I suppose my first thought upon reading this prompt was the definition of "poor." I'll go with a poem.
My heart does this thing
When I see your faces-
It goes Boom Boom--Boom
And then I see that look
In your eyes that plagues
Your days and creates a
Watery liquid that drowns
And I'm so sorry life has made
You feel that way. It isn't right
And even though my heart it
Goes Boom Boom--Boom, for you,
It aches likes an ingrown nail.
Pushing into the skin, though
No one sees the pain. So I try
To figure out how I will fix it.
Without having the right clippers
With me at that very moment.
I try to make a plan to make
The pain go away.
I wish I had the secret to
Winning the lottery. Or the secret
That would make that boy fall in
Love with you. Or the secret that
Makes business succeed. Or that
Secret that creates a smile on
Your sorrowful face.
But I do not have that secret.
Though my heart still goes
Boom Boom--Boom for you.
And some day, I hope the Boom
Boom--Boom will be just enough.
I started feeling insecure when I was in fourth grade. It was one of the most deepest emotions I have ever felt. At such a young age, it really tore me apart. It still does. I am thankful, however, for the emotion. And that's a very strange thing for me to have to say. That I'm thankful- for at times feeling pathetic, worthless, disgusting, and teary-eyed looking in the mirror. I am thankful, I think, because it was in fourth grade that I sulked into my bedroom, sat down in my closet- which used to have this little area where the ceiling caved in, and so it became my own cave, the only little place I sat, that no one could find me in. In my illegible handwriting I picked up a big journal I was given for Christmas one year, and I wrote about my body. I wrote everything I hated about my body.
And that hasn't changed. I still write about my body. I write about all the marks that stretch along the never tan enough skin. I write about the dumb little brown spots. I still write about their reasons for ever being placed where they're placed, their significance. I still write about the shape of face, and its complete disproportion to my body. I write about my horrendous feet, and how masculine they are. Or my horrible vision, or the greatness of my nose, and the small lips that have never been placed on a woman deemed beautiful. Or how I needed to lose so much weight. In fourth grade.
And it was this that made me write, beginning in fourth grade. I desire to go back, so badly, to hold that little girl's hand and tell her that she had no business thinking about those traits just yet. She had a lot of growing to do, and if she didn't let go of those horrible thoughts they would grow like an addiction to cigarettes. She would keep inhaling their poisonous consequences, and end up feeling like the ashes off their paper, useless and frowned upon.
But she did in face grow with those inhales. And she did indeed continue to write about them. And I am grateful that something has listened, because my body will always have something to say.
The day I was born, I had an empty backpack. The world in front of my eyes, the grass a noticeable green, the skies a noticeable blue. My, how wonderful the contrast was. And even on a rainy day, I would pay special attention to the raindrops on the backseat's window. I'd watch them rush, and I'd be so sad for that one little raindrop who didn't win the race. It seemed as if when he slowed down, the others would win, and he wouldn't try again, you know, for next race. And I'd watch the cars zoom past the car, wondering why they were in such a rush to get wherever they were going. I would mismatch my clothes, and I'd revel in the new colors. I noticed my mom's breathtaking scent from a mile away, I knew she was home when she was. My dad would carry me to my room to sleep in warm blankets, and if I was already in bed, he would kiss me, it woke me up from the deepest sleep with the love it carried. Nothing felt quite as nice as that, nothing ever has. Before my sister would run off to the teenage years, we would play Barbies in the basement. No one ever quite played like her and I. We had a magical, original Barbie game. We took such care of them. She let me push her Barbie van around the basement, and when we were called up the stairs, I followed her lead, and that has never changed.
They started throwing stones in my backpack not too long ago. Not just stones I had to carry, but others' stones too. It seemed fit for the kind of person I am, the broader shoulders, the heavier the stones, the more sensitive the heart, the higher number of stones. And when people close to me had no green stones, I barely had green stones to give, but I tried to muster up the ones I had. If I had enough green stones, I'd give them all to the people I loved.
The green stones became the object of necessity; everyone now needed the green stones! Suddenly, my empty backpack became heavier with stones that the Universe had "substituted" for the green stones. The new stones, the substitutes, kept piling up until you could fill their spaces with the green stones. If you had enough green stones, they had this magical power that they made your backpack super light, if everyone had enough green stones, all was well. And soon enough, the green stones began to consume us all. They consumed us so that we were swallowed up into the backpacks, and all we ever heard were each other's voices, and the voices of the stones, screaming "We cannot live like this, we need to find these green stones! We need to make them." And now, all of us silly people constantly look for green stones. But me, I have come to hate the green stones. They remind me of tar, they belong in a toilet, along with the emotions we all feel from their absence.
I like to write; point blank. This is a little piece of me that I get to share with the rest of the world, and hey, you know, maybe you'll appreciate it, maybe it'll do nothing for you. But my writing exists, and that's enough for me.
© 2019 Silvia Iorio. All rights reserved.