If Dickinson was right and hope is, in fact, the thing with feathers

It goes like this.

Wake up, fall into the abyss of timeline updates, scroll through the carnage I slept through. New day, new wrath. I grow more weary of the world every day I am forced to wake up in it. Tell me, where is the world we remember?

I am weary of those who have a voice but do not speak. I am weary of those who claim their rights have been stolen from their hands when all that is asked of them is patience. The world will open again, that is a promise. But now! Now! they won’t be commanded to wait. I wish I could give them grace.

I used to write letters to my children. Addressed each of them by name, signed them Mom, wrote of how proud I am of the faces I do not know yet. There’s one for when my daughter turns sixteen, when she’s twirling in a silver dress with her eyes lined and hair curled. And another for my son to open in his college dorm room the night we leave. But it feels wrong now, to bring innocence into a world tainted by this much blood. I do not know whether to hold onto those envelopes, safekeep them under layers of dust, or to tuck them into a glass bottle, say goodbye, and let the river do what it will.

It goes like this.

One day you’re young and you dream of your own family and you’re going to name your daughter Ava and teach her how to be happy since nobody taught you. You’re naive and you’re sparkling and the world still feels good enough, not perfect, but still a world in which you wouldn’t mind one day having a handful of laughing angels sprinting around the kitchen island, their laughter spilling everywhere. One day you still keep a broken-winged bird fluttering in the cavern of your ribcage, a fledgling thing called Hope, until you wake up to another day, realize that nothing flutters inside of you anymore, and when you breathe out to ask Why? the room fills with feathers.

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