I was six.
I was happy, and loved.
I relished in the world around me, dancing with no care and singing, because I knew the whole world was listening.
And I was Loud
Very, very Loud
I wrestled with the sun, and terrified the stars,
Racing the streets like they were the speed of light, my feet pounding with echoes of defiance
I feared nothing and no one
For I knew I was born to make history,
And history was born to mark me
For years I wondered why that changed
Left counting my loneliness like bruises on my legs
Blaming myself for insecurities I was taught
I don’t remember the change
I just remember the impact
I went from taunting the earth
To tying my shoelaces
I learned how to bottle up my emotions like rain and let them drip, calculated, onto a lined piece of paper
I forgot how to see my universe
And learned to write it instead
I stopped fighting
And started to listen
I never realized how much I lost in those two years
Because I couldn’t remember what it was like to be me
But I knew something felt wrong
I felt captured,
Put on display like a glowing jellyfish,
In an aquarium filled to the brim with nothingness
Commercialized for everyone,
And yet no one came
They trapped my soul in the lining of books,
Told me to shut my mouth and open my palm
Gave me machines to teach me how to write,
And headphones to force me to listen
I was so Loud
And I needed to be shut up.
I thought it was my fault.
I thought I was
I hated myself
Do you recognize that I hated myself?
Each year brought a new excuse as to why I was born to suffer
Suffer in a body meant to sing,
And left to the silence of time.
I blamed myself.
I threw everything I had into my creations because I knew that in those crumpled up papers,
That shredded fabric stuck with old scotch tape,
In the quiet hum of my staticky purple stereo,
I was wanted.
Mom grew worried that I would become a hoarder
Value my possessions like an eldric dragon guarding her treasures
That she sat me in front of a screen and scared me into submission.
She was partly right
But she couldn’t seem to see that these possessions, these treasures, were the very things keeping me alive
Because books and colored pencils and scotch tape can’t force you away
But fathers and sisters can
I was six
When you decided that my voice grew too loud
That my mind grew too sharp
That I had grown
When you decided it would be easier to starve the love out of me,
Than to remember you ever loved that mess of a child in the first place
Because I was a mess
Just as Monet is nothing more than a cluster of dots
And Mozart just black ink on a page
Nothing makes sense if you refuse to see it
After years of starving, and loneliness,
Years of whittling my spirit down from a great redwood
To the very colored pencils I learned how to break
You expect me to relish in your pride?
“Look at who I have solved! Look at how she does nothing but work, create, and breathe! I have perfected the imperfect! Tamed the untamable!”
You do not get to claim this person as your own!
While I am proud of who I am
I am not proud of how I became this
Shedding my past self was an act of survival!
Learning that in order to be loved I needed to be silent!
I loved you!
For years, I loved you more than I could ever love myself
I trusted you, looked up to you, I would have died for you
I was never enough.
You said I was annoying.
As if that gave you an excuse to shove your daughter away
nothing more than chalk dust after a night of rain
But in pushing me away,
You forgot one thing.
I was made to be art.
Made to wrestle with the stars and sing with the moon
You muzzled me with lack of love
And thought you created something beautiful
But I will never be beautiful
You have simply fueled my fury,
And given me the very tools to take back my voice
Do not tell me you are proud of me,
Until you are ready to tell that to my six year old self
Because her and I,
I have said my sorry.
And she is ready to teach me how to be Loud again.
Write me in the list of girls you talk quietly about.
And I'll pretend it was all in my head
We'll keep living our arrogant lives,
Knowing we were nothing but ends.
You are an image of a hand in mine,
the disappointment of the sun in my eyes.
I am the desperate swim downwards,
hoping the cold water beneath will make you feel something.
We are lost.
Standing tall in a maze of hushed voices,
trying to find the truth amongst the flitters of our heartbeat.
I have never loved the way I love you!
Though I know you have.
I am simply another girl to lose your heart to,
but you are the first I will lie about.
In a world of ending,
there is no use in believing you would want to begin.