Poetry

Apoptosis

By: Ergene Kim

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mum said be a good girl she
said, Listen to your brother let him
embrace the whole of you and keep
you away from all those ugly things, don’t you?
want to be away from the world?

and so I listened like a newborn foal
avoiding those footsteps in the snow the
ones a little bigger than mine, by
a miniscule inch. (as if it mattered). I kept
quiet because not because of mum but I did
love my big brother so.

the other ones i didn’t love so much the
ones who came in chiliads to tell me things
i didn’t want to hear and slipped slowly
through my ears like the jelly we made one day
one fine summer day when all the other
boys were outside and only my brother,
he stayed with me and I was thankful but angry
that I was grateful.

and Turn the other cheek, the
grey strangers tell me and so I do without
A sound. without a whimper escapes
my bloody lips the one bitten bloody
from the days I made coffee cups of
shrunken-in screams.

And yet I still do not unleash
all that is held within me–the birth,
the blood, the cycling death; the
scent of raw coins as they slip
through my fingers and apple-knockers
banging on my glass ceiling
for if I did.
What more is there to gain?

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