When my heart cracks open, and the only people I want to hold onto, to speak to, would destroy me with one careless word,
I have nothing left. The pain burns it all away, like flesh held over a candle.
I’m the one holding my hand there, watching the tiny flames lick my palm, begging for their attention, trying to restrain myself from throwing my body towards the heat.
It would desolate me to be inside the fire, yet it feels essential to my survival (and all I’ve ever wanted is to survive). It would be easier if
these people were no longer
on the planet. Easier, if, I never had to see them again, then I could survive and it would feel like survival, not like walking through a toxic blaze. When
I am oozing out, burned to ash by my own doing, there is nothing left. Nothing but
the smiles of my students, their affectionate greetings, their “Have a good day, Ms. Bush” as they leave my classroom. Nothing but
friends who answer the phone at midnight to hold me with their words as I writhe in pain, friends who always answer my messages, who never make me feel like the problem (the way the people I feel that I need do), who gather around the table with me once a week to laugh, drink, and eat. Nothing is left but
my gorgeous eyes, swollen and bright, staring back at me, reminding me that I’ve made it through much worse, that the best
is yet to come; that the people I feel enslaved to are wax, and the flame is meant for them, not for my flesh. It will eat away the residue of their impact on my psyche, until I feel as free as I actually am, always have been. There is nothing left but
gratitude. All that lasts is “thank you.” There is gratitude that the suffering ends, that the story never ends in ash, though the flames are relentless. For every time that the pain sounds, joy screams louder. I am here, and from the ash I always rise. I am grateful that the pain cannot destroy
me, that the hatred does not overcome me, that I am, and always will be, free, free as the sparks that fly up from the fire and evaporate into the smoky stratosphere.
Who knows, if she never showed up, what could’ve been
There goes the most shameless woman this town has ever seen
She had a marvelous time ruining everything. ~ T. Swift