“ I wanted to be beautiful. I whispered words of sirens into my skin, drank peaches and apricots and bathed in tears in hopes that their sadness would absorb all of my own. Through osmosis, I learnt of the white teeth. How heartbeats meet backseats and innocence becomes a thread broken by desire. Pain. Illusion.
I thought that beauty would lead to happiness; that being with the beautiful people would cleanse me of my imperfections. But they were just porcelain dolls with cracks in their mirrors.
Running for miles and miles in bare feet, I could feel the blood pooling in my mouth, the beauty damning. Whispers and whispers, tears and tears and rips in the flesh.
I see my mother, whispering, telling me its alright and I am a child again. I am four years old, eating lipstick, running in the rain. The beauty floats down into my hand, a butterfly in the middle of an enclosure, vibrant blue and full of poisons. Capture it, hold it, absorb it. The beauty. A pinnacle of something unreachable: an oxymoron in itself.
Pretty and deadly, a serpent in my mouth, I hold my tongue in desperation. The beauty, it has taken my mind from me. I am a conjunction, the join between this and that, never the subject, never the destination of a sentence. Adam and Eve come to me when I’m sleeping. They explain the apple, but I do not understand. Their guilt seeps through their pores and drips onto my pillow like tears. I cry in desperation, and I cry in solace.
There is an irregular beat to my heart. Every few moments, it stops. I can hear my lungs screaming at me to breathe, but I am safe here. Waves lap my hair, an ocean of tears dragging me under. I smile at the surface, but no one sees when I’m eight feet under my own sadness.
I’m trying hard to start swimming, but my feet are made of lead. I sink. The water laps over my head, suddenly I’m breathing corpses. Flowers float past my hair, and I reach out to catch them in my hand. They are always just out of reach, beauty running past my fingers, leaving me to gasp for air as I watch it drift away.”