gatekeeper

when they ask who hurt me
i say your name
who knew your honeyed words
would prove so poisonous
who knew the paragraphs and paragraphs of texts
were sent to her too

when they ask who hurt me
i see your face
i shouldn’t have set expectations
not when i knew i had no claim to you
after all, we were “just talking”
i shouldn’t have let my hopes rise
yet with every soft smile, funny jibe, thoughtful question
i sailed farther and farther into an impossible reality
until there was no hope of anchor
no hope of returning to shore

it wasn’t until i saw her name on your phone
that my hull started to splinter
calm seas rose into stormy torrents
and my spine froze with every dash of icy water
i needed to eradicate myself from the situation
yet i stayed
even when my ship was vomiting seawater
i emptied bucket after bucket into the raging sea
my mind realized the ship had sunk
my heart refused to accept it

you were a lesson-
a lesson not to hope naively
not all are as good to us as those were in the past
i opened my gates to you
& you entered and decimated my city
now, they are locked and bolted
expectation was my Achilles’ heel
yet at the end of the day,
the blame is on the gatekeeper

when they ask who hurt me
your name sticks in my throat
you walked past my door – your soft whisper barely counting as a knock
yet, i opened it.
i hurt myself.

-a.j.

4 Comments

  1. Wow I love the ship analogy and the courage that it took the write this post. It was very deep and you could feel the emotion on the edge you of each letter. Love this piece and. The gatekeeper. By writing this, you’re helping others be better gatekeepers and for that I commend you

    Liked by 1 person

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