Body

We all live in these vessels that carry us to the grave

Souls occupying until it feels like the right time to leave and start over

Leaving behind mourning of who was once in this now shell

My body has endured me opening it up in attempts to let the unease fly free

The chemicals my brain has been known to produce are out of date

The boards of this ship creak and let water in – only replaced when I am but nearly drowned

My skin is decorated with tattoos for a love I can no longer whisper the name of

His name still feels like a house fire out of control in my chest

I no longer wish for him to recognize my soul as one he once so intimately knew

This vessel I own in this life is littered with stories told and those yet untold wait to emerge through the old, the weary, the hand-me-down

I have not sank yet but dear god I know people are waiting to see the day I no longer exist on the same plane

But this worn out body has not seen its last days yet

Leaving

In a sea of people I hope your eyes find me happy

For I feel your presence everywhere I go

I so badly want you to be happy with your decision to leave

Yet I hope part of your heart is still broken – the part of it where I once lived

I shed so many tears for you for me to not want you to hurt

Loving you felt like drowning but I would continue just for you to keep loving me

I was so consumed by the fire I felt for you, blinded – I couldn’t see that it wouldn’t work in the end

The way you looked when you left is a painful memory plastered to my memory

I wish I could forget but I couldn’t help thinking about how beautiful you looked in the moments before

Oceans of green stealing glances, blond hair messed about by the wind through the car windows

If you regret loving me, don’t forget who you were then

Don’t forget what drew you into my arms

 

Love Notes

My body –

I am still learning ways not to destroy you

You are the vessel that carries me to the end

When you are gone, so am I

I decorate you to forget I once set fire to you so I could feel the warmth in my bones again

Because it was so cold

 

J.D.B. –

Love letters signed by you still litter my floor

All tear stained with the memories I try to block out

You were my worst mistake

I hope she tastes sweeter

 

A.M. –

I am sure I was your worst mistake

I want to plant forgiveness in your heart

But I know it won’t change your mind

 

J.S. –

When I imagine my wedding, you are standing there at the end of the aisle

Come home soon

 

My skin –

Your need to be red all the goddamn time gave people lots to pick apart

I tried to hide your imperfections with no avail

Deciding to be proud of you was my greatest achievement

Collisions of people are mapped out on you

Generations of triumph and hardship are written out on you

I am so sorry I ripped you apart for so long

 

Life –

I regretted being brought into you for years

You made me feel your weight too early

But you handed me laughter when I needed it

I am forever grateful for your gift

Even on the days I want to retreat into the darkness

Poisoning

The trauma he left beats inside me as a second heart

Damaging me like the unfortunate book in your basement flood

I can’t quite piece together his face anymore

But I still have each love letter handwritten, sealed with his name

Chained around my neck in a heart shaped locket

A reminder that there was once love here

Even if tainted

I have no idea where he is anymore

I don’t care to find out

 

The Bottles On My Nightstand // A Prompt

There is a glass I leave open

Full of each positive thought I’ve had in the last few years

Some months it numbers less than others

Lying there open for whomever needs happiness in a moment of despair

Next to it lies a jug filled with each emotion that is not happy or her synonyms

There have been moments where it has overflowed into the glass next to it

I try to cap it in attempts to let no one else but me see inside

A few horror movie scripts could be made of it

This jug’s counterpart is a bottle filled of the years I don’t talk about

You know, the ones I erased from my memory in hope every one did too

But I know they will stay with me past the grave

All the years I didn’t stop hurting, even when I thought there was no hurt left

The memories play here in a movie about my own suffering, still waiting to be finished because I know there will be more years of this despite the little room this bottle has left to fit them in

One more bottle sits, filled with the good times

Capped off so I don’t forget

Moments I couldn’t stop laughing until I cried

Days my face hurt from smiling so much

I know there will also be more of these

Keeping optimistic it will fill before the years of suffering, I keep a larger bottle for the good days ahead

via Daily Prompt: Bottle

Love // A Prompt

We spent summer afternoons laughing our lungs out on the playground of your town’s elementary school

Those same nights spent trying not to get heat stroke in your poorly air conditioned room, with as many fans as we could muster

The first time we called ourselves a pair, our hands fit awkwardly together

Hearts thumping hard enough to break through ribs but trying to hide our feelings in front of all the people who so badly wanted this to happen

We danced around “I love you” for far too long to some people but it felt just long enough for us

Winter nights we spent in a snowy wonderland, snuggling up to each other for warmth

