Without Reference

She must start somewhere, even if it’s wrong

Writing isn’t incubating ideas so long

They burn holes in the brain.

Ideas unhatched make a woman insane.

So I start.

I step out.

My fingers stop hovering and punch at the keys.

You wrote a brief bio in your Medium profile. The last word you used was “writer.” Who are you to use that word in reference to yourself? What have you published? Anything of note? Who would pay money for what happened between the hope that lived and the fear you smote?

Anything could go wrong. My ideas a muddle, my words all confuddled. Part of me is drowning in a second-guessed puddle.

What could go right? Go write.

I hear my own voice and my muscles go tight.

The heart in my chest fights constriction in limbs

by speeding its cadence in skipping rhythms.

I flip through journals for words that I wrote,

looking for proof that I have yet to choke.

I’m speaking in meter, my words long to rhyme.

This isn’t the way I want to spend time.

So I remember that writing feeds not vanity

but keeps me from succumbing to insanity.

Holding me steady is the waning belief

that within I’m made of both pain and relief.

No one is causing it; no one can fix it.

In me is both the hell and the ticket

to paradise or suffering I helped create.

No source to cite, my path is innate.

I write my soul wide open with words

and pour into it the peace truth affords.

I see my lone self in the crossfire

of fear taking aim at what hope inspires.

But this light I reflect on those looking to me

will also go dark if I don’t get me free.

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