In Alignment With Past Selves: A Poem

I’d wake up and go back to who I was

To make sense of everything, to understand

What happened, when, where and why.

I’d end up straight back in the pain, no mere

Memory, as if no time passed, trying to regain

Perspective. Something within me still holds on

To certain things. Sometimes I can’t tell whether

The hands in the marshlands come with good or

Bad intentions.


Do things drown within me? Never to reappear?

Do they all melt away and become one fluid mass?

Do they wander around, rubbing against my skull?

Do they ever get tired and fall asleep?


My mind goes to these places when my body

Is still. When nothing happens. I’d love to

Be able to salute feelings that brought me down

As much as feelings of joy.

Could I even recognise one without the other?


Sometimes my body cannot quite believe

That it’s out of your war zones, mental terror

And verbal abuse. Your voice comes back in echoes.

And I learned not to trust it. Breathe in the peace

That holds my body instead. Whatever I locked away in

The basement would lead me to the torture chamber


And I decided that in order to live with myself

I won’t fight what has already been done

And look both angels and demons in the face, all mine,

Give them all a seat at my table, everyone of us

Committed to the same cause, choosing creativity

Over destruction, light out of darkness.

group of woman lying on blanket eating lollipops
Photo by Aline Viana Prado on




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