Stress Patterns

I can pour a cup of tea in the dark, by sound.

Exact facts and stacks of stats reverberate within earshot
and I know when you’re around.
I know when you have something to say
because you take a few quick breaths in,
allowing your lungs just enough air to support the words you want to get out,
but not so much that there’s a risk of any getting stuck in there,
left behind.
Just syllables,
and consonant clusters
dissolving into the mucosal lining of your lungs,
little bits left to fester, ferment, and cause infection.
Unwritten words that don’t become airborne are left
to decay and fossilize as dead weight.

A phoneme is defined as the smallest indivisible unit of sound in a language,
like sh in sharing, t in time bomb, and r in la radio.
These are the single bump Lego bricks in our castles of conversation
and the stray bits of thread in our spoken tapestries.
These sounds are no more significant than fizzes or pops
until we allow them to assemble
starting in the lungs, then in the larynx, then in the mouth.
We synthesize words that sting, bite, seduce, create, and destroy.
Words are the cherry stems we tongue-tie or spit out.

You take a few quick breaths in and all your
and consonant clusters
come falling out at varying speeds.

This is the moment when you decide if you’re building a castle around us
or a wall between us.

Choose wisely.

Either way, be sure your words are bricks and not straw,
or I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll blow them back into your ears, and into your eyes
with a deafening roar and a blinding fog.

Before your words become bullets, remember that I listen at close range.

I can pour a cup of tea in the dark, by sound.

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Between Silences

Between Silences


Last night you said you couldn't

Take it anymore.

Last night you said that

You wanted to die.

Last night I held you

In my arms.

Last night I watched

While you cried.

I went to sleep with you

On my mind.

I went to sleep with worries

Not far behind.

I went to sleep and dreampt

About us.

I went to sleep in hopes

You'd be fine.

Today I looked into your eyes

And felt relieved.

Today I hope it all goes better

Inside your head.

Today I want so badly

To hear you laugh.

Today I know exactly

The reason we are wed.

God made you for me

And I for you.

God had a plan figured out

The day we met.

God is always watching out

For you and I.

God wants us to be happy

Don't ever forget.


Brandy Noelle Souza

July 3rd, 2013

Author's Notes/Comments: 

Dedicated to my husband

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