Tag Archives: DeMaris Gaunt

In Flames

After I forgave you
for leaving me alone
for making me wait
for making promises
that weren’t quite promises
I tried to step outside
the room of my heart
and look back into my life
through the eyes of a stranger
who might be passing by—
and if they saw in my window
a tiny glow
they might assume the source
was a Rockwellian scene
of contentment—
a woman waiting by the fire
for her love—
but if their curiosity
led them to step closer,
to peek inside the door—
they would see me
holding a torch
above a flammable pile
of our history—
deciding whether or not
to set the whole thing
on fire.







“By the Hearth” by Platt Powell Ryder, 1881 (American painter, 1821-1896)



Ten Seconds

Even the simple
is laced with complexity
when all you want
is a ten second hug
(which you promise
will end your cravings)
but you know
you would turn to liquid
in his arms after only five
and he would have to
hold on to you
until you regained
your balance—
and maybe even
carry you away to safety
if your legs
gave way altogether—
and there’s no telling
when you’d be strong
enough to walk back
to where you came from
and by then
he might not be able
to let you go.









Loyalty, Undeserved

is overrated—
a sort of
or respect.
Family first
was the original
default position
back when it
could easily
save your life—
it’s now a habit
bad as any
compulsion or
mad delusion—
like the one
that insists
your god
is so perfect
there is nothing
you are willing
to do
to challenge
his divine
and eternal




If you were there
and I was there too
in a proximity
that allowed us to touch
each other in the flesh
instead of with words
I wonder where it would be—
if it would be on sand
or under trees
or under sun or moon?
Would we feel
something like this—
like need, like hunger,
like heaven?
I wonder how long
it would take to decide
whether or not we would
want to make love
the way we make love
in my imagination
on nights like this
when you’re there
and I’m here wondering
if my proximity to you
will ever change—
and if such a change
might change the way
I want you—
which is badly, and now.


DeMaris Gaunt


Photo by Deanna Morae





November 24th, 2016


You are running out of time
and you know it’s not right
to spend it wanting the hours
to slow down in your favor
so you can have a little more time
to consider the damage you’ve already done.
You want to believe it will all work out—
That forgiveness will wait for you
on the other side of every last mistake
you’re about to make—
and you’ve concluded that making them
is what you do best—
and this Thanksgiving could be your last
so you want to make it count
by giving thanks for the duplicity
inherent in such a day—
that two people can share an equal
and opposite feeling of gratitude
for things that happened
and things that didn’t.


DeMaris Gaunt



Where you are it’s 2 a.m.
and you exist in sleep
six hours apart from me—
on a future date, in fact.
For you, it’s already tomorrow
but I’m stuck here in the past
at 8 p.m. writing a night poem
about your yesterday—
about the way we almost
told the truth
with a code of black letters
on a white screen and through
a thoughtful exchange of music
which is always dangerous
because lyrics can mean
almost anything you want them to
if you want them to—
and I wanted that song
you shared with me to mean
you wouldn’t be the man
to ruin my life—
even though you wanted to.


DeMaris Gaunt


My Ocean

My favorite days
were those that couldn’t restrain me—
those days I went a little wild
with frustration or love
and blurted out the truth,
which is always a little bit awkward
when restraint
is the most valued attribute
of a female who isn’t outwardly beautiful.
It’s those days that carry me
through the mundane landscape
of my meek and orderly existence.
I prefer the everyday pleasantries
that float into me and away from me
like colorful sailboats on a placid afternoon
but there’s nothing more satisfying
than watching the storm move toward you—
seeing the water darken and swell
in a fit of exasperation.
Sometimes this goes on for hours—
and it seems not even the ocean
can contain it.


DeMaris Gaunt