Things I Wish My Mother Would've Said
Everyone you have lost is gone forever.
If you try to call the dead, the phone won’t ring.
You won’t hear their voices.
The ground will shake like your wrists.
You will realize this sometime, when you’re in the bath and every nerve in your body is screaming at you to put your head under and count to a thousand.
You are more than a suicide note.
You are more than a suicide attempt.
You are more than cuts and bruises, and friends that abandon you and don’t even say hello in the hallways anymore.
People will leave you, daughter. People will leave you alone and shaking.
You’ll find solace in the most unexpected places, in the boys that look like they belong everywhere but with you and in the vinyl that whispers to you while the sun is going down.
Eventually you will find the people that will bend the sky down to you so that you can touch the clouds.
They will become your motivation, they will become the glow in the dark stars on your bedroom ceiling.
You will forget that they are plastic, and often mistake them for the night’s sky.
Memories do not always hurt, it’s okay to be nostalgic but do not drown in it.
Do not drown in anything but love, daughter.
Love every leaf, every lover’s vein.
And every single time you think you’re going insane.
Remember that the door is always closed, but always easily opened.
Remember that you can leave.
Remember that you can take the next flight out, start a new life.
Remember that the world is in your piano hands.
You’ll meet someone and call them love because they don’t know the difference between the dull and sharp edge of a knife.
You’ll write poems.
Lots of them.
You’ll write enough poems to fill the walls in all of the rooms in all of the houses you have ever lived in.
You’ll scrawl them on the tree stumps you find temporary homes in while walking in the forest.
You’ll engrave them on someone’s bones after they tell you that they would rather die a thousand deaths than go a second without your energy warming their cheeks.
For every accomplishment, erase five shortcomings from your mind.
Be yourself before you forget who that is.
Be, daughter, be who you want to be;
Be who you know yourself to be.
When the world is sleeping on your shoulders at 4 in the morning, don’t wake it up.
Take a deep breath, rock the earth into a deeper sleep.
Tell the walls your secrets because they don’t whisper.
Don’t tell anyone with a tongue something you wouldn’t want to end up floating back out of their mouths like a catchy song.
When you’re standing up on stage, waiting to start your poem, do not avoid eye contact.
Make everyone nervous with your metaphors.
Make everyone nervous with your passion.
You are the strongest soul you’ll ever be.
And when I die, shall we not meet again,
Remember that I am your mother, daughter.
And mothers, always know best.