She’d be lying if she told you that she started from the bottom

Clean white sneaker soles speak louder than her ratty sweatshirt

Student ID shining in her wallet, paper weighing on her mind

Louie said it best:

We live cush lives and stress to make them perfect.


Here I present you with a girl

Whose challenge is to lie beneath the borealis

Beneath a roof, no roof

Here on a patch of grass

And clear her mind of all except the mixed colors of the view at hand.


We’re not sure if this is her coming-of-age story.

She’s long had her driver’s license but bikes to work.

She pays rent. Tiny place. New and clean.

She comes home from work and lies on the carpet with her eyes shut.

She thinks this might make her immature. She thinks it matters.


Tonight, she sits up from the carpet and looks at her bike.

She slips the key into her pocket, leaves her wallet on the counter.

Takes her bike in the apartment elevator.

The ride to the river is just downhill.

Feet dangling off the pedals, she rides down. Alone.

Takes smooth, slow pedal strokes to mid-bridge.

Sits down on the ledge. Alone.


She aches with the realization that the best she can do from her vantage point

Is to become a listener.


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