Lit Mag Poetry

I Hope You Find Your Voice Again

I Hope You Find Your Voice Again
I’m bad at painting my nails
I think it’s because my hands used to shake
They did that a lot
Remember how the paint would be all over my fingertips
You must have noticed, or maybe I told you
Because one day you brought me some rubbing alcohol 
I normally just left the paint on my skin
It’s not that I liked the way it looked, I just didn’t want to feel exposed
But this time I thought about you and I started wiping it off
I went all around the edges with the alcohol and it stung
I was so careful and I thought you would like it
I thought you would look at my fingers and see what I had done
But when you came and took your rubbing alcohol back, your eyes were shut
I asked you to open them but your ears turned into clouds
I yelled at them while you blew them against my cheek but they were just vapor
I reached for your mouth, feeling for the shapes of the words I needed to hear
But you bit your lip and it screamed in pain and the wind passed by and took your voice
The words disintegrated in my hand and I cried because I knew you couldn’t hear me
I caught your breath in a bottle, maybe it could tell me what I wanted to hear
But the glass burned my hands and I let go
I listened hard for it to break so I could hear your words before they melted into the air
But it just kept falling and I knew that what was behind the glass would never be mine
You couldn’t see but you knew I was out of options
Because you wouldn’t open your eyes, and your ears were clouds, and the wind stole your voice, and your thoughts were shielded by glass
But an ocean of paint lapped at my feet and you got scared because I had another option
You tried to stop me but you couldn’t open your eyes, your ears were clouds, the wind stole your voice, your almost-words were sand  
I dove into the paint so I could hide again
Wasn’t that what you wanted?
I was confused because you started searching for me in the tides
You looked for your voice, too
I hoped you’d find your voice again
I thought it was my fault so I came back and let you steal mine
I couldn’t use it yet, anyway
I stopped painting my nails badly after that
It’s not that I stopped shaking
I just stopped painting them

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