Saturday, December 31, 2016

Again, A Ringing

This warm rage comes
bubbling under gladness
I'm not sure I know how to
describe it properly
gritty like sand
or when acid hits your stomach
my body
knowing it's poison
clenches up
I want to help
all the time.

But I fear, sometimes,
that is not enough.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

So Cold

Got these goosebumps.
I am so cold.
Skin tickles.
I'm not embarrassed by my writing anymore.
Well, I am.
But you know what I'm capable of,
so don't judge me too hard.
Is this why I choose wrong.
Length of time doesn't seem so bad.
but sometimes, I do.

Riley Welch

Monday, December 26, 2016


Sweet, maple
like a holiday drip
ground walnut shells
oils and brew
like a witch
get too rough
get too smooth.
ice, ice, hot.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

3 Bedrooms

No inspiration.
No perspiration.
I just feel like
I'm back stuck in a rut.
And it's rough. I don't know why things keep unfolding.

Does life just influx
in these great ups and downs.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, December 21, 2016


I feel a stark inspiration
a light
a bulb?
No, just light.
Where it blossoms I don't know.
Where it blooms I might.
Tucked away in corners of books.

Riley Welch

Monday, December 19, 2016


This is surely the longest
a notebook has lasted
in a while
I'm halfway through
1 over 2
Surely I won't be finished
at least until December
I'll have to find one to replace it
But man,
I'm so attached
like I wasn't before.

Riley Welch

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Cross streets of

I've danced so much
my thighs were sore
every time a wet body
crashed into me I gagged
hips don't move like I wanted
so so loud.
I can hardly believe
my ears didn't give out.
Curls of smoke on the porch.
What a wonder this place remains.
Big and full of laughter
Dirty twenty dollar bills on the floor
bright lights,
so, so nice.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, December 14, 2016


Leaves will rustle
I hear them hit the roof
hit the gutter
some scatter to the ground
I can't hear them on the ground,
but against themselves
as they go down.
Quick sound of almost winter.

Riley Welch

Monday, December 12, 2016


Sharpening knives
the way iron sharpens iron
you are you friends
I've figured out the formula
I think
good becomes good
expose yourself
learn to move on and grow
I feel all of this gratitude

I think I figured out how to channel it.

Riley Welch

Saturday, December 10, 2016


Trying to get back to it:

Falling behind again

I always give it a good go.
This sounds like everything else.
I try not to get discouraged.

But, I'm sorry.

Riley Welch

Saturday, November 26, 2016

One more break

As finals approach, I once again find myself too busy to write. I hate being in this spot. I'm going to take a week or so and then winter break will be in full swing and my writing, hopefully, will be too. 

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

A Haiku

This is a haiku
I don't think I'm good at them.
Or don't understand.

Riley Welch

Monday, November 21, 2016


Even with this level of production I fear I’m becoming stagnant. 
I want to keep up my practice, but I feel like I need guidance. 
I want to be better and I want to keep working, 
but I don’t want to burn out by doing the exact same routine for 3 years.

Riley Welch

Saturday, November 19, 2016


Racing water
trickling beauty.

He had asked her about it once
but that was in another life
when they were both different people
in a flash he could see stampeding footprints
this is what want felt like
this is what disappearing felt like
this is what once and twice over worlds felt like

Riley Welch

Wednesday, November 16, 2016


I'm sure I've got a poem with this title already.

Or a couple lines that I thought about writing.

What about the west has become so wild?

Or is it not wild anymore.

I can't keep track of what is associated with which direction anymore.

I just thought it sounded like a nice name for a poem.

I don't know.

I guess I shouldn't write poems based off just the title anymore.

Better to get an idea snowballing.

Remember when I would have poem ideas and write them down and turn them into something?

That seems like a crazy left behind time now.

Oh well.

Riley Welch

Monday, November 14, 2016

2 Weeks

I wanted half a month.
since I caught up I figured
this is surely no big deal
maybe it was
I've been so tired lately
words come into my head
and I cannot bear to ink them on paper.
It feels like when I was a kid
and described everything
long and lengthy
in my head.
No pencils at all.

Riley Welch

Saturday, November 12, 2016


I feel an odd sense of defeat at admitting time from writing needs to be taken. Maybe it doesn't and I should instead write through the mad and through all that sounds like everything else.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, November 9, 2016


I'm feeing pretty mad
for a dull Monday morning.

I'm mad there's only four weeks left in the semester.
And I'm mad I didn't take more classes.
And I'm mad my boyfriend lives in a different state.
And I'm mad this is the first time I've written in a month.
And I'm mad I've been building up scripts in my head,
when I promised myself I would put them on paper.
And I'm mad the poems I queued on my blog ran out because now I have to write more.
And I'm mad that I'm mad about writing,
because this is what I do and who I am.
And I'm mad my room got messy,
and that I ran out of safety pins to hold my socks together.
And that I have such weird particularities about rooms and socks to begin with.
And I'm mad I can't text about myself.
And I'm mad at the US.
And I guess at the entirety of people.
And I wish schools taught empathy along with money management.
And I'm mad salicylic acid has become an addiction for my skin.
And I'm mad that writing this poem is making me mad.
And I'm mad I'm neglecting my friend edits.
And maybe I'm mad at myself.
Or everyone else.

I can't tell.

Riley Welch

Monday, November 7, 2016


Can't get away
know I can't
but god,
oh man,
I'm too jazzed.
[How long is a three week period anyway?]
Not too long.
Test, test, test, pause.
One more.
Standards higher than ever
and being met.

Riley Welch

Saturday, November 5, 2016


I think about overlap a lot.
It makes things easier.
Less brain space.
I guess in some cases
it could be harder.
But it seems like,
in my life,
means multi-task
means two at once.
and in this case,
Just maybe,
time is precious,
So I need
I can get.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

R (red)

Arctic mumbo jumbo
blood rising
and pumping.
OH! I'm so angry.
At everything.
but right now, at this.
Red and blurred.
Lined up tight.
Everything seems so pointless.
It stops.

