th is now a holiday, a special date 
where we all thank the woman upstairs for creating such a beauty
of a person
with a name like two different worlds but so beautiful
and your middle name that i never knew
for some strange reason

just the letter 

n

e

ways

bless you and all of your days
and by the way, that mix tape was great
if i do say
so
myself 

all by myself
i toast to your life and health 
while looking at 'testo junkie' on the shelf
and feeling sorry for myself
but more sorry for what i put you through

the
grapevine
i heard you are doing fine
which made me sigh
with relief 

cutting through the bruise and grief

flying from new york city to tucson international 
i counted my blessings backwards until we landed
and i never reached zero
despite your absence

i need a hero
in black tights and thigh high boots
not a cape
to save my heart and take me into the future 
where i pray for a better view and a lovely picture or 

a painting 
on these ceilings like in the sistine chapel
a masterpiece that will be your face in person 
but i’ll settle for a text message 

just type ‘hey’ and i’ll try to wait a day 
before i reply
with a platitude or some crude way
of saying ‘thanks, it was worth the wait’

boobytraps

as a kid i told a kid that there is no santa claus then watched as he gave birth to a pregnant pause 

not pregnant but i am ready to abort so i am off to the airport
man, you too? 

with all these portmanteaus wearing the same outfit everyday like i’m steve from blues clues 

pick and chose

i never sleep so no need to hit snooze 

filling up on xannys and booze knowing all the while that this is all a ruse 

trying to succeed but knowing i’ll lose

because i 

pulled myself up by my bootstraps only there were too many boobytraps 

sodom and gomorrah


i am an angel, i am a saint, i have never had one complaint
i won’t let you dangle, i’ll never taint us, but i’ll make you faint

of

heart

with my dreamy eyes, long lashes, wit and curly hair with a part
i will always apologize, i’ll take out trashes, i’ll push the shopping cart

me

off

to a reality in which this is all true, i wish i didn’t feel so blue
instead i’m a fatality, i can be rude, and crude with a bad attitude

needs

to

improve because as of now i don’t know how to make the right move
so i cry silent tears, i sigh for all my wasted years, feeling like i’m always lose-ing

my

place

while thoroughly reading the torah and planning a trip to bora bora
as i smile knowing all the while i may as well be in sodom and gomorrah