Swan Song for the Living By Kanika Lawton

Swan Song for the Living

I do not believe this
kind of exhaustion can
ever be cured with sleep.

I close my eyes and feel
the weight bearing down
on my eyelids, on my
shoulders, on every dip
and curve sawed out of my
breaking, cracking back.

Maybe it is time to admit that
I have gambled with blind
luck for far too long – each time
knowing I will be closer to the
last, never wanting to accept
what is coming for me.

And I feel like I am being
eaten alive by the bile of
uncertainty deep within
my stomach but what can
I do but swallow it back down
and tell everyone around me
that I will figure things out,
like I always do.

Like I have to.

Maybe this time I won’t know
what to do anymore.

These words will always feel
like acid on my tongue.

By Kanika Lawton


Kanika Lawton is a third-year psychology student from Vancouver, Canada who is currently studying at the University of California, Los Angeles. In 2013 she received several Gold and Silver Keys for her poetry and short story submissions in the Scholastic’s Art & Writing Awards and was the national winner for the Draw it! poster category in the 2013 Canada Day Challenge. She draws inspiration from the dramatization of real life events and believes profusely in the power of memory and perception and their binding influence over how we write and understand our own narratives and stories. More of her work can be found at sapientiaes.tumblr.com


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