Tag Archives: writer

Empty Girls Walking

I could never write again.

I could go the rest of my life without putting pen to paper. No one can force me to pour myself over essays or arrange stanzas for another sad poem or pick apart the meanings of words that I have yet to unpack.

I don’t feel like a writer. I haven’t sat down to work for ages – I write blog posts, sure, and some poems here and there. Words still tumble around my brain until they ache, until I have to do something or I’ll explode.

But there’s an essay that won’t let me go. I haven’t written it and I don’t want to do so. I don’t want to write down the thoughts – I want to pour them down the drain, light the sink on fire, and run away.

I don’t want to face this memory.

And it’s holding me hostage in the worst way. It has me by the brain and every time I get close to something else, it throbs in my skull. The words have come to me, angry and insistent, time and time again. It’s too much.

I wish there was a tidy ending.. a promise I could give that I’ll write everything down, that I’ll explain myself, that I’ll empty the vault and release the pressure building up behind my eyes.

I don’t know, man. I’m scared of everything I have to say. I’m afraid of how true it is, it was, it continues to be.

All I can do is look down at my hands and think, maybe someday.

maybe soon.

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Something Old

Here is where I was, two and three years ago. Simple pieces. Nothing too heavy or incriminating. But poetry always marks who I’ve been and where I’m going.

 

Bus #32 off Orchard

To the bulimic on the 9 AM bus –
I’m sorry heaven’s light burns the skin
around your chapped lips, I remember
how badly the sun can sting on mornings
like this
you slide into the hard plastic seat
as if slipping beneath a pinewood lid
your body sighs, collapsing inward,
and I wonder
how long you would be permitted
to sleep.

——————————————————-

we spill into the street
like milk flooding linoleum
and we know there’s no use crying

the sun has yet to claim its throne
seducing the last whispers of dawn
a frigid wind slips underneath our scarves
stroking the smooth napes of our necks

screaming metal materializes
girls clutching coffee struggle
to remember their own names
we file inside and no one says it
but we always crave the proximity.

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On Again

Some days I can’t be touched, not even by animals. The thought of someone’s fingertips on my skin makes me queasy.

Some days I cry because I want to be held so badly that my skin physically hurts.

It’s not easy to think of me as a survivor of assault. I know that. Remembering that my body was a space I had to reclaim, time and time again, has never made my loved ones happy. But I want to be seen fully by the people I love. I want them to understand, almost viscerally, the ground through which I had to claw myself in order to become the woman I am today.

I relish the idea of being known to my depths and I’ve been fortunate in that there are a handful of people who can throw my voice from their mouth. I am lucky. And even they don’t want to hear about all the nights I spent peeling other people’s fingerprints from my skin.

So why do it? Why remind you of where I’ve been, of the shape of the bruises that still ache when I move?

Writing is the only thing that makes sense to me. It’s the only cure, the quickest way back to normal, the most trusted record of who I am. And for years, I wrote without sharing. I wrote for myself, chronicling every breath, every misstep, every victory. Now, I write with you.

My father told me I share too much – that my words could, at any moment, outlast me in the worst ways. For a moment, I was scared. But then I flipped through my journals, through the pages that questioned and wept and burnt for something, some sign that I was meant to live and create, some proof that my pain could matter somewhere outside of myself… and I couldn’t look back. Writing is all I can do.

It is a selfish practice. I can’t sugarcoat that. I am trying to rip experiences from the walls of my ribs, the good and the bad, so my lungs have more room to expand. But sometimes I read comments and secret messages, written for my eyes alone, and I remember that I’m not the only survivor you know.

I don’t have a tidy ending to these thoughts, only a promise that I will keep creating as often as possible and I will be honest. There are good days and there are bad days. I’ll continue to share both.

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Meta

Hey, honey bees.

We have officially made it through the hellscape that was October and November – I’ve spent the first part of December recovering, passing out at odd hours with my tongue glued to the roof of my mouth. I wake up just as strangely, arms thrust upward, and I am consistently confused by my surroundings.

But now we’re here, you and me and a screen. That’s a lovely place to begin again.

A man once told me that I have a startling predisposition to share what’s bothering me, loudly, and I can’t argue with that. I can’t process pain unless I open the wounds, scoop out the infected tissue, and sew myself shut. That’s just biology. If I let it sit inside me, silent and raging, then I end up in the hospital. It’s the equivalent of emotional sepsis.

That doesn’t mean I’m good at processing emotions, nor does it entitle me to everyone’s time or attention or love or affection. It simply means that this blog is my surgery room. You are welcome to sit in the operating theater or leave the hospital. I can’t tell you which is best for you. I can only lay here, heart open, and make sense of my own mess. What you do with my findings has always been up to you.

When I sit down each week to write, I find myself circling two feelings: the feeling of trauma, which is heavy and dark, and the feeling of intense gratitude, which is heavy but bright. My life trickles out in these two extremes, or shades similar, until everything looks black and white. It is my sincere hope to be seen as more complex than that dichotomy, that slippery slope more divisive than healing. Most things are not solely Traumatic just as most stories of Gratitude have a bite of something more.

Writing my adventures lets me find gratitude in the aftermath of trauma, grief in the bodies of friends, and wholeness by way of misplaced hope. I write about my body, my illnesses, my friends, my successes, and my failures because I want to be seen and understood. I can’t do that without risk. I’ve had people hurl my words back at me, as if something carved from my own skin could be rendered into poison – but that is the price of discovery. I can’t understand or be understood if I am not willing to risk that pain, as unfortunate and jarring though it often is.

In short, I remember every single person who tells me they read this space. I also remember every single person who has abused my vulnerability for their own gain. And the former makes the latter seem so insignificant, so banal, that I can never believe their malice hurt me in the first place.

So, my friends, are we okay? Do let me know.

 

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Orange

I think of you
as my fingers peel
back thick skin

the fruit, so cold,
numbs my touch
but
the air is electric
alive with possibility

as my teeth tear
into you
and juice flows over
my peony tongue

I can’t tell
if I feel guilty
or refreshed.

————-

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(I am too sick and too sad to share anything new this week. October is fast becoming unbearable. Everything reminds me of Mani and my heart feels selfish. I miss her, and him, and feeling complete.) 

 

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