To Get the Full Effect of this Poem Eat Stale Unsweetened Cheerios at 2am
Loving you is either shards or syrup.
I want you to untangle the vines of my green veins and
iron out all the fleshy folds of my brain tissue.
And I wasn’t spiritual but then you taught me what fermented drinks are and it was all over from there.
I’m on my own.
Only I know what’s happened in that suburban bathroom. With the dusty, dark-pink bathtub with the
jets that didn’t work.
And the medicine cabinet I’d take bottles from and put laxatives and diet pills in the mouth of my child body.
And the ugly beige tile sprinkled with the blood of an eleven year old.
I only ate to throw up.
I only dreamt in nightmares.
Forearms bruised as a geriatric apple.
I can’t tell anyone about the chicken feet and cow hearts and goat heads I saw at the Mexican grocery store that
turned me off red meats for the rest of my life.
I can barely look at ground beef without gagging.
I can’t tell anyone about the walks past the little hole in the wall hairdressers, Quinceañera stores, tailors, the dollar trees, the Blockbusters, the Irish Pub, the rundown craft store, and the florist used for money laundering.
I can’t tell anyone about our mansion in the ghetto that smelled like dog hair and that was heart wrenchingly sad without any of the whimsy or beauty of melancholy.
The green and pink paint would chip off with the slightest pressure of fingertips.
The dark wood antique furniture would groan under the weight of the beasts in football jerseys and poly blend dresses.
I can’t tell anyone about the irregular heartbeat
of chilled panic.
I can count the number of EKG’s on both hands.
My childbody and childbreasts exposed or covered by a thin layer of hospital gown the color of mint gum.
The rip of the medical tape.
Do I really think they want to know about the IV’s?
The daily routine of vital signs, coloring books, vomit, and sporks?
I remember all those grey drives in between therapist’s offices.
Cheap coffee makers and water dispensers with the red and blue levers for hot and cold water.
Mental Health and celebrity magazines scattered on coffee tables.
“In 2010 we’re answering life’s big questions like can we wear high heels in heaven? And what are next year’s fall colors?”
Trash covered streets. Smoke sputtering from rusty cars. Smoke stacks.
Driving past the garbage disposal plant to get to the dentist.
I remember how we’d leave the haunted mansion in the grey ghetto to travel to rural Michigan to our cottage.
Grey lakes and slimy fish…..
Brown woods littered with log cabins and abandoned trailers….
Wild fields of flowers and feral cats….
Blueberry picking and television….
In between my school and house there were train tracks.
The freight trains moved so slowly I’d fantasize about crawling on top of one of the car’s
like a 1950’s vagabond to be taken somewhere less sad.
Juliet Lauren is an eighteen year old emerging writer. Her work can be found in Gold Wake Live, SkyIsland Journal, and Ghost City Review. Her manuscript and poetry have also been recognized numerous times by the Scholastic Arts and Writing Awards. She currently resides in Florida and you can follow her on instagram at jadore.mon.amour
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.