My closet is a tree curling into a question mark around me.
My closet is a safe haven for the truth on my breath,
the words still lingering on my tongue in a tirade of fears undone.
My closet keeps me warm
when the rest of the world seems to shiver on its own lies;
caving in on itself
as if that is the only thing it knows how to do.
The oiled hinges creek from overdose,
used to the brink of its capability
swinging, constantly, back and forth like a pendulum,
as if mimicking the words slipping so easily under my breath.
One, two, three, four, five, six-
I count off the seconds that I hide,
seeking an escape that can’t be built from wood and nails.
Seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven-
I try to forget your words drilled into my skull like a final breath,
as if these lies were the secret to the universe,
a mantra I can never forget,
that I will remember
like the cigarette smoke that hung like a noose in my father’s house,
foreshadowing a future
encraved in my skull.
Twelve, thirteen, fourteen-
I look at my trembling hands and pray that they stop shaking,
as if it were them causing this fear, and not the look in my mother’s eyes.
I attempt to recall what it was like to live without this nagging in the back of my heart,
tugging like worried child, to conceal the nonexistent blemishes on my skin.
I am the epitome of anxiety.
The rapid beat of my heart seeking a solace that will never come,
the bolster in the house had long since withered,
the edifice of this musty shaken shack crumbling down in the flames of the fracas
I am a nutcase,
the tin can that once kept hold of all these shattered pieces
falling as sand
through the cracks of my palms,
this is last stand I have,
the final catcall to doom
I was unfortunately not built for crowds,
the scattered hallway of people, the constant;
insistent touches of body on body,
the too close foreigners
this is not okay
Do not touch me,
I do not know you,
and if I did know you,
you’d know that I am paranoid
I do not trust, will not trust,
and will probably never trust you
But if I do find some final mended strand
left suffocating inside this melting pot of crisis,
then take my heart and place it somewhere safe
Treat it as if it were the last key to your house,
The Pandora box of hope
as you would a wounded bird,
cherish its seeping edges
with a tenderness I have never seen before,
make me feel like you are the pentagon to my heart
Open my closet door at your own discretion,
do not take pity or judgment
I will spit them back in your face.
I would say welcome to my hell,
but that would insinuate that you might enjoy your time here.
Still I hope you enjoy your time here
For this gateway only opens for so long,
I’m only allowed to breath from the oxygen tank of my own making,
the ticking clock a constant reminder of my limitations
when this door creaks open
I have only so much time,
a reprieve from the coffin I call home
Open my closet door as if it were the beginning to a righteous path,
find my hand and pull me from the depths of the sea
Love the sea,
as the water kisses the sand,
to unweave the stitches I have sown through the flesh of my lips
Do not turn away from the demons in my head,
as you would the enemies on a battlefield,
knowing them as you do the quirks of your sins,
cast them away with the light of your grace,
unreel the snake clutching to my throat,
pick the apple from my grasp
Open my closet door and set aside this present grief,
find a girl who still struggles to bleed