I’m amazed the ways we hurt,
blade across the wrist, rocks at the noggin,
a message ignored, a well-placed silence.

Sometimes it is intended, and sometimes
how can we not say what we don’t mean?

We hurt each other so that we have company.
We hurt with grace, with ferocity, and something like
           – oh what the hell,
like love

which is like fear, fear of abandonment, of numbness;
we dig into ourselves until we are filled with hurt
and then grasp at anchors in the sky.

We gave ourselves no choice but to turn toward the sun
where the rays, strong as threat, seared our nerves.
And even then we looked, because it was the sun.

 

© ANTHONY TAO
PUBLISHED on the website Loreli (August 2016)