Issue 27 • October 2019

Art & Lit

Art & Lit

Appointment with Reality

Kendall Sommers, St. Mark's

She wants to depend on herself.

On something more than her parents’ wealth

Or on ten doctors

Desperately trying to “cure” her.

But they don’t know her.

Not the way she talks

Or walks

Or breathes

Or sees

the world that has contained

every grain

of her body and mind.

That both are defined

By fateful critiques

which took away her urgency to speak. 

 

Respect yourself the doctor says.

Love yourself the therapist says.

“I’ll learn”, she says.

“I’ll try”, and she does.

 

Because she craves autonomy, 

The ability to find internal harmony.

She no longer wants to rely on

the fantasies she was raised on

that she was forced to sustain on

In the wake of the memories that caused her body to turn on

Her. when she looks in the mirror

she sees the ruins of  

another beautiful daydream. 

 

And so she wants to depend on herself

for her own health.

Not on some man

whose shallow compliments she began

to equate to her self worth.  

It seems like nobody will ever respect her,

So how can she?

They may love her,

But not in the way

She wants to love

Herself.

 

Not by breathing deep

And getting enough sleep.

Not by supplements and drugs and pills,

when she is just trying to sit still.

 And keep from exposing the cracks

In her thin porcelain face that lacks

The youthfulness her age tells,

And the smile that dispels

What is truthful.

The fact her laugh is faithful.

And that the gaze she sends your way

is not one of flirtatious play

But of trauma, fear, and pain.

The pain that stained

On every part

Of her innocent heart

On the day you bruised

And made her lose

All she had.

Much too young.

And her tears stung

In the gashes on her cheeks.

Between her legs still ache

As a reminder of the day

 

She stooped crying

And she started dying

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