Survivor's Guilt

Mon, 07/16/2018 - 10:02 -- Jerney

Survivor's guilt sounds

like my sister getting beat in the next room

for something I know I did.

 

That's the thing-- I did.

I did not. Did, did not.

I did I did I did NOTHING.

 

Survivor's guilt looks 

like Ricky's loaded trigger--

a round he lost in life,

but found in his gun:

A bullet that cried like an ambulance come too late.

A bullet that cries about what could have been done

besides taking refuge in a blossoming mind. 

A bullet that will weep relentlessly

because everyone survived

except for Ricky.

 

Or at least I used to believe so.

 

My guilt looks 

like mildew and a bouqet of flowers.

Flowers for the dead

and mildew for the tears still staining

my skin.

This skin, this skin--

 

well I didn't think it was fitting to wear

the same thing I did when

my grandmother passed

or when I witnessed 

souls run cold like stiff breezes

so I tried to cut the pieces 

that are still present,

make an offering,

punish myself for what I did.

 

Did not. I did. I did not.

Did not did not did not. 

I did nothing.

 

Survivor's guilt feels

like neglecting to reject the parts 

of me that don't speak up

when someone drinks poison 

and expects me to die.

 

Congrats--I'm tough as nails

but still eating knuckle sandwiches

and air sandwiches trying to unbruise,

trying to undo my siblings' tragedy.

I know I caused them a lot of pain.

I did but did not releive the 

verbal, the physical, the emotional torture.

 

Though I was on both ends 

of our father's angst and there are still things

we don't speak about,

I know that calling Him "daddy"

was a golden apple my siblings couldn't

sink their teeth into.

 

Survivior's guilt smells 

like all the roses I didn't find 

trying to learn to love myself

when no one else would.

 

Just thorns and green buds

buried, reproducing the kind of hatred

branded on my insides

and carved on my flesh.

 

This I did. Did not.

I did not. I did

I did I did

I did the unthinkable and sailed across 

the sea of How Many Cares Don't I Give

When Trying To Off Myself So Im Not A

Component of Insanity But An Object Of

Goodbye.

 

Survivior's guilt tastes

like words on the tip of my tongue

but choking back my voice 

instead of these useless tears.

It tastes like kissing a pair of scissors

or a flat iron or a sewing needle. 

Tastes like wasn't I raised to be

less than speaking up by way of scar tissue

still healing?

 

Voices in my head make oblivion feel like home

but survivior's guilt is the barrier bewtween

how I survived and thoughts rampantly dripping with

Suicide in 31 Flavors.

 

And I did not.

I did I did I did

Nothing.

This poem is about: 
Me

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