Let me tell you a story.
I was never the girl that boys wrote love songs for
Never the girl that had the world yoyoed around her fingers,
Never the girl that spent midnights on the beach with red plastic cups in her hands
I was the girl that spent recess on the swings, my palms stretched around chains that locked me to the earth and swung me to the stars.
I was the girl that hid behind four corners of a novel
because words have always been more patience than people
I was the girl that held the superpower of invisibility
behind the cloak of indifference
On my yearbook, they would write:
“You rock, don’t ever change.”
But how do you listen when you stare at your reflection in mirrors
and only see a paper crane falling apart at the seams?
I told myself what no one else would tell me,
I said, “Your body is made of ivory bridges beneath the pavement of skin,
You are the causeway to every destination
Where you go and what you do is entirely up to you.”
I said,“If you don’t like the route you’re taking,
the car you’re driving, the world you’re in,
you can change it.
If you don’t like you,you can change it.
You want to be a writer, so let this life be your work of art.
You are the poet and the poem, the conductor and the orchestra.
Write your life like you would read it.
Remember that every line within you can be crossed out,
every noun not needed, every adjective all wrong.
Throw yourself down unexpected roads,
turn right when you want to go left.
Remember that it’s okay to take more than one route,
it’s okay to be more than one genre.
You’re allowed to sit down on park benches reading Bukowski at midnight and stand up listening to Kayne.
You’re allowed to always wear black when your favorite color is pink.
You’re allowed to be a sonnet and also a country song.”
I told the girl filled with self-hate,
“It’s okay, this is only the first draft.”"