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sometimes all you feel is like
an overstuffed string-drawn bag,
but instead of sweaty clothes
or school folders stuffed in you,
you are holding in hot pain
that wrenches your abused soul.
it threatens to spill from you:
you’re scared you’ll scream out the words
that you’re not okay, not fine.
you’re not, but you lie through teeth,
because you are strong (or supposed to be)
and you are happy (or so they think).

but then something happens
that causes nausea
to roll in like strong waves
—and there comes a point when the
thick, long scars on your heart
are open all at once,
so that every feeling,
good and bad, is gone and
you can’t breathe
can’t breathe

breathe.

you feel like you’re drowning.
you wonder when life became
sleepsleepsleep, why you can’t feel—
and is that really a bad thing?
there is a constant static
in your head, and you realize
that you are forgetting things
like mom’s birthday, when to eat
(but you never are hungry),
feeding the hamster and cats,
your best friend’s address, what you’re doing—

there are long skips in time
when you can’t remember
who you were with or
what you were doing,
but at least you can’t feel.
you may be sinking fast,
but you cannot hurt now.

there is a fire in your lungs
and a dimming in your sight
that warns you that you are dying,
but you can’t feel and your throat
is all cotton balls and stars.
you know what being numb is
and you do not mind one bit;
it’s a lot like happiness.



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