Like my lips are pencils

My hands turn to paper,
sour letters written in
loose handwriting,
explaining everything to Mom.
We mark days with white tipped
fingernails against thick upper arms,
and the soft click of popping knuckles.
Soft hands over pale quilts,
strewn news papers nest around her body
nearly one with the bed across from
the television that she flicks off
when I open the door without knocking first.
Her eyes too tired to carry me
any further today, my selfish heart sinks.
Slinking over wood and tile and rug
in the kind of daze that dies in a blink,
I come to my own.
And so my hands become paper
cutting thick skin in futile
only leaving cuts between fingers.

This was the day my sister told me she hated me, and for a moment I couldn’t find myself in the smudging bathroom mirror.


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