wish fulfillment (3)

oh, the bad days just seem to stretch on forever, don’t they? digging right into your bones, foaming at the mouth, they do not let go or give in. they fight harder, and longer than any sane person could possibly endure and finally break you, when you’re lying on your bed, watching TV.

rather than drinking water or doing your schoolwork or working on that story. rather than taking a shower, or talking to anybody. because i’m so deep down now, i don’t think anyone can save me but myself, so… i’ll sit there, drowning. in a big, grey hoodie, and the same pair of jeans i’ve been wearing for days.

i’ll close my eyes, and wait for the ocean of pixels to carry me away, to somewhere the grass grows green, and the birds sing all day, and help me stay sane through… all this.

and you’re there with me. everyone is. all my imaginary friends, and long-lost acquaintances, perfect lovers i’ve yet to even meet.

and when it gets bad, the walls cradle me close. i take a bath, i read a book, i get the fuck off my phone, and know that right here where i stand is a place called home.

i get changed into pyjamas. wash my face, and look at myself in the mirror. the girl before me is tired, and sad, and there are bags under her eyes. and she’s breaking out again. but if you look closely, you can see a little grain of hope buried deep down inside. and for the first time in two fucking years, she starts to think that maybe, when all of this is over, she’s gonna be all right.

geography

i want to draw the memories out on that map i found in the glovebox as we drive. mark out the places we’ll go, and the people we’ll meet. and i know it hasn’t happened yet, but just promise we’ll get there, someday, no matter what.

because we’re gonna light up lanterns, i’m sure we will, and write wishes on the tissue-paper sides. and i’ll have a job, and i’ll hate it, but in that way you can ignore when you come home, so it’s fine. i’ll stop being so tired, all the fucking time, fazed by the slightest disaster.

but for now, i pin out contingencies across the dash, and buy myself a bath bomb off etsy. because i don’t know anything about the world, but i want to learn. walk along the old path, all alone, and don’t stumble like you used to. preserve the snapped twigs and press the crocus petals in your favourite book, so you’ll always remember the day you looked down over the abyss, and chose not to jump into it.

i’ll take the long way home, and carve out a path along hiking trails and highways, all of my own. trace the geography of broken promises along my collarbone, and try not to dance on the walk home, a smile breaking out across my cheeks despite it all. despite myself. feel the bruises, and scrapes, and scars, the way my thighs touch, and just let them fucking exist.

not a failed lesson, not the answer to the question, not some holy sin. this is home, this is my body, and i think i’m learning that. ever-so-slowly.

potpourri

when i remember you someday, i’ll think of fancy parties; your emerald-green cardigan, and that golden necklace i still have today. i’ll think of potpourri, and grilled cheese. because no one made it quite like you, did they?

i’ll think of rose gardens, and croquet. bony fingers, vintage clocks. cotton balls; blood on the bathroom floor.

i climb up this family tree, until i can’t see myself anymore. but it’s all right. because when i fall, i’ll land amid the wisteria. and your perfect red roses. scratch myself up pretty bad. but i always carry band-aids on me, just in case. so it’ll be okay. and i’ll learn from my mistakes. i’ll grow, and i’ll change, and i’ll probably make them again.

and if you could, i know you’d disapprove. shake your head, and scold me. because i put my elbows on the table, because i swore in my poetry. which is… kinda shitty. but i’ll get over it.

because i think this ends with me. this thick, sticky poison we’ve passed down through the centuries. i mean, we’ve hurt enough, haven’t we?

honeysuckle

you are imperfect. you are the wind in the leaves, you are the broken branches, and the buckling trees.

you are dollar store hoodies. you are old navy jeggings, and clashing teeth. embarrassing diary entries from 2015.

you are sappy fanfiction, password protected on your broken hp. and maybe it was cliched. maybe it was messy. but god knows, it made you so happy.

made you frenetic and crazy. made you shaking hands, made you quivering leaves. dancing around your bedroom to songs about turning sixteen.

because deep down you have always been the art of wandering through shittily paved suburban streets. of picking honeysuckles off the vine, and searching for something sweet.

and… i think that’s beautiful. in a way. think that maybe, if all i could leave behind were those simple moments of childlike joy… well, maybe that would be okay.

peppermint

i fill up the teapot with peppermint, fresh from the garden. bring my blood to a rolling boil, and pour it into fine china. wait patiently for the devil to form.

and of course, he tempts me. with golden dollar bills, and opaque words. i sip my tea. tap my fingers on the kitchen table, and listen. carefully.

i visit the graveyard in my closet. lay calendula petals, over the paperthin corpse of destiny.

i slip out the door; empty backpack on my shoulders. and i wander through the desert for days.

savouring the sourdough taste of my decomposing words.