Riley Welch

Monday, October 31, 2016


September was over in a flash.
I opened my mouth and it all fell out.
Jaw closed again.
How slow does October creep?
Possibly like the way
you stop counting at ten
and start over.
How do you continue?
You know what comes next.

A pause at ten.
A breath.

Riley Welch

Saturday, October 29, 2016

3 Bubbly, Sleepy, Wild 3-Line Thoughts

9:27 AM
All purchased.
Not cheap, so worth it.

12:27 PM
Too late now,
I'm out,
no assignments or anything.

6:10 PM
I'm ready.
I've learned.
This is all over.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Silence *is right*

Excitement keeps keeping me up,
I've never felt my feet
cycling like this before.
Pump. pump. pump.
Swear you'll wait up?
Or at least, wait up when I run ahead.
Spring is so fresh
this year.

Riley Welch

Monday, October 24, 2016

3 Hours

Eyes hanging
bags sit low
your entire face slides off
sinking quick.
Pants loose
dress loose
sweater loose.
If not for sheer force,
I would surely melt
into a soft pureed liquid
on the ground.

Riley Welch

Saturday, October 22, 2016


Vibrant blue,
went to hear light buzzing
who knows how things fair.
I still think about things falling apart.
All the time.
Really, all the time.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


I felt depression sinking in again
a cold white sheet
Like how your bed feels so good.
But think of how much better
getting up and living your life feels.
Like I'm in a battle
against what my body wants to do and what I know I need to do to survive.
Goosebumps don't feel good anymore.
UP, not down, up.

Riley Welch

Monday, October 17, 2016


A car turned right into the lane one over from me.

I jumped.
Careful not to swerve my car into them.
In a quick moment,
I realized it was the same car as mine.
Light blue,
I pictured us hitting
and completely overlapping,
becoming one car.

Clean edges, sliding into each other

denser, stronger, deeper in color, speed.
Wheels hitting the ground with purpose.

And then the moment passed
and the car turned without hitting me
and sped.
It felt like a missed opportunity.

Riley Welch

Saturday, October 15, 2016

OJS (Oversized Jean Shorts)

How to make a mark in different mediums. 
I want to capture in perfect still, 
hard hitting
or etching.
God, there is beauty in nothing. 
I'm becoming softer. 
But can't tell if it 
will help or hurt me. 
Still life, 
or freeze frame.
Left off and out.
Deep breathes. 

Riley Welch

Wednesday, October 12, 2016


Keeping it up.
Back up.
No loss.
Things are fresh
let it ferment.
Let all thing ferment.
Spill over
and out.
Or both.
Sometimes more is that.
Just more.

Riley Welch

Monday, October 10, 2016


I went to write out a metaphor
where I proclaim
when you speak
the clouds glisten
and everything speaks to me
all at once.
As though,
you deliver life of all things.
but every time I try,
not only does it feel,
deep in my bones, like a lie,
but it sounds bad,

Instead I feel it all,
I hear,
I digest.
That tiny bug in my stomach
twists and turns
and gratitude for my
life bubbles like gritty sand.

Riley Welch

Saturday, October 8, 2016

And I Felt a Great Loss

While in line at Wendy's
I watched a woman
checking fried goods in the oil.

And flipping the fries and nuggets
about in this basket,
and when she did
a piece of chicken
flipped out of the basket
and into the boiling oil.

I was immediatly fixated
and curious
as to the destiny of the chicken.
Would it be retrieved
or burn up in all that oil?

Riley Welch

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

The Golden Hour

In trying to capture a moment I become redundant.
So here
picture this:
grey sky. No white sky.
All clouds, no storms.
Warm. But not sunny,
an odd contradiction I've
come to find comfortable.
Trees the greenest green.
Well, that was lazy. Trees a variety of
greens. Rich and forest-y and
light and almost yellow.
Oh, it was all so beautiful.
The air settled on my shoulders
in a relaxing comfort. I had not
felt for week.s
Orange rooftops welcomed the shade,
almost bleached by the suns persistence.
Chatter and footsteps were drowned
out by headphones on low.
To add to the mood.
Everything was so lovely.

And then the bus came.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Day 5

When I'm busy,
without being overworked,
my body doesn't make poetry.
Because it's too busy with
a long a curling to-do list,
it makes sure words don't fit anymore,
not as they used to.
I think it's a writing slump.
do I leave off completely?
Or write through it...
When your sick, you take a break.
but I guess there's a chance
being unable to write
and being sick
are two very different things.

Riley Welch

Saturday, October 1, 2016


A small rip began
at the top of a well-loved nest. 
Things mostly fall apart
because very few things last forever.
Ringing. Constant. 

Riley Welch

Wednesday, September 28, 2016


Stretching to the highest limb -
things are stagnent because
of lack of diversity,
practice, practice, practice,
Not fair to fall behind
just because you figured out the trick.
It should still be challenging.
I don't think letting myself down is the right word,
I know I'm putting off words that must be accomplished eventually.

Riley Welch

Monday, September 26, 2016

Water Running

Why isn't my sadness dripping in creativity?
If I must be unhappy, at the very least,
couldn't I be productive too.
Gears shift, a child cries,
strange music to me.
Piano keys and other things,
ringing, constant.

Riley Welch

Saturday, September 24, 2016

4 Sad 4 Line Monday Thoughts

6:30 AM
You feel so warm
and like
I don't want to get used
to being alone.

10:00 AM
It feels really beautiful.
I'm sad
and I'm going to keep it up.
At least for a week or so.

