Original Works by Courtney Krystek is loading...

Original Works by Courtney Krystek

Cracked Pavement



Run down


Uncross me from the pins

crashing into my wrists.




bare burning bulb



crochet masterpieces

pricked in skin.





tree shaken down to Winter.

Bitten lip

swinging map

drawn over irises


If I cheat enough

will it still feel like stealing a heart

everytime I leave her?

Or just a sweeping pendulum

too scared to break open and fall?

Don’t make promises to my ring finger

or it’ll be the middle that leaves

in the morning.

When did I become

the one unattached





bed sprung?


Your words remind me of her.

Make love to my body

but don’t even think about cuddling up to my soul.



They told me the bruises ringing my legs were anemia

a simple iron deficiency

eat more beef, one doctor told me.

eat five meals instead of three, he said.

take supplements, another said.

Well I did all three

until the lumps on my breasts were questioned

like suspects in a murder

which very well could soon be the case,

was it you,

or you,

or you that killed her?

Was it the tempered gland on her kidney turning around too fast?

Did we catch her heart too late,

our clockwork machines too weak to carry

a burden such as mine?

Advanced directives,

advanced directives,

so many people keep throwing them in my face with urgency

saying fill out the papers Courtney

fill out the papers with your shaking fists

but I can’t line the red with my ghost-like signature,

I can’t seem to curve the C and the K in the manner that says I am going to survive.

Because I am terrified.

Because my bones are sealed in concrete

watching the world spin around them

sickening and weary.

I’m waiting for appointments

and I’m waiting for tests


waiting for the results.

And all this time, a question brands my brain like the hot metal pressed hard against the horse’s flesh,

when did I learn to live?

Where did I find the will to stay?

I want to stay I want to stay god goddess please please let me stay let me stay

I’m a kaleidoscope-
star collision headed for the full moon,
a broken glass screaming ‘NO!’
to the hand nearing with clear superglue.

I want the thunder to shake my bones
I want the lightning to strike my pale pigment into fire
there is fire on your lips.

I want to shatter in the sick rain
let the tears run along
every ceramic crack
of my china bowl body
thrown against a wall five years ago.

I want to scream
my vocal cords snapping open
you open
they’re turning into purple ash
my brain is on fire
my eyes are facing the dying sun.

I’m painting my soul into expressionistic
and it’s scattered
dug out with a clawed fist
but each black shard
only attracts more light
and moths are my best friends
surrounding this burning
burning bulb heart of mine.

I’m a sun-drenched boot
and I prefer it this way.

Don’t lace me up.

I want to feel the wind.

— (via courtneykrystek)

No you’re not her.
Nothing about you screams “Taylor!”
My hand brushes a teardrop of your hair
And it’s not fiery
It’s not fighting
It’s not the red root
Bleed because I fucking can

We talk about existentialism
And forensic anthropology in the same breath
And i’ve met only one other girl
With a brain so versatile
But I press a fingertip against your skin
And my hand comes back clean
And hers would’ve burned.

No you’re not her.

Your eyelashes blink burnt sienna sunsets
But hers are hot emeralds
Blinking like streetlights
The one night you hung out in the middle of the street daring a car not to swerve.

You are safety I can wrap spiderwebs into.

But you aren’t her.

No you aren’t her.

— (via courtneykrystek)

I woke up with red flags pressed into my skin
a flush of thousands, golden sun gleaming in thrifts of blood,
I picked them up one by one
and smoldered each fighter between my forefinger and thumb.

The earth wants me to keep living
so badly it’s sending troops
to fight the battles raging in my head.

But I just swipe my hands along my skin
knocking each mast set into the follicles of trauma
rooted deep inside my belly.

If you pull them all out
I’ll unravel like a twenty thousand year old tree.

No I don’t just want to tear myself out of the world
I want to burn alive
until the only remainder of the paths you scorched into my skin
is smoke.

You see, my courage is afraid to eat
and my bravery is stumbling over its own lost feet
I don’t recognize my fractured eyes
that were blown up running into land mines
fighting to get away from you.

But don’t worry.
I’m keeping our secrets tucked nicely away
in the last fifteen birthday boxes my mother gave me,
the candles scorching their way into the cake
as I shouted ‘God make me safe’-

a wish no six year old should know how to scream

and right now I’m screaming fuck you and our sick society-

I can’t even put these trauma-riddled
words into poetry
because all I can think of when I think of love
is the way I screamed in the backseat of your car

and all I can think of when I think of hope
is the desperation that clawed its way into my chest
every time you offered to babysit.

