Beach Bums

Let’s go to the Maldives. We can get a hut. It’ll be one of those huts surrounded by water on three sides with a long bamboo dock to lead us back to land when we’re ready. We can relax. You’ll finally be able to breathe and sleep. I will be tan, thin, and happy. You’ll sing me lullabies and we’ll eat fresh mangoes as the sun sets and the ocean waves us into slumber.

Stacey Renberg

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Silver God & Black Emperor

It’s always shit and piss and blood with you, sir. Can’t you, can’t we, just take a break and imagine the vast rock enclosing us? We should be lifting our fists to heaven, but instead we’re lifting them to each other while grasping bottles, cancer, and over priced steak that is seasoned to bloody perfection.

And yes, it’s a game. We enjoy the dirt and the naughty thoughts, but there has got to be more. Life should be an endless fucking pursuit for that infinite moment. You know! That moment Charlie talks about while riding in the middle of a pickup truck? That moment where oblivion and clarity come together to create the sublime.

And the sublime, shit. I know its horrific and yes, I know its terrifying, but if we didn’t have the world’s mountains and oceans and tall, tall skyscrapers, we would never know just how insignificant, yet significant, we really are.

So listen to Charlie, and hell, listen to Largeman and search the abyss. Explore, fall, and swim for as long as you can because you never know when the darkness might strike you like those matches you always seem to be burning.

Stacey Renberg

The Good That Won’t Come Out

I don’t mean to be selfish. I find it so funny to even be writing this. I suppose that somewhere in between time and space we all arrive to this point and realize the obvious and accept it. But, it’s different this time. It finally is. Breathing has become harder, presumably, yet I have found the good in suffocating a little bit. And not in a malicious kind of way, but in a way that makes the heavy moments worth it, tolerable even.

“The lows are so extreme that the good seems fucking cheap.”
(Yes, thank you, Jenny. We know. I know.)

And so I’m beginning to swim in the soup and every fucking cliché line is jumping out and splashing me. The present is becoming more of a factor and I feel as if I’m falling in love all over again with the thought of it all. I’m seeping freedom and clarity that the ability to experience it all is sometimes too much to endure. But I fight. I jump out and splash right back.

I’m utterly ecstatic at the chance to live. I need to stop hiding.

Stacey Renberg

Shame Dame

I don’t want to be an embarrassment anymore.
I don’t want to hang my head down low anymore.

I want to want to be myself.
I want to want to live.

But above it all,
I want to be satisfied with who I am
so I can leave my cocoon
and not be so fucking ashamed
to call myself by my own name,
or look you in the eyes
and tell you how I feel.

Stacey Renberg

Toys

It’s the lime green and sky blue that sends me to the dream world whenever I walk up the stairs. I imagine entering the room and seeing nothing but vast grassy hills and fluffy clouds forever. There is no sound just a light breeze flowing in through the space where there is no window, but a square cut out of the wall, rough edges and paint peeling. There is something red but it’s unclear, just an inanimate object, maybe a wooden chair. The room is empty as I stand and place my hands on the windowsill. I desire to jump, to plummet into the tall skinny plants, to feel that goddamn breeze on my face, on my skin. I can breathe. I am relaxed. I am calm.

For reasons unknown, this vision, this dream world, takes me back to my childhood, yet my memory is altered and changed. My surroundings are unfamiliar and my acquaintances peculiar. The Robin Williams movie, Toys, is the only visual example I can compare it to. One day I will find that dream world and roll in the grass for hours. I will eat vitamin sandwiches and become a real life paper doll. I will learn stealthy techniques from L. L. Cool J and I will dance in the snow to Christmas music. It’s wonderful, isn’t it? I can still remember the infinite sky, the awkwardness of being a kid and the yearning to be alone to dream about the future. Some things never change.

Stacey Renberg

20 Grand

I was once lucky enough to have a balcony
It overlooked the sea

My legs would hang off and
my feet would touch the sand

The breeze blew and blew,
but never knocked it down

I would drink tea with seagulls and
shake the hands of fishermen sailing by

The sun and rain would stop by too
They never got along, but I made time for both of them

I collected my ashes in a small tin can,
But my neighbors complained about the low tide

I don’t have a balcony anymore
There was a great storm

It is buried under years of
memories and distance
and what we all thought was love

Stacey Renberg