1:13 PM
Why do you hate it now?
You used to eat veggies right up.
This is quite difficult.
Please don't spill your milk.

3:16 PM
I am weirdly relieved.
To be done for the day,
still lots and lots
on this agenda.

Riley Welch

Monday, September 19, 2016


Back from this little break. Hopeful this year will remain quick, painless and with enough time to write. 

Rainbow zigzag
shoveling rage
plastic bags
two to three word combo
brain buzz
brain bleed?
Gold halves.
you inspire,
Sometimes love
Pouring sky
shining sky,
thoughts flow. Suddenly


1st Day Part Last

How does getting up early still feel hard?
I'm getting to this point:
I'm trying to balance being productive
and being awake, alert, on time
with my writing.
The formula for good writing doesn't seem too forced.
Just that,
imperfect situations lead to perfect -
or, at least,
ease of writing.
Here we go again.

Riley Welch

Monday, September 12, 2016

A few week off...

The beginning of my senior year of college and all the things that come with it are hitting me especially hard. I'm having trouble writing poems I like and having trouble writing poems I think sound unique and not the same as everything else I've ever written. I'm going to take a week or two off to sort out this year's school schedule, and come back to it. See y'all in a few!

Saturday, September 10, 2016

The Dragonfly Collection

This is dedicated to the notebook I finished at the beginning of August. I name my notebooks after how they look, this one was covered in Dragonflies. 

How did it all fly by so quick?
My writing quiet and angled.
Nothing great happened.
I felt no "ah-ha!" moment.
I just lived, with a contentment of sorts.
I find some days I feel SO, so average and normal,
and in this, I find true, incredible comfort.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, September 7, 2016


So much left to do and work on.
Organize my thoughts as best I can, line by line.
Figure out how to live in a world like this.

Riley Welch

Monday, September 5, 2016


I forgot how words slowed down my life.
Or flowed when I let them.
I haven't let words spill -
Fast and unreasonable -
in so long.
Though not for lack of trying,
I know they will return soon.

Riley Welch

Saturday, September 3, 2016


Running out of time causes me stress,
But excitement.
My return seems imminent,
at the moment,
my stomach mostly flops at the thought.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, August 31, 2016


Children grow up quick
and strong.
How do you grow a flower if you don't know it's type?
My mom once told me I was a ______.
The kind that grows easy and big,
anywhere, in any soil.
I'd be okay if I was over or underwatered, even a few times.

Riley Welch

Monday, August 29, 2016

W pt 2

My emotions hit like tears on paper.
It doesn't take much to start up.
A spill.
Happiness or sadness.
Or anger.
I think of how much I love.
And I cry.
i think of all these fights.
And I cry.
I think of loss and departure.
Tears, tears, tears.
Repetition is comfortable.
So I try to stay there,
to keep the tears tucked deep down.

Riley Welch

Saturday, August 27, 2016


I got a bagel the other morning,
it lacked a center,
where you could usually just look right through it.
It's not as thought it was baked like this,
but rather,
a hole was there, and, in baking it, sealed itself shut.
It felt comforting to know sometimes things grew together,
even when placed on opposites sides of a circle.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, August 24, 2016


Waiting feels worse than living.
Waiting to go back home.
Waiting to come back.
Waiting to graduate.
Waiting to pay off my credit card bill.
Waiting for the weekend.
I've been warned against this before.
Wishing pieces of life away.
I know I shouldn't.
I don't want anything to feel wasted.
But my where just seems,

Riley Welch

Monday, August 22, 2016


Squirrels are too smug.
I don't like them.
I think they think they're better than me.
And that makes me mad.
So I don't bury food,
off in the forest.
I've got grocery stores,
I don't need to bury any nuts...
But I bet if I had to,
I could, and then come winter,
I could find them.
Oh I bet I could find them....

Riley Welch

Friday, August 19, 2016

Road Home

Every time I cry
I get a headache.
It's as though the loss of a few tears
dehydrates my body completely.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, August 17, 2016


Sometimes I feel like I haven't written a good poem in months, but this week I finished my 10th notebook since 2014, and I think progress is as important as success. So here's another poem:

I walked out cold to my core.
Goosebumps and shivers.
Before I eat I'm always cold.
The sun wasn't as warm as I wanted and  cranked the car to 90 degrees.
My car has a temperature range of 30 degrees.
And some summer days I set it down to 60.
But today I am unquenchably cold.
I was in a daze,
a haze.
The kind I only cured by inexpensive breakfast eggs.

Riley Welch

Monday, August 15, 2016

Poem 1

Hello sweet lines.
Will you keep me stable?
I can only hope.

Riley Welch

Saturday, August 13, 2016


A tarp hung over the unfinished construction work
and the wind from the storm rippled it slightly
a hole was torn down the center,
which probably defeated the purpose of having a tarp at all.
The sky was grey and stormy
like I wished it to be
but now I felt I should have taken it back.
It felt hard to be sad when the sun was out,
though as the rain drizzled and my headphones hummed
my eyes welled up in an uncontrollable way.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, August 10, 2016


I got a shiver down my spine,
to my toes.
I felt like I was going to end.
To explode.
To spontaneously combust.
The wind blew, and I felt your hand on my shoulder
and knew you were there with me.

Riley Welch

Monday, August 8, 2016


I'm trying to name poems as I write them.
So I won't be forced to come back
and do it afterwards.
In the moment,
feels more easy and freeing.
I don't mean to doubt my voice.
But sometimes it happens.
I must unteach myself all these things.

Riley Welch

Saturday, August 6, 2016


It felt like bubbling soda trapped in my gut.
Over and on itself.
Like gently kneaded dough.
Not too chewy or tough,
but just, just right.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Above or Below

Morning, unsmiling and soft. 
Like an old flannel blanket, pulled into air. 
Undecided on temperature. 
The heat could skyrocket, 
in which case, 
all that mist would slowly clear
and the day would become hot. 
Or, the clouds would roll in
and the temperature would drop 
and eventually, rain would fall. 
And then the day would stay cold and wet.

