The Weather

 

in this desert you may wound me
you may try to stop me
hold me under
you may push me at the foot of the steps
where I brought everything I have
and smash them, crush them, bury them
hold me by the neck and press closed my mouth
you may suspend me
you may shackle me, and have me limp, slowly

but I will
limp slowly
crawl
climb with long fingernails
open a familiar vein
eat the dry oats of my own pepper-flecked feeling
because i know
i am needed.
it makes you desperate
it makes me calm
you may think it is yours
but you do not know
how much more I sacrificed
just to win this step you stand on
i grin, bloodied teeth:
i am not afraid to be beaten down
i am not afraid to lose and lose
i am not afraid to look unphotogenic, ugly as I swim through jagged rocks upstream
it is a privilege to be struck down here and know
i have already been struck by greater fears than you
and when i leave you it will be the first time you know
but not for me:
i see the open door getting closer.
it may take me my life
but i have all of it
and i have learned to burn a fire under patience built so well it can, in a moment
flash and lick up the night in the shape of my soul
i am as the weather in my window: it comes back, and it is raining, it will always rain.

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