I sit, alone. And I watch the world go by. Plans are made. Day and night. I sit and I whisper to myself, “maybe they will ask you this time.” But they rarely do. You’re seen as an independent woman. But really, it’s just so no one can see they’ve hurt you. My muscles ache with straining, holding myself in, locked in the stereotype of independence. I’m lonely. And I’m scared. And people can’t often see that. But I’m a big girl now. I’ve got to deal with loneliness. But I envy those who people care for me and invite me to outings because they know that they feel excluded. I too, feel excluded. But the crowds that rally behind me are merely mirrors that I’ve grown tired of seeing. I weep, because nobody can see my arms outstretched for them. When I ask people to hang out, it’s so I can feel human again. But I’m a passing thought. A bookmark in the pages you will forget about. I wait for you to return to me. But I know I can’t escape without being cut. So I’ll cut, cut, cut. And even though I’ve been clean for 8 months, if it means people know I’m not doing well, it means I don’t have to hold myself together anymore. I can let go. It’s okay to just let go.
I have always hated the fact that each thing I do, is tainted by the memory of someone else. He tainted my poetry, you taint my heart and I practically bleed bad decisions. Have you ever been so broken you forget that parts of you that you have left? After we broke up, after you broke my heart, I was hated by your friends for trying to get over you. I was mocked for trying to fill the holes you left with as many faceless people as I could. You didn’t think it was so I could burn away the tree trunk memories of you. How sex meant something with you. Only you. I always felt bad that my ex was a reason I was depressed with you after what he did. I didn’t think I’d be more heart broken after you but here I am. 11 stone of heart ache and bad choices because God knows I don’t trust myself alone. With him, I now no longer feel safe walking near where he lives. With you, I now no longer feel safe with myself. I trigger and trigger and trigger and trigger I am a shotgun. I wrote a poem before we dated telling you I was gunpowder and you weren’t safe. Look how the tables have turned. I am Guy Fawkes’s barrels and I am parliament except no armada is coming to stop me blowing this joint. I am a warrior. But only now while scrubbing my head clean of myself. I am too many mistakes and too much disappointment. I am a lot of things but brave was never one of them. Oh look how the tables have turned. I am 1st of bravery, 11lb of pretend confidence and 9st of better human. I am a lot of things. But I refuse to taint myself anymore. I refuse to be the bloodstains on your memories and I refuse to let you ruin my life even though you are out of it. I am many things. I am so much more. I am a roaring cascade of a woman. I am an ocean, beautiful and a force of nature. I am intelligent and clumsy, I am more than I will ever value myself at. I am worth more than all of the bad stuff I’ve been through. It wasn’t until you that the beast was released.
You know what I hope for? I hope that you understand everything I’ve been through. I hope the roles were reversed. I hope you know what it’s like to be 5 years old and have your uncle hate you because you were born the wrong sex. I hope you know what that level of rejection is, if your family can’t love you, who will? I hope you blame yourself when he decides to stop contact with your family because you wrote him a letter asking why he didn’t love you. I hope you know what it’s like to be bullied from the ages of 5 and 15, I hope you still know all the words to the songs they wrote about killing you when you were 10. I hope you have friends who treat you like trash but god forbid you treat them any less than you would royalty. I hope that when you break your wrist trying to save one of them, they don’t even help you tie your shoes because “it’s your own damn fault you’ve got one hand” I hope you look at the scar and I hope you see every hateful thing they said and I hope you apologise to them for making them say it. I hope you blame yourself for people hating you because it must be you doing something wrong. I hope you feel everything. You go home and cry as hard as you can because it cuts you so deeply that no one considers you a human. I hope your first real relationship tells you that they love you when they are drunk because love tastes better with liquor in their throat, and being sober isn’t good enough they have to be intoxicated to spit it out. I hope they manipulate you into having sex for the first time because they can’t wait anymore. I hope you think that they think you are so desirable that they can’t hold it in. I hope you realise after a while that what they did, how they twisted it. I hope you remember what the rape felt like. I hope you never forget. I hope you know that you can’t tell anyone because “that’s what happens in a relationship” I hope you know that your friends will blame you so you can’t tell them. I hope you know what it feels like to have your deepest fantasy torn apart because whenever they act it, they are doing it to you because you didn’t want to have sex. I hope you know what “no” tastes like on your lips while they are on top of you, not listening. I hope you find yourself at 4:15 googling an abusive relationship. I hope you notice when they psychically hurt