I can’t tell you much This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

April 12, 2009
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it's nearly impossible
to try to pry the stitches
off my lips

Too much of my energy
wasted on screaming
behind the seams
thinking, knowing
there's some sound escaping
so why isn't anyone
saving me?

I can't take
the pain that
comes from

is useless when I
know it won't work
because my lips hurt
the effort is draining
so I stop
and the scabs frost over
turn into scars
and I look normal.

But no one
sees, I can't open my
mouth, can't form any
intelligible sound, it all
just comes out as a mumble.

Breathing is hard,
I wheeze when I do
and it all whistles
and it all reminds me
of how my grandpa breathes.

Are my lips, my lungs
am I that old, too?
His shoes don't fit
but our breath is in rhythm;
how did I fast-forward time
waste my breath
trying to cry before I
could even form my mouth around
the word “Mommy”?

No consonants
can be made,
the vowels just drip from me
like a leaky faucet.

my failed attempts are used
on any passersby who
say they want to help
but really just
use that excuse
to be able to whisper
about the internal lisp when I've left.

Can I speak?

Can I speak
when obviously
no one will really hear?

I tried it before.

No one heard.

But I used to speak.

I used to speak.

Used to speak.

To speak.


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 2 comments. Post your own now!

Victoria H. said...
Nov. 6, 2009 at 8:19 am
i love it!
izz123 said...
Nov. 4, 2009 at 2:27 pm
great poem. you expressed the tone beautifully. it's a very sad frusterated type of poem, the feelings come across clearly. great job and keep writing :)
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