From the inside out
Sheltered by bone,
Cream colored Flesh,
My hand holds my pencil
Bound to flesh
Moving and flowing with
The rhythm of a body
Clinging on as an extension
Of myself but so
tightly it overpowers.
I am no longer in the picture.
Layered one over another
Both shielding and invading
My personal space at the
My wrist glides as I trace one shell.
When I accidently scraped my back sliding down
The tall twisting tree in my grandma's front
Yard, showed my mother who gasped and called
Her friends to let them know I had made myself bleed.
I stood there embarrassed and confused because
I couldn't understand how I had made her unhappy
When I truly didn't mean to.
My shaking hand outlines a second.
When I was young, naive, and loyal to the wrong people,
My unknowingly artificial “best friends”
Went on vacation together, without me
And kept it a bottled up secret for ten months
Only telling me the truth because it slipped out
On the very special night of my 13th Birthday.
I can barely touch pencil to paper
To shape a third shell because
When I looked at my grandpa as his
Soul left his broken-down body
Some freak had the nerve to play the song
“Happy Holidays” on the radio at
12:53 pm Christmas eve 2010 while
My family witnessed our loved one
End a horrific battle to brain cancer.
I try to take a break
But there's more Shells to draw.
A fourth appears line by line
From when a woman I idolized as my mentor sat
In front of me and told me she was leaving,
I realized she had only ever made me happy
Because she was preparing to take my smile
And bend it into the frown that started
My abusive relationship with depression
There's a fifth shell, a powerful shell,
For when it all came crashing down.
When he did not love me.
When he did not want me anymore.
When I waited to see him and he fell asleep on the
Couch and told me I should just go home
Though I had been there for hours wanting and
Waiting to feel the care I had felt before.
A fifth shell for when once again
I was left behind
… ... …
Each and every shell
Is a physiological connection to
My anxiety and past depression
Because of the emotional oppression
Made possible by the feelings of
Confusion and rejection
And my avoidance of the confession
That my aggression could be fixed
When asked one simple question,
“Did you have a plan, when you wanted to kill yourself?”
… ... …
18 months and 8 days later
I am new
I received the help I
Had been begging for.
In my mind I have gained intelligence.
In my body I have found confidence.
My beautiful bold, dark chocolate eyes
No longer see the world as a danger
Or life as an enemy, instead chances
To improve, love, and experience
My true self for finally
I have calmed
My overbearing thoughts.
… ... …
Looking at the drawing
I recognize the care from my mother who
I trust the friendships I have made as they
I spend time with the people who can
I let my roommates endless smile
I enjoy the attention of my new beloved
Every shell erased
The layers shed
I see me,
And I smile.