To the Broken You

What’s wrong?

What’s—

You ever look into broken glass and stare at your fragmented reflection. You can kind of see yourself as you were in the womb, before you were an embryo even, only a collection of particles that had not yet come together to form something. You can pick out the things you dislike most the easiest: little piggy nose, that scar just above your left eye, that fine moustache hair highlighted by your poorly-applied foundation. Ugly fuck lol. Imagining these faults removed, no longer parts to the picture. That’s a nice thought.

No matter how you fuss about the things you don’t want, though, the things you don’t understand, you will eventually find yourself facing a non-shitty, fully functional mirror and encounter yourself again. Whole. Whatever that means. You see the person you know staring back at you, the you you’ve known yourself to be before you became someone else, someone with splintered veins crawling up the expanse of their skin and eyes that see more of the empty spaces they wish were there than the truth. The person you think has finally come back to being you.

Wrong:

You’re you even when you’re broken.

Dead Thoughts Still Live

I look out the window and see the sky, and I’m reminded of outer space. The stars, absent from the blackened abyss, call out silently as my deaf ears strain to listen. How could it be, that I’d forgotten of the universe around me? That the beam of light that struck my eyes was something more than a glass illusion hanging delicately from my concrete box like a purposeless limb dangling from a dead tree. I’m reminded of all the things it would seem my mind would rather forget, those obvious truths that stare so violently into my eyes while my vision ever so purposefully blurs so as to deflect what will hit them regardless. I’m aware of my heartbeat, and the blood—all that blood—flowing in circles beneath my skin as I latch to each breath and hope to survive to the next. I concentrate harder, and I swear I can feel my very compositional molecules decomposing within me; the crick crack of my bones causing my limbs to creak and groan with the effort of remaining whole, despite the constant pressure I assert on them. Coiled, shadowy hands find the taste of my body simply divine as they feed off of me, jerking me down when I attempt to fly and holding me to the earth when I acquiesce to their pull, stretching out, stretching thin to the ground as my physical self tries to reconvert to its original state while my soul says not yet, not yet, keeping me together, holding my body like the hand that clutches at shattered glass in the attempt to erase the damage done. I’m feeling too much, I can’t take it—how have I not imploded? Tears streak down my face, uncalled, unwanted, but there all the same, but those hands that tie me down won’t allow me to wipe away their traces; the wetness on my skin makes me uncomfortable, it makes me tired—I want to sleep. But my tears, like lone soldiers trekking home, find their way to the edge of their world—my face—and free fall, and are met with the good earth, and strangely I feel relieved, like a part of me was able to go home, even though the rest must stay, just a little bit longer. Just a little bit longer. I look to the sky and I wonder at my own ability to shroud my consciousness; ignore that calling into the darkness that whispers ever so softly into my ear as I turn my head, that knowledge that this must end, and soon. I want it. But I’m afraid. My fingers convolve at that word, and, stung like the bitter end of a whip, my mind recoils before lashing back, stomping down at the feeling as I fight for control again. I can’t fear I can’t fear I can’t fear it is natural. What is? Fear? Or darkness. Both call to me and this time my ears are not sewn shut, it’s far too late for that now. I breathe in and I can feel them invading my black body, shifting and turning here and there as they become comfortable inhabitants in me. My mouth opens in a silent moan and I can feel more than see that serpent rise from my mouth, black as night as it lashes itself out of me, choking me in its endeavor to drag the words so hated by my unwilling tongue: I fear. It tumbles messily out of my mouth and the serpent, displeased, lashes again, making me repeat myself over and over and over I am afraid I am afraid, and, finally someone help. I shut my mouth and close my eyes as I lay just above the earth and wait for it to swallow me whole. This word, help, is forbidden in the realm of the free. With freedom comes payment. Payment is loneliness. To ask to be saved from it is to beg for time in Hell, complete with disgust, betrayal, fear, and, most of all, hurt. It hurts. A pain like no other, it is so remarkable it leaves me feeling like a million microscopic holes had been punctured into my body; it looks alright but I will always know they’re there, I will always know there’s no helping me. Fuck that. Fuck the serpent that lies in wait on the tip of my tongue, that weakness that is fear that forces me to call out despite my knowledge of the fact that no one will come to my rescue. My soul, so tired, shakes in its confines and asks me to be still. I am. Though sleep won’t help my weariness, I fall into that grey pit regardless, hoping to be whisked away to a universe entirely my own, where hurt, loneliness, and fear are only things of deeper, darker nightmares.

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Are you there?

Would I even want to talk to you if you were?

You’re so easy to reach, but I’ve never made the effort. I tell myself you wouldn’t respond. You’d think me annoying. It’s premature doubt. Something so simple. And yet, I am an unwilling participant in this active nonparticipation.

Humans were meant to be together. Without one another we wilt like flowers in the shadow of the moon. My mind understands this–it’s the reason I have the feeling of a hole growing day by day in the center of my chest, swallowing me slowly the longer I go without the sustenance of another human presence.

The Greeks had one thing right: incubi and succubi exist. They dwell in the body, waiting to be fed the nourishment of another’s soul. They’re not evil, though. Just misunderstood. They don’t always need physical contact to be fulfilled–sometimes even the lightest of conversation, or the briefest glimpse of a smile, can carry them a long way.

Even knowing this, however, my mind is crowded with the toxicity of some kind of apathy. It’s a kind of apathy that suffocates my life. This cocoon of blackness that wraps itself around my being, constantly telling me I don’t need to be present. I don’t need to be there for you, or anyone else for that matter. I’ve got my own problems to solve, the first being that it’s too hard to get out of bed most mornings.

What a selfish life I live.

My phone screen lights up with your efforts. You’re worried. But I think you have better things to think about. I turn off my phone and roll over in bed. I dream about getting up, walking out, and never coming back. I imagine the day I take what little is left of my bank account and place it all on a one-way plane ticket to someplace foreign. I’d get lost in the culture and the language. I’d sing love songs and hear beautiful poetry and laugh under the smile of a new sky. I would marvel in the life I’d been missing, holed up in my room.

It makes everything so much harder, knowing I’ll never do these things.

My hurt highlights the fact that I can’t sleep without the comfort of a heavy blanket and a pillow to hug to simulate the feel of another human body pressed against mine as I fall into a different world. It emphasizes the indentation my body has left in the center of my bed after so many hours curled up on my side, hopeless in my effort to leave. It streaks my life with black, like claw marks after a vicious attack. My hurt leaves me within inches of my life as I writhe with the ache of it tearing my fragile body apart.

I wish you’d take more effort than the internet would allow you. I wish you’d enter my depraved sanctuary with the physical body which was afforded you. I want more than just your presence in the form of pixels and blue text notes. My soul craves the food yours has to offer. You have a body, which harbors your soul.

Use it and save me.