Paolo Sebastian

Night cuts

Velvet crush, black midnight the crash, the wreckage of a million pieces of glitter flung throughout the heavens.
Arranged by chance, haphazard by design, glorious in their misplaced, mistaken tome.
Hazy shades looked down as honor and innocence were raped ugly.
Broken dreams lay littered perfectly across the dark abyss of night.
My night, you are my cover against the fear, you wrap me up against the unforgiving light of day.
You keep me safe & warm, bundled inside the cocoon of our forgetfulness.
Here we need not recall the pain.
Here we need not recount the horrors.
Abuses fizzle out like stars in the morning, mere pinpricks of light dissolving in the sanguine peach glow.
Vaulted spires edged out by dawn. I fly into your embrace, harbored, settled against the cruelty of memory.
Minuscule my hearts desires seem, molecules stacked throughout the universe.
Stay with me a while and help me close the past away.
Help me forget the weight of history.
Shake the torture of those nightmares. Fold into bed tonight.

Jan '13

A day away

I need you to understand me. 
I need you to know what cuts me the deepest. 
I need you to keep from cutting. 

Paris Changing

Paris Changing: Revisiting Eugene Atget's Paris

By Christopher Rauschenberg

Between 1888 and 1927 Eugne Atget meticulously photographed Paris and its environs, capturing in thousands of photographs the city's parks, streets, and buildings as well as its diverse inhabitants. His images preserved the vanishing architecture of the ancien rgime as Paris grew into a modern capital and established Atget as one of the twentieth century's greatest and most revered photographers.

Christopher Rauschenberg spent a year in the late '90s revisiting and rephotographing many of Atget's same locations. Paris Changing features seventy-four pairs of images beautifully reproduced in duotone. By meticulously replicating the emotional as well as aesthetic qualities of Atget's images, Rauschenberg vividly captures both the changes the city has undergone and its enduring beauty. His work is both an homage to his predecessor and an artistic study of Paris in its own right. Each site is indicated on a map of the city, inviting readers to follow in the steps of Atget and Rauschenberg themselves. Essays by Clark Worswick and Alison Nordstrom give insight into Atget's life and situate Rauschenberg's work in the context of other rephotography projects. The book concludes with an epilogue by Rosamond Bernier as well as a portfolioof other images of contemporary Paris by Rauschenberg. If a trip to the city of lights is not in your immediate future, this luscious portrait of Paris then and now is definitely the next best thing.

Is it kind?

Is it kind to smash a soul?
Has he given me a gift?
Perhaps the numbness will provide the escape I have been needing. 

Terribly flawed

We are all terribly flawed
& you never stop paying for some mistakes
& these days giving your whole heart to someone doesn't seem to be enough

Nepenthe - Eleven, Twenty-two, O'Nine

Sweet, seductive, beguiling - Like a wisp of smoke intolerably strong, holding me in bondage

I tend to forget to ground myself.

I want to move beyond bitterness, distrust, and insignificance. Respect & decisions made… I want to know that perfect feeling again. He stirs it in me – couldn’t explain it if you asked me to

black cords and blue flannel has my head in a daze
Hazel-brown eyes have warped my brain.
Same windows…
same windows...
My heavy sigh
Silent reflection
Reflections break my heart
The two most beautiful angels
These children: Gorgeous beyond words

Incompatibility breeding destruction
The capacity, the potential
To break
To be washed away
And fall apart
Eyes blurring out
Ripped apart my consciousness
My struggle
I crumble under my own weight
Emerson, my love, my self-reliance
A muddy, contaminated place
A place where it’s hard for me to catch my breath sometimes
No guiding light & a haze covers all features of the landscape here
Depression devouring my core
Some kind of eerie semblance somewhere



Pain without boundaries
Framework of self-criticism
There was something about you I couldn’t put away
Crushing carelessness – my smudge
A place of madness
A place without tenderness
A place that whispers desperation,
My longing so intense
It just cuts
It eats at me
No soulful emergence from the edge
Just maintenance

There’s so much in me…

I turned to dust

My anguish came from the massive deficit of an empty heart

Such a good man
Such an amazing person
Things he thinks he hides, I see in his eyes

I feel in his touch,
I hear in his voice

He will not convince me otherwise
He will not convince me I didn’t feel what I felt.

I can’t bear his heart for him.
I can’t let it crush me
Rose mouthed beauty beaten black
Lost under stone

It doesn’t try to be beautiful, it tries to be true

Delivered hope quite unexpectedly on my doorstep, where I didn’t want it frankly. I set about through all the motions, all the while wrought with blind obedience to my delusions.
Suffocated by intense denial

Too soft
too ridiculous,
too much a mess,
too crazy,
too emotional
too much to handle
& I’m probably all of those things
But I want him to see the best in me
Instead I feel like he doesn’t see me at all –
Crushing desire
My heart, my biggest weakness in his eyes
I sold myself a dream
Amalgamation of dreams
Lack of empathy for myself
Becoming the topographer of this wasteland

It was as if nothing outside of his arms mattered…
the world faded away, & all that was left was him & me.
I never let anyone hold me
... not like that
makes me feel unlike any other man I’ve ever been with.
He just makes me feel like if the world were falling down around us
if I was in his arms somehow the walls would crash around us
& the ceiling might give way,
but somehow, incredibly in his arms I’d be safe.
That feeling is rare.

It’s everything.
He places his hand on the small of my back & runs it over my body.
Skin to skin…
I felt accepted.
I felt cared for.
I felt valued.
I felt beautiful.
I felt worthy.
I felt like I mattered.
And I really mattered to him.
& he wanted me happy
& he wanted me content
& he wanted to please me

& in that bed with him is the most honest I have felt with anyone in a long, long time.
I felt like all the pretenses were dropped & he sank into himself & he allowed himself to feel something for me.
I do not have the ability to hold onto that with him.
I want to live in that moment with him.
I want to be there all the time.
That place was beautiful… perfect.

His touch melts me. He has no idea. No idea. His lips… everything.
Empty words and empty actions
so tender with me, so gentle, so generous, so giving, so pleasant…

Jagged glass, twisted mirrors
Slender slivers
Tender familiar quiver
I try to trick myself into believing I’m the exception

Not a fraud
A heart that shines like that –
forgive me, but that's just not the truth the way I see it
You don’t see the best in yourself

Shut the door
Lock it, turn the key
And walk away

It never was
It never could be

Spiritual exhaustion which afflicted us
Chills and fever
Deep profound longing
Sweet delicacy
Liquid exploring its way down my throat,
I’m flushed about this man
Why does he still grab me like this?
This fragment of my reality then,
This fragment of my mind cannot be rewritten
He remains indelible on my psyche
And he has no idea the power he holds over me
He’s just there, very close, very far away.

So damned hard, so utterly painful
Anguished ugly

My fantasy has a firm grip on me
I can’t scratch & claw & fight my way out of it
Stuck in this shard of my mind – shadow mostly
There’s no hope for me
I can’t pull myself out of this feeling I have for him
Something is haywire in my brain & I just fundamentally cannot extricate him from my system
He is under my skin,
He’s in me… deeply


The Book of Counted Sorrows, Revisited

Dare we linger, dare we skate?
Dare we laugh or celebrate,
knowing we may strain the ice?
Preserve the ice at any price?

~The Book of Counted Sorrows

One, One, Thirteen

Artist unknown; credit unknown. 
Message me if you know. 

Fresh start 2013

We are all damaged in our own ways. 
But we need to be tender with one another. 

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