third person

i narrate my life in third person, sometimes, when i need to get away. i paint myself a hero, a protagonist, maybe the villain on a bad day. and when it gets bad, at least it’s only ever in a controllable way. where i can watch from the sidelines, and think to myself wow, that was some compelling characterization, all right.

because if someone’s always watching, at least i’m not alone. and when i’m lost at sea, at least i know there’s always gonna be the three-act story structure to guide me home. to hold me tight, and love me to the bone.

so i close my eyes, and pretend this isn’t really my body, on the bad nights. when i can’t help but feel like the sky is falling down. i shiver, and i shake, and i pinch my wrists, waiting for the tornado to dissipate and leave me shattered on the ground.

i take one step back, and then another, until nothing makes sense anymore. and i’m a kid on the swingset, i’m strangled tongues and rusty verbs. i’m a picasso painting, but only the ugly parts. and maybe it’s avant garde, or maybe we’re just stupid. and we take ourselves too seriously, and we never call home.

we go mad for an abstract concept. for a chance to be remembered. and so here i am, staring down my demons the runaway. and maybe this is what destroys me, but goddamn, if they’re not something to describe. i make myself mangled limbs and traffic accidents, and i know that i’m not really fine.

but i am not going down with this plane tonight. i won’t let the cancer spread to me, along broken, dilapidated limbs of this family tree. i’ve come too far to give up this early. and god, it sounds pretty, doesn’t it?

like the first page of a brand-new story.

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