Afterwards, you hide,
take what he gave you, and run
outside of the body that no longer
shines with any light
comparable to celestial bodies
and wrap yourself in the skin
of something else. You leave that
place and lock all memories of sun
and moon and sky inside a chest.
You carry this chest wherever you go,
but don’t open it.
(Don’t ever open it.)
You are ugly now,
but you are safe in your ugliness.
Even though you are rotting inside yourself,
the dirt and soot and kitchen smoke
should cover the smell of decay.
Some mornings you might even smile
at the bird by the window ledge.
(Just don’t talk to it.)
You keep the chest shut
firmly in the dark and do not speak
of it, even as you watch yourself
become as if you are this self, this skin.
You repeat: I will forget. I will forget.
Alix Bosley is a writer and poet from southern Louisiana. She has lived there all her life and will probably die there too. Having reconciled herself to one day haunting its swamps, she spends most of her time obsessing over lost civilizations and fantasy worlds. This is her first poetry sale. She can be found online at alixbosley.wordpress.com.