People Tell Me

People tell me I’m sensitive. What this means is that my heart is unlocked and you just need to climb inside it to see that I’m crying. People tell me I’m insensitive. What this means is that I picked up a pebble and threw it into the wind, but then it fell back down and was bigger than I first noticed. People tell me I’m beautiful. What this means is that my mind is a socket and people are plugging in a charger for my feelings. People tell me I’m ugly. What this means is that everyone else sat in a field of grass whilst I played in the mud. People tell me I’m smart. What this means is that I listened to thousands of other voices regurgitating the same spit. People tell me I’m dumb. What this means is that my life is an essay that I have yet to complete. People tell me a lot of things. What this means is that their lips keep determining, their eyes keep deducting, and their ears keep ignoring. I tell myself that I’m here. What this means is that I can focus on the snakes or the mice but, either way, I’m going to get bitten. Instead, I should focus on the most conflicting voice of all: my own.

Wall

A brick wall pushes against my brain,

trying to keep me sane,

but in reality,

it’s trapping the helps and the whelps

and maybe I need them back.

If I have no tears or fears,

if I have no worries at all —

then what’s left to care about?

You only care when you feel bad,

and I just can’t feel sad.

It’s so heavy, against my mind,

and I can’t lift it —

I need a grenade.

Perhaps, then,

I’ll find a way

to feel again.

Rain Clouds

Everyone has a little box in their brain

full of rain clouds

that will never go away.

They’re the rain clouds

you can’t let fade,

because they’re the darkness

you need to keep.

They’re tightly sealed,

until those days

when you think about them.

My box is full to the brim,

and rain clouds are fighting

to get out every day,

and more are getting leaked.

They fill the parts of me

I don’t want them to fill,

and rain is getting in the way.

My happiest thoughts become

soaked in rain.

And me?

I’m already drenched.

There’s no saving

a soggy piece of paper.

I Think

I think

that I exist,

I think

that it’s real,

I think

that we’re alive,

I think

all of that,

but what do I know?

Nothing.

Because knowledge is

never definite,

as it could all just be

an illusion;

rain, sun, snow,

the world,

the stars…

We’ll never know

whether our eyes

are actually there

or whether all of this

is a dream.

I think I can touch it

but I know I can feel it.

I think I can see it

but I know I can think it.

Urges

Urges send my hands reaching,

clawing at what they want,

but then I stop them.

I have to stop them.

Urges control my mind,

every thought in it

wants the same thing.

Happiness, sadness,

anger, they all become one.

One spear aimed at the heart.

Whether it misses or not,

that’s up to me,

and whether I listen

to my mind.

The spear misses this time.

The Box and The Ball

The box is blue.

Inside the box is a ball.

The ball is red.

The ball doesn’t want to be inside the box.

The ball would much rather be inside a red box.

The ball jumps.

The box doesn’t move.

The ball learns to accept that it is stuck with the blue box.

The box doesn’t want the red ball to be inside it.

The box tries to open.

The box is stuck.

The box tries to crush the ball.

The box can’t get rid of it.

The box learns to accept that it is stuck with the red ball.

A yellow car comes.

In one movement, the yellow car crushes the blue box.

The blue box crushes the red ball.

The red ball suffocates.

If only, the yellow car had avoided them.

If only, the blue box had opened up.

If only, the red ball had jumped out.

Let’s Be Honest

Let’s be honest.

I’m in a black hole

that’s sucking me in deeper,

and I’m trying to reach —

reach for the stars, as they say,

but I can never make it.

Let’s be honest.

I’ve been like this for a while,

sleep is my companion

and my worst enemy,

I don’t have the motivation

to get motivation,

I don’t have the aspiration

to get aspirations,

I don’t have the strength

to get strength.

Let’s be honest.

I’m sorry I can’t pull myself away,

from the same muddled day

I’ve been living for too long,

it’s a blurred mess.

Let’s be honest,

I’m depressed.

Expectations

I’m an empty casket, don’t put a body in me. I don’t want something to sleep within me, I don’t want the weight. You expect me to fulfil my purpose, of carrying a body, of being a container for it, but I want to be something else. I want to be free. I don’t want to do that, maybe I want to have nothing inside of me, because then I can fill it with my mind and my soul, without them suffocating.

The body is going in… I’m drowning. I can’t see the body but I can feel it. I can feel the crushed emotions, I can feel the sleeping soul. I want it gone… but, you see, it is my destiny to contain this body for the rest of eternity.

Eternity? Yes. I am to be the home of this body. I can rattle and squeak… but I can’t let it out. I have to fulfil my expectations, the ones I wanted to be gone. I can’t do anything. I can’t throw the body out. I have to live with this weight.

Have to.

Expectations.

water

a splatter becomes a puddle,

a puddle becomes a pond,

a pond becomes a stream,

a stream becomes a river,

a river becomes a sea,

a sea becomes eternity.

My Brother Is an Egg [Short Story]

My brother is an egg. He is oval, white, and very fragile. Seeing him so fresh to the world, and so unknowing, it pains me. He is the purest form of life, waiting until the day of his hatching, not knowing when it will come or what will come of it. I know. Our mum knows. We don’t have a dad, they don’t need dads.

My brother is an egg. He sits around all day, waiting for his time to come. But he will never have a time. He is a boy. I cry sometimes, knowing that he will have been an egg longer than he will ever be a chicken. I am merely a chick myself, but I know more about the world than he will ever know. I know that it’s cruel; my mother has gotten so used to it that her eyes don’t flinch anymore. I remember when she used to try to warm us all. Not just me, but all of the girls. All of her many, many daughters. We’re in a cage, you see. People don’t call it a cage; they say it’s not a cage because it’s a barn, and that we’re cage-free, but I can barely breathe here. My mother has gotten crushed accidentally so many times that her feathers are mangled. She isn’t that positive anymore. I try to be, but I’m so young that they don’t believe what I say. They know I haven’t had the worst of it yet. Even after the debeaking, the most painful experience I have ever been through, they’re telling me that was just the start.

My brother is an egg. He is starting to shake. He wants to see the world, to be free, to dance. A little crack here, another crack there. He is ready. But he shouldn’t be. What awaits him is a horror story. I have only heard folk tales of what goes on but we all know the basics. They talk about it sometimes. There is a conveyer belt, and there is blades. He will not live to tell the tale.

My brother is hatching. His body is shivering, he is starting to wonder. Where is he? What is he? Where will he be going? We all know the answers, of course, but he doesn’t. He is a baby, and I want to wrap him in my wings and keep him close to me.

My brother is a chick. A hand reaches down and snatches him. He lets out a soft startled squeak. He wants to be with his mummy. Is that too much to ask? He is dragged away, and that is the last time I ever see my brother, but it is not the last time I imagine him. I imagine his scream amplified as he falls off the conveyer belt, I imagine his body being ripped apart — but that is nothing compared to what I imagine next. I imagine him running around, in a field, happy. That is what breaks my heart the most.

My brother is dead.