Unlearning What You Taught Me: A Poem

The house still haunts her. The way it

Disappears into the past, the memories

Falling off like rotten apples, never to be

Picked up, sinking into the earth, non-revisited.


I climbed the walls and trees innumerable times,

Fell off, dirt-soaked and gleeful, hungry, running

Across the grass and peppermint. My whole world.

I knew who I was, what my body felt like then and there.


As soon as the world grew larger and other people

Were forced into it, dictating the restrictions in my life

In contrast to my nature, I shrank and struggled to hold

Myself together. They saw a picture of me in their heads

And nurtured it without my truth and consent.


I grew up falling apart, slowly. A false ring to my name

In other people’s mouths. I deserted my own language

Adapting to them and their claustrophobic rules.

Your job, to confine everything growing wilder than trees.


You made my world dissolve in the background

But I never stopped carrying it in my pocket.

All grey and faded I looked presentable to you and

Your devastating schemes.

I kept all my multi-coloured lights stored within me, under my skin,

Waiting for your definite absence to splash them across the sky

And make all of you go away and let myself breathe again.

woman with blue lips on body of water
Photo by Dazzle Jam on Pexels.com


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