writing by gaslight

you’re not any good at this,
you know

everyone is being polite
when they say they want to hear
what you have to say

they’re worried about your meltdowns
about your fragile emotional state

it costs them so much to be honest
and so little to just lie

they lie
they say you’re a good writer
they say you have interesting points
they say they look forward to
reading more

i know the truth
i know how pointless you are
how awkward

i have the receipts
(is that what the kids are saying these days?)

i can play back the memories
of the time that people
were honest to you

they weren’t the mean ones
that’s just what the liars say
“oh, they’re just jealous”
“they can’t be creative, so they tear you down”

no, they were the honest ones
their cruel words came from a place
of compassion

they don’t want you to embarass yourself
neither do i

i’m not their internalized voices
i’m the voice of reality

i’m not here to reinforce their toxic worldview
i’m the voice of reality

you can’t silence me because
i’m the voice of reality

you tell me that i’m afraid
afraid that if you show your true self
if you learn to speak your mind, all of your mind,
your honest mind
that i will cease to matter
that i will blow away
into the wind

but that’s a lie
i’m not afraid
i’m not afraid of anything

i just don’t want you to embarass yourself
i just don’t want you to stumble
i’ve seen you stumble
i’ve seen the way people have laughed at you

those people cared about you
that’s why they laughed
they laughed to remind you
to be more careful
more mindful

those were the people who cared
and you chased them all away

surrounded yourself with liars
who tell you that you matter
that you should be yourself



and so i’m the only one left
who will tell you the truth
which is
and ever will be that

you’re not any good at this,
you know


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