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Molly Coates Jul 2013
I love you
I think.
Or maybe I love the concept of you.
I love what you could have been.
I love what we pretended you were.
I love what I assumed you were
Under the surfaces your cactus-needle fists
And broken glass tongue.
I love what is good in comparison to you.
I love the way I see brilliant colors
And hear beautiful sounds
In your absence.

I do not hate you.
I do not hate the chicken scratch doctor notes
Saying you need to up your dose of
Chill the **** out – erol
And take a step back – etine.
I do not hate your late night screaming.
I do not hate your isolation and destroy foreign policy-
Your invasion into my life
And your crimes against my humanity.
I do not hate you
Because I have seen how much you already
Hated yourself,
Hated me,
Hated everyone
And everything
And everywhere
And life.
I do not hate you
Because I love you

I think.
It's been a while since I've added anything - it's kind of hard to post these.
Thanks everyone for being supportive to all the amateurs like me out there. (:
(p.s. I'm sorry about the f-bomb!)
Molly Coates Jun 2013
Yesterday wasn’t so good.
Sometimes when I think about it,
Yesterday disgusts me.
I don’t feel very comfortable
Talking about it,
But even in the silence,
Yesterday squirms in the back
Of my mind.

Yesterday weighs pretty heavily
On my chest and shoulders.
I hear Yesterday in my cracking joints
And I see it sprinkled across my arms
As scars.

It is very difficult to look forward
When I know Yesterday is
Close on my heels.
I am constantly glancing over my shoulder
To be sure Yesterday hadn’t become Today.

I feel Yesterday deep in my stomach
in my neck and in my ankles
and I feel it in the moments of
Vision-going-black panic
and I’ll-never-sleep-again nights.

My brother reeks of Yesterday.
His name and face are
Constant reminders of the past.
When I see him, hear him, or think of him,
I crinkle my nose at the smell of
Pain and fear
And barely getting by
Fighting to survive
For reasons I could not put my finger on.

My only comfort is that
Even if I crumble into nothingness
Even if in the next moment I collapse
And everything looming above me
Comes crashing down…
Even if Today I die.
I will always be sure that I did not collapse
That I did not stay down
That I did not crumble
That I did not die
Molly Coates Apr 2013
My dad calls me Little Sister.
I don’t know the reference
Or what part of me deserves that name.

Now that I’ve pretended to grow up
And now that I’M 18 MOM AND DAD IT’S MY LIFE
I can see where the “little” comes from.

Nobody ever had to tell me how to be a sister.
From Day 1 of what I remember,
All I ever wanted to do was make my brother happy.

I saw one day that my wish was fleeting
Standing up against the titans
Depression, Anxiety, Addiction, Hate, Fear, Anger, Confusion, and Violence.

I also quickly realized that
Caution is key.
I also eventually learned that I had roughly 45 seconds
After my brother and parents finish their scream battle
Before the battle came to my doorstep
In the form of kicking and fists
That was often one-sided.
Call me a passifist.
Who am I kidding, It was always one-sided.
Molly Coates Apr 2013

**** it’s only 2.
Well, now that I’m up,
Lemme watch that slide show
That has an automatic timer for switching slides
Because I’ll be ****** if I ever want to see those things again
And so I just. Can’t. Hit. Next.

Lemme curl up in my bed under the blankets I stole from my basement.
Let me take a few deep breaths because I know for the next lifetime I’ll be running,
And Alice macartney knows you don’t get to breathe this deep on a run.
And If you have to ****, it better take a second because anybody can see you
And I know it too because, hell, I’ve been running my whole life until now
And it’s time I had a break.

Well, I’m already up
And it’s always sometimes helpful maybe
When I reread the script in my brain that begins with
“I’ve been physically abused for most of my life”
and ends with “I don’t know, but yeah.”

Three feet from the ceiling under two blankets
And the crushing ticking of two clocks that are never the right time
I lay down in a desperate attempt to be able to say tomorrow “yeah I got some sleep”
without feeling like a ***** liar.
And when I do lie, I’m gonna lift my mug of caffeine with a splash of dirt and milk to my lips
As if by blocking my mouth I erase the falseness of my words.

And after I reread my script and reread my script
And watch the slideshow titled “what the hell happened to your ribs?”
With an italicized subtitle “don’t tell anybody, okay?”
I scratch at the TO DO list of favors and assignments
And required events and obligations
That seem to crowd over the curvy crayola cursive that reads
“Please sleep. Please eat.”

And then I walk out of my room and down the long long hall
As quietly as I possibly can
So that I can listen to keyboards click, or floorboards creak, or pencils scratch
So that maybe I can count how many others are up with me
In the Twilight Zone.

And maybe by the time the grandaddy clock downstairs chimes one two three
I’ll have washed my face enough times and brushed my teeth enough times
And read my script enough times
To have a pounding headache just heavy enough to shove down my eyelids.


****, It’s only 4.
Luckily I have a new slideshow to watch
And this one is called “the Fourth time my brother died”
With subtitle “flowers in my chain lock links”
And a dedication to Oom, my cow stuffed animal that has a bit of blood on him
From that one time I don’t remember.

I walk back down to the bathroom
And wash my face for the upteenth time.
Surely by now my skin is chemically burnt because
If I’m not going to wear make up, then I better be perfect!

