run until the waves pull you under
grit my teeth to stop them from chattering
hug my arms to my body to stop them from shaking
the breeze isn’t what’s ripping away at me
I can’t put a clamp on on my anxiety but I can die trying
chugging too many water bottles
like I can drown it all away
my organs wrapping around my heart and squeezing
until i explode
suffocating on air
choking on the lump in my throat
fading into the background
no one can hear my cries
walk willingly into the darkness
with no one to meet me on the other side
suffer alone and quietly
greet the hollowness with open arms
hoping to find peace by losing myself
She leaves the knives in a clutter all over the kitchen counter, bloodstains and all, without a second glance.
She doesn't care who knows anymore.
She watches from behind the strips of yellow tape, rereading the words on them over and over again and barely processing them.
CRIME SCENE DO NOT CROSS
There's whispering nearby, hushed and terrified.
"Who would do this?"
She turns and walks away.
She doesn't realize she's done it again until she wrenches the knife out. She watches the body crumble to the floor, blood seeping from the wound in his chest. A look of betrayal is stamped cleanly across his face.
His last expression.
She kneels down and wipes some of the blood off the knife with the hem of her victim's shirt. Not all of the blood, though--how was she going to add the knife to her "collection" if there wasn't any blood on it?
She hears the whispered words in her head again.
"Who would do this?"
She smirks and revels in those words. Then she turns and runs, leaving the body of the boy who was once her cousin behind.
When the police officers kick her door down and charge into her home, it takes only a few seconds to find the pile of bloody knives she's collected.
As they march her out of the house in cold handcuffs that itch at her skin, she realizes the whispers of the public have changed.
"Why would she do this?"
Was what they called
The girl with hair
Like a raven's feathers,
And eyes that rivaled the
Never-ending black pits
Of her family's despair.
Was what they called
The boy with golden curls
Woven like silk and vivid dreams
Who had eyes that shone
Like perfectly cut diamonds
And glittering sapphires.
She was an outcast.
She was a stain.
He was a fairy tale.
He was a god.
She was inevitably lonely,
And abandoned by all.
But she held the grace
Of a thousand ballerinas,
And the intelligence
Of a hundred brain surgeons.
He was beautiful,
Like a shimmering star.
But he was pressured to no end,
Beaten and thrown
From his first and only home
For being weak.
And the day came when fate decided
They would meet.
And when he saw her
He tripped over himself
Because in her eyes of darkness
He saw himself.
He was back to square one.
"She is to blame,"
"For his plummeting perfection,
And his shattered success."
And by not fault of her own,
She was suddenly
The careless fingerprint
On his spotless record.
And she was
The smudge of poisoned ink
On his detailed autobiography.
He was at first worthless.
A corrupted weakling,
Who was never strong enough.
He was a tattered cloth,
Until he was stitched together
By chance and luck.
She was always worthless.
She was chipped and broken glass,
Her cracks tearing at her skin
Until there was nothing left
But a whispered sigh
"She's a nuisance.
He was a framed masterpiece
Of total faultlessness,
Until he met her,"
"They are polar opposites,"
But not to talk to
In the dead of night
When the wind howls
And sleep is far
From claiming me
But not to spill secrets to
Over the phone
Because no one else
Is there to listen
To my problems
But not to trust blindly,
And a bittersweet life
To the hands
Of the impulsive criminal
Dead or alive
State of mind
So the word
So the word sorry
Is not repeated desperately
In hopes of forgiveness
That doesn't come
So there is no knife
Stained with blood
Held in my hand
And so there is no
Injured, horrified girl
Who was once my friend
So I don't have to run
From the girl who once trusted me
And from the black bars of jail
So when she glances
At the shackles around my wrists
It isn't with disgust
And thinly disguised
He stood at the edge of the water, looking down into the dark abyss. The circular moon shone on the water's surface. He had run from home when he couldn't take it anymore, and he didn't plan on ever going back.
Suddenly, a drop of water fell into the lake. It wasn't rain. The liquid substance slid down the boy's cheeks, and quickly fell into the water.
The tears were not normal. The boy raised his hand to his face in confusion and fear. The liquid spread to the edges of his chin and up his forehead, covering his entire face. Then his mouth and nose were covered, and choking silently, he blacked out and fell straight forward into the water, never to be seen again.
And the moon laughed, a dark and chilling sound like the thumping of drums and the cackling of wild hyenas.
