Though I grow,
only so within the parameters of my soul. A prescribed disposition, a certain reflection, I paint it all in grey, with black and white precision.
That is not how I see the world,
Do we make noise when we sleepwalk
limited. Muted. In that famed song of self.
Brown hair. Hazel eyes. Average height. Build me up.
I always think about the description they’d give me if I went missing. Or got Lost.
Elsewhere. Out of mind. Out of sight.
Out of self.
She has a beautiful voice
and her violets grow intricate
over the neighbour’s fence
and a face I could trace
but dare not
in case a scar, with longing
I fear that I have always been small, obsessed with taking up as little space as possible.
My shy girl persona threw me into the deep end. High school. Though whatever splash I made, no one noticed. The dramatics of teenagehood extend well into our twenties. Or is the drama only me? My fingers fumbling on keys in stretch for metaphor. Finding the space between experience and present has grown so much the stretch leaves marks on your stomach. The acne scars that occupy my jawline are a constellation of anything but stars and hope. They frame a mouth that kept silent, sealed itself against whispers that slithered in between the pages of whatever novel I was reading. Time heals all wounds except these, and many others you’d find if you looked in the mirror long enough. Rolled tartan skirts above knees, mine brushing shins. Fingers wanting to find her’s. Laced. 3:20 bell. Rings. A headache and cramps and the powdery taste of paracetamol and fear for tomorrow on my tongue. A basketball hitting the pavement. Handball. Her turn. Switch on, and off, but they keep the light on, over you, a surgical lamp, examining, manipulating, updating, live, real-time in a new-world yearbook. Log off. Cousins over for lunch. Things are going well. Tinsel on the tree. A new year calling my name. I reverberate down the halls. Fading out, out, smaller and smaller. Fading white to black to reunion.
Confusion, in the face of one thousand lines
heartfelt sentiments, I have penned
these broken, 1am rhymes
are out of step with you and them
Echoes fade out
my trust in you
continued your illusions
painted in muted, watercolours
droplets, tears of pale lavender
and the tree we sat under
in our first and last January
It will all taste sweeter than this
You lied like the deceiving prince I knew you were
but I was a Lie
in words and in body
The space matters now you no longer fill it
only now I know it’s there
and it exposes me.
Kiss her like you kissed me
taste lipstick, love and meaning
no taint of hesitation
lose your fingers in her knotted hair
I’m sorry, so sorry
to have weighed you down with me
We were never anything more
than an event
occupying the smooth transition of a few months
where you unleashed your passions and perversions
as I hid, in the corners of your covers
You may never feel
what it is,
to be cast aside
into the cold,
or to dread
or to be caged
Shaking hands clutch at teacups
starved talons and twisted mouths
of spite, unripe plum painted lips
red stained, seeping into cracks
shiver at my thoughts
that curdle cold milk
The stick of every second, disgust
stains the rim of my cup
filtered light and floating dust
carries ancient words
that work in forging blades
to burn smooth skin.
Relief swells in my throat–
a substitute for truth
as a road, for lined eyes
and bent backs,