The day I tasted rage I knew I’d never be the same.

It was so visceral, so unstoppable, so welled up in my clenched fists I was simultaneously invincible, and terribly afraid to be inside my own mind. I’d have barricaded myself inside those walls long enough to bloody the face that made me taste it, but I faltered. Tripped over a memory of a tenderness in a different heart, and I couldn’t get back up again.

Duality is unsettling when you find it in your bones. In an instant I want to shield you from pain, and I become pain. In an instant. The sudden grip of the unforgiving clenched fist turns me into a monster, and I don’t know how not to scream. The beast inside me becomes your burden, because I can’t make him tame.

I am a very good teacher in patience; in calms and in slows I thrive. I don’t know how something breaks in me and in an instant, I switch lives. The two-faced nightmares I awake from bear resemblance, I’m busy tracing lines up a tree of genes, wouldn’t go so far as to call it family, and I’m the apple that

At times I am swollen, pregnant with rage, and it’s eating at the bars on the cage, and I can hear the teeth screeching in scrapes against cold iron, and I break into a cold sweat, and it’s all black, and in an instant… the only thing I have left is the shattered look upon your face… The gentle broken remnant of my failure.

I’m giving up on self help books. I’m saying “this was fun, but it’s my life,” and I’m flying planes and building skyscrapers and counting sheep and wasting time. I didn’t know I was a machine until I found the oil like blood on my fingers the first time I slipped and couldn’t get back up. I’m bundles of old car parts in cans on the shelf in case I ever smack hard into a brick wall again.

I’ve seen the battle side of gentle, the attack side of tender, the “let me get this shit straight” side of “I love you.” I’m turning pages, blistering my fingertips to make rhymes instead of fear, to build bridges instead of break wills, to become bigger, to become anything at all that is bigger than this.

The day I tasted rage, I knew I’d never be the same. I knew I’d always yearn, I’d always long, I’d always crave… but  that I would have to figure my shit out, because I wanted to never again be the root of that look on your face.

Ashley Wylde
January 21st, 2015

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