We grew into each other and the love we had bloomed

Love knows when two people who are meant for each other

We felt comfort in each other’s presence, not always needing words but just a gentle brush of skin or meeting of eyes across a room

Sharing jokes between facial expressions and gestures

As much as I hate to admit, he was home

The spring I tore myself away is still vivid in my memory

The sights, smells, the way the air felt

I didn’t want to admit how afraid I was that he might be the one

And that was the worst mistake I ever made

We both admit we still love each other

It’s just finding the path back to our love and watering it until it blossoms again

via Daily Prompt: Blossom

Changing Seasons

The person I was 3 years ago would not recognize the person I am today

Even if standing face to face

Which is to say neither will he

He will never come back to me now

Which is fine

Since he was the one who broke me

A Time Capsule

For every year of mental illness I have endured

 

2009

Each scrap of food left on my plate

Turning into nearly entire meals

I am sure they have decomposed by now

2010

The bones starting to poke through

Her aggressive hands

The toxic words forced down my throat telling me I am nothing more than her friendship dictated

2011

The first drops of blood staining my bathtub

Dozens of razors, knives, and scissors representing an addiction and all the stark white scars they left behind

Frozen veins from each time she buried my heart further into the ground

Dozens of bruises carefully crafted by her hands

Every skipped meal my body would wish it had years later

2012

The hospital bracelet

Mapped out plans of my funeral, thought out in black ink in what I thought would be the last remnants of my life

Weeks of therapist visits and psychiatrist appointments

All the anxiety attacks induced by the slightest mistake

Every pill I tried with failure

2013

Each hallucination from bugs under my skin to phantom voices and sights

Fears of human touch and living

Hundreds of scars making a home of my skin

All the pills ingested to keep my head close to above water

A year’s worth of cigarettes

2014

Lost love and gained love

His gentle words turning violent yet tinged with roses

Each positive coping skill trying to overthrow the negative trying to still kill me

Intrusive thoughts whispering sweet nothings about how I won’t amount to anything

A year’s worth of cigarettes and additional scars

More pills

2015

The first joint I smoked

Scars and cigarettes engraved on my body

A love so volatile I thought I would drown in his poison eventually dying out

Learning to be alone and to be ok with it

Thoughts of death and self hatred

Trying to love myself the way I should be

A high school diploma

2016

Thoughts of death intermittent but acceptance of the day

Pills, scars, cigarettes

Another love blossoming and wilting

Anxiety attacks over nothing in particular

2017

Wishes of happiness but acceptance that happiness is a passing emotion rather than a permanent state of mind

Another year of pills, scars, and cigarettes

His words still haunting my dreams, waking up sweating, checking for his blood on my hands knowing he’s still alive somewhere

Flinching at hands on my face and arms

A constant state of being on my toes ready for fight or flight

Forget, Past Tense

Lay me out while I bleed for you

Until everything is but a blissful pink

And I know you will not forget me then

Just like when I whispered my elegy in your ear

Each tether keeping me anchored on this earth snapping

The weight you crushing my chest

I did not want your blood on my hands but that only meant further drowning in the abyss of being forgotten

If I left you would have been dead but if I stayed it would have been my name on that marker

My name left your tongue the first time you kissed her

You forgot about me the moment her fingerprints replaced mine on your skin

I smirk every time I check to see you’re still here

Remembering my tears quelling droughts the first month after

I felt like an abandoned house

You stole everything and all that was left of me was the shell of a woman who you once promised to love until the stars faded to darkness

But you should see me now

Rebuilt on my own, everyone wants to know what was here before but all I have are the photographs of you smiling and my eyes begging for an escape route

Thank you for showing me what I didn’t deserve

Aftermath

You quoted George Orwell saying “We will meet in a place where there is no darkness”

To which my response was “baby there will always be darkness”

 

For months I beat myself up for not leaving earlier when the first warning signs appeared

Lamenting that I was the only one hurting

You said we would have a future, just skirting around “love” to be someone who once was

I daydreamed of walking down the aisle to promise forever

The white dress leaving our friends and family gawking

Daydreaming about the way the sun shone in our kids hair and the reflection of the ocean in their eyes

I wanted it so badly to last beyond its expiration date

 

These days I tie our memories to balloons to watch them float to anywhere but here

They will see how I gave you so much in so little time

I am still trying to forget the small details

The kids you wanted, the names you already picked, the freckles written on your body you preferred over others

I wonder if she tastes sweeter than I did

Or if the moon told her all the secrets that I gave her nights you soundly snored in my arms