Second degree burn

Quick wave over the kettle, steam kisses my left forearm
the visceral effect is instant and long-lasting
raise the arm above the heart
but it doesn’t make the pulsating pain diminish

fall asleep with ice, reduce pain to throbbing
it does not reduce the bubbles or damage under the skin
rainy, gray morning, the rain smashes my face
in the famous Nebraska wind

the clock ticks in the sterile room
everything, white and red
biohazard bucket bright brash burgundy
so many voices
trigger memories long ago

reminiscence I do not wish to recall
of pain and sterile rooms
of eyes staring up from below
of fake sympathy
of judgment
of isolation

I am there
black cherry wood bookcase, desk with a sheen
utterances claiming to soothe, but can’t be trusted
I don’t want to sit in the chair
forced to speak words unimaginable

sterile rooms with no compassion
dispassionate adults going through the motions
I still see the penetrating side eyes
they speak with discrimination

salve, Neosporin, a bandage
let it heal on its own
I’ve heard those words before
the blister will pop when it’s ready
and new skin will grow

wipers sway back and forth, soothing me inside
I can breathe again as I return home
to the safety, quiet and peacefulness
where the only danger is accidentally self-inflicted second degree burns


Shutters, apertures, nature and more


The majority are with you

1 Comment

  1. Kim

    Sending warm, healing vibes

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