To the Suicide Operator By Gabrielle Caggiano

To the Suicide Operator

I am calling you one week
before my eighteenth birthday and
I’ve got the knife and the melatonin;
The Prozac is locked up in the nurse’s office

The Post Traumatic Relationship Syndrome
(it sounds made up but it’s not it’s not it’s not)
it’s the broken heart with the flashbacks
the panic attacks I am willing away
with assertions like:

I don’t love her anymore.
Sir, I never thought I wouldn’t love her
in this lifetime but
my hands are freezing, you understand.

We were gay, but so what
We glowed on the way home
We were fifteen and I only
knew what Love looked like on her

She lives in innocent bystanders
my parted lips at the coffee lid
my tongue in the opening of the plastic:
I chase the acidity of our love down with blonde roast

Sir, do I sound sane?
I still have spells in the shower
I fall headfirst to kiss the ceramic
it’s the only way I can reunite myself with our memories:

She breaks me in seven pieces every time.

I know this wasn’t supposed to be a poem.

She hijacked my circadian rhythms;
every year on this day I can’t move.

By Gabrielle Caggiano


Gabrielle Caggiano lives in Baltimore, Maryland. Two collections of her poetry have received silver and gold keys in the 2015 and 2016 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. She has poetry forthcoming in AllPoetry’s upcoming project, ‘Circular Whispers.’

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