Riley Welch

Monday, August 1, 2016


on the edge of good.
On the edge of sanity,
As usual.
My words don't dance and neither do I.
Rage puddles under me.
Why is there such inequality
in power.
After all this time.

Riley Welch

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Unread Novel

My mind is a list
and everything I need to do
builds and builds and builds.
And I'm trying to keep up.
Pages turn,
and I've got a book,
but I'm not done with chapter one.
Always over. over. overwhelmed.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, July 27, 2016


It's sunny. 
Really sunny. 
Now that's what I call sunny.  
Super bright and sunny. 
I definitely need sunglasses sunny. 
And maybe even a hat sunny. 
Crazy sunny. 
Not a single cloud in the sky sunny. 
Grass turning away from green sunny. 
It's sunny. 

Riley Welch

Monday, July 25, 2016


Forcing myself to write
on especially tiring days
exhausts me.
I have little want to spit out anything.
I find sometimes,
even the thought of looping words
becomes one of repulsion.
Not repulsion.
Wrong word.
More like:
getting lost in trying to find a starting point.
But I do also feel, pretty strongly,
that the act of practicing,
especially when you don't want to
holds power.

Riley Welch

Saturday, July 23, 2016


Beauty collapsed into moments.
Remember them,
quick and loving.
Sometimes they expand again,
like a memory,
but nothing sticks the same as the first time.
How many times do I feel butterflies in my stomach
when reliving a moment,
silently in my head?
It flip flops over itself,
time and time again.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, July 20, 2016


Cool windows reflected wrapping branches
knocking noises,
pink, cream, green.
It feels like they shouldn't,
but - to me -
they fit together so sweet.

Riley Welch

Monday, July 18, 2016


I probably couldn't request a nicer morning,
up early,
soft sunlight hitting. 
Cold, crisp coffee. 
Words scribbled as always. 
Backpackers came in first,
rolling through town.
Looking for a hot coffee. 
Business men followed them
probably on their way to the office. 
I sat in the corner and watched silently.  
Not because of my quiet nature -
because my nature is not really quiet.  
But because I was sitting alone and it felt odd to be talking with no one next to me.
I kept writing,
because it felt like it had been a while since I sat 
and relieved 6-8 poems of pressure off whichever lobe of my brain those come from. 
I'm always more fresh and ready to write 
bright and early. 
If only,
more often,
I could get myself up. 
At night I try to write
and it comes out a jumbled,
but satisfying, mess. 
As I finished my coffee,
I was ready to leave, 
and answer to obligation instead of myself. 

Riley Welch

Saturday, July 16, 2016

One More, Many More

I realized I stopped writing poems about you
and your death
and what it did to our family. 
Was the distance making grief easier,
or just making me forget faster?
I can't believe I stopped,
spaces between thoughts grew greater and sometimes so did guilt. 
I was going to change things
to make it up,
I just wasn't sure when. 

Riley Welch 

Wednesday, July 13, 2016


And it glowed, lit up the sky.
I knew the answer.
It didn't feel like sand in my fingertips this time.
The fear of falling lessened,
only slightly.
But surely, it did.
Much more afraid to drop it,
but knowing that,
if I did.
I would be alright.

Riley Welch

Monday, July 11, 2016


Trying to
write more more more.
Remember last summer?
I wrote
so, so, so
Someday I predict I will again.
One a day,
or three a week,
Keep it up, up, up.
Oh the privilege of thinking only one thought at a time.

Riley Welch

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Ms. Smith

One foot carried over the other
and her shoulder tinged a gentle red from the sun.
A breeze blew hair into her face and she shook her head
-chin to collarbone-
a few times, until it straightened itself out.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, July 6, 2016


Rounded soft curls,
piled on her crown.
She wrapped them like a promise.
Heels clinked on stairs,
step, step, step.
We always heard her coming.

Nails glossy and strong
rapping them on the table.
As an act of impatience or routine,
we could not tell.
She walked like a mystery,
in that we knew little of her,
except how she moved.

Like the way her wrist flicked the key in the door
and how she threw her purse to her shoulder as
she turned to leave.

We saw her glance to her watch
as she stepped on her bus
and waited for the next day to
to see her leave again.

Riley Welch

Monday, July 4, 2016


I feel as if we don't spend enough time being grateful.
For loving.
For looking up through green shaded leaves,
sun barely peeking.
For breezes igniting goosebumps down our stomachs in sweltering heat
and twisting armed branches
that mimic dancing bodies.

Riley Welch

Saturday, July 2, 2016

The Red (Root) Collection

You know the drill - I title each notebook I use according to the color of the color and binding, this one was red and covered in root vegetables. 

This is the poem dedicated to my time with this notebook. 

I feel like I'm learning.
Like the lessons of being surrounded by writers
are greater than my 45,000 dollar,
4 year

Should I feel guilty about that?
Maybe not.
It shows commitment at least.

I fill up books a bit slower now.
And spend more time on edits.
I haven't figured out how to become perfect yet,
but I have doubts I ever will.
And at the very least,
I am becoming

content with that.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

1:57 ATX bflc

Walk around
But not as scared.
Too scared?
Scared for others.
Why isn't anyone growing?
I stay awake worried.

Wipe my tears.

Riley Welch

Monday, June 27, 2016

Kitchen Thoughts

I sat on the floor
and I realized
it was a view I had not seen before.
A room I had walked through,
so many times,
but I had never looked up quite like this.
Is this what dogs see?
Or children?
I seem to lack the memories of looking up.
I haven't always stood this tall,
but I have trouble picturing standing at my mothers knees,
and wrapping my arms around them,
or of feeling
that my father's shoulders were the highest point on Earth.

