Who will walk these wooden streets?

all poetry is written by Ryan Kai Cheng Thom, who is (obviously) an aspiring poet. Contact them at ryan.thom@mail.mcgill.ca!

July 24, 2014 at 1:04am
8 notes

someone told you when you were very young

that you were a good child because you were so quiet.  and so you learned that silence was something to admire, to look up at and aspire to, like the moon - distant and unfathomable.  you perfected silence.  carved it into yourself till it was miles deep.  you dropped your words into this chasm and watched them disappear.  you could sit for hours, folding your thoughts under your tongue, into themselves, over and over.  at school, as teacher droned on.  on the playground, as the boys chased and beat you up.  at home, as your mother shrieked.  in the hospital at two, three in the morning.  people told you that you were a good listener as you got older.  told you secrets, their petty whims and hidden rages.  their stories of abuse, of pain, of tenderness.  they never asked if you wanted to hear.  you thought this made you special.  your silence was exquisite, a many-faceted prison that gleamed like a dead crystal star with your voice trapped inside. love me.  love me.  love me.  

the man you’re sleeping with has a girlfriend whom he adores.  you know because he won’t stop telling you about her while you’re in his bed together.  he makes you leave this bed once you’ve finished making him come, out of respect for their relationship.  once, when she was sick with the flu, he stopped in the middle of sex with you to call her and see how she was.  though you have never met this woman, you know all about her.  she is brilliant, beautiful, delicate, tempestuous.  she sounds like the romantic interest in an indie film about a disenfranchised white guy.  you listen to every detail.  you nod, you reflect.  you gleam with empathy.  with understanding.  he likes to fuck you roughly, up the ass, after he talks.  sometimes you bleed into the toilet after. you barely make a sound.  a part of you is proud of this.  you think that this is being good.  you think that this is strength.

if i asked you what you wanted, you would not say a word.  the truth is trapped inside you, like light inside a prism.  you are always disappearing in the hope of being seen.  you are always shrinking to fit into someone else’s arms.  you are collapsing ever inward; you are a galaxy trying to become smaller.  when i put my ear to your chest, i hear the humming of a barely audible frequency beaming itself past the clouds, into the atmosphere, through the distant reaches of space.  infinite and unstoppable.  magnificent.  love me for my anger, it whispers.  love me for my need.  love me for my jealousy, my weakness, my greed.  my cruelty, my viciousness, my vanity, my shame.  love me for my ugliness.  love me when i scream.  

July 19, 2014 at 5:52pm
0 notes

i curse you

to be yourself,

to be human,

to never change.

July 16, 2014 at 3:36pm
10 notes

what made you want to own another person?

who taught you that without a cage or a contract

you would end up


July 12, 2014 at 3:08am
3 notes

academic writing

i am supposed to say that i am striving to be


how can i say this?

i am not unbiased, we are talking about my life.

i cannot be unbiased, we are talking about freedom.

2 notes

i do not dispute that i am mad,

and what is more, i love my madness;

it is the only thing in this life 

that has never left or failed me.

it is the face of the ghost on the pillow next to mine,

the arms i fall into when men break their promises.

it is the voice of the ancestors, refusing to forget.

it is strength and the ocean, and great tearing hunger,

an itch so strong that i have no choice but to claw open my scars

to find the flowers growing beneath.

when i close my eyes, i glow in the dark.

what has your sanity done for you?

0 notes

our mother, the ocean

left a piece of herself inside us,

so that when we wept, we would know

that our mother has never forgotten us.

despite all the things that we have done,

our mother loves us still.

repeat after me, little one:

our mother loves us still.

July 8, 2014 at 4:45pm
1 note

do not fool yourself into thinking

that you can change the way he treats you.

do not fool yourself into thinking that

you like the way he treats you.

do not fool yourself into thinking

that he would treat you better, if only.

you owe yourself so



July 7, 2014 at 1:22am
1 note

i am asking you for constancy.

how constant can you be?

July 6, 2014 at 10:05pm
0 notes

remember when

we left the womb and first discovered hunger?

9 notes

lead the revolution you need to be free,

no one else will do it for you.

be the prophet who envisions your future,

no one else can see it for you.

write the poems that set your blood on fire,

no one else can write them for you.

be the lover who heals your heart,

no one else can heal it for you.

become a star when there is only darkness,

we are thousand stars, waiting to greet you.