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 Aug 2016 Sarah Mulqueen
to live and to love is to be vulnerable,
exposing our hearts to flame and to frost.

grief is the most sincere way to honor,
our happiness once it is lost.
I'm learning to lay awake
with myself,
Peaceful and warm I
can be with me,
Caring for myself like I do my chilli plant,
Testing my own leaves for lack of nutrition,
Or love,
Cheap, clean sheets beneath my hands and calves
Light the wick.
Colin Meloy's liquid voice falls
like hail,
Excitable under my skin.
So as I watch the light move across white ceilings I can clear
and muse
and breathe.
I feel like a folded symbol,
inside the chipped-cherry boxcar
that is my damp, June mind.

A fetus seizing in the womb,
hooked up like a cheap monitor.
A foreign strandedness, wrapped
by a boa of dark country back roads
and sterile air skipping across grass.

If I stop, If I sleep
the sweat seeps from my pores
like a sterling grey squad,
oxidizing in the fog,
swimming around headspace,
guns melting with claymation cheeks,
howls into the night, darling deadbirds.

I am now happy and remember
only other happy memories.
Over a decade of depression
and now this.

I feel unfinished, unwanted
by the quickness of life.
I feel like a grain
caught in a gust so swift,
I may never adjust.

I, the empty-headed boy,
causing jet-black glass
to appear on sand,
to remove my footprints,
and incase them, phantoms.
Hyrcule my boy, whom I love:
You are nothing but a burial,
time, your shovel.
Please don’t let me be like my Mother.

Don’t let me be the woman
Who never gave me a second glance
Because whenever it came to children
She stopped loving at one.

Don’t let me be
The woman who gave her all to the first born,
But when it was me
She gave it all up.

Don’t let me be the woman who smoked
Half a lung into ashes,
Every night thinking I don’t see
The grey puffs rising to my window
Darkening my room
Choking me as it slowly became the air I breathe.

When I grow up,
Don’t make me marry a man
Who never loved
And lived for numbers upon papers
Caring more about his reputation
Than his own blood he weaved into

When I grow up
Let me teach my children
Happiness and what it is like to smile,
Instead of drilling into their brains
All the reasons they should cry
And drown in their tears.

When I grow up,
Don’t let me search for my dreams
At the bottom of a shot glass
Taking more and more
As I get drunk on false, temporary happiness.

Don’t let me come home to my children,
Telling them how useless they are,
Throwing things at them
And finally collapsing into a heap of hopelessness.

Please don’t let my children
Have a father who never even cared
Enough to remember their birthdays
Let alone save them from the nightmare
That was their Mom.

Don’t let me become
The reason my children cried at their reflection
Because beauty never defined them
The reason they refused to eat
Since the flesh on their body
Kept growing in their eyes only.

Never let me be the woman
Who found only the ecstasy
She bought through men each night.

Even then it wasn’t love.
Even now it isn’t love.
She never learned to love people like me.
But I loved her.

Yet it was forced,
I only saw the mistakes she made
Every time I looked at her.
Including myself.

Please, when I grow up,
Let me learn to love my skin
And suffocate in all the things that make me

Let me prove to the woman who claimed
To have raised me up
That I will never make the same errors or ever be like her.

I’ll love, I’ll live, I’ll care.
Three things she never grew up to do.

When I grow up,
Please don’t let me be like my Mother.
If we were more like ourselves
How long could we keep up this act?
Dodging each other,
Only saying meaningless "Hellos"
And questions,
Never pausing to stop and actually
Take the time to know someone,
Who they truly are,
Deep down,
And then

So they know that they aren't the only one there.
Everyone has one life to live.
Lived well enough,
one life each should be plenty.
We are all connected
What I just don't get is
No one is connecting
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