Riley Welch

Saturday, June 25, 2016


why terrorize the little?
Harass the sweet?
Why make this all about shrieking?
And not just hanging out, free?

Riley Welch

Wednesday, June 22, 2016


Kittens purr
and purr
and meow.
Is it when they want something?
Or are they just chatty?
If I could chat back
surely that would
make us closer.
Help us to be
better friends.
But since I can't
I'll just fill your dish
and hope you love me anyway.

Riley Welch

Monday, June 20, 2016


Goosebumps keep coming
and acid tickles the back of my throat. 
I decided not to eat
so my stomach wouldn't upset itself. 
I am so
I am glad not always. 
Because I would surely have an ulcer by now, 
if that was the case. 
Like, just a small one. 
In the wall of my stomach
from all the 
so intense. 
I want to be settled instead. 

Riley Welch

Saturday, June 18, 2016

9:00 AM

I wanted to spill out words-
like have them flow from my hands without thought. 
Like having so many thoughts you don't have to think
Is this confusing yet?
I'm not sure I make sense sometimes,
I get lost discerning myself. 
I wanted to make a stronger impact,
to mold soft dirt into plants and make life again. 
Reorganize nutrition so it's evenly distributed. 
I thought I would fail nutrition in college 
but I made a B+. 
What a shocking final grade report. 
Happy, not sad.
Bark on a tree curled off like paper and I thought about subbing it as writing material,
but my ballpoint wouldn't roll on it smooth enough. 
Birds make their nests higher than we can reach on purpose
or at least, I've always assumed it was on purpose. 
But I don't know much about birds. 
So I could be wrong. 
We overwatered the dirt and it turned to mud which overturned the roots
because they had nothing solid to hold onto anymore. 
We ruined their home, and I thought, for this, I should feel guilty. 
I didn't mold the dirt the way I wanted. 
But sometimes things don't happen as you want and you just have to move on. 
Dwelling on things causes unnecessary stress,
which means getting things done becomes harder and harder
and no one really wants things to be harder than they have to be. 
Curling lattices made a safe spot for twisting vines to climb up,
but you still just watered the roots,
unless it was a really hot day. 
I made a list of what I wanted in life
and amongst many emotional bullets
was a greenhouse and the ability to cook eggs every morning. 
I suppose the eggs part is a matter of me waking up earlier 
and buying eggs,
but I don't know when I'll get around to actually doing that. 
The greenhouse seems harder
but also more rewarding
or satisfying
or maybe both. 
Maybe reward is satisfying 
and maybe satisfaction is a reward in itself.  


Riley Welch

Wednesday, June 15, 2016


I let the anxiety
and uneasiness
bubble up in my stomach.
It curdled like milk.
I tried to calm down.
Everything is fine. fine. fine.
I poured a beer
a bath
put on a tv show
with the captions
because I decided I couldn't hear.
"I've got to stop doing this"
"I've got to stop"
"I've got to"
Epsom salt piled up at the bottom of the bath
before it could dissolve and I made sure it wasn't
too, too
Before I sat,
hair piled up on my head, so it wouldn't get wet.
I tried to un-curdle milk.
Which doesn't come easy,
so everyone knows.

Riley Welch

Monday, June 13, 2016


What a waste.
How many words
fit on each page
before she hits the door.
I don't know who will grab the knob first.

Riley Welch

Saturday, June 11, 2016


I saw your eyes
peeking through two branches on a tree.
Lovely and shining.
If they had been green,
you would have gotten away.
Blending in with the leaves and sometimes, when they're fresh
the tree bark.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, June 8, 2016


I had a dream where the world ended,
but it didn’t fall apart,
and nothing went up in flames,
all my favorite restaurants were still open,
and no one I knew or loved was dead.
Everything was almost the same,
except we all knew the world had ended.

I still worked on marketing plans,
I still did my homework in the hours before it was due,
I still planned out with friends which day of the week we’d go out,
I still got annoyed when I knew I was right,
I still kissed my boyfriend and told him he was good,
I still ate like garbage and over-caffeinated and was shocked when I felt like shit,
I still felt guilty when I missed phone calls I knew I could have taken,
I still watched tv and texted my best friend my favorite jokes,
I still scoured Craigslist for cheap jobs I could do on the side,
I still washed my face too much and my hair not enough,
I still waited until I was 3,000 miles over to get an oil change,
I still worried about graduating, and grad school, and work, and money, and family, and friends, and drug use, and drinking, and growing up.

And we were all still endlessly anxious,
Like even without a world we found a way to remain discontent.

And then I woke up, stomach turning in knots over itself.
Reminding myself:

It was a dream.
It was a dream.
It was a dream.

I worried about the metaphoric implications of it,
but no more than I worried about anything else,
and after a few hours,
I forgot the dream altogether.

Riley Welch

Monday, June 6, 2016

Two, Four

I'm walking in circles
round and round about. 
The foot
in front of the other 
and to the left
or right
depending on the step. 
Dogs keep track of four feet. 
But I can barely keep up with two. 

Riley Welch

Saturday, June 4, 2016


Instead of a poem today, I'm posting a link to my first publication!

Coldnoon: Travel Poetics International Journal of Travel Writing recently published a collection of poems I wrote in their online "Diaries" section.
Because this is a journal of travel writing, these are poems I originally wrote on my backpacking trip in Germany a few summers ago. I'm very, very excited this got to be my first publication opportunity!
Check it (and the entire website, because it's pretty cool) out:

Wednesday, June 1, 2016


Curling shadows danced an outline
that I could barely keep track of,
I noticed I repeat when i can't choose the next line,
triplets are so comfortable,
your mouths cannot trip if it knows
exactly what comes next.

