154

how many days do I spend thinking
I’m doing the wrong thing
letting self doubt burn me alive
dousing this fire

why is it when we think of ourselves
we first think of what we are not
how radical would it be if I
kept the flame lit
and let nothing put it out
not even me?

151

I’ve slipped on my shoes and
I’m pushing the front door open
greeted by rich, dense humidity
creating a thin sheer of dew
on my summer’s skin

I’m transported to this time in my life
when togetherness was just a neighbour away
and every problem felt like a big one
I stepped off the porch
the way humid warmth attaches to me
like nostalgia

there’s comfort in the heat
of feeling so uncomfortable
I place one foot out
and then the other

the cicadas so loudly exclaiming
what a relief it is
to live in the past
because at least, you
always know what happens next.

145

even as it seems
the world falls apart
and there are no good people

I consider how rain feels like
the universe, releasing pressure
and that the sun kisses every surface it finds
and how looking for good things
often manifests them

137

second place, silver trophy
a medal for doing well, but
not well enough
funny how validation weighs like
a chunk of metal around your neck
funny how time passes
seconds, ticking by
something just barely out of reach

135

when you win, you make a speech
thanking the ones who supported you
you’re supposed to be humble in your poise
you’re supposed to smile

there are some trophies you earn
that never have a ceremony
no round of applause

does success still count
if there is no fanfare?

at what point
does a table for one
fill a room?

131

play me that song you like
the one where we dance in April rain
let’s be restless through the night
aloof in summer linen

and when we feel out of sorts
we’ll wear our blues and
remember every line
I’ll gaze as your lip curls,
crescent moon

130

the youthful glow
a ray of sun
bursting through the sill
egg’s yolk spilling
soaking into burnt toast
the back of my hand is
warm from the sunlight
the cutlery reflects
right into my eyes
my father spoons another helping onto my plate

128

sometimes I find myself
dreaming of my past selves
and how I can become them
more beautiful, more youthful

I’m learning to celebrate me
by not wishing to be
who I was yesterday
what a disservice that is
to consider today nothing short of
progress