Before I Allowed Myself : Arjun Pal Mazumdar

Before I Allowed Myself

By Arjun Pal Mazumdar (Seventh Grade)

Before I allowed myself to let gravity tangle
with these yellowed, harbinger cards in my hand
and watched as it painted the Queen itself, letting suitors die
from the guilt of the Jack, as he pretends to play the mandolin

Before I allowed myself to sit in the darkness
nestled against a scandal in a paper back
letting the bards of the far east make me cry wistful tears
and wait for this tortoise to learn to glow in the dark

Before I allowed the maps of the stars
to lead me to lines of code, trace them to their humanity
to perpetual aisles of poetry, to have a dialogue with their insanity
to lamenting beaches of stars, to see through their innocent disguise

Before I allowed words to get close to me
to push me around, to push me away from anything real
I was a writer, but now
gravity rubs against me in darkness, the stars scrape across the sky
I don’t
know what
I am