Riley Welch

Monday, May 30, 2016

On Edge

Things felt like closed doors.
Churning stomachs.
Vomit crept up
neat at the edge of our throat.
You didn't know what to do,
with all these feelings.
turned over on itself in your gut.
No, no, no.
Not again.
Swallow one time.
Hold it down.
One more,
one more,
one more time.

Riley Welch

Saturday, May 28, 2016


Things aren't very
in my head the way they used to be.
maybe I'm my best me
worry, hungry, helpless,
but at least
the head on my shoulders
is all I worry about.
back and forth
and forth
and forth

Riley Welch

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

A Love Poem

Sometimes when I'm back here
back where is technically home,
on especially cloudy days
I imagine I'm back.
Back up north.
And the only reason I can't see the mountains,
is because the clouds are hanging low
and wrapping their bodies around the foothills.
The air here is too dense
and it doesn't always work -
but sometimes,
for a split second,
I look west
and see clouds
and imagine the bodies of giants behind them
and imagine the air thin and cold and dry
and imagine I can hear the pitter of a summer rain,
that always sweeps in the afternoon.

Riley Welch

Monday, May 23, 2016

4 Chairs

Working and waiting
I've had trouble differentiating the two.
Days have slowed down
and I'm bored
and excited.
I'm working on wishing for weekdays
instead of weekends.
Because sometimes,
pieces of advice stick on my skin
and I can't remove them.
And once,
I wished all my weeks away,
and was scolded
because my life was of value.
Everyday, second, moment.
And I've got to quit letting it
fly, fly, fly

Riley Welch

Saturday, May 21, 2016


Running in circles
was always so, so pointless.
Exercise seemed daunting.
If you walk everywhere, does that count?

I'm screaming
Inside my head.
And it's shocking, but no one can hear me.

Now, now, now.
Racing - running? - no, racing.
Down spiral, spiral, spiral.
I don't know how
to quit repeating.
Everything gets so lost
and only sometimes
gets found.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, May 18, 2016


The ground changed under the tires with a bounce



It was always sandwiched like that
making the center material stick out sore.
Budump bump dump

The air rushed past the windows
And the clouds were hanging so low you couldn't see the mountains anymore

Goosebumps traced their was up my spine and I smiled the whole way there. 

Riley Welch

Monday, May 16, 2016

9:34 am

I love the idea of dirt.
It feels so full.
Rich and damp and nutrient packed.
Like if I drop a smattering of seeds,
they will sproutsproutsprout
and tiny greens and roots will grow twisty and winding through the soft broken up bits of grass.

Riley Welch

Saturday, May 14, 2016


Things edges don't stick
without glue
no matter how inconvenient.
I find crafts boring
and always forget
the glue.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

The Green(ery) Collection

Another finished notebook means another poem dedicated to the months I spent with it. 

Here's a new kind of confidence.
Houses, food, friends, family.
Searching, searching, searching.
Struggle and bustle.
Want sometimes outweighing obligation,
and almost never the opposite.
Word and worries
Colors melded together and sleep came and went.
Things feel right,
no matter how much gets reworked
and again
and again.

Riley Welch

Monday, May 9, 2016

More Rain

Water always cleared out
thick clumps of dirt
along the sidewalk.

Rushing, pushing them apart
and to mud -
smooth and earthy.

Rain moved in between grass blades,
sometimes sweet, and gentle,
sometimes rough, and destructive.

The tree's bark was dyed a darker color
by the dampness.

And all the twigs and sticks, scattered on the ground, became soft.
Where they had been brittle, they no longer cracked under foot,
but instead bent softly under the sole of a shoe.

Things would dry out, days later.
The mud would turn dirt would turn dry.
And everything would become a shade lighter
and wait again.

Riley Welch

Saturday, May 7, 2016


I'm getting
anxious, anxious, anxious
I'm amping up
more, more, more
I'm nervous
I'm building
waiting to
move on,
or whatever.
Everything feels
I edit my writing
over and over again.
I just can't imagine this not bursting,
spilling over,
and painting my body
red with relief.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

3 Pretty Happy 3 Line Monday Thoughts

10:57 am
Oh jeez,
almost 11, totally drowsy
up, down, up, down.

3:04 pm
Day dreaming,
sunny or cloudy. Fresh.

10:57 pm
How symmetrical,
chicken and tortillas,
salsa on top.

Riley Welch

Monday, May 2, 2016


Bursting pride
yellow lilies overlapped
petal, petal, petal,
do lilies even come in yellow?
I seem to have forgotten simple facts
things I learned
when i was little.
How you have some things, that are immediate knowledge?
Everyone knows cheetahs are quick, quick, quick.

Riley Welch

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Part One

And I couldn't tell
if my slow speed
was due to the cascade of blisters coating the heel of my foot,
or to all the thoughts
painting my mind white.
I started the engine
and a Rolling Stones song played.
and the moment felt
I couldn't wipe the smile off my face
and even took the long way home
with the windows rolled down all the way.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

White Space

And it felt violated
am I bad?
Am I a bad person?
Do I hold bad intentions,
sitting restlessly in the palm of my hand?
But this seeping,
and out of me
I guess I should try and stop it.
When does 6 hit?
6 months.
Is that alright?
Why do I find myself
the appropriate
isn't most of it just up to me?
New division.
Not one more
once more,
once more.
Things get hard when your tongue twists over short letters
scribbled out
on a page.
Handwriting sinking,
worse and worse
edits, edits, edits,
if I don't finish them soon
no one else will.

Riley Welch

Monday, April 25, 2016

4 Mildly Tired 4 Line Saturday Thoughts

8:37 am:
It feels
too early
to be awake
just yet.

11:45 am:
Saying goodbye -
even though being apart is normal
is sometimes sad
and sometimes hard.

