Lilacs Dad's voice in my ears, After all these years, Lilacs the color of dreams, Reality starker than it seems. The callouses on his hands, Evidence of life's demands. Too blind to see the truth, He thought I had it smooth, Not knowing what lay ahead The road on which he tread. The fallen lilacs only covered The hardships I discovered. Enemy You're my friend, yet you act like my enemy. I see you change color from the purple of fairy tale chivalry to the green of envy. The hands that glued my disconnected self now tear me to pieces. I am no longer whole no longer a poet. My words matter no more, for you have lit a fire and burnt them into ash. You're better Without Me You don't nee me, you need her, though you think the other way around, deceived by my eyes, my hands: the warm glow of my gaze, the soft skin. The kind gentle voice consoling you in your darkest times But you need her, who has a rock solid ego, who is not afraid to swim with you in deep water, for she will rise up no matter how many times she has been pushed down. Her arms are strong to lift you when you're drowning, her feet rough for walking Glass Rod You push me around with careless hands like I'm a glass rod on a wind chime forcing a word a tune out of me as the thin thread I dangle from wavers and I hold on another day before it breaks and I detach from the world I know crumbling shattered into pieces Blocked the black board gazes at me waits for shards of glass to fall from my mouth and shatter outside the jacaranda flowers descend like knives upon the bleeding road I want to vomit bile of disgust wake from gangrene daydreams where I fall from high places again and again the maroon color of poinsettias saved for wakeful moments my alma mater burgundy and gold I live in the past not the now my poems are mostly about me not the outside world the trees, the conch shells the sound of paper turning crumples my heart as only the nonsensical spills onto the page Bio: Jackie Chou writes poetry because it makes life more colorful. It turns the common birds and flowers of the urban landscape where she has lived all her life into heroes. Her poem "Cycle of a Tree" was nominated for a Pushcart by Highland Park Poetry.