The next time someone asks why I don’t finish a meal
I’ll show them the structure plans you carved into my thighs
for years to come when my hips would swing

Now the only thing left hanging is my kneck
in an attempt to dry out the body
you left bleeding on your sheets
cracking your knuckles at the door
saying ‘we just went out for some ice cream.’

And the doctors wonder why I threw out all the spoons
when my mom brought home rocky road the day I learned what is was to touch the moon.

This is me ripping down the stop signs
that no one paid attention to
This is me blaring the radio every night
just to get your fucking footsteps out of my head
This is me opening my rubber-banded throat
This is me reaching for her right-handed touch
This is me clawing the edge of the world over
looking for the grave you cleverly composed
This is me pulling my eighteen-year-old self from her first suicide attempt
This is me screaming breathe.


Am I Still Human?

(via courtneykrystek)


Woke up one day and I was gone.

Clawed through my chest, picked through each rib like a toothpick,

All blood on my hands. But nothing to show for it.

Lungs full of clouds

I’ll breathe easy

But you know it’s a lie when I stutter everytime you ask me what’s wrong.

Revolving mirror

If I stare too close will I fall in?

Let me go.

Gunshots through the doorframe were always your worst nightmare

And here I shoved them on your lips

Every single damn time I said I love you.


Follow the sound
Of rubble smoldering
Hips breaking
Steel bending.

Follow the sound
Of fingertips bleeding
Rock weeping
Breath leaving.

Follow the sound
Of bedrails squeaking
Lips moaning
Walls spilling secrets.

Follow the sound
Of thunderous beats
Heels running
Skies caving
Ground rocking
Bodies shaking
Glass shattering
Pulses ripping
And a beat
Running from the curtains.

That’s where you’ll find me.


I have half a mind to press my hands against my skull

Until my eyes run blind.

Then again, they’re already there.

Trembling in their sockets
Like leaves reluctant to take the fall
That will save them.

I’ll wipe the holy from my eyes
And arrive on shore
Like a pirate discovering his heart for the very first time.

Beat beat beating in the sand.

It’s there it’s there it’s there.

So Here

Warning: May trigger

So here’s how the story goes: I started running and couldn’t stop. My legs kept moving, my brain kept surviving, my lungs kept bursting over and over into bright red flowers blossoming on my chest like popped blood vessels in between my ribs. If you run your hands across them you’ll feel the bumps of a railroad track leading to a girl stuck in the middle of her trauma with her belly ballooning out of her waist just to feel in control, with her mirror broken in her fists just to feel whole. Pulling the ceiling down with her shaking fingertips just to feel more centered.

See here’s what it’s about: control.

I’m so strong you say?

Yeah look at me starving myself away.

I’m still strong enough to feel you say?

Yeah look at me stone cold all the time.

I want to break the sunlight up into patterns until it only runs across my cheek in a river, because I can’t stand you seeing me now. I don’t want you to see the cracks in my lips when I smile or the splashed horizon in my eyes.

And you know what’s so fucking sick about all of this?

I promised I wouldn’t let him win.

I promised I wouldn’t let him have my life.

But somehow he crept inside my dreams the way he crept inside my bed night after night,

And no matter how hard I pull at the frail roots of my hair, the ebbing tree of memory just beats beats my brain into a bloody pulp

Until I’m spitting blood onto the ground and covering up bruises on my hips.

I guess you could say I’m at war with my trauma. I’m gun-shy but my memories are firing off bullets like kite strings on The Fourth of July.

Are there still flowers out there?

Are there children who laugh?

Were there once days I could get out of bed? Open my eyes?

If there were I don’t remember.

These shadows are no longer echoes. They are full-fledged screams. And I’m trying to knit my life together by ignoring them. 

Screaming Underwater

I swear this fire might just be the last of me.
I can’t help but stay riveted at the bottom of the tub
waiting for the ash to rise to the surface
but all that ripples across the surface are waves.

With only an ounce of oxygen I’m still left gasping your name.

Rip me up from the stones.
Kiss me like you never thought of leaving,
like there was never a choice.

I don’t want to tap this faucet with my toe anymore
I don’t want to overfill this bathroom with steam anymore.

But the mirror only kisses me back when it’s lost in fog
and I can only pretend your hands are wrapped around my thighs
when the fire feels like my skin.

These shivers are black shocks
and your voice echoes from deep within the ceramics,

I break for air.