he sings the most beautiful song.
that the sky becomes a reflection of the heart
that he can barely carry in himself.
the words on his lips
they break, they sound different,
they sound like the first cry of a baby-
the violent coming to life.
they run and collide and shatter
against the rough indifferent surface
of this dying world, a not-so-bad world.
he becomes a not-so-bad singer.
as he runs out of breath and love
someone places a coin of gold in his hands.
he means to feel grateful for this compensation,
but all he can do is hold his tongue, hold his tears.
hold his bitterness in himself
and sing another song dreaming, waiting
for an honest reply, a genuine care,
an understanding gaze in return for laying bare his humanness.
On Sundays, I wear the purple summer dress
that I once promised myself I would never wear.
I paint my nails, I color my lips, and I open the windows in me.
I become someone I was taught to hate, I try to break
my hatred with my smile.
I let myself be reigned
by the greed for beautiful, sweet, shining things.
I think of all the things I have tried not to want.
I let myself be the delicate vulnerable woman
that is easy to love, easy to idolize,
easy to abuse, easy to blame, and easy to hate.
I tell myself that it is not my fault,
but the more I live the harder it becomes to believe it.
I fall asleep on the floor where first I tasted blood,
wondering why I can never give up on this dress, this dream
that has given me nothing but hurt.
I do not know how to help you.
I am used to relying on you,
to make everything right.
You are supposed to be the strongest one.
Or were you always like this?
Was your strength a make-belief,
for not caring,
for not doing anything.
I do not know how to hold your hand
when you refuse to be held.
I am confused if you really mean it
when you ask to be left alone.
Teach me through your tears,
who you are, when you are not my pillar.
All of us remember all the ways our bodies have felt small and vulnerable, open to destruction—like they are not ours at all, but objects for which we have to always be on the defensive, apologetic, abstractly and consistently afraid.
– Why I Wanted to Write About Anger, Lynn Steger Strong
It was so sad to see him like that.
He had shrunk so much, so tiny, his eyes always remain almost closed. He cannot even sit up to eat, has no strength left. He cannot identify people, he’s calling out different people names in random way so much, that now people have stopped responding to his calls. He cannot sleep without pills anymore. Things were that bad.
When I saw him I thought of all that he had done for me when I was small. But these are things that I know, not what I remember. I know what he has done, I know what I should feel, but sadly I don’t .
If only I could feel and remember all that he was once to me, If only I could feel the love for him that he deserves. But it can’t be.
I see myself, sitting beside him on a chair talking random things to him, reading him stories, poems. That is maybe something that should have happened, probably happening in some parallel world but not here.
He is not that type of man, even if we assume that he was sane enough to be able to understand what I am saying. We were never on same page. Maybe we were, but something changed, that drove me so far from him, maybe I realized what he was, maybe I realized what I was, and realized things will never be same. How long can we pretend .
But when I saw him so weak, so powerless and vulnerable, I wanted to feel that love for him that I know wasn’t there in my heart.
(for my Grandpa)