October 3rd, 2014 / 11:31 am

at school people say things

by Jordan Castro

at school people say things

i can feel myself turn inward

the escalation from ‘politely responding with terse expressions of acknowledgment’


‘feeling my face morph into something soft and wet while seconds turn to minutes turn to hours
turn to years and i am staring and nodding and smiling strangely and maybe saying “yeah” or
“uh huh” while internally moving at a speed of one hundred miles per hour and experiencing
feelings in a linear manner that go from anxiety to self-hatred to self- aware self-hatred to
sarcastic self-aware self-hatred to “what is going on” to “what…” to thoughts about myself in
terms of the current social situation to thoughts about myself in terms of some insanely large
context like forever to thoughts about myself in terms of myself to extreme feelings of
detachment to nothing while having already started to feel even more anxiety about the prospect
of tweeting said feeling, which is really many feelings, a poly-feeling, which may or may not be
explicable in 140 characters or less in a manner that is clear, enjoyable, and relatable’

happens quickly

my face feels numb and my mouth, i think, is open

someone smiles at me

i fall further into myself, screaming

from If I Really Wanted to Feel Happy I’d Feel Happy Already

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  1. JakeLevineSpork

      no one commented on this yet. i think this is a great poem. i’m sad htmlgiant is dying. this is the best of what i think alt lit had to offer. maybe alt lit is dying now also. i like tao lin’s writing sometimes i don’t know about him and his life.. i really like and am friends with noah cicero. he is a great person. i don’t know how it will all go into the history of things, but i can say elisa gabberts moves in contemporary poetry is something i use in class and i have shown students lots of things from htmlgiant and have gotten a lot of my favorite literature from this site in the last few years. this poem is great. thanks for posting it. i’ll miss you htmlgiant.

  2. Dinker Bopper-Alley

      something that was never alive in the first place cannot die