moonlit lantern x red tulip x a place in my head


moonlit lantern

a moonlit lantern hangs above my head as i wilt into sleep.

to be alive is to be resourceful.

i count the seconds away from home as tallies on a billboard.

the lines are indistinguishable.

i read by candle light and blow out the fire before it burns past saving.

i sneak a smell of the pages and know they are mine.

the next morning i wake up before the sun makes its appearance over the horizon.

i speak encouragements to myself in my spit-stained mirror.

‘i am ok.’

the darkness in the air hangs a little longer until i utter more encouragements.

‘i am more than ok. i am great.’

i head off to start my day with a smile on my face because 

even in the lines of gray

i know the brightest thing that shines is my happiness.

i water my plants before i go.

i love telling them little affirmations

that they will be ok.

i work all day

and i grow tired.

but come dusk

and i am back in my sunset-streaked home

with my plants doing ok

and my stained mirror showing my sparkling eyes

and my lantern hanging above me as the citrus colors fade slowly to moonlight.

red tulip

i stare at the room with defiant courage.

i will overcome.

red tulips grow out of bare dirt.

like fresh lipstick,

they sprout, blooming with spirit.

i pick a flower,

and plead guilty for the death of such beauty.

i give the flower to someone i love,

and that person is me.

the room grows silent as my smile grows bigger.

let them contemplate,

my flower and i are happy.

i leave those stares,

in that echoey room

and scream out into an unbeckoned reality.

‘let me be enough!’

my red tulip withers in the streaming sunlight.

i forgot to care for the ones i love.

i weep into the death of myself

as the red tulip floats further and further from my grasp.

i love it to the very end.

a place in my head

i’m stuck in my head,

wrapped around a memory 

i can’t embrace.

i’m working on making this space

a place i don’t hate.

i lay pillows,

a beanbag chair,

a nightlight,

some books,

and a record player,

so that i hold my standards for myself with more grace.

i pace myself peacefully 

with my dark thoughts.

i open a window so that the sun shines more 

fully in all disgrace.

i feel the warmth as i allow love to flood this broken place.

i never wanted to run this race,

but here i am.

at the finish line.

and all i see instead of your abasement

is interlaced love from myself,

in that place,

in my head,

that i made a home.