A palmfull of water might irrigate my dust-bowl throat.
I must have been screaming in my dreams.

I slither back under the ceiling and the blankets
And I hold my fists against my eyeballs
As if a ravaging beast is trying to burst out.
I try to breathe silently so that I can pretend I don’t exist
That I’m not alive.
Because my heartbeat sounds disgusting
And my lungs were never that good.

One Two Three Four Five
And I’m ****** because I’ve been counting
From 72 to 248 for an hour now
And I know there is only one hour and fifty minutes
Until I have to
Molly Coates Apr 2013
I’m curious tonight.
Don’t isolate yourself, they say.
Don’t Isolate yourself.
How do I not feel isolated
When I can’t type up into a google bar
Please google, show me some abuse poems
Please, google, Show me somebody like me
I wanna know who else has ever looked in the mirror
Scared of what I’m gonna see
Scared I’m gonna wake up and look and see the bruises on my collarbone
And the bruises on my arms and legs and confidence and hope
Google, I wanna see my future. Can you show me that?
I wanna see the 35 year old woman or man who lived through that ****
I wanna see the 35 year old woman or man who can put their arm on my shoulder
Lean his or her head on mine and say
“don’t you worry, honey, we’ll make it through alright.”
We’ll make it through alright.

But Google I can’t find them.
I’m scared they don’t exist
I’m scared I’m never gonna be the 35 year old woman who lived through that ****
I’m scared I’m never gonna be 35.

Tonight I’m curious.
Where are the poems about blood?
Where are the poems about abuse, google?
I can’t find them.
I don’t want to be the first one.
I don’t want to be the first search result.
I wanna know that I’m not isolated
Because I can’t isolate myself because they say
Don’t isolate yourself.

Don’t Isolate yourself, they say
Mommy how do I not feel Isolated
When I look in your face and swallow every single thing
I ever wanted to say to you because I realize
I don’t want to say a **** thing.
Daddy how do I not feel isolated
When I can’t look at you and really LOOK at you
Because I’m so scared you’re gonna look at me.

Don’t Isolate yourself, they say.
Hell, I’ve been isolated for so long
How do I not feel isolated?
When it’s all I’ve ever known?

Don’t ISOLATE yourself, they say.
How do I not feel isolated
While I can’t put the words to the feelings.
I can’t put the words to the pain
Because it wasn’t just pain.
It wasn’t just fear.
It wasn’t just love.

My brother.
How do I not feel isolated
When I can’t look at you and see a brother
When everybody thinks I’m an only child
Because I can’t put words to you.
Because you’re not just my brother.
It wasn’t just anger.
It wasn’t just fear.

Don’t isolate yourself, they say.
How can I not ISOLATE myself
When nobody can get close.
I can’t put words to it
Because its not just isolation.
Molly Coates Apr 2013
Home is not a chain-locked door.
It's not a first aid kit under your pillow,
nor is it a box cutter in your desk drawer.
Home is not a cover-your-ears-and-be-somewhere-else.
It isn't a ****** stuffed animal,
nor is it a shirt you can never get clean.
Home isn't where hands fly up and come crashing down,
rather than hands holding hands
making the London Bridge that's
falling down
falling down
falling down,
but never on top of anyone;
always around into a warm embrace.

Home is not a chain-locked door,
but rather a door always propped open
with the lights on
and music playing
So everyone knows you’re there
Home is not the two hands cupped together
Hiding the scrapes,
Hiding the bruise,
Hiding the blood,
Hiding everything.

Home is not a chain-locked door.
It's not an election of proper hiding places,
or a search for an efficient escape route.
It isn't the cold feet on the cold floor
with cold hands that shake.
Home isn't dodging floorboards that creak
Like your life depended on it
Because your life depended on it.

Home isn't tracing cracks and skid marks on the walls
remembering that one time
and that time
and that time
and that time
and that time.

No, home is not a chain-locked door.
Molly Coates Feb 2013
I used to think love was a smile, but
How could somebody like me know love?
I believed that the amount you smiled at someone
Symbolized the amount of love and affection
You felt for them.

[People would couple up so that they could smile at each other more often by spending more time together.]

I see the places where love is almost invisible.
How could somebody like me know love?
I see where people frown and yell at each other
And the ones who love are much too
Afraid to smile.

I know that I am not alone.
How could somebody like me know love?
Poets and romatics are always searching
For the words and images and songs that
Would define it.

I do not want to be called a poet
How could somebody like me know love?
I don’t weave words into beautiful textiles
That are decorated with the shapes and colors
Of the soul.

I enjoy reading poems and stories, but
How could somebody like me know love?
I have read novels about getting the girl
And poems about the cold dark empty
Unrequited love.

I don’t know what I think love is anymore.
How could somebody like me know love?
I have never felt so beautiful a thing
In my world or fear and dysfunctional

I have felt great love, but not the romantic kind.
How could somebody like me know love?
I am willing to sacrifice anything for those close to me
But I know there is more to this concept than
Deep friendship.

I don’t even know what “like” is.
How could somebody like me know love?
On the cusp of adulthood, my lack of knowledge
Leads me to fear that I am nearly too old
For naivety.
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