you. Their kisses over your bruises won’t hide how they got there. I hope you know how it feels to have everything you thought was love ripped away. I hope you think that your partner hitting you must be love. I hope you think you were worth that much. I hope you self harm. I hope you get out of the relationship. I hope you get free then find someone new and they build you up so much, you are their first. And you try so hard to make sure what happened to you, never happens to them. Because of the last one, sex isn’t intimate. It’s a commodity. Your body is cargo. I hope you make each other strong. And tell each other how much you love each other. I hope they rip it away. Because your mental health isn’t worth their while. Even when they kissed you and your cuts and they told you they wanted to help fix you. They actually get close to fixing you before they break you worse than the last one did. I hope they keep contacting you trying to ask if you’re okay even after they say that they do not care that you cut. That you drained them. I hope you know how that feels. To have love and have it ripped away. I hope your friends don’t know so keep asking about them whenever you mention getting hit on. I hope you watch the love fade from their eyes. I hope after the times you spent having sex where it actually meant something, they start to use you like cargo again. I hope you remember how that feels. And I hope you remember how it feels all over again. I hope they leave you. And no amount of self help books and poetry will erase the memory they burnt into your mind. I hope they move on. I hope you doubt the entire relationship. I hope you notice the lies after the relationship ended just like you did last time. I hope you feel cheap. And I hope you feel worthless. Because that’s what you tell yourself every day.
I also hope you don’t know what I went through. I really hope you don’t.
I was once asked if I felt I was enough. It was secondary school and it was a boy and I couldn’t answer him. I even wrote a song about it.
I always dreamed of being That girl. You’ve all seen That girl. She is sensitive and shy but confident and willing and reckless and brave yet cautious. She is beautiful and kind and smart and enough. The type of girl that would inspire songs or poetry about the curl of her mouth, the way her eyes light up, her smile when she thinks no one is looking. That girl, who is admired from afar. People take photos of her while she is in her own little world because she looks so beautiful when she is writing. When she sleeps, she could be with the Angels. That girl, who is the inspiration for every love song and broken hearted poem from anyone who felt unworthy of loving her. That girl.
I was in a relationship where I was told daily how I wasn’t enough. I wasn’t worthy of anything. I was in another relationship where I fought to keep them happy daily but they didn’t want to try and make me smile. They felt happiness came from the wallet and not the heart. I surrounded myself with friends who would expect me to break my back in order to keep them pleased but god forbid I ask for help. Disappointment over disappointment over disappointment. I felt I could never be that girl. I wasn’t enough. I wanted to be the sun that streaks someone’s sky awake. To be the girl that they want to make smile just because they like the way she wears it on her face. I split my skin because I wanted to cut the other girl out. The bad girl. The one who makes them all run in horror. Who could love her? Seriously who?
My ex, the one who actually for a time made me incredibly happy. Said he did not care that I cut myself. That it didn’t surprise him and he didn’t want to stop it.
If no one will make me be that girl
I have to do it
I will be the only sun to streak my sky away
I will write songs about how I like my eyes when I listen to music I Love
I will be my own poet, I will never
Write about a beautiful girl who I hope is me, as if it was another person. I am that girl. I am the danger. The John to my own Sherlock. I am my own best friend and I have treated myself worse than I would treat another human. I look in my reflection and see hatred because that’s all that has been shown to me. I cut my flesh because my pain must make someone else happy. I call myself fat because I see every
Mistake in each pound of flesh. I dyed my hair Because the other girls thought I’d be prettier brunette. I made myself cry. And attempted suicide because I was my own worst nightmare. I have started to call myself beautiful daily because one day I want to look in the mirror and believe it. I’ll dance like I have never danced because no one puts lily in the corner. Let alone myself. I’ll sing like I’m rocking Wembley stadium and I am a sell out performer. I shall act my goddamn heart out because
Fuck me I love myself most when I am pretending to be someone else. I am the constellations that light my night and I am beautiful. I am beautiful. I AM BEAUTIFUL. even if no one else believes it. I am beautiful. I am that girl. I am that girl. And I am fucking perfect. Even if I don’t believe it yet.
Welcome to the world Lily Margaret Smeeton.
Tom, this is your baby sister.
You are a grandparent again
You are an uncle again
You are an aunt again
You have a little cousin
Second children aren’t received as well as the first.
“oh that’s nice.” “well done” “oh she has a big nose” “tom what are you doing to your sister?!?”
