I have this curiosity about prison beds.
I think I might have a prison bed.
Or maybe my blankets are just made of chainsand my sheets of shackles.
I have too many pillows.
I say they’re for comfort but what’s comforting about the hissing tongues of cigarette smoke and cologne that you leave trapped in their cases like prison cells every time you leave me alone.
I pretend the stuffed unicorn on my bed is a security guard.
When I was younger, I would’ve said that she protects me from the monsters under my bed.
Now I look at her and realize that this false sense of security just comes from keeping the people out and keeping the monsters in.
My purple unicorn is no match to the thoughts like dragons with ridged teeth and flamethrower breath in my head
But my tongue is a phoenix.
My words are hot and dangerous.
It’s a defense mechanism if used correctly.
So what if I said my phoenix is only a baby?
Unaware of my own strength.
My words are destructive and controversial.
They start fires that burn up every relationship I’ve ever known and turn homes into ash.
As a kid, that scared me.
I was afraid of the fire and losing my home.
Well, what I thought was home anyways.
I’ve grown up since then.
I know now that the thing that my phoenix set ablaze was not a home but an empty dungeon disguised as a happy family.
It didn’t matter how many times my flame thrashed against those walls because you can’t destroy something that doesn’t exist.
Thankfully, I don’t remember everything about the dungeon.
I remember learning to differentiate between intoxication and sobriety in the late night footsteps of a troll.
I tried to understand the magic in his hands that would form weapons out of sunflower stems and toothbrushes and last night’s leftover chili.
I remember the screaming heard through hollow walls like nails on a chalkboard.
A reminder that no matter how welcoming he looked, the troll was a killer.
I remember my prison bed.
It held me the same as the one I have now only my wounds are no longer filled with alcohol and salt water but with rose petals and galaxies.