Austin Davis was born in Indianapolis, Indiana and now lives in Mesa, Arizona where he is studying creative writing at ASU. He is the author of Lotus & The Apocalypse, a poetry novella out now from Outcast Press. Austin performs his poems all over the country and teaches classes for teens and young adults in using poetry as a tool for bettering mental health.
Austin is the founder of AZ Hugs for the Houseless, Arizona Jews for Justice’s homeless outreach program.
Welcome to the Poets Weave. I'm Romayne Rubinas Dorsey. Austin, what poems have you brought for us today?
The world will end tonight
the weatherman says,
when the flower heads twist down
at a quarter past six.
Remember that summer of hot breath,
open windows, and making love
to the sound of bicycles passing by?
Kiss me soft
as the clouds peel away
from the sun like dark yellow apple skins.
Let me hold you,
run my hands through your hair,
these last few minutes.
LOTUS & FEAR
there’s a yellow balloon, the color of autumn after snow,
bouncing around my chest
i often mistake its rhythm for my heartbeat,
so trust me,
i know i can’t be trusted
let’s play a party game
where we have to take turns telling each other
about all of our fears and mistakes
and take a shot each time we wish we had a time machine
last night i broke into my old elementary school
and left a coffee mug full of wet dirt and seeds in the janitor’s closet
to see if it’s possible for a flower to grow tall and bright
under the glow of a lightbulb on a string
i’ve always thought of happiness as being tangible
the most brilliant mango hanging from the highest branch
but if we can’t even find the forest how are we supposed to climb the tree?
each day numbs me into dismissiveness
until my lips are purple from wine
and i’m sitting on the patio
watching the rain darken the red brick tiles around my feet
fill my lungs with hot breath
and we'll blow out the candles together
sing that familiar tune
learn how to pop without a sound
LOTUS & LOVE
We meet up in the library parking lot
every night after you get off work
at the drugstore.
We lay on the roof of my van
and stare up at the sky.
You call the stars “cosmic freckles”
and tell me that the “v”
on the middle of a Valium pill
looks like a little heart
that wants more than anything
to become a circle.
I nod and laugh and think
about how we’re both going to die
some night in our sleep
and we’ll never see it coming.
The leaves have no idea they’re going to fall,
the fish have no idea they’re going to be eaten
by an unhappy family around a big oak table,
and you have no idea
that getting to hear about your day
for 32 and a half minutes
every night is what makes me okay
with waking up in the morning.
I suppose this is the way living has always been.
You think you’re happy until you meet that person
who makes you notice every ache in your chest.
Maybe we should drive my van
into the book deposit bin
and steal all the books
our consciences can carry.
Maybe we should make out
or make love or make up
some story about a little home
in the mountains
with art on the walls,
a pineapple pizza
cooking in the oven, and “1979”
by The Smashing Pumpkins
playing on a ham radio in the kitchen.
In my mind you’re pulling into the driveway
in the same car you’re driving tonight,
about to lay with me by the fireplace
on our rug of pink and yellow orchids,
tell me all about the last 10 hours
of your existence,
and make me feel like
the man who cried into the clouds
during a solar eclipse
and didn’t go blind
You've been listening to the poetry of Austin Davis on the Poets Weave. I'm Romayne Rubinas Dorsey.