my body isn’t mine dawn and dusk
it belongs to the restlessness
the tomorrow never comes
only the in betweens are mine to control
my imperfections are mountains
i am climbing myself
rain is boring into my back
water is filling me up
i am too heavy
the slippery stones give
but the ground doesn’t want me
i attempt to fly
i am at the edge looking into the stomach of time
i don’t see wings but i have faith?
i imagine flapping
i take a leap
the ground doesn’t want me
my soul is a stagnant water
i have a whole room to myself.
yet, this is me crouching in one corner.
square rooms are prison cells.
they end everywhere.
can you smell the loneliness on my tired clothes?
sweat-drenched XXL Lacoste
made bed. too made to be lain in.
my mind is a gutter. all the waste gathers here.
it is a filthy, filthy place.
my memories are rats.
big ass rats gnawing into my brain.
last night was a rodent parade.
when the sound of my own breathing reaches my ears
and my skin is warm
and time attaches itself to my brain
vulnerable, i am my most, here
now, inside sheets reeking of aging dreams and dying hope
there’s too much valley here
when do i start climbing?
your first love’s
tattooed on your heart
and it burns, still burns
like it was just yesterday
they decided to be fire
instead of water.
How many more scars
do you need on your body
to remind you of the existence
of some dark place?
To remind you to not
stray too far
To not bring along people
whose hands cannot build home
or hold one down?
While you’re painting survival
with your blood and tears,
do not forget that this war you fight
began with your permission
and will end only when you decide
that you have seen enough
of your own blood being collected.
there’s a way you hang on to words
even after the last letter has escaped the lips
even after the last pause
even after the last exhale
that is you being expectant
that somehow the lie will be given up
and the truth will, for once, make an appearance
and when it doesn’t
when it dawns on you
how much you’ve always known this person
there’s also this way you look at them
some i-told-myself-so jumps up from within you
your insides are on fire
you begin to think of the many definitions of a fool
beginning with you.
War is raging in your body
Oppression of all sorts under your skin
The same that tore your mother down
and your sisters, too.
The same that will break your daughters
because you have not been taught how to love yourself
but everything outside of your own.
down to your birthskin and into immersion,
water resuscitated all of your unjustified guilt.
Bathroom mirrors scrutinized more than just your upper body
And you lost
Crumpled to pieces at your own reflection
– not enough strength to pull yourself from the shame
Not enough will you hold your head high
and look you in the face.
You have long made excuses for this repression
Worn it like a crown upon your head
Adorned it with your diamond tears
Even given it face
Given it home inside your most sacred places.
But if you will wake
Give yourself some of this love you give to others
You will find an army sitting inside of you
ready to help you extract freedom from any kind of oppression
You will be done fighting
Because you will love
And you will heal.
Your walls will go up again.
And this time you will swear it.
You will swear to keep them standing.
You will swear to protect yourself.
You won’t break like tired wood.
You won’t fall.
Your bridges won’t burn
because there will be none – no crossing to the other side.
No marching against yourself.
You will surrender to yourself.
You will belong to you.
Not to the promises.
Not to the waiting.
Not to the wishing.
Not to the lonely nights,
or the dying lights.
Not to self-destructing habits.
Not to people who aren’t or things that aren’t.
Not to what you’ve lost
or what you will never gain.
You will be yours now.
Yours to guard.
Yours to defend.
Yours to secure.
You will come home, to rebuild.