pain as compost

i rarely remember my dreams..
blame it on the weed.
but this one i cannot forget.
it has left an imprint,
a residue of haunting.
that permeates my heart,
slithers into my bones,
and whispers
sweet nothings
of loss,
lack of worthiness,
and fear.

to lose you,
dear friend
the one who has spent more days
contemplating the ether
than any lover or confidante.
you are a marker.
you are the part of the map that reads,
“you are here.”

and so what does it mean
this dream
in which
you realize
our intertwinement
is a smoking gun?

another dream
of violation and confusion
and i wake up dazed,
i consider the nature of loss.
and i scoff at the assumed security
with which we all navigate this place.

we tell ourselves it won’t happen to us,
not today at least.
and we become
the pawns
moved around
with forgotten hands
in blood-stained lands.

we are the children of pain.
borne down from decade to decade.
to carry this wound,
deep and ingrained
without any idea of its presence.

does a butterfly know it has wings?
does a cat realize it has a tail?
will this gaping hole inside me
eat away
until all that’s left
is a smile and a handshake?

my skin feels dry
as the lines
find new places
to mark
with its reminders.

i am always dying.
and when i admit this,
when i am willing to confront
the dark seed
planted inside me.
i find that maybe,
just maybe
all of this pain is compost.
and i am a tree
that will one day
without warning or hesitation
sprout roots into this fertile ground
and forget my tormented making.

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