She crouched beneath the tall grass, her eyes wet with tears and her fists tight. Her son was dead. She didn't know how, but she could tell. He left home the day before, and two hours ago she woke up feeling like her senses were numb. He was gone, she was sure of it. She had the creepy instinctual feeling that he had drowned somehow.
She muttered to herself, "Be brave, be brave..." She had to find her son and bring his body back. She had to, for the sake her two twin daughters who didn't understand and would never understand death until they saw with their own eyes. And she had to do it for herself. Even if she could never erase the image of her son's limp body from her brain, she had to do it.
"Be brave, be brave, be brave, be brave..." she continued to chant, her voice accidentally rising in volume the more she thought about her two precious little girls and the imagined lifeless eyes of her only son. She realized that she should quiet down, lest someone heard her. She tried to stop--but she couldn't. Her voice kept going, and her mouth kept moving, but the movements were oddly foreign. She couldn't close her mouth no matter how much she tried. Her chanting raised higher in a shrilled screech.
Then when she thought she was about to burst, her voice changed from her own to that of... something different. It was deeper and darker, and boomed across the field. "The Moon will become the ultimate ruler! I will take from this world one human at a time if I have to! Night shall never end! The sun shall never rise! BOW!" the strange new voice rang out. And then she fell to the ground, the empty shell of her body never to speak again.
They kneeled at the entrance of the cave, waiting and watching the moon. They could both tell that it had been night for far too long. The sun should have risen hours ago. They watched the sunrise everyday--they would know.
The two twin girls lived in a cave. At night they were alone, but when the sun rose their mother came to them, bringing with her food and news of their never-before-seen brother.
They were not as stupid as they seemed. Sure, they were 10 years old but still looked 6. Sure, they understood English but couldn't speak a word of it. Sure, the only language they spoke wasn't a real language, and only they and their cat could understand it. But they were not idiots. In fact, sometimes they could be more intelligent than their worried mother.
"The stars are still up," one of the girls finally said in their odd language. The other girl, with slightly shorter hair as to tell them apart, nodded but stayed silent. The longer haired girl pointed to the moon. "Today isn't supposed to be a full moon." Once again, the other girl nodded.
"Mother's missing," the long haired girl finished a few minutes later. The quieter girl nodded and stood up, a small black cat curled up in her arms. Her sister looked up at her in surprise. "You're not going out, are you?" she asked. "We're not supposed to go out. We--we've never gone out before. We have plenty of rations in here--where are you GOING?" the longer haired girl asked in distress as her sister took a step towards the forest.
"I want to go... find them," the quieter girl finally said.
Her sister sighed. "Do you think they're...?"
Once again, the shorter haired girl nodded.
"So do I," the other one agreed reluctantly. Gathering themselves, they held their breath and took the long awaited step onto the grass.
Immediately, the moonlight shone on them--but not in a comfortable, artistic way. Their skin began to burn, and they screamed. Gritting her teeth, the quieter girl kneeled down and let her black cat out of her arms, whispering something to it. With one sad reluctant glance, the cat darted off into the woods. The two girls held each other as they died slowly and painfully. In the distance, just before they both died, they could almost hear the whisper of their mother. "Be brave..."
Child of the stars that fell when the world faded
Friend of no one but the dreams that whispered vain compliments into deaf ears
Who once was the girl with wings who could fly to every corner of the earth and still have time to listen to the quiet singing in front of the campfire
Who remembers the world crumble with the weight of what she has and hasn't done
Who likes the swift cool breeze that sent shivers down her fragile spine
Who hates the fiery passion of those who were wrong but were confident anyway
Who believes in nothing but the pain that kept her awake at night and tired in the mornings
Who fears the slowly burning embers because when they disappear, she will too
Who hopes for change even when she knows she is forever doomed to despair
The Least You Could Do
The least you could do
is serve your lies
and your bitter words
on one of your pricey,
rectangular dinner platters,
drizzled with honey
and covered in that
annoying parsley garnish
you seem to be obsessed over.
Add a scoop on the side
of cheap vanilla ice cream
that tastes more like
Hire a waiter
or a butler
to serve it
because you are
to hand it to me
"They are coming!" she screamed, her ear-piercing voice ripping through my dreams. I snapped my eyes open in fear, blinking rapidly to clear my eyesight. I had no time for morning grogginess. I never did.
"Where?" I hissed, sitting up. I reached underneath a nearby pile of leaves, groping for my knife. I managed not to cut myself this time as I gripped the hilt and held the blade in front of me shakily. I heard someone fall to the ground, followed by another one of my sister's screams.
