Friday Poetry: "Instruction Manual for Navigating What's Already Broken"

Two things came back today, both of equal importance: my mother (from the US), and the blood test results (from the doctor)! One was extremely jetlagged and the other was relatively normal, so I'll just leave it to you to guess which was which.

Turns out I was right about the blood test—everything is average. No odd hormones or anything, no abnormal blood sugar levels... zip, zero, nada. I had a hunch the sadness was mental rather than physical, and turns out I was correct. It's also worth mentioning that my mother dragged herself out of bed at four in the afternoon to take me to the doctor, so that's always appreciated :)

On a slightly less jovial note, the relative peace from yesterday didn't last. I was on shaky ground all day at school, and then after we went to the doctor I caved in. I think my family was worried—none of them quite know how to deal with this, so they hovered, which did not make things any better.

If only figuring out the mental side was as easy as the physical side.

But I can't just stick a needle in my brain and withdraw the necessary information to make it all better, so I suppose poetry has to be good enough instead! This week's Friday Poetry is an idea that's been bouncing around in my head for the past couple of weeks; I wasn't quite sure how it would translate in words, and I actually quite enjoy how it turned out!

As always, feel free to let me know what you think—I always love hearing your interpretations! I'll see you on Monday—have a wonderful weekend. x

Instruction Manual for Navigating What’s Already Broken

i.

know that his heart is a scarred thing, a beast
snarling from behind metal bars. kiss him at three
in the morning when his breath tastes
like cigarette smoke and you can’t tell the colour
of his eyes. when you are both drunk on
something larger than alcohol, he will look over
and ask you your middle name
and whether you have nightmares.
stare down at your mothbitten hands. lie.

ii. 

see the smoke gathering in his chest,
billowing out his lungs, hands like gravel biting
into your skin. allow yourself to believe that
maybe all along you’ve been the ghost,
tap dancing until your bones fall apart and
not even you can find a home in the eye sockets.
he will ask you if you are okay
and there will only be one answer.

iii.

lie.

iv.

know that he’s walked through hell with a
smile on his face. know that he’s an angel anyway.
pluck feathers like truths from his pockmarked back.
say his name over and over like a prayer until
it turns into a curse, until the breaths he takes
are nothing more than caricatures of the demons
you thought you’d been running from.  

v.

later you will remember what it means to conjure
halos out of kisses, and you will wonder when you forgot.
when he asks if you believe in heaven, lie. 

vi.

learn him as he really is: a skidding heartbeat,
an open road, a kiss like murder, like midnight,
like blood dancing around twisted bones. taste
something too close to heartbreak on his lips
and allow yourself to believe that maybe you’re
not in love with his eyes so much as the colour
of what they hide.

vii.

find your heart in the backseat of his car,
nestled between whisky and wings. ask yourself what
gave him the right to take it. search for the answer.
find it in the feathers he shed on your jacket.

viii.

ground note, panic: taste him, like gravel and
whisky and unsaid words. some part of you
will want to tear him to shreds, but a bigger part
will know there’s no use in bothering.
he’ll beat you to the punchline anyway.

ix.

he will ask you whether you believe in
ghosts and angels and love.

x.

look at the colour of his eyes.

xi.

lie.