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Nihilism vs. Mockingbirds
"You're like a phoenix," I told myself,
thinking back to every time I sat there in our
eye-singeing lime-green kitchen,
And heard my mother tell me how
I was born too early and was so small the nurses called me "peanut" and I had to get chest tubes that scarred me
Like I'd a knife fight with life at a month old.
But I survived, like a phoenix.
"You might be a firebird, figuratively," my therapist thought,
As I sat on her charcoal-black couch and clutched tear-stained tissues like they were
life preservers that could pull me back to those early days
When I had parents and my innocence had yet to go down in flames.
I survived the funeral too--
I had no other choice but to rise from grave-ashes.
"Phoenixes are cliché, and so is hope," I choked out through the black smoke of despair.
I asked "Does this matter" once too often,
Dug through the depths of attempted life-meaning one too many times,
And came up short.
I had no answer for life, so I reasoned there wasn't one.
(I didn't want to have to face the harsh, glaring sunlight,
didn't want to be dragged back into dull delusions by fleeting flashes of life-sparks.)
"Have you seen this new book?" asked a girl in my class
on another monochrome, dreary day.
I glanced through my smog-grey glasses of cynicism at the cover.
It was a mockingbird,
shining fiercely white out of the deep blue sky,
and it was the only beautiful thing in the world.
"How simple," I thought, "how stupidly simple is this bird?"
But its beak pierced pinpricks of lights into my veil of gloom.
Am I a phoenix or a mocking-jay?
Does it matter?
Either way, my life has its fire again.