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Leah Hilliges May 20
The old man who
Quietly observed the 5am commuters
Demanded no reciprocation
And the few who knew him
Grew accustomed to his presence
As their wallets thickened
And their backpacks were exchanged for briefcases,

The old man who
Quietly observed the 5am commuters
Saw the few who knew him
Slowly lose their curiosity
And their youthful naivety
To the noiseless bureaucracy
That stains those jobs
That demand a 5am commute,

The old man
Quietly observed the 5am commuters
Until one day he didn’t
And the few who knew him
No longer took the 5am train
In the paper lives they’d shaped
And quickly forgot the old man,

How sad,
that none of their cases could find the space
To hold the soul of the gentleman.
Leah Hilliges May 13
Three flights of stairs and two lefts,
And there she’ll be,
Waiting for me.

Her lips, chipped.
Hips, dipped.
Scars from rough hands,
Of careless, foolish men.

She lacks eye contact,
Seems detached–
Marble skin,
Cold like her kin.

Reliably imperfect.
My muse.
Leah Hilliges Apr 27
Forgive me for offending,
and bruising your heart.

You cannot know, that
mine is guarded,
by thick bars welded over years.

You cannot know, that
my piercing words only reflect my fear,
of giving up that familiar loneliness.

You cannot know, that
even with your best efforts,
it cannot and will not be.

Forgive me for offending,
and tempting your heart once again.
3 rejections
Leah Hilliges Mar 16
Empty and tired,
I remove the iron pill from its shiny blister pack, and
Refill the tall glass that reminds me to drink.
I place the tab on my tongue and
wash it down with a gulp of water.
Better make it two, no,
Three to fill my hollow stomach.

Empty and tired,
I take my iron supplement,
a buffer to prevent me from eating
this late at night.
Affects absorption, I remind myself.

Empty and tired,
but there’s still work to do.
And my period came this month,
but I didn’t even need a liner to stop the blood,
from staining my white underwear.
When will I be able to use the tampons that have been waiting patiently
under my bathroom sink since I was 12?
I’m 16.
I tell myself to remember that the next time
I take an iron pill to stop myself from eating,
when I’m
Empty and tired.
TW: disordered eating
Leah Hilliges Feb 18
I stripped myself bare,
and let him paint his dreams
on my papery skin,
A feeble attempt
To restore life to that canvas,
That I fail to picture
Could be beautiful,
But when marked by deep scars.

Leftovers of love.
Dear god,
    make me ******,
    and sensual,
    and all that they feel.
    For my body does not belong to me
    so long I find no pleasure in it.

A soul without a body,
Even poetry’s no remedy––
In solidarity,
we save the vessel
that holds the soul,
Stifled in solitude.
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