6:01 pm:
Suddenly dizzy
and light-headed,
words come quick
and spilling.

8:23 pm:
Night came even
friends and laughs
and lots of fresh greens.
Full, happy, and sleepy.

Riley Welch

Saturday, April 23, 2016


I wanted to climb as high as I could before it all got away from me.
If I didn't immediatly
look over every edge
I thought it would be much, much too late.
I am so,
in comparison to each mountain.
I could look out
and climb on
and I needed to
before I continued.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

18 Seconds

I think I forgot how to write
how to line up
all the letters I know
or at least
know how to use
which is probably only 23 or 24 out of all 26.

It's as though
when I was in an environment
without writing
and reading
I had to fill the space with my own words.
But now,
that I am surrounded
drowned in them.
I've lost my flow
that used to come
spilling out.

Riley Welch

Monday, April 18, 2016


I've always loved
taking the long way home at night
after everyone was asleep
so there wasn't anything I could miss out on either.
And I would roll my windows down
no matter how cold
and sing
and freeze in the night air.
But money lately,
has been dwindling, unfortunately.
That means gas has to feel more like a luxury
than a priority
and so sometimes
when I'm coming home late
on a ten dollar quarter tank
I don't go the long way.
Because I really can't afford it,
at least not tonight.

Riley Welch

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Wrap Around

So I rounded the corner
and the mountains spilled out of the horizon
like nothing I had seen before.
The orange of the sun rested a sleepy head
on the tallest peak
and lit up all the clouds.
Pink and yellowed hold
and I felt immediatly thankful
for all that had led me right to where I was.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, April 13, 2016


There's something hard and sad about wonder.
How it turns and replicates itself,
hiding in the back of your head.
Usually cast as worry,
but sometimes playing anger
in a never ending, intermission-ess play.

Wonder preys on wild imagination,
and on lonely late night fears.
It feasts on stories you heard once or twice
about other kids - it's scary to see the connections
that end in your worst nightmares.
"But how close is it,
"How plausible?"

You ask, hoping you can say, "Well, not so similar."

But you almost always can't.

Wonder just lets you ask questions you may never be able to answer
and let's you build stories
off of nothing.
Nothing at all.

Riley Welch

Monday, April 11, 2016

Corner Stop

God bless my parents,
because they weren't writers -
aren't writers,
but they made me one
and I don't know what I would do if I wasn't.
And I know it's not always good.
And I know even less often it's great.
But lining up words in a pleasing order always feels right.
And sometimes I read words and cry
and sometimes I write words and cry
and sometimes it's happy
and sometimes it's not.
But on nights I am filled to the brim
I'm so glad there's a way to empty.

And I'm rethinking everything I've ever done
and I think I did it right,
but I also think I should do it differently
to try and do it better.
And I think I should stop expecting perfection
and I don't mean the kind of perfection we should reach,
I mean the outlining of my brain that I've decided is right.
And what I expect from others,
to know how to act.

And I need to stop getting so mad at poetry slams
and maybe use the platform for the emotion it's meant for
instead of checking to see if the poems were edited first.
Because maybe it's a good release to tell a crowd,
mixed of friends and strangers, how I feel.
And maybe someone will agree
and then they'll write poems too.

Because I don't know how else to describe the feeling of pulling my car over on a pleasant spring night and writing as fast as I can because the words have come straight up my spine and I have to get them out and I feel myself crying because my fingers can't keep up with my thoughts and I have so much to say and I'm only 21 and I'm worried that by the time I die I'll have run out of words or run out of time to write the words and if I don't write them I'll lose them and both prospects scare me and sometimes I wish I could take back everything I've ever put on paper so I could spit it out again and feel so proud and fresh of everything I've ever done.

Because sometimes those words get so stale
and I get so bored
and that's not fair.


But I guess I got distracted
I don't know what I meant for this to be about
but I think I got what I wanted.

Riley Welch

Saturday, April 9, 2016


Steam rises off of hot bodies.

Always fascinated by the way
the cool nights take in heat
and spit it out as misty vapor.

Fresh out of hot tubs
and into the cold night,
the sprint from the edge of the tub
to the door
is minimal
but in this weather
it seems like football fields.

It was a night that lacked a narrative
it was all just
hot and cold and hot and cold.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, April 6, 2016


A hat flew away carried by a heavy breeze.
Because wind
has to be moving 11 miles per hour
just to lift a grain.
Soft and delicate crystals
of sand
off a beach.
So maybe
more than a breeze,
it was a gust
that took the hat from it's owner,
and let it face the world
without a body
roaming beneath it.

Riley Welch

Monday, April 4, 2016

Messed or Missed

Wasting time
with writing
never feels like wasting time.

Even when I know
I should be accomplishing something.
Am I accomplishing something?
Some days it feels like

I write
and write
and write
and turn blank pages
into deep, messy squiggles
that I can barely decipher.

Riley Welch

Saturday, April 2, 2016

12:08 - reworked

And as the early, fresh sunlight cut under the sharp stone
it warmed my feet inside it's hallowed out leather shoe
and I felt in that moment
a great feeling of accomplishment
of learning
of doing something.
That may some day work in my favor,
which led to a solid feeling,
of contentment.
In a worn-in spot I could live in,
at least for a week
or so.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

SD - 40

Snow fell fast
and silent,
I had already
how snow can muffle
the sounds of night.
If you've been
there before,
you know how it feels
to have the night,
lit up by the reflection
of the snow.

When rain falls
it hits the ground with great might.
Too heavy and loud.

Riley Welch

Monday, March 28, 2016

Big Picture

So, things start
so small.
You build out and out.
It's hardest to remember
the puzzle piece.
Like the inner workings
of a cell
and how proteins can build
up a person - so small you can't even see them.
But then,
there comes even more to understand.
How do muscles move?
Think of what's behind that.
The cells and nerves that move the muscles.
And the muscles itself.

