I reach my fingers into my eyes and pull out long, thick ropes of time. 

I tuck my nails under my collarbone and yank. The room fills up with steam.

I want to forget my laziness and fear. I want to crush my crumbling thoughts into a diamond. I want to be a perfect star. I want to burn the sky. 

My lungs balloon with laughter, harsh, the scent of stale air. 

The cruel truths of cruel men ring out in the stillness. 

What, then, girl, do you do? Give us the word of your inaction, bleed that ambition to the floor, your big talk and your little body crumpling in broken metal and wasted time. 

The fear of death, of the running out of time, could not engulf the fear of failure that fallowed all the crops.

But then, here, this little pricking change of day and day. 

I could grow a woman for this body, build her out of the wreckage of all my former selves. I could make you proud. I could make me. 

I will let these trivialities propel me, if only to keep swimming through the dark. I want to be the kind of girl you think I am. (I kind of think I am to be the girl you want.)

I will sharpen my machete. I will put on my mascara. I will cut down the field of terrors that spreads itself before me. You will see my face on billboards, fear oozing out my mouth, bent and desiccated. You will hear my voice in the boiling seas. A thousand little girls will weep, for we are holding hands. Rose petals will burst from the car stereos of small-town tyrants, and I swear to god even if just for one night we will sleep well. 

Oh, help, this heart has stretched to let the world in, and your hand is at the hilt.