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Once upon a time I had been let out of my cage for a spry walk around golden streets and pearly gates
To my eyes at least. To yours perhaps they sang of home. To yours perhaps they stank like any other
Regular city. To anyone else’s eyes it was nothing special, nothing at all.
Oh, but I felt it all like a violent wave. The people, the magic, the life pulsing through the air
The freedom! Oh, I could breathe. I could see. I could mingle and I could think. I was FREE
I was free to meet new people and speak to them as I pleased. I stroked boys’s arms and kissed boys’s
Lips. I was never alone, never. I breathed their exhales and felt their inhales and stole their heat and
Watched them watching me. I spoke and laughed and danced. I let my body free. I let the music and other
Bodies mold it and shape it, bend it and flex it like a blade of grass waving in the breeze in the tempo
Of humming bees. I was FREE, god damn it, I touched so much skin and looked in so many eyes
And talked idly about nothing important and nicknamed and laughed and teased and connected.
Once upon a time.
After ten seconds I was led back to my cage, grinning stupidly, eyes brimming, heart singing
Empty lonely cage. I pressed against the bars. I wanted to dance. I was used to feeling it bend.
It did not. I could not believe. I pressed and pushed.
The bars did not bend. Did I expect them to change?
Yes, oh yes I did. I thought they would change after ten seconds. I thought they would see how the rest
Of the world functioned, and imitate. My grin slowly faded. I looked around at the familiar place that
I called home. I walked all around the cage, calling for help. I longed for skin to touch and eyes to see.
I wanted to feel arms around me. I wanted to open my mouth and let laughter spill like overturned honey.
Did I use to live here before, really? I withstood all of this? Yes, I did. I had gotten used to pushing
Against the bars and feeling them, unrelenting. I had gotten used to crying alone and drying my tears
And sleeping and dreaming and singing quietly in the empty green staircase with stairs that led nowhere.
I had gotten used to not talking and not laughing. This had been my life.
For ten seconds, I had escaped. I had breathed the happy air that everyone else breathes, and I had danced
The merry dance of life and sang the joyful song of friendship and touched the warm flesh of love.
The ghosts of memories flood in, providing me with seconds of pure happiness and remembrances
Of better times, such better times. Then I blink. The ghosts vanish to be replaced by the bars.
I push against the bars.
The bars do not bend.