No Silent Moment

This is me

An eleven year old girl with a baby in her arms

Smiling like a Saturday morning cartoon

This is me

A goofy group at the top of Dennis-The-Menace slide

This is me

Hands pressed against aquarium glass, unbelievable eyes tracking a God’s-honest-truth shark, swimming right there

This is me

Five mouths eating for the cost of one

This is me

Happy birthday and a picnic

This is me

Back of the pickup truck down the highway, wind whipping sandy hair past freckles, urging the truck drivers to blast the horn, ooh, I got him, he did it!

This is me

Dressed in clothes too big posed for a picture in the foyer of the church, always in the middle, youngest in front and oldest in back, smile but don’t make faces, everyone listen up now, a smack in the face in the pew if you talk during the service, behave and pretend to be something better on Sunday, pretend to be respectable on Sunday because these people are feeding you, little ungrateful shits

This is me

Hiding in the corner with a book lost in someone else’s imagination,

Always in a book to be anywhere else, to see something else, always on chapter three of a new adventure instead of checking the fridge again for a snack that’s not there, or playing with the kids that call me weird

This is me

Crying for no reason, again, why are you crying, why don’t you say anything, what’s wrong, why are you crying

This is me

Going to counseling because Mom can’t figure me out, he won’t tell me what’s going on, I’m afraid he’ll hurt himself

In trouble at school and detention and suspended and fights and smoking and skipping and staying out three days and cops bringing me home

Not talking to anyone because nobody can see my words, I want to make sentences like movies, when I read I see faces, why don’t my words move and dance and sweep them away? why can’t anyone feel my hidden meaning by the touch of a breeze in a mist-covered field? why aren’t my paragraphs lighting up their minds like bonfires in libraries?

This is me

Just wanting to be anything else

This is me

Trying to sweep memories under the rug where they belong, trying to fill in the cracks in the wall, trying to erase the groping hands from my skin

This is me

Wishing I could say no, hoping someone could speak for me, praying that God will reach down and take me away from this dark blue suit

This is me

Spending the rest of my life trying to save a little boy

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