"Omthertehhoramoph!" the muffled voice of my sister screeched. I looked over to my right, expecting to see a bandit with his hand around my sister's head, kneeling over her fallen body with a spearhead pressed to her throat. Instead, my cousin Archie was desperately trying to stifle my sister's screams by tackling her to the ground and clamping his hand over her mouth.
"Shh, Edyln! They'll hear us!" he whispered in my sister's ear. She was only six. She didn't know anything about the projection of sound, but we tried our best to teach her. And yet sometimes she simply forgot.
Archie turned to me. "They're over the horizon! Get Meredith and Anissa! I'll pack the food!" he ordered in a hushed voice.
I nodded briskly and took off, my feet carrying me up the hill in a blur of speed. I burst into the tent up the hill, panting. "Hurry! They're nearly here! Archie and Edyln are safe, but go!" I said between gasps of breath. The two twins stood up in a rush, grabbing their weapons. Once they were outside, they each pulled a thick string on the tent, and the tent collapsed. Meredith gathered the cloth in her arms and threw it off the hill and into the lake below us. She and Anissa jumped down after it.
Archie was running up the hill with Edyln in tow. "Tent?"
"With the twins!"
Archie pushed me off the hill, and I fumbled in the air, twisting towards the lake below me. It wasn't a particularly high hill, but it was high enough for bandit cowards to second-guess jumping off of. Especially if they spotted a clump of red in the lake. Our red tent made for a good fake blood effect.
I had fallen off high places thousands of times by now, but I never got used to it. I clung to my knife, and as I was a few feet from the water, I threw it towards the dripping figures of Meredith and Anissa beside the lake. I didn't have to worry about hurting them; I knew they would catch it. Fighting against the wind, I hugged my arms together and closed my eyes as I hit the cold, welcoming water.
Another Successful Day
I couldn't find a way to justify my teacher since I could never read her thoughts, so I just made her sound terrible. Oops.
The first bell rang, and my early birds entered the room, struggling to carry their heavy binders and textbooks. I smiled to myself, and made a mental note to commission yet another unnecessary textbook to their load. They needed the exercise, the skinny little string beans.
Students continued to trickle in throughout the next few minutes. The second bell rang. I didn't bother starting the lesson yet, but instead, I prepared my detention slips. John rushed in 27 seconds later. 27 seconds. A new record for him. I walked over to him as he sat down, and slid a signed detention pass to him. He shrunk into his seat with a sigh. Mrs. Lilith, the current detention room overseer, was always accompanied at lunch by at least one of my students. She was a lonely and sullen woman, so I told myself that I was doing her a favor.
A few students had noticed the black piece of construction paper taped over the clock. Being able to tell the time was the basic human right of the privileged. So I took it away from them. That way, they wouldn't be able to pack their things five minutes before the bell. I introduced this method to my class formally, and they stared at me as if I were insane. Many of them groaned, four of them panicked, and one of them looked ready to kiss his watch. It was amusing.
I instructed my students to place their homework in the basket at the front of the room. Most of them did so. A few of them quickly checked it over, and I noticed the look of horror on three of the student's faces when they realized that they forgot to fill out the bonus question at the very bottom of the page. In my class, the word "bonus" was synonymous with the word "mandatory". I smiled thinly, "Speak to me after class if your homework is incomplete. And yes, if you didn't fill the bonus out, it's incomplete."
I headed to the front of the class and turned the Smartboard on, a PowerPoint already set up. I could hear the faint mumble of two of my students talking. "I could turn this off and hand you a worksheet, you know," I said after a brief pause of silence. That shut them up. I'd give the class the worksheets for homework anyway.
I went through the PowerPoint, clicking away with my remote control and pointing to important details with my laser pointer. My commentary was monotone, and was practiced in a way that would convince my students that every word I spoke was fact and not opinion.
The bell rang, and I handed out the homework for the day and detention slips to students who neglected to finish their homework. Another successful day. I was sick of this job. Over twenty years of it, and never any appreciation or respect. I even had to open a "complaint department" in the summer just so my students would stop complaining until then. Not to mention I didn't get paid nearly enough.
On This Day
On this cloudy day
I follow the dreams I never had
And cherish the friends I never wanted
On this sunny day
I throw caution to the wind
Even when I can't feel a single breeze
On this rainy day
I pick out the flowers for my funeral
And drown the petals for my wedding
On this broiling day
I tan my throbbing brain
In the heat of the moment
On this chilly day
I dig a graveyard for myself
When I don't think I'm about to die
On this snowy day
I can't tell which hurts more
The loneliness or the swarm of strangers