I am Caitlin

I am Caitlin. C-A-I-T-L-I-N.

It’s the traditional Irish spelling.

No one can spell my name.

They throw in a K, a Y, and E’s galore.

And it’s always the same and they never are sure and my name is not there.


I have mountains of birthday cards addressed to a stranger.

Someone that’s me but not quite.

Almost but not quite, so close, but not me. 

There’s the C and the A and then there’s that E.

Then there’s that E. That’s for her and not me.


There once was a card with an E and a K.

Wishing me wishes on my special day.

Along with the card came a gift. A blanket with black dogs.

“Because I know how much you love your dog,” it read.

 “What dog?” I said. I’m allergic.


My grandmother bought me a soccer book.

Due to how much I love to play.

 But the day I touch a soccer ball is the day the London Bridge will fall,

And pigs will fly and I’ll still ask why,

Can’t anyone spell my name?


I look at theses misprints, soon I realize

my name has become something personalized

C-A-I-T-L-I-N is Catalina is Caity D

And this isn’t my name yet it’s very much me

So I let the E’s swim in my sea of the C’s


I see people call to this person care

Listening to her, wanting her there

Wanting the person these names seem to share


They mimic my misprints; add letters galore

They look past my crust, they see to my core

And though I have cards addressed, not to me

They’re written to people I’m getting to be.

Even if “Katelyn” has K, Y and E.

I am Katelyn and Caitlin is she. 



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