She is not folded in the crooks of crooked grins or enveloped in the yuks that follow poorly executed jokes. She pays no mind as she singes the edges of those brave enough to approach her. She spits on empathy and disregards the “what ifs” or “why nots.” Rarely spoken aloud, she is deafening when confined to quiet corners, and will lurk there, unmentioned and unforgotten.
When permitted to surface, she looks nothing like you’d expect— badly disguised and undeniably ugly, with unforgiving features that have been bent and twisted— coated with a sticky sugary sheen. She demands to be considered, as she slides, jagged and bitter, off of the tongue and into the light.
She’s always there, regardless of any acknowledgement— closer than we desired, bigger than we imagined, wiser than we hoped. She, the ***** that we are forced to shake hands with.