By Kacie Hampton
My mouth – glued shut.
Nothing gets past it,
nothing coming in,
especially not coming out.
The words are slowly piling up
inside my mouth.
Some are thin, crushing themselves together,
taking up hardly any space.
Others are thick, jumbled,
clogging my throat.
It would be hard to breathe
if I even could.
Heavy words set up shop around the tip of my tongue.
Little words cram themselves between my teeth and in my cheeks.
Sometimes they combine.
I’m and sorry get ready to be spit out.
I and love and you shove their way to my lips
ready to spill.
They will not.
Words like terror find their way into my bloodstream
while forgiven chips at the cement between my lips.
No still wrestles with fits of giggles and sighs,
never quite coming out on top.
I do not know why,
or who did this to me.
I am resigned to it.
You built a home inside me,
lining the inside of my ribcage
with potted plants,
your favorite books.
You set the cilia in my lungs on fire
to keep yourself warm.
Now smoke curls up my windpipe,
leaking from between my lips
when I open them to speak.
Strangers could look into my eyes
and see the smoldering flames
left in my chest cavity.
You dined on the alcohol soaked tissue
that made up my liver.
Being drunk was all you were ever good at.
Eventually, you made your way into my brain.
You rewired it.
Connected thoughts and feelings that did not belong together,
you made a mess of me.
But you didn’t bother to clean it up when you were done.
You knew that I would.
Kacie Hampton is a senior at Warsaw Community High School in Indiana. She is a current staff member of Teenage Wasteland Review (you can follow them on Twitter at @twlmag). She is obsessed with dogs, dragons, and hanging out in cemeteries. Kacie has work forthcoming on UltraViolet Tribe. You can also follow her on Twitter at @_poutybaby.