I stand before the mirror, naked, tired, shaken. I have bags underneath my eyes. My eyes have sunken into the back of my cheekbones. My eyes are hollow. My eyes are empty and lost and forgotten. My eyes are naked.
I dip my feet into cold water that has risen slightly high in the bath tub. I turn on the hot water frantically, cursing at it, my bruised toe screaming. I am frantic and tired and shaken. The water runs down on me, hot. My back burns and I scream with joy. I am so tired and scared. I hug myself, I wrap my arms around my belly, and my belly aches with suppressed pain and confusion. I hug it. I turn and twitch and my body is wrapped in a hot blanket of rain. My eyes are wet and screaming. My knees drop. I sit on the unwashed, dirty tub, and I wrap my arms around my knees and let my eyes fall into a hole. I am thinking of my mother. I want my mother to know I am here, under, and buried. But I don’t want my mother to suffer or to hear me singing. I don’t want her here. I want her somewhere, but not here, not under.
I like to rise above sometimes and see how I walk, how I wander, how I behave in front of strangers. I like to rise above my mind and my soul and hold my head in a different position.
I like to rise above,
until I am not thinking about myself.

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