Sorry

young woman with her head in her hands

Have you ever been tired of saying that you’re sorry? Can’t courage your way out of this weakness; can’t forklift this stain out of your chest; can’t shatter these words into dust, drive them to the deepest ocean and wave them goodbye. After all, demons are easy to kill, for they coward under the strength of your words, melt under the banner of your truth. But I am no superwoman, not yet anyway. The law of my tongue half written, a scorching painting left unfinished. But I’m sorry sounds like broken English too distorted to be deciphered, so the flesh of my skin crawls away from the filth of this apology. My knees are stitched against the backbone of my breast, my arms stapled around these, my head tucked tightly inside of me. I am twisted