we told them not to break

as the slush and snow come down, a light inside you flickers and burns on. it is like the silence comforting itself. it soothes you by taking over the world around you, lifting it from your shoulders allowing you to feel weightless, if just for a little while. the coffee is fresh and the blankets are warm and the pages you covet have not been written yet. you think of all the people who do not understand you and you try to use the eyes of your mind to peer at them up close. blank skin, rough hands. hollow chests. concentrating very hard, you can see the whiteness of the small bones in their wrists, taught like stringed instruments straining for sound. then one by one they turn their heads, roll their heels, turn the corner, turn a season from wind to dust and fall like curling orange leaves away from the garden you have so tenderly sown.

because you were conceived in the womb of a thirsty woman, the letting go becomes a work of art.

perhaps the gray in the sky is as much like you as your fingerprints. though you see them — the tiny slices in the skin as well as the falseness of the wide-set sky — you cannot hold them. though they resemble all the sadnesses you do not know how to express, you know deep inside they are more yours than anything else in all the world. you pull the blankets around you tighter and tuck your knees up to your breasts. you think about how people are uncomfortable around you and how when you feel their discomfort you take it in. you hate yourself for causing anyone harm but you do not know how to stop yourself from seeping into them. this shame becomes the fear you cannot name.  you open your mouth to force the words to keep the discomfort at a distance. so long as there are words, there are lines. so long as there are lines, the fear cannot cross over.

the room you live in is perfectly still. awash in the coldness of the rain on the window, you cannot help but remember there is a sun someplace kicking up dirt. the way it is still burning the earth and in its mindless glare, forgot to leave you.