Self Portrait: Revisited
My birth was like this:
first love, then breath.
(Thought did not occur to me
until the second time I broke my own heart.)
Leaving is the name you give to the baby girl
you will train to disappear.
You forget her at bus stops, in locked cars,
the front hall, your second wedding,
when she’s eight, nine, ten, and comes home
crying, when she’s fourteen, fifteen, sixteen
and comes home heartbroken, when she’s
nineteen and doesn’t come home.
You say: Call sometimes . You say:
Stay longer. You say: We want to
see your dumb face.
She smiles. She laughs. She calls you
a jerk and keeps laughing.
Everyone is laughing. Why is everyone
laughing? Nothing here is funny.
First. people lied. they said if she Spoke
to them about her Pain. they would LISTEN.
she knows it’s A lie. (she Types out the word
/people/ But it ends up please like she
is Never not Thinking about LONGING)
next – she Tried to speak – Next – you taught
her to turn her Sadness into LAUGHTER –
So it would Be easier to swallow. but now.
her pain never feels like Enough. LOVE
yourself they told her – and then – she
Remembered her heart had been LOST –
By Samantha Brynn
Always too soft and always looking for a fight, Samantha Brynn is a sarcastic New Yorker who cares too much about people she thinks she knows. She likes pretending to be other people on stages and in general. She is not the monster under your bed. She is not a black cat at your door. She is not a ghost, but a person. Honestly.