my mother tells me i’m special, but i think her and i just see things so differently. god put a timepiece inside of my heart, urging me to learn when to stop and when to start. it is not until we wallow in youthful self-pity that we realize what happened to us in the womb. i spend saturday nights examining my formulaic dna, and then i swiftly assume a position of praise. but am i so special, or am i just knit against the hands of time, always concerned with how long it would take me to fall in love.
when i was young i climbed on everything and played games with my brother that weren’t meant for anyone at all. seas of blankets led to eventual misery. golden locks on white doors led to an unavoidable gagging reflex. the timepiece in my heart didn’t work at all during 1999, and i still beg god to tell me why.
the timepiece in my heart stopped urging me to eat, to speak, to sleep, to smile during my freshman year of high school. hormones and clocks have nothing to do with one another, which i figured out when i saw every one of my bones all exposed. i thought there must be something wrong with me but i couldn’t hear my heart’s chimes ring, so what was i to do? i counted bruises and forced packaged foods down my throat and told everyone that no one could understand.
there once was a boy who tried to repair my little gears, and he tried to mend things that had been broken for 16 years. i wrote him love letters with bruised fingers and i held his hand and sometimes he held me so hard that i wished only to disappear. i ruined his christmas that year, but i couldn’t escape (i still can’t escape) the growing thoughts of entrapment. and when he ran to my car window in the rain, all i could do was request that he let me go. my gears still weren’t fixed, my things still unmended.
god urges me to touch the cogs he gave me but i can’t seem to and when i laid under that boy for months i thought god had most likely dissipated. there are moments of absence and although i do not wish to remember them, i wish there weren’t so many of them floating between my clicking seconds. i loved that boy until the moment he pressed his body against mine and that was one of the first times i wanted to die.
i let that boy and other boys and other girls touch the pinions god gave me and now i know i never should have given them the power. he spun my wheel and spun my wheel and spun my wheel but not once did he teach me how to feel. he left me ten pounds lighter but decades older and galaxies sicker.
i was about to bake him apple pies when god crumbled the mounts once so steady in my heart. i spun around in pretty dresses and we kissed on morning sand and then i stopped loving him very suddenly. eat more and smile more and sing to me and let me read whatever it is that you write but don’t tell me a fucking thing and simply force yourself to love me. and so i loved him but it didn’t matter because my little timepiece was only under maintenance.
i’m too old for new tricks but the timepiece in my heart taught me when to stop and when to start. and i started and i am okay and i am trying to write you something as beautiful as you but god won’t tell me where to begin. sometimes that motor is as quiet as me but i trust it to drag you into my dreams. i stopped loving myself stopped caring for my heart stopped eating and smiling and keeping track of time. i am falling asleep with you and nothing ticks and nothing tocks and someday i will break your heart and you will lose your mind. right now, though, you are telling me that we are truly fine, and that all of my mechanical parts will be alright.
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