Bigger picture,
why is the person moving their arm?
Lunged back, ready to punch, wave point?

But why do our muscles
work the way they do?

Is there a why and
a how to everything?

It's easier, sometimes
for me to know why the person is moving their arm
than to consider
what release lets the muscles move at all.

Riley Welch

Saturday, March 26, 2016


Laughter comes out in short bursts,
Even without sound
you know the gasp
of a laugh.
in a theater,
when it wasn't
meant to slip out.
And booming.
When you least expect it,
catching the joke off guard.
under your breath
during class
at a note your friend smudged out,
instead of taking notes.
You always recognize a laugh.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, March 23, 2016


Round and round
the mind runs
without breaks
or rest
finding a center.

Riley Welch

Monday, March 21, 2016

4 Hungover 4 Line Saturday Thoughts

7:03 am
Rolling over
and gripping onto
edges of cushions
soft and heavy.

10:47 am
Rolling down windows
to get some air
some air,
the music was loud.

8:08 pm
Rolling feet
pitter patter
food, coffee, words.

1:11 am
Rolling cool breezes
doors rushing open
silent and a little scared,

Riley Welch

Saturday, March 19, 2016


Why don't we ever talk about
the stifling anxiety
the heart thudding through your entire self.
Heart rate increasing
how does anyone deal
with concealing
shaking fingertips.
"Hello, I am scared to walk home alone."
You know
keeping it simple.
I don't walk home alone
I don't
I can't.

Why was I taught to be scared
and why didn't anyone stop me.
Why didn't anyone tell me to be brave.
Why didn't anyone tell me, to stop crying
why, instead,
did they validate my fear
comforting me,
I wish someone had yelled.
And told me
it was no big deal,
it was time to get over it.
Maybe it was out of fear themselves,
of losing me,
into a dark cloudy evening.
I was always afraid of losing the trail.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, March 16, 2016


This poem will be the first back on my regular schedule of Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday each week. I am still on the lookout for the occasional outside author - so drop me an email if you have some writing!

And I feel like
I don't know what to say
even though
the symmetry
is screaming at me.
How can so much have happened,
and make anything else seem good?
It feels like I just want to unwind my arms
but then bury myself in them.
Am I warm?
Am I comfortable?
Do I feel safe?
Do I feel loved?
Do I love me
Do I love me
Do I love me?

Riley Welch

Tuesday, March 15, 2016


messed up
and crazy
and backwards
and wrong,
but sometimes the answer has no resolve.
And it;s too bad
and a little sad
and definitely cruel -
but round about
a hundred ears
and nothing else
seems true.
A skipping couple months
of hanging down
or around
and the sun comes out.
Dissolves the mist,
clear, clear blue.
Bright and indigo.

Riley Welch

Monday, March 14, 2016

3 cups

She stirred her coffee
so carefully
because she knew
if she rushed
she would spill,
And she wouldn't want to clean it up,
but if she let it dry
on the counter
it would be so
much harder to clean.
So she stirred carefully,
to avoid the problem completely.

Riley Welch

Sunday, March 13, 2016


"Positive experience
can serve
as a distraction from life"
From a linear point of view
why not diverge,
just every now and then
from a designated path.

It could clear up
and let you see
if just for a moment
things could go, well,
more poorly.

Riley Welch

Saturday, March 12, 2016

The Dark Green Collection

These poems
are meant to commemorate
the time of the notebook.
What happened
since September
when the dark green book began.
Things moved
so busy.
Which is a proper
for just how many months
it took to fill
this one.
Long stretched.
Nine to nine days.
Working, schooling
laughing, learning.
These sets of months
Perhaps the happiest yet.

Riley Welch

Friday, March 11, 2016


Homey smells
fresh seared onions
in preparation
for a feast
of family
of walking on light
only if to avoid
I remain conscious
of the words that leave my mouth.
Don't we want to celebrate joy here,
no need to cause
Sometimes, though,
is better to ignore.
If only for the sake
of someone else's happiness.

Riley Welch

Thursday, March 10, 2016


The pages of this book, have
filled to the ___
I feel ready to move on.
I feel the need for
forward progress.
In the form of
completed pages.

Riley Welch

Wednesday, March 9, 2016


There's something
about dancing
on a hot December day
crisp sparkling water,
spilling over with each
Socks sliding -
who can hate
the poor attempts
at dance.
That slowly, surely, surely, 
convince everyone else to join in.
Short smirks
and unruffled

Riley Welch

Tuesday, March 8, 2016


Running against
have never been
more exhilarating.

Riley Welch

Monday, March 7, 2016


the rules seem to
Hard then soft,
like chewy candy
or a melting piece of taffy,
on a stuffy hot afternoon.

Riley Welch

Sunday, March 6, 2016


Isn't it funny,
how words
won't come to me
until I have responsibilities
and deadlines.
I'll sit staring at blank pages
with not a care
or chore
in the world.
Writing nothing.
But then
when I have
and tasks
and things to do.
All I can think about
is committing


I opened the pages
without a thought
of the words
that might
fall out,
but it did feel right,
when my pen
hit the edge.

Riley Welch

Saturday, March 5, 2016


Today is the kind of day
where I want to be
Where I put
pen to paper
and let all my words
spill out.
Let my head empty,
less hearing.
And at the end of all that
I'm finally ready
for people to refill it.

Riley Welch

Friday, March 4, 2016


A gas fills whatever space it enters.
It stretches it's arms wide,
reaching the edges.
Pressing against
walls containing it.
Sometimes it is content.
And sometimes, it is packed snug
and angry.

Riley Welch

Thursday, March 3, 2016


They walked out the
And I realized
how many miles
they already felt.

Can realizing
good choices,
are really good choices,
still be hard

Riley Welch