I wanted to die because I was the butterfly
That emerged from her cocoon
On a rainy day.
My wings drenched and heavy,
I drowned in a puddle before
I had ever even kissed a flower in the sun.
I wanted to die because I was the bird
That hatched in a cage with
A ravenous cat.
My wings were still growing
But I could not afford to wait for my feathers
For death by his teeth was unlikely to be painless.
I wanted to die because I was the excuse.
My existence was nothing but an obstacle to those
Whom I wanted to free
From their comfort in the agony
And the longer I lingered
The more entangled they became.
I wanted to die because I was the ghost
Banished to a life of solitude,
Of inhabiting the spaces in between the skin of one
And the skin of another,
Of inhabiting the crevices that could not be reached
By the loving voices that whispered my name.
I wanted to die because I was the flower bud
That withered before it ever bloomed,
Before anyone ever got to know
Its name, before
It grew into its beauty, before
It had enough of anything to give.
I wanted to die because I was the eyes
That witnessed the destruction of love, that witnessed
The way that madness slowly creeps into a heart
That has been wronged,
Before they had ever looked into the eyes of a lover
Of their own.
I wanted to die because I was the curious child
Who strayed too far from the shore.
Deeper and deeper the sea became,
Until my toes no longer touched the bottom, until
The animals became more and more nightmarish, more monstrous and
Home drifted further and further away from my reach.
I wanted to die because I was the economist
Who had examined love and heartbreak and trust and betrayal and
Even took into consideration the way three words could make
Years and years of shattering worthwhile and
Placed the stones one by one on each side of the scale
Only to find that the cost still far outweighed the benefit.
I wanted to die because
I did not understand then
What I understand now.
Submitted to Art Parasites by Sachi Johana Yasui