Don'T Follow Me Poem by Stephanie Starr

Don'T Follow Me

If I could see you today, I’m not sure what I would say
Would I talk about the grass beneath our feet, or the sky up above?
Would we talk about the gravel we ran on or the things I ran from?
Can we hide the truths through an open door?
Can I shut it all away or re-write what is already written?
But I am not a writer, I have words with no meaning
I have only my eyes, the truths I cannot hide
They are the looking glass to my soul
So if you are looking for the truth in me
Look there,
Don’t look anywhere else

I know where you have looked, but the rumors say where you have been
They whispers stories of you, ones that you don’t deny
And yet the paper is thin, my hand bears down hard….
And all the words I wish to say will never make it out of my head
The tips always break, the delicate beauties crumble, and I am left with brokenness
Oh, there are ways to fix it, to grind down to another perfect point
But I chose not to fix the accusation, the problem, and throw the thought on the floor
I sigh and pick up the phone and wait for the words of wisdom to come,
But they never solve anything, I am instead hearing ring…ring….
If I reach it, if a voice connects with mine, what can I do?
What do I say to block out the screeching of tires and dented metal?
I would tell them

Talk me down, don’t leave me hangin’
Cause you’re all I got in a world stitched with tape
I am not the fate,
I don’t want to escape
So speak slowly, let the words rumble in
Grip that phone like it’s all you got
Cause it’s all I got
Tell me why the sound of a mouse clicking
Is louder than the screams of my best friends,
Tell me how it all ends
I can see it through if I know
When my river will start to slow
And the pain in my hand will turn to arthritis
When the chains cut me down…I won’t fight this
I’ll let the rings in my blank notebooks hold me close
And force me to read the white, the empty, the morose
Cause then I’ll be happy
I’ll know the truth so I’ll be happy
Just let me enter darkness happy

So when the dog barks and I suddenly think of you
Or see the green pens lined up on a desk
Will I laugh? Will I cry? I do know how to say goodbye
I have trouble doing math cause you’re not there
I struggle and struggle as the problem stares with answerless eyes
But then I always find it, I find my solution and my face lights up
I knew I didn’t need you, and now I have the proof
The finished picture, black and white, no letters needed
Can it be that simple? Are you just a cut out?
Yes, I think so
But while you were colored with an angry face, I tried to re-color it
I took the bright colors in my crayon box and attempted to paint,
Right over your dark splashes, but they didn’t show up
They only blended into the mess of you

I can’t re-write you no matter what you think
I colorful cut out is still a cut out,
Cut away from its original scenery, and I thought it changed you
But you didn’t, I am not an artist, and you are not a blank canvas,
So when I gave up, put my hopes back in their pallets,
And put you back in your place, you fit perfectly
It was like you never left
My work barely visible, I did nothing to you
Because after a certain age, they are rigid models, no longer moldable
They become hardened antiques, taking the pose they were taught
I am not your artist, I sketched an outline too late
The edges complete, the form filled in, the scares carved on
My hands could not erase what had been done to you
So you can blame me,
For not seeing you sooner
Let this be your lullaby when you cannot sleep,
And when you finally do, don’t think of me
But realize that I wrote this to keep you safe and protect you
The demons cannot get you when you are with me
I am not there, but my broken words are
When it all hurts too much and the world is a blur
Remember that it is held together with tape, weak but hurtful
When it peels off your skin and takes a part of you
You know the bridges you walk on will support you
Please, they won’t let you fall
They won’t cut you out
They won’t tear you down,
Wash you out,
Fill you in,
Let you suffer,
Tell you lies,
Change you,
Desert you,
Hurt you….
Like I will.
So don’t follow me.
I am not something to be.
I am not the key.
Don’t follow me.

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