Beyond the glass protecting my reflection from my reality
is hollowness haunting the midnight desert.
Shadows playing puppeteers,
teasing control over slouching stars.
A whisper of wind whips past windows.
My father holds my hand, the record
My father says it will be over soon.
Close your eyes, wait for morning.
The sun flirts with the moon.
A lock of auburn clings to her cheek,
wet with tears or dreams.
What does it mean to be alive?
The last thing I swallowed was my heart.
These are not butterflies in my stomach.
There are no knots in my gut.
My body is a locust.
Existence is a generality.
What is security?
My home is a thousand miles north of Mars.
I am not an alien, I am a parasite.
My brain is a leviathan.
This is where my fear lives.
This is where people I love buy their poison,
where a child gets lost before she grows up.
When everyone is asleep, God opens
and walks around in the chalk outlines
He didn’t have a childhood;
this is why he takes so many from us.
I’d like the sky to be black more often.
I’d like to swim in the shadow of Jupiter,
to taste the breath of Saturn,
to waltz with Neptune.
I am not a writer.
I am not a dreamer.
I do not dream in pictures.
I do not write in words.
This is a field where only weeds grow.
This is a collection of coins.
This is a place setting at a table with
only one chair.
I am sorry it all has to end this way.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.
This piece won the June 2015 Teen Ink Poetry Contest.