The Ides of March

Kyle Seamus Brosnihan

“Et tu, Brute?”

yes / me / Caesar / let’s be honest / history is a joke / oblivion is a punchline / Julius you are dying / now become garden like everything else / let’s move on / time to climb the huge mountain / between my heart and tongue / a landscape of portraits and bubbles / encapsulate the world then pop in the streets / my heart overflows with bubbles / mind’s a needle poking it’s way through endless days / wish there was a button / on the back of my head that I could press and fall asleep / wish there was a crank attached to my chest that I could turn and be happy again / failure / loser / burnout / bum / these are words my dad uses / we regret to inform you / we wish we had better news / good luck / that’s what the grad schools say / my heart’s a song / my mind’s its excruciating feedback / sometimes I dream about shooting myself / in the head with a word named god / thanks for lying to me it means a lot / I say to the mirror / throw a fist / catch a bone / nothing turns me on / like being alone / might as well ask the void to marry me / might as well ask the flower / if its purpose is to not exist / it’s called symbolism / life takes time / time takes life / all roads lead toward / becoming someone / you never wanted to be / I never wanted to be / myself yet here I go again / feel like a sad clown / if I had tears / I’d shed them now / my mind’s an inside joke / that’s what I’m always laughing / drunk on my own defeat / basking in my favorite weaknesses / it’s time to take revenge against the mirror / the psycho himself / travel halfway around the world / just to be alone / in search of lost cities / in search of lost happiness / in search of dead god / find electric city / find empty room / random impacts of recognition / my heart is sick / my mind impersonates a doctor / gives me pills / gives me books to read / tells me to say five Hail Mary’s / and repeat how much I hate myself every ten minutes for the rest of my life / snows of winter / torrents of spring / suns of summer / leaves of fall / the years keep going the wrong way / I think of Zach Mitchell / dying of cancer in the Mayo Clinic / I had the chance to visit him but I didn’t / because I’m a terrible friend / now he’s dead forever / like Pierre / like Wonhyeon / when you are young your friends are still alive / time hasn’t turned them to dust yet / the world is familiar / as in like family / then time changes everything / the world becomes alien / go weeks without looking in a mirror / go months without writing a word / go years without loving anyone / decades burying who I am under who they’re looking for / a century of not understanding myself / a millennium of doubt / a ten thousand year itch / at eternity of pretending / I’m not a man’s man / more like a depressed person’s depressed person / I am my own hostage / I am my own urn / watch me spill / my heart’s a pit / my mind’s a ladder / the repetitions of life / stubbing your toe on random long agos / I’m a goddamn grown man / and my best friend is an empty room / alone with gale force feelings / it’s called turbulence / one of my few talents is asking people to please leave / the art of living with yourself / the tough got going and I’m right here / but where does the sob go once I banish it from my head? / the night is light cause of all this city / life is dark cause of all this bile bubbling up in my gut / when I was little I couldn’t wait / to see the Pyramids / to direct a movie / to marry a girl and start a family / but now I’m big and all I want / is to waste my life alone in bed / spend Christmas with the TV / birthday with Pornhub / it’s called a lurch / my heart’s a wet / muddy / messy / rainforest and my mind’s a bulldozer cleaning things up / tearing shit down / everything is perfect then suddenly an itch / I should do something / I should be someone / I should change the world / stop the war / get a PhD in the meaning of life / go to Africa / find a more satisfying job / write more beautiful poems / go see a therapist / make my parents happy / evict the devils in my head / but the more I want to do / the less I want to do it / here’s a schizophrenic teeter-totter / with my heart on the right and my mind on the left / an orange tree attempts to burst forth with apples / dragging my feet through history / I’ve been exploited my whole life / by corporations / governments / bosses / tax collectors / local businesses / professors / customers / Facebook / they want me dehumanized / they want my mind to be easy / my heart to be hard / but I want to burst forth with peaches / lavender and thyme / I want to say adieu to yesterday and make sweet love to now / I want to find a way to shut my second voice up / the voice that tells me to buy a gun / the voice that tells me to start smoking again / tells me to lock my front door / give up on my art / become a lawyer / the fault’s not in the stars it’s in my head / god damn I’m sick of empty rooms / depression is boring / let’s be honest again / the average person is dead / crumbled into an outline / the average person destroys the world / a little bit every day / the average person is depressed and addicted / to drugs or TV or empty rooms / the average person forgot how to love years ago / lives in a cage of fears / believes they are exceptional / not your average average person / America is a nation of liars / and I’m the poet laureate / hearts as ancient as waning moon / minds as modern as drone strike / here’s a toilet / here’s a steeple / here’s a mountain / here are some pills to bring you back down / the average person is a failure / the universe is so huge and Earth is the only place that’ll have us / and we are killing her / it’s called the end of the world / as if the Earth is a failure too / why’s it so easy to write yet so hard to live? / I’d be lying if I said / anything at all / it’s impossible but what isn’t? / the way time does its thing / years glide by like clouds / before you know it / you’ve given your youth away for nothing / little by little it all proved false / the prime of your life / gone / sacrificed to depression / sacrificed to an empty room / sacrificed to so some boss sailing away through the great polluted sea / sometimes I get so angry / I seriously consider becoming a terrorist / a mass murderer / killing the dictators and the billionaires / reading poems to the people in power before I put their heads under the guillotine / it’s called forced perspective / none of us made this world / but we have the power to destroy it / violence is easy / simple / and the urge / is great / terrifying / and inside each of us / my heart is violent / my mind is perverted / one of my first memories is of my brother / beating the shit out of me in the backyard / knocking out my right canine tooth / and how I spent the whole night / sucking down my own blood / imagining ways to murder him / children understand what knives do / children fantasize about having a gun in their hands / they’ve seen the movies / have great feelings and terrifying ideas / get obsessed / plot revenge / children lie / just like poets / and look another mass shooting / this time inside a poem / hundreds of thoughts and feelings / executed without mercy / and I can’t say how / I’m standing in the center / holding the gun in my hands / slipping in the bloodbath / people don’t kill people / broken hearts and perverted minds kill people / people don’t write poems / angels with guns write poems / bang / bang / bang / bang / The Ides of March are here / violent children run the world / the sway of the earth shakes like a thing unfirm / it’s time to lift up Olympus and cast the mountain into the pit / an eye for an eye / a tooth for the world / the tide of time is turning / cry havoc and let slip your feelings / a revolution of one / your heart is the slave of no man / your life is a costume you wear / over that changeless part of you / the holy part you have saved / somehow / the golden nugget of your cavernous soul / untouched by history / unkissed by love / uninterested in entertainment / inalienable / unafraid / only human once and it’s time to be brave / let that be my revenge / take my gloves off and reclaim the meaning of it all / dead tree of my heart bursts forth with angels / and apricots / and apples / heaven descends like a halo to crown my triumphant head


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Kyle Seamus Brosnihan is a poet from Lincoln, NE. He graduated from UNL in 2016 with a BA in English. Since then, he has been running a literary space called The Aliens, where he hosts a weekly writers group, organizes readings, and fosters creativity in his community. Read another piece of his here.