(un) learning

By | 1 April 2019
I have turned into a thing you cannot recognise / I touch my face and it makes me feel heavy / my ex’s laugh comes to me in a dream and breaks me into a nightmare / I prepare the bathtub with lavender and soap / I imagine my head being held down with two hands and sleeping / I clean my fears with water and silence / that evening I placed my heart in my mother’s suitcase and went missing / my mother is afraid I am turning into a person she cannot bring back / she is used to a love that dies too early / on the nights she is lonely she brings out the cassette player that carried her through four decades and a war / she sings to Nina Simone’s ‘Be My Husband’ as she maps the honeymoon of 1989 on my palms / the memories cause her knees to ache / this is how she keeps him alive / my father plays hide and seek / I have spent my whole life wearing his eyes but never seeing him / I inherit his need to disconnect / to disappear / the years have grown on me / mother says / I am a child in the face of life / too young to be stretched and stained / I agree / I cannot help but become the sea when I should carry my limbs like steel / I am turning into a thing that only I can stitch together / I have spent twenty-four years learning of love and survival / when the morning comes / I crawl back into strength

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