Calling all poets. Submissins are open for Wingword Poetry Competition!

My Eyelids Droop Down

 Radhika Pradhan

My eyelids droop down.
I look at my forearms.
They are covered in skin,
miles and miles of skin.

The skin of my right forearm
is soft, tanned and clean.

You can see the impression of my green veins
form a Y on my wrist
and then move lyrically upward
to somehow lose its track
under muscle
and flesh.

The skin of my left forearm is charred.
Imprints of my blackened trauma
form circles
atop the skin of my wrist.

As my eyes move further down,
dark black ink
reading,
This too Shall Pass
rests on top of
deep slashes
that had once cut through my skin
over and over again,
releasing fresh red blood.

My eyes move toward the right side of the room.
I see a half smoked joint
resting on top
of a crystal-clear ashtray.
Waiting,
To be lit.

My clean right arm performs the task.

As I blow the dense smoke out,
I feel it again.
The same feeling
that my blood produces
as it gently,
yet stubbornly
oozes out of my skin:
Escape.

You would think that fresh blood would have some gravity to it.
But it doesn’t.
It really is just thin crimson water
that refuses to come out
until
you vehemently and violently
cut the same area of crimsoning, destroyed skin
again, and again.

And why do you do it?
To escape.

Numbness is a heavy stone-cold pall
that hovers above your body
day after day.

And you struggle to breathe
from under its weight.

Until you escape.


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