The first steps aren’t as special
Those first words already heard
“You’re Tom Smeeton’s little sister?”
“Oh YOU’RE Tom’s little sister?!”
“You’ll be just like Tom then!”
I am the polar opposite of my sibling.
He is a babbling brook. Quiet. Brooding. I am a May Day parade. Loud. Colourful. Ever changing. I am not the same as the last tenant of our mothers womb. People are different.
“Hey alien” “oh freak” “piccalilli!” “Chilli Lily” “lily pad” “frog spawn” “froggy!” “Toad!” “Hey Alien”
primary school kids can be cunts.
The variations of my name they could spin and swirl around made me unsure whenever someone said Lily, if they were talking to me.
“I love you, you love me, Let’s team up and kill Lily. With a knife to the heart and a bullet to the head. Oh my god the gingers dead” is what they sung when I was 11 years old. I still remember when I was told. Molly Anson. Who I never trusted completely since she broke my princess hat when I was 5. She was dressed as a hula girl, she had no business wearing it. She approached me in the changing rooms with it written down on red paper. Only months later would I know she helped write it.
I started to connect the dots of words like “ugly” “pathetic” “alien” with My name. If someone was saying words of disgust and distaste I would react like a dog would when a whistle is blown.
Lily is a flower. Easy to trample on. The flowers you use at funerals to signal the loss. Lily’s.
I am in the process of changing my name. It’s hard for people to accept because I’m not trans so they don’t see how a name can affect it
“You’ll always be Lily. I’ll always call you that! What’s wrong with Lily? It’s a nice name”
It is a nice name. But I can’t remember the last time I said it without having the taste of blood in my mouth.
The first time I said my new name aloud as an introduction I was at a club and I was drunk. He was in a suit and was obviously out to bone.
“I’m Will. What’s your name?”
Xenia. Warrior princess. Greek for hospitality. Lily’s get trampled. Xenia’s skewer you with a spear then serve them to their guests. Brutal. Cut throat. Caring. I am strong. I don’t get trampled. Xenia. I am no weed waiting to be torn apart. Xenia. I am no petal to pluck when you wish to know who love you or loves you not. I am no second chance. No last mistake. I am the girl who you know won’t get broken again. Because I’ve been broken. I’ve been hurt too many times. Trampled over and trampled over. Like babies first footsteps over the same pathway. I know what it’s like to be plucked from a garden, replanted somewhere new and the cycle repeats. Battered Lily flowers staining my memories. This flower won’t get trampled again. This heart has been through war and hell and back and will still offer my enemies a beverage as they enter my home, just wait for the arsenic to invade your body. I am savage. I know hell. I have been broken. I repair myself like a broken toy. I make sure that those I love don’t go through what I did too.
Hi, I’m Xenia.
I’m a Mother fucking warrior.
Welcome to my home.
Thought’s I’d Never Say Aloud
I find shadows of you in everything. Like your memory is creeping around the graveyard I buried you in. Haunting while living.
I wonder what it would have been like if it were you that were still heartbroken, or if we never met in the first place. I wonder who I regret more, you, or the darkness which lurked in all of our love poems. I need to stop finding a saviour. Another half. I’m complete already. I need to say “Don’t fix me; Love me for what’s broken.” It’s okay for me to be wonder woman just as much as it is okay for me to be the damsel in distress.
I wonder what it’s like to not be seen the way I am seen. It’s so hard to call yourself beautiful when everyone else sees you as disposable. I’m trying my hardest but there’s only so much breaking and mending someone can do before its just forcing dust into an ash tray.
I wish I knew how to forget. I wish I could use some spell or curse to take away the parts of me that I don’t need reminding of.
I wish I was still young. Then I would know to remind myself that what those girls and boys said about me when while I was growing up does not matter. The nights I worried about wether I was pretty enough, funny enough, smart enough, good enough, for some peers who are now jealous of my accomplishments and my confidence – I was always enough. I just had to build my platform myself.
I think about dying far too much. See less than a year ago I tried killing myself and now I’ve been cut free for 3 months. I want to die happy. I want to recognise that I have no regrets because at one stage in my life I wanted it. I realise my worth finally, I had to value myself. We should never rely on our price by the opinions of other people.
I find shadows of you in everything. Only because I let myself be surrounded by light. There is beauty in pain and there is darkness somewhere. I just need to accept that. I am on earth, there is no cure for that.