fingers ice cold
identity pinned on arbitrary digits
spilling the rotten flowers from her insides
counting pumps of panic juice
one, two, three. not enough.
she scrubs until her hands are red and raw.
four, five, six. they're not clean enough just yet.
waking up freezing and covered in sweat,
voice filling up volumes,
feeling every person who has ever
touched her skin.
sitting and shaking in spanish class,
quietly looking up the number of sleeping pills she needs
to get into her wretched body
in order to disappear forever.
craving the feeling of the cold blade on her hot skin
the red ribbons erupting onto her sheets
blinding anger, sadness, grief turns to
staring at "severely underweight bmi" girls
scribbling on her injured wrist what she needs
to get to that point. she's almost there.
**** yourself. **** yourself. **** yourself, she writes.
**** yourself. **** yourself. **** yourself. **** yourself.
one day, she breaks,
dying a thousand deaths as sirens wail
peeling the tape off the IV they attached to her vein
hearing her mother cry
liver damage. severe blood loss. hallucinations. stitches necessary. psych ward? she's convulsing. must be in shock.
finding herself surrounded by broken girls and boys
in a white-walled facility
made for lunatics, just like her.
smiling through session after session until they say,
scraping through as she plans
how to keep the dead flowers just for herself.
months later, finding herself
in another home for lunatics
tiny quiet shaking girls just like her
being fed sugar water through her nose
on her eighth day, saying
a single first word to her therapist.
sharing a room with a wrinkly zucchini of a girl
turning pink and crying when
the soft soul walks in the room,
finally giving her a beautiful flower to hold.
all her hidden blossoms spilling out of her chest
ugly, shameful plants finally revealed
for the first time in many moons,
she's no longer ashamed of them.
falling in love with the girl two doors over,
erupting into giggles
sneaking around the milieu wearing
sitting in a circle of winter girls,
our flowers resting on our laps,
our fingers warmed by
the touch of one another.
i wrote this during residential treatment for my eating disorder