As You Say | Silly Girl


United States
33° 25' 5.9376" N, 111° 55' 52.2984" W

Listening to the stories of others

Like pages turning, examples of being told no

That you can’t do it. You’re silly. Or crazy.

Dream smaller. Safer

What about that little girl

Who sits in her college dorm

The blank pages of uninspiring, captive

Walls staring back at her

Blinking their dry eyes as

She tries to put the tears back in hers.

Pieces of paper with jotted down notes

Of inspiration- words meant to keep her going

When things are at their worst.

People telling her she can do it.

You’re almost there, just keep it up.

When all she wants to hear is someone tell her

No. For once. You crazy person why are you

Doing this to yourself? Breathe. Let a load off

Your shoulders. The shoulders that no

One can see are constantly caving

Under the stress that loads 50 more pounds

To your hardening back. Shoulders up to your ears

Ears at their capacity, just like your agenda

Someone tell me I can’t do it all

That just sometimes, it’s wise to quit

The things that are irrelevant and

Holding you back like quicksand

On a hot summer day, with only

The appearance of hope.

Someone tell me it’s ok

Because you can’t just tell me I’m fine

That I can do anything,

When each day I feel as if I’m simply

Going through the motions

Checking things off my neatly organized

List of things to do. Counting down until

The fleeting moment when I might

Have some time to relax

And do my own work. Never-mind

That “free time” you speak of

I don’t have “me time,”

I don’t watch television

Or movies like you do. I don’t have time

Nor would I waste it doing such things

Don’t get me wrong though

I need to be busy. Or else my mind screams

So loud, until I’m forced to add more things

Like a slave constantly trying to maintain

A delicate yet impossible balance, because

Forces just aren’t aligned in this dimension.

But what have I done now? Again backed into a small

Corner, leaving me begging for someone out there

To notice that painted-on smile

When did I get so good

At keeping up such a nice facade? When just beneath

That thin layer of skin a battle rages on inside my head

There’s never a dull nor quiet moment. Things fight

For my attention. Constantly getting scratched, clawed and

Pulled in all directions. What you see is a smile

Perhaps some days I’ll show drops of frustration

But just a small amount because the world

And people in it, can’t handle darkness or sad things.

They like puppy dogs and bright painted skies

They want to see happy people even when they aren’t.

We brush problems beneath the rug and avoid

Discussions other than

Pink dandelions on a warm spring day

But these teeth have seen the darkness and my eyes

And hands have been a whiteness

So please, for the love of God

But only at that precise moment

When I’m ready to hear it, when I’ve

Already made the decision myself, but still

I want to hear you say it

To tell me it’s ok to not have everything,

As you say, “under control”


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