I climbed. I tripped. I fell.
Catatonic, like a marionette whose strings were still enmeshed
with Yesterday’s calloused fingers, those quintuplets of impasse;
I was tugged and tossed into a labyrinth with no exit
where I was clobbered by the ghostly howls from the chambers of my heart.
From my lips tumbled a few sound bites—a prayer?—that
beseeched for a crack in the wall or Ariadne’s thread to lead me out.
I fell. I bled. I wept.
The sky’s teardrops bruised the petals of forget-me-nots below,
just tantamount to the way a colorful soul was subdued into sepia by too much torment.
I beg you, brandish the brush again and paint me some gossamer wings; let me soar.
Let the somber sky turn me into a mermaid of the clouds
so I can swim and wrap the stars in the lazy cradles of my palms.
Splash hunter green on a canvas of a frosty pallor—
let me turn my bleak world into a masterpiece from the blackest of coals.
I wept. I wiped my tears. I got up.
The firmament’s King always wakes up to thaw
the monsters beneath my bed;
every scar obtained from the turbulent night
was fate’s personal signature on my soul,
embedded not to remind me how hard I fall,
but to magnify my strength when I finally cut the strings of the past.
I got up. I held my head up. I climbed again.
Looking at the world from the correct end of the telescope,
let me be reborn like a phoenix rising from its ashes.
Even the desert has its own oasis, even the night has its constellations;
a rose can’t be a rose without thorns.
No need for knights-in-shining-armor or any ersatz prince
for she, my personal heroine, smiles back at me from the looking glass.
-from the first issue of The Sentinel (AY 2010-2011)