Notes on Being a Real Person | Emily O Liu

don’t leave me alone. i don’t want to talk to anyone but now it’s the only thing that forces me to materialize into something solid. my brain drifts with the clouds out the window, past the frame. wisps of something hard lick at my edges like flames, and i shy away.

don’t leave me alone. it scares me, the effort it takes to say this. it’s so tiring to be real. motion, how does it work? my skin bruised by bedsheets, enter my room after dusk to meet the gargoyle. in the stillness dust motes dance and drift.

don’t leave me alone. woken abruptly by a phantom toilet flushing, my brain swirls down the abyss in relief. goodbye thoughts. for them, a bright future.

don’t leave me alone. monday, that my backpack still settles on my shoulders. i am not entirely sand streaming through a sieve.

don’t leave me alone. i’m too self-centered and so i can’t imagine where you go. when you dissolve into nothing i don’t have a brain left to piece you back together.

don’t leave me alone. don’t leave me alone. it scares me, the effort it takes to say this.

Emily O Liu loves languages, maj7 chords, and wearing colors. Her writing appears or is forthcoming in HAD, Rejection Letters, Gone Lawn, and Poetry Lab Shanghai, among others. She is a San Diego native and Fulbrighter teaching English in Taiwan, tweeting @hintermelon.