For sad old earth must borrow its mirth

got good at hiding it,
you think.
but, someone will see you,
and they’ll know.
the things you do
that are just a bit, um,
abby normal.
the way you let your lips get dry
then bite on that thin strip of skin.
pull it off.
taste the bitter blood.
encourage that wonky hangnail.
wait for the right moment to yank.
do the red watercolours
somewhere inconspicuous.
let your pain matriculate,
bone deep.
tell no one of this atonement.
connoisseur of cultivated anguish.

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