my pencil kissed my paper
in quiet determination, as my teacher spoke out-
"what is poetry?"
A mind like mine mulls over
things like this;
breathing them in only to
spit them out.
what is poetry?
& i could only think that:
my dead mother's hand crushed under the weight of
her saltwater eyes that i see in the
it isn't the life she could have led without
drugs or cancer.
my best friend's bones--
pale white and aching,
creaking under her skin as she
denies herself one more meal,
"maybe this is
maybe i want to
the razors i've let in
(and thrown out)
(and brought back)
and bargained with-
"don't make me bleed.
i don't want to shatter."
but my ribcage can't handle the pressure.
my ventricles can't handle the chemistry.
my brusied knuckles
and brusied thighs;
they are empty cliches but they hurt
all the same.
my father who hides pill bottles still;
whether they are hidden from
him or from me,
i am still not sure.
the hollow weight of promise as you give
to someone who promised you the universe.
but the only stars i got were the ones in my eyes.
but poetry is
clenching your fists under a damp pillow and
praying to some god that there are people
whispering into the night,
let there be someone listening."
letting your heartache rhyme,
or exist in
it is mostly letting your heartache bleed out
into the shape of a question mark.
it is your future.
it is your past.
poetry is the button i keep at the bottom of my
the one i found in the sea
when my head was underwater and i was
it is small and it is
and it is
i like the sound of that.
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