Saturday, April 19, 2014

I Calmly Learn to Say No and Brush it All Away

The only way through the dark city is to pick up a broom and sweep it all away.
Any broom will do as long as it's full and thick.
The broomstick I pick is made of straw bound to a smooth shaft.
By morning my job is done.
All the half-baked story lines, the straddling past, and the sullen faces swept away.
Did anyone know how cluttered my mind and being became?
Like an apartment where you collect memories and trinkets and refuse to throw them away.
But empty cereal boxes get demolished every day.
They hold the memory of a wanting, a lacking, a hunger, so you let them go.
But the trinkets stay because they remind you of a story or a gift.
The trinkets remind you of someone even though it may only be a ghost of you.
What if by keeping what you want and throwing away what you need to feel and understand you are burying yourself?
Try keeping all the empty cereal boxes as a reminder and let the rest go.
Then maybe one day you'll let it all go and find yourself surrounded by emptiness.
Emptiness on the outside but a fullness on the inside.
I feel fearful writing this here publicly, as I have been trained to, but then I remember this is my blog. This is mine to write whatever I please, and anyone else can start a blog and write what they want to say.
Although they may not get 103 views after a popular post, they have the right.
Anything that makes you feel better is acceptable.
The discomfort you live with is not acceptable and you must be placated at any cost.
You lived in fear the whole time you lied. You were afraid someone would take your love away.
And you were scared of the reckoning that was coming relentlessly.
I am not going anywhere, I have to sweep the past away.
To me it means for good, because I am not looking for a fresh start with the same cast of characters.
I think I hear them crying out to me, "It doesn't have to be everyone! It can be just me! It will be even better when they are all gone."
And each person thinks that person should be them, although if something better than me came along they would drop me like a hot cake and quickly forget the past.
What no one seems to understand is multiple parties are all playing the same game with me.
I don't want to go back to the scenes I already saw, already defiled, and of course in turn loved and hated (in stark contrast).
I remember the moments when I trusted other actors and now I don't. Can I blame anyone if it's a cast of only one?
I won't give you any more chances to talk amongst yourselves or pit yourselves against each other.
One by one, you came back to me, thinking you were the only one who dared. I heard surprise in your voices.
It's something I don't understand, because I make you all so uneasy and mad.
But isn't following me around on the internet looking for hidden clues a search for the truth?
If I hid the truth it was only because I knew you wouldn't like it.
One by one you each trained me to say what you wanted to hear.
You controlled me and I always put myself in the weaker position.
Now I sweep it all away.
The memories are both positive and negative, but sometimes I just can't bring myself to glamorize.
Glamorize the illness, the clutter, the pain, the dysfunction, the errors in judgement, and the fear.
The circles disappeared into the space I found.
If you are confused, wondering, or sure this is a poem about you let me clarify.
This is a letter to my past.
And if the past catches up to me I might not recognize myself at all.
I'm not the memory, it ran away, and I cannot stay.
It's not appealing to me to sell myself short for someone's else pleasure anymore.
In the past I feared saying what I thought, because of punishment.
Either I got cut off, or snapped at, or you went away and complained all day.
I can never win. That's why I always do.
And you...all of you...are swept away.
Let me know when you find out where you went.
I still care for ALL of you and it hurts me to say goodbye.
But I might go mountain climbing or watch the sun rise in the mountains alone.
And if I'm not alone it's none of your business.
If you aren't happy for me or feel jealous it's not my problem.
In this world, in this place I landed and took my first breath for the second time in my life I am at no one's mercy except for my own.
Here I am allowed to be human: to change my mind, to say the things I'm afraid to say, and not to be affected when you hate them.
But you should know I am writing a book and your character is what I see. Not how you want to be portrayed or how you want to be.
I was everyone's scape goat. Who will you blame and shame now that I'm gone?
"Go to therapy!" they say. And I do, but they don't. So they gloat and remind themselves they don't need help.
Then I watch them crash and burn.
I guess six years being psychoanalyzed was good advice after all.
I could say something, but I don't want to be small.
Just know I'm not going to edit out your character flaws.
Because I'm writing MY version of MY story, not your version of your story.
If you want to write a book all about how great you are, then be my guest, it's a lot of hard work, work I'm not doing for you.
I asked permission to include all of you in my work and you gave it to me. I'm not being a jerk.
By now you must realize I don't want to come back.
So you get the message.
I do too.
I don't want friends who only accept their version of me.
So, perhaps this is how I sweep the past away.
You take all the credit, while I silently walk away.
Take these words like a spoonful of something sour, and then grimace.
I'm amazed by the responses I can invoke with only words.
It's like I feel what you feel as I write them and you read them.
In the end, who is or was controlling who?
For me I don't care. I just got you being you.
Even if it means you snicker and screw up your face.
Criticize me or laugh at how stupid I am, even to my face. Something you would never allow someone else to do to you without a major attack from a head case.
What always got to you easily was the fact I wasn't broken on the inside.
And when you were nice or when you were sweet I appreciated it, but each gesture always seemed to come with a price.
A price I cannot pay.
What is best for broken bottles, the tiny cached bags, torn Visa statements, and the baby bottle? Sweep them up and throw them away.
No matter what, you'll take it the wrong way.
Someone must have forgotten how many times I got trashed. Sheer ego without a cap.
But I was silently counting the number of times I got thrown away.
Flatter yourself and then wait for a prize. We ransacked each other's lives, remember?
Now you're all ready to begin again.
Goodnight and good luck.

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