Thank you.

these past few days felt

and the next couple of days will feel

like a punch in my belly by a hand covered in concrete and oil

I will keep walking through the streets with a burning chest

and constant shedding of the skin & hair & everything that I held onto

for so long, painfully growing into my heart

the hand is the hand of my friends and all the people

that moved me in any way in the past year

(I’ve written their names down, all of them, on a long list spanning two pages)

it is not a violent punch - but a gentle & necessary one

the fingers of the hand don’t point at me before the punch

the hand holds out to me and as I reach for it, I know what is going to happen

it dunks itself into a bucket of oil

it is translucent and doesn’t stick,

only covers the hand in a barely visible film

a mixture of the rage I carried inside of me

directed towards myself & everything I couldn’t control

and of a healing ointment covering my wounds

(I’ve written your names down, all of them, on a long list spanning two pages)

as the hand touches my body,

the oil ignites on impact, setting my chest on fire

I feel the fire going up into my mind through my veins

my limbs going numb & my thoughts clouded by the smoke

it destroys the thorns that were growing inside of me

my own shell ended up hurting me

leaving me bleeding inside

I don’t know what happens when the fire goes out

I hope it does

and I hope it leaves me in a state in which I

can forgive myself

for everything.