Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
breathe.
the clock slowly ticks down to end my twenty first year.
breathe.
i think i was expecting something a little more dramatic. loud music, flashing lights. at the very least a few friends beside me and a strong drink in hand.
breathe.
but maybe i don't need so much excitement anyway; i've had two full decades of it and it's been enough for a lifetime.
breathe.
in fact, i spent most of those years hoping that would be my entire lifetime,
so many times thinking i would die before this day
so many times desperately wishing i would die before this day.
breathe.
so maybe tonight's spectacle will just be the first breath i take to begin the rest of my life.
maybe it will be the fact that i choose to breathe at all.

...

breathe.
i am still here.
breathe.
i know now that wanting to die doesn't mean you hate life. and loving life doesn't mean you have to be scared of dying.

breathe.
i must keep reminding myself again and again that i am loved despite the fact that i'm alone on the couch with nothing but a blanket for company.
breathe.
the smiles of my friends flash before me one by one, loosening the knot in my chest.
breathe.
i know the planet is beautiful, but god, it cannot compare to the sound of my friends laughing, as if their joy were weightless. carefully, i stitch pieces of it into a patchwork umbrella for the next rainy day.
breathe.
i have looked love in the face and i am slowly thawing.

breathe.
i see again every time i fell on my face, every time i pushed someone else down trying to get up, every clenched fist and tightened jaw.
breathe.
i have had to fight too hard to get here. but i guess that really means i learned how to take punches and maybe throw one back every so often.
breathe.
my knuckles are constantly bruised and my skin scars too easily. i am not allowed to forget the hell i've dug my way out of, and i am thankful. it makes the sun feel a little warmer every morning.

breathe.
lately i've been speaking a little too quickly, tripping over words like the world's clumsiest track runner. there is too much going on in my head to keep up with my mouth.
breathe.
and is my voice too loud because people are complaining about how i can't whisper, also everyone else needs to talk so should i just stop now...
breathe.
...no, this is still a hundred times better than when i never spoke at all.

breathe.
i am learning how to gently fall asleep in an empty bed
breathe.
more importantly, i am learning not to call the bed empty when i'm already in it.

breathe.
it seems i have reached the age when my grade school self thought i'd be an adult with everything figured out. she is yet another person i have disappointed.
breathe.
still, i am slowly realizing that no one else really knows what they're doing either. and that's okay.
twenty one thoughts for twenty one years
connor eickstedt Dec 2016
You ask for a poem?
There are no words left in me.
They were torn from my lips but an hour ago when her mouth slipped across my cheek and missed by a fraction of an inch,
There are no words left in me.
Not today, not after the moon has hovered so bright in the sky, too bright to let the darkness swallow me. Crouched outside, begging for the void to consume me.
It doesn't.
Not today.
There are no words left in me.
I screamed them out to the unaffected sky, the heavens that breathed back nothingness; the nothingness that haunts me.
There are no words left in me.
Only nothingness.
Days I grasp for meaning but my fingers just fall through the veil into darkness and it's all I can do just to keep my breath alive.
You know of it, the way silence can scream. How it can scream louder than a crowded room full of hungry children.
It's so familiar;
I'll take the mellow bite of sorrow over it's absence any day.
Pain can shout nasty words in my ear but nothing is as loud as the resonating echo of an empty mind, an empty heart.
Cold.
Her kiss landed on my cheek and I smiled at her. When she called for me, I tried to answer but somehow, the words were nowhere to be found.
They want for me to sing but I said I'm sorry,
I can't sing for you today.
A thousand words have hit my back and knocked my breath away.

— The End —