© 2023 by The Homegirl Project.

“Being”: a poem by Chinmayi Balusu

Hold a candle to my chest and

Gaze in horror at the damage you’ve left.

You have yet to grow old and understand what

You have done to me.

You left me without a morsel of my

Presence and I didn’t know what

I could do anymore.

My body used to be my own

Maze, so complex that no one could find even

Me in it. But

You changed all of that.

You left me with

Bruises in my mind

Scattered scars on my heart

Pain filled nights with the weight of it sinking into my lungs

Restless bothering lagging through my arms

And regret sinking into every inch of my footsteps

And then I walk into the mirror

A hopeless accident that I need to see

And realize that even if you left me like this

I have found the remnants that seemed to disintegrate

And I pierced them back together

So well that you could never even tell

That you had existed?