Rusty Nails and Lizard Scales

A Poem


My armor is stuck

It’s starting to rust

In all of this rain.

Forged by fire

It holds me down.


Peering from the inside out.

My view is wholly incomplete.

A dragon sits on my shoulder

And roars and spits

At passersby

My pet, my soul

Perched right above my heart

Which escaped my chest

And reappeared on my shredded sleeve.

It atrophies.

Held in place with a rusty nail

As my skin breaks in protest

Of its uselessness.

My once trusty dagger, now a rebel

Digs into my flesh

Deeper, trying to loose the steel that has grown to be as much a part of me

As fingernails.

Like lizard scales

Like a tortoise shell.

It slows me down.

An anchor

Another weight to bear.

Today might be the day I break.

I drop my knife

And try to stay


— Just stay

— Don’t trip

— Just be

“Just being” isn’t enough for me.

I Walk

Then Crawl

Then Sit

Then Slump

Then Lay

Then Bleed

Then Break

Then Sleep

Mama, writer, lover, fighter — I wear my heart on my sleeve because my pants pockets are too small.

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