HOW TO SAVE YOUR OWN LIFE By Natalie Wee

HOW TO SAVE YOUR OWN LIFE

put down that gravestone
you’ve been carrying. bury
the people who leave–
they are dead to you now.
ghosts are everywhere.
stop holding your heart out
to strangers like samplers,
hoping they’ll love the sun
under all that lonely. people
who love lonely people
are always trying to forget.
you know this, because you
are one of them. & that’s
okay. just breathe in deep.
like a firefighter pulling bodies
from the wreckage, only
you are the wreckage,
you are the fire &
you are also the firefighter
which is all to say that
you are trying to save yourself
from yourself. depression is just
an overstaying visitor
who forgets who actually owns
this body. it is whole without
anyone else in it. there is
no monster here,
only the shape of a falling star
where your heart should be.
northbound & reaching, a
hero telling her story. it starts
like this: once upon a time,
you rode the dragon
& saved your own life.

By Natalie Wee

Biography:

Natalie Wee is the author of Our Bodies & Other Fine Machines (Words Dance Publishing, 2016). Her work has been published or is forthcoming in Drunken Boat, Asian American Writers’ Workshop, Prairie Schooner, The Adroit Journal, and more. She has been nominated for the Best of the Net Anthology and two Pushcart Prizes.

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