growing pains

you’re not a victim my father says
despite the tears on my face

you’re not a victim
despite my broken heart

it’s not anybody else’s fault but yours he says
even though he’s the one who chooses the words that wound me

so i will learn to say: “i’m not a victim”
and pretend yourย words don’t hurt me anymore

-when he says you need to grow up

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something wrong with me or you

did i do something to deserve all your hate?
if the world is punishing me
it’s doing a pretty good job
i hate myself so much
i wish i could be anybody but myself

or maybe there’s something wrong with you
the way hate spits out of you
like lava burning into the flesh of my heart
when it cools, leaving barren rock behind

i wish there was an answer to all the suffering you make me feel
but when i ask above
only silent emptiness reaches my ears

-to my father and brother

what i hope you leave behind

sometimes i worry as thoughts of you consume my past times and present
that you won’t ever fade from memory
but i have found with past memories and present
forgetting is easier than we know
you will slip into cracks of my memories unseen
but you recede like a glacier
carving me into something i hopeย contains the shape of things i love about you

-to the ones i have loved, love, and will love