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By Jane Nguyen

I could mourn my youth

The wonder that lit the world bright

That flame so quickly extinguished

Smothered and dead beneath my own hand

From the tattered remains of my mind

Like wisps of pollen scattered on a breeze

Gone and gone and forgotten

If only I could rebuild myself

Mold my body into a lovely, delicate nymph

Mold my soul into something alive

Carve a smile into my wooden face

Whittle notches into my stiffened form

And shrink my body in the same way

I have shrunken my spirit

But I cannot alter from which there is nothing

Devoid of thought or feeling

From this hollow I reinvent myself anew

Birth a blank slate once again

Forge the metal to reinforce my might

Erupt from the earth to brace against

the billowing tempest

I shall squint my eyes against the debris of past

Vision piercing the veil of memory

I will clutch my flickering resolve

And I try

Try to stand tall on quivering feet

Amidst the chaos behind my vacant gaze


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