You know me the best
yet you relentlessly work against my best interests.
I want to talk, get to know you better,
but there’s a wall between us;
Human, actor, character. Human, actor, character-
Rule number 1: Don’t break character.
Accompanied with every deep inhale of breath, there is a guttural moan that claws it’s way up-
through the unconscious exhale of air from my diaphragm,
through the scraping gates of my voice box opening and closing,
and through the resonating vibrations of my buzzing vocal folds.
Your fingers are latched onto the flesh of my neck,
forcing the sound of rebirth to spill out of my pale lips.
Rule number 2: Project your voice.
The entirety of my body feels numb
in a state of drugged euphoria.
I want to look away from your piercing gaze
as it paralyzes me on the spot.
They are filled with so much intensity
that my head begins to ache-
about to collapse
beneath your eye-opening scrutiny.
Rule number 3: Maintain eye contact.
I reached out to grab your hand, but grab the handle of a cabinet instead.
I followed your demands of taking out
the makeup remover-
I did it all.
I took a swig of whisky with a handful of medication.
I shaved my skin a little too deep.
I chopped my hair into uneven, rough, bristles of a brush.
and I let the leftover residue of mascara stain the skin of cheeks.
Rule number 4: Accept all offers.
I shivered as though I had been bathed in a tub of blood, warm, yet chilling,
as I stared at the openly palpitating heart in the curved shape of my hand;
red fluid flowing through the lines and crevices of my palm
which resembled veins and arteries.
Look at what you made me do,
mercilessly exposing my soul for all to see.
The faint pumping of blood echoed a continuous thump
into the cochlea of my ears.
Rule number 5: No meaningless silence on stage.
I need, I want. I need, I want.
I didn’t need you, I didn’t want you.
I needed safety and wanted tenderness.
You offered me neither, and so
I became human,
I hid my heart away in the comfort of my embrace,
I screamed from my throat,
I let the lingering atmosphere become uncomfortably quiet,
I denied your presence,
I tore my eyes away from yours.
I broke all the rules,
I no longer yearned to be you-
my reflection in the mirror.
Rule number 6: Find your truth.