I lay in bed
till the microfiber threads
wove their way into my veins.
I played dead
curled up roly poly
till summer was on its deathbed.
and I thought about you,
the middle of June,
the streets of Seoul—
I pretended I was thinking of nothing at all.
But the playground taunts that never stopped,
echoed in my brain like a record skip.
Like a clock:
tic tic tic
and I wondered how they changed me,
how the bullying rearranged me,
and I decided I would never know.
I swam in the cotton comfort of my quilt,
wondering why the glimpses that haunt
were the ones I boxed up,
stamped and sealed shut.
The impressions I crave,
are they the same ones I mailed away
without a return address?
By Katelynn Paluch