I tried to learn other phrases in the same twenty-four languages
that you learned to apologize in. “Have you seen / this woman?” “How do I get home from here?”
But surrounded by strangers, every question I asked started with
I wasn’t meant for wanting attention but here,
where I can’t pronounce the street names,
I’d do anything if someone could understand me.
“I’m sorry, but have you seen this woman?”
“I’m sorry, but”
You were right, we weren’t meant
to apologize this hard.
Because I get out of bed every morning on purpose.
Because I get out of bed every morning with purpose.
Because I moved the bed into the corner to give my feet,
to give my body more room to feel itself on the ground.
Because “the ground” is the hardwood floor
of a third floor walk up in an old part of Brooklyn.
Because the third floor puts me far from the earth,
because the third floor puts me up in “the air.”
Because where else do I belong but the sky.
Because where could we be but the sky.
Because three flights up, I am climbing out the window
with legs at strange angles, / because the roof is the next flight up
and it’s been how long since I stood this full of purpose, three feet from a
Because I am a long-hanging cloud and your feet are on the ground
of a third floor walk up
as you wake up
in an old apartment
1.The first time for anything is always the hardest that it will be. 2. You will learn this lesson more times than you would like. 3. You will look good with any color hair, and boys and girls will like that about you. 4. You will like boys and girls. 5. You won’t be convinced anything is ever the last time. 6. You will develop a fear of full length mirrors for more reason than one. 7. People will assume you are exaggerating, let them. 8. People will assume you are something you are not, let them. 9. You will be selfless until you are unable to be. 10. You will worry this will last forever. 11. You will be patient and kind to the wrong people. 12. You will be patient and kind until you are unable to be. 13. It will take twenty-six years but one day you will wake up closer to the sky. 14. The concept of a career driven life is as socially constructed as virginity. 15. You won’t look good in those neon peach pants. 16. The people you will be attracted to will always surprise you. 17. You will have a bad hair cut at your college graduation. 18. You will be evicted from an apartment eight months after that. 19. He will not kill you. 20. He will not kill you. 21. He will not kill you. 22. Your capacity to heal will be always deeper than you are aware. 23. You ability to dress and not cry yourself will take longer to develop than you would like. 24. Every year will be a different lifetime. 25. You may never settle on a hairstyle. 26. You will like it when your hair is pulled. 27. You will want your hair pulled a lot. 28. The things you think will end you will not. 29. You will never master pouting your lips. 30. But my goodness, you will try.
Bee Walsh // 26 // Queer Babe // She on her best days, They on all the others // Bronx-native living in Washington, D.C // Advocates for ALL GRRLS // Made a blood oath to smash the patriarchy // Internet Coquette & OG Poetry Editor at The Rain, Party, & Disaster Society// East Coast Booking for Speak Like a Girl // 95% iced espresso, 4% dry shampoo, 1% lighter fluid // Aspiring sentient sea mist // Talk to her about fourth-wave feminism, the tattoo of the vagina on her finger, or the Oxford comma // @beewalsh // beewalsh.com