2 minute read

Windows in my house are
dealers of bugs, friends with spiders.
Shut so tight, if they were women,
they’d have identical lips
all aligned in a single line.
If you tried to open them
they’d protest like stiff legs.
Windows in my room have forgotten
what it feels like to want to run away
from small town claustrophobia,
except in my mother’s room
where they’re flung open like obliging legs.
In my mother’s room, windows breathe.
My mother has long accepted
her suffocation. She sees no point
in letting her windows
or her children have a part in it.

I ran away from the scary claustrophobia
of small town windows
and mothers
before my hinges grew too tight.
I climbed my way to the third floor
of a windowless room - airtight.
In that space where no fancy survives,
I told myself I’d focus.
College-topping, career building,
ambition, self hate
and a singular sense of knowing
that I don’t ever
want to go back home, require focus.

Free falling does not require focus.
Imagine yourself standing
at the top of the 100th floor
of a building. On edge. Falling.
Leisurely crossing one window at a time.
Window after window,
life after life, more lives than
you’d ever read in books
or knew you could have.
As you fall faster, windows blur
until you can see the ground.
And all the nights spent
in tangled limbs and hair,
chasing dust motes, dogs, dreams
pass by you in that blur,
and make no sense
in the raging wind
that leaves your bones
and breaks your heart.
You thought you’d replace
windowlessness with a balcony?
The crash is inevitable.
The crash is welcome.
The crash is the price you pay
for jumping head first
off the 100th floor of reality
and for the stolen moments
you free fell through
the windows of love.
The crash is falling out of love.

I had thought I’d replace
windowlessness with a balcony.
I have French windows
in my room now.
At night, they rumble
with passing traffic,
the satisfaction of their existence,
the discontent of my ambition.
Huge windows
that let in all the light
I could ever ask for.
With this amount of light,
I could have the sun in my mouth.
With this disproportionate
amount of inspiration,
I could write endlessly.
I don’t have answers
to every time they ask
why I do not write.
I put curtains on my windows.
They’re green and yellow and beautiful
and smell like the loveliest shroud.

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