A note from Melanie: I wrote this poem as a personal pandemic challenge to myself. With so much around me feeling very familiar and worn, I wanted to write from the perspective of a household object, with the hopes that I may gain some new perspective. For some reason, a rag from an old t-shirt jumped in my imagination, wanting to speak.
You just scrubbed my right shoulder, my
seams and stitches, into cat vomit. I get it.
I once was an entire torso, Dave Matthews Band
branded–now I’m just ripped apart remnants.
Sure, I’m a thinner and smaller version of
my previous self, but I can still absorb pain.
Sometimes I wonder why you don’t trust me
with your tears? Is it the beer, sweat, spilled
ink and Pepto-Bismol now burned into my fibers?
You, also scarred, can only hold so much history.
Maybe that’s why you grab those one-and-done
tissues, flimsy flags that wave so delicately from
your clinched fists. They wilt under the weight
of your mucus and grief, surrendering
to amnesia. Why do you keep buying
those throwaway hankies? Why keep me around?
Is it because we still somehow clean
each other up, reminding ourselves
not only of the mess, but also of the
breeze that dances through frayed edges?
Writing prompt: try writing your own poem from the perspective of a household item. What object comes to mind? What would this item want to say? I’d love to see any poems you draft in the comments below! 🙂