By Holly Taylor


i am just over seven months old
considering my recent rebirth
in which i ate very little,
prayed not once, and
loved because it was the only thing left i knew how to do.
there were no clichés except for maybe when
everyone in the psych ward was crazy.

i have rolled this idea of rebirth
around in my hands
until my palms are calloused
until its hard edges have become soft
sea glass on a beach and everyone is there to collect it
except it’s all a gift for me
and my bag is getting very heavy.
soon i’m pushing glass into my mouth
hiding it in my blankets.
one morning i wake up to a piece behind my ear
like a magician’s trick.
the more weight we put on it
the more miraculous it has to be,
but it is not miraculous,
not that.

it is sobbing on the floor by the hospital bed
and it is piss in the hallways
and it is 4AMs hyperventilating
so completely alone.
it is a game of hide-and-forget-about-me
it is going to work and not working
it is going to sleep and not sleeping
it is going to therapy and not healing
it is not following through
or following through too much.
it is heartache too intense to bear
i’ve stopped carrying a needle and thread
because it can only be fixed by the most advanced repairs.

these days
i like bridges and rooftops because
they are symbols of the times i wished to jump
just to see the underside of things on my way out
since the upside has always been so down, for me.
these days i like walls
because they keep me safe
and only sometimes can my scratching be heard.
but i know we all cried after her funeral
and pawed at each other’s shoulders when we could see
bottom lips quaking in refrain
and said “what could we have done to make a change?”

once though,
just after i was born,
i let my tired hands find a home in mike’s
while he looked at me and told me i was beautiful
and that his god must still have plans for me.
he planted a flower in my chest and told me to water it
“give it lots of sunlight”, he said
and some days i will admit that i forget to.
and some days i am just too tired.
there have been weeks in which i’ve ignored it
while it showered its leaves onto to my padded floor
and never died.

today i opened up the door in my chest
if only to let some light in
just to warm my core
and saw the flower there standing
kind of simple and unremarkable
but all the while beautiful.
“i am standing, too”, i thought.
and maybe that is the most miraculous thing.

Holly Taylor is a twenty-something from Ontario, Canada who writes poetry in her spare time. She uses her work to advocate for social issues such as feminism and mental health, and she aspires to spark dialogue about such things through her poetry.

© 2019