New Skin

I jot my ideas in a black notebook, frantically, as though if I pause for a moment to think I’ll get distracted and the words will slip from my fingers, as though any of my revelations are original.

The pen leaks and I smudge your name in ink across my knuckles, the hills and valleys of our violence etched in broken skin. My veins like blue rivers travel up my arms, so plainly visible and yet unmappable.

They always say I have the softest skin.

I guess that’s why you broke it, tore it from me, skinned me—your prize; something worth mounting on the wall.

These days I live without skin, vulnerable to the slightest change in the wind, each gust a burning weight, each breeze the tightening of a noose.

Raindrops like water torture.

Unbalanced. At odds with nature. Chemically out of whack.

I medicate and the trees come into focus, I follow the path a train of ants wind up the trunk. I recognize the universe in the grain.

I can tell the future.

My dreams are vivid, a side effect. I wake up sweating from my worst nightmare and can still smell the scent of him, still feel the weight of his body violating mine, still hear my own cries echoing in the dark room struggling for consciousness.

He holds me. Murmurs in my ear. Calms me. I feel him tense when I narrate the nightmare, as though he’d give anything to do battle with my dreams.

I drift away against his chest while his fingers trace patterns on my shoulders, my back, my arms, like needles softly knitting.

New skin.

Foals – Blue Blood (Live)

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6 thoughts on “New Skin”

  1. “I feel him tense when I narrate the nightmare, as though he’d give anything to do battle with my dreams.”

    Love it. And love when guys get irrationally protective like that. It’s the thought that counts.

  2. this is really amazing. the articulation of everything that’s been caught in my chest for months now, thanks. im going to link you in my blog, hope thats ok-let me know if you would prefer me not to. xxx

  3. I just wanted you to know that I am in love with the way you write. You inspire me to stray from poetry and experiment with prose. Thanks you.

  4. They say the same thing to me.

    Sometimes, the poetically inclined will point out the irony:

    Softest skin, coldest heart.

    You’d miss that vulnerability if it went away.

    I realize that this image is how I’ve always viewed your writing. Writing that is skinless, emotions creeping into a house with no ceilings, walls or doors.

    “I feel him tense when I narrate the nightmare, as though he’d give anything to do battle with my dreams.”

    🙂

  5. You haven’t proven me wrong once. I’m genuinely glad that you have continued to write, that you’ve continued with your strongest voice. Rattle the windows, echo through canyons, but speak your truth. Sincerely, Kim S.

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