It hangs around and
Haunts me so casually,
Like his explosion wasn’t a whole year ago,
When I became a walking casualty.
“A Walking Bruise,”
How else could I describe,
Without tiptoeing around the truth,
That I’d been turned into a beaten-down
Curling into the rubble,
I mistook the devil’s voice for my own,
“Lay here, die like this,
On the hill you fought on
And lost all your skin and bone.
And that’s what you are––
You’re skin and bone,
The beauty thing is a lie.
Disqualified from the race men run
To win girls like you at the finish line.”
Then a mightier hand reached into
And stripped my bed.
He cloaked it in new sheets and said,
“It’s what underneath that’s been misled.
I’ve been killing you so you’d
Die to yourself.
That explosion took the walls down
You’d built up, which kept me out and
Held you in, smothered with
Follow me, now.
Exclaim my name.
You won’t love it always,
But the beauty is that we both know the endgame.
I’m the answer to your ‘Why,’
So next time our enemy feeds you lies,
I’ll explode his walls with you
And he’ll be his own walking bruise.”
M.M. Cochran is a YA writer and author of Between the Ocean and the Stars (summer 2022). With an educational background in English and creative writing, she has worked in the journalism industry, as well as the agenting and publishing industry, and she is currently a freelance book editor for her service, Elegant Editing. Now pursuing a career in publishing and becoming a full-time novelist, she spends most of her time editing and writing in her novels. Meanwhile, you can find M.M. collecting coffee mugs or slipping into an oversized sweater, wishing for a white winter.