5 Midnight Black Stitches

January 17, 2018
By MasqueradingWordsmith SILVER, Pewaukee, Wisconsin
MasqueradingWordsmith SILVER, Pewaukee, Wisconsin
7 articles 0 photos 0 comments

They are the only ones who hold it all together. They are the only ones keeping everything from falling apart. 5 midnight black stitches with angry limbs and pointy toes like spiders. 5 little things that I don’t want, but are there anyways. Holding on in spite of it all. I can see them poking out of my forehead in blatant rebellion, but Mom says they're here for a reason.

Their strength is quiet, brooding. They dig deep into my skin and tie angry midnight knots. Preventing anything from peeking out. They bite hard and hold fast and never let go. It’s scary, but this is how they heal.

Cut just one away and the whole string falls apart, their spindly limbs coiling together like springs as they fall. Hold on, they say as I stare at them scrutinizingly in the dirty bathroom mirror. Hold steady, they whisper. I do not want to listen.

When the days pass and my tears are long dry the stitches hold on. And they’ll keep holding on until I heal. It is only then that they’ll let go. It is only when I’m ready to be set free. But even now the scar of their presence stays with me. Still holding everything together. 5 little midnight stitches that I sometimes miss.

The author's comments:

This piece is inspired by “Four Skinny Trees” from Sandra Cisenero’s memoir, The House On Mango Street. I wrote it as a metaphor for my family. They are the ones that hold everything in my life together, just like stitches hold everything together. It also ties into a personal experience—when I was in kindergarten I had to get five stitches in my forehead, and I thought it would be a good thing to compare to my family.


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