It’s like catching a glimpse of a flickering candle down a long, dark hallway.
I want so badly to hold onto this light.
I want so badly to feel better.
I am throwing myself into doubt, the unknown, the darkness.
Please help me…
Friends, universe, Wakan, that which we cannot understand.
I have to believe in you, or I will have nothing left.
You told me today
you would drag me like a ball and chain
But I will not go quietly
into the abyss
I will arrive kicking and screaming
knowing there are more hands to grasp
and seashores to wander
still blood oranges to peel
and savor like sunsets over the bay
I will not go quietly
I will arrive angrily
knowing there are more lives to touch
girls to convince they are brilliant
more lonely pets to take home
still men with emotions to embrace
this time I will not go quietly
I will not look at you and say
it is too painful
this time I will be prepared
My heart is wrong.
It doesn’t want the right things.
Wrong for craving the eyes that
appraise my hips and trail down my thighs.
Wrong is how much mascara I wear
even though my eyelashes are good enough
just the way they are.
Wrong is my desire for married men,
just because they are unattainable but it’s not right,
my desire for fresh scars, for the feeling of my jeans
growing too loose and slipping off.
My heart doesn’t want the right things.
But I have been there and back.
Yet still, my heart is wrong.
It has an irregular beat–
the doctor said it, so it must be true.
And wrong are the people who say,
“You should be happy, because you are so beautiful.”
Wrong is the feeling that while my face
may remotely approach beauty, my heart
is the twisted, the grey, and the withering–
the decay of a girl who used to be happy.
My heart is wrong, I think–
maybe my thoughts are wrong instead.
Maybe what’s wrong is in my head.
Wrong is the way that I will end this poem,
for it is not with redemption
as you wanted it to be,
not with happiness or joy,
nor with triumph,
but with survival.
is just plain survival
and that is not wrong.
like a leaf
like green tea
cut me out of an egg
i want to leak yolk
into my new nest
i want to be re-
birthed in the dew
like a raindrop
like a small pebble
from the beach
just a snowflake
from a blizzard
People always say It’s the little things. It really is.
The little things give us the will to survive.
It’s the pink marmalade glow above the bay against the dark forest I walk through
on the way home. The frozen dirt beneath my boots is hard as concrete, tap tap tap. Dripping icicles that dangle like fangs in the mouth of a cave.
The things like a child’s cherub face split wide in a grin or
a lilting melody that catches me off guard. The fire dancer swirling his flames in circles
and loops, igniting the air. People will stop to stare and applaud.
It’s the crunch of leaves beneath my sneakers, announcing autumn.
The birdsongs of dawn as I walk to school, alone on crisp mornings.
It’s the emptiness of the beach in winter, snow meeting sand.
The wind howling its favorite tune, bending around the boards of my house.
It is me clasping a mug of hot tea, a cat nestling into the lap of someone
talking soft into the phone. The flash of a stranger’s smile.
Sometimes I forget these things, but it seems that they always return.
They return when I need them most.