one time
i saw something
i didn’t understand
and for the first time
that i can remember
i didn’t have words

but i did know
my belly hurt
my knees went weak
my heart fast
my palms sweaty
my mind blank
my neck stiff
my jaw clenched

my body knew
something wasn’t right
this was something
not good

i didn’t speak hardly
for my mid-twenties
i stopped speaking
because i didn’t know
what to say

so much
i didn’t comprehend

at art school
i used the same bathroom stall
as much as possible
the reason being
there was a poem
scratched on the wall
in the stall furthest from the door
the one you had to walk past
all the other open doors to

“come to the edge
i said
come to the edge
and she did
and i pushed her
and she flew…”

i liked the idea
that i could fly
i liked the idea of someone
making the choice for me
i was so tired of trying
to figure out things
trying to make sense
of what happened
what was happening
and so completely confused
about what to do

but i learned
later, the harder way
that sometimes
when someone pushes you
you do not fly
you fall
and i decided then
on the way down
i would never let anyone
make that choice for me
again

because this one time
i saw something
i didn’t understand
and it changed me
into someone
who now
understands

❤️ emily joy rosen

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