dirt on the skin

a chaotic piece of art is what tiana said

she felt the beginning of chaos

art pieces lay below her, shattered

shards of glass pricking her feet.

she felt dirty- dirtier than when she

found those magazines stashed under her cousin’s

desk, dirtier than when she cleansed her cousin’s

vomit on the front porch. she had felt dirty when she saw blood in her urine when she was twelve. she was happy, for she was sick and sick people got treated kindly. but then the excitement died. dread set in. dread. shivers ran

up her arm, then down. hairs stood up, hairs she had so long wished would disappear without shaving. she plucked them. routinely. plucked them clean to be ready for the boy she was seeing at the time. clean. a faraway word. a different world, a different time. she would never be clean again. for the spiders crawling up inside her skin threatening to break out, fall back inside- just as they make it, slipping into nothingness. she couldn’t help them, for it was not it was not her skin. it was the skin of a monster. a wendigo crying with hunger to hunt humans. a shapeshifter, having shred the skin of the woman she used to be two hours ago. will Dean let her out of his misery? dirt on the road beg to be scrubbed on her. she thinks of her bathroom- a morbid bathroom- it is too clean for her. she doesn’t deserve clean. the sewers should be her shower, scouring the dirt in her. rub her skin

until it burns, until it dies, until it ceases to exist.

she does not understand poetry. she does understand chaos.


Author: Shriya Simran Pradhan


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