Posts Tagged ‘anxiety’

I feel vulnerable and my body aches

with uncertainty.

I become anxiety

when my plans tank.

But I still want to hear about

your day.

What happened in class—

the notes you write her,

the next drawing you make.


My eyes are always inside screens,

my mind on what I need to do,

my hands on something

I believe is more important.

But it isn’t.

Nothing is more important.

I need to turn and face you.

Time is not running out—

It is right here.

And so are you.


I am not young enough

to walk next to you in the halls,

and not old enough to

pass off as your mom.

I am in-between friend and parent,

wanting to have more power,

to give you what you need,

What you want.

I care too much

about your fingers, your music eyes,

your swollen heart.

You are not my child, but you are

worth all my time.


You are not the reason

I worry about money,

about where I will end up.

I feel your gratitude

even when you are distracted—

We all get distracted.

I feel like I always am.


My uncertain life would be hollow

without your stories, music,

and yearning to be heard.


Yes, I am scared.

But if you ever left—

There is nothing that scares me





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3AM lights up my corner of the room,
and I blame the coffee I had
too late,
but I know it’s the buzz of my mind—
My obsession
about grad school,
the programs that I could fit
my soul into,
like clowns cramming into
their car.
I close my eyes and
“MFA” on Google’s search
flashes across my blank slate.
I see a wall of red,
like I looked into the sun.
And I feel unreachable.

I am searching for
a better writer inside
But I am afraid
of what I want the most—
to show you that I am
more than words.

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Exit Signs

When I shut the door,

my cat’s eyes widen.

They need to know

there is a way out,

like we all do.

Exit signs always glow,

but not for comfort.

It’s out of necessity.

We need to know

we can get out,

and where.


I feel this endless space

between when

I wrote the last thing

and when I will write

the next—

My shadow

is chasing me.


And my biggest fear

is that when I don’t feel it

it just won’t be


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You are a cat. When you fall your body twists and it turns, but you always land on your feet. Even if you can’t see the ground, your body prepares you. You are lost, but you will find the way by smell. If not, someone is going to find you. Posters with a high reward are stapled to poles and taped to doors of businesses. Your name echoes underneath porches and in unfinished basements. Try to jump the fence—but know that someone is there is stop you. You can swipe at their face and hiss, but understand their eyes—

Let them take you home.

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Little Bare Feet

Photo credit: subwayblogger.com

Photo credit: subwayblogger.com

I want to call you

the moment I sit

on the train­.

My stomach contracts

with the nerves, turning

up like sewage in a well,

dirty sludge wavering back

and forth.

A little version of me

walks through my body

and has to roll up her

jeans, and surrender her shoes,

because what she is going through

is too deep, and too thick

not to be barefoot.

I don’t call you,

but the little version of me


You two talk for hours

on a 15 minute commute.

You tell her everything

will work out.

She believes you,

and I stand up.

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When I’m looked at

Photo credit: madamefromageblog.com

Photo credit: madamefromageblog.com

I want to tuck myself

away in some unmarked

drawer so I can’t be found

when I’m wrong

and when I click the

wrong button

and don’t remember directions

or what you’ve told me.

I want to be locked up

when I’m looked at

like I should have been born

with the knowledge,

should have walked in here

with the answers imbedded

in my common sense.

I do not want

to be sorted, or slipped

in a folder, or set apart.

I want to be tossed

in a pile that you refer

to as being miscellaneous,

and over time I want

to fall out.

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Stock Answers

Photo credit: www.kcet.org

Photo credit: http://www.kcet.org

I am the type

of person

who ends up

staying late

after the first

day of class

because I was

stuck on the


questions we

had to answer

about ourselves.

I could not

decide what my

favorite snack was.

I guess it depends

on the time of day

and my mood.

I watch everyone

file out of the room.

Even the professor

is packing up.

I am not


with writing



Stock answers

are important.

When I discovered

that my favorite

author was John Green

I was not thrilled

because I now

had a favorite author.

I was thrilled

because I had

a crucial stock

answer that I

never really had


Now I would be



For interviews

I prepare for

questions like

“How long have

you been writing?”

And “What themes

do you write about

and why?”

But what I am

not prepared for

is questions that

should feel natural

for me to answer.

Questions that

I should not have

to think about.

Like what is it

about my mentor

that is so great?


why do I like

cats so much?

Things that I write



Suddenly I feel like

I am being asked

to write a poem

on the spot,

no paper involved.

I say stupid things

like “Oh, well,

he is personable.

And cats are


I leave the interview

thinking, No No


That is not

what I wanted.

The questions

I never thought

would be difficult

became the




the interviews

were fine,

but I was haunted

by the lack

of stock answers

because too many

of them were


inside of me.

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