This might be a year of firsts;
the year I learn not to shrink
into a space neatly prepared for my heart
since I am a privilege
and not a ‘one size fits all’,
that even good things can fall away
and words left unsaid
are a bottled scent left on the doorstep,
a perfume I can’t wear anymore,
pick my power up off the floor,
feed on its potential,
At 2pm, last year breezed past me, out the door,
gracefully granting next year could plant her seeds
before sunset, steadily watered with liquid gold.
‘Hey Jude’ playing over the speakers
and I bless the drunken singers, warbling chorus
enough to cover for our quietness
as we stand there, feeling the corners of our lips
curl up in the sounds of silent serenade,
whilst tiny songwriters etch lyrics into our retinas,
signalling how these soft notes might look good on us.
Pain pitted me to the post, and in defeat
I drag these heavy limbs across the finish line.
Body battle-worn, at loss
with how to rise from this crumpled pile.
The devil’s flames lick my feet
yet here I lie, stone cold,
crowds hurling their hurt in oblivion
to the collected suffering we already carry on our collective shoulders.
But carry on, we do; and if I have to crawl
over shards of broken glass with a broken heart
I will get us through;
the world has good in her yet.
She promised me once, and I hold her to it,
joy wins the war in the end.
One remaining star in the sky
flickers faint but true, just as these eyes
would give away their last spark
to have yours to stare into,
leaking wishes that trickle from our cheeks to the floor
as frozen rain,
and finally you can teach me to ice skate.
For the first time in my life
I am an artist
before I am a victim
and the only powers
I remain slave to
are the wild words
pouring from this pen.
with the constant hostility
the mind imparts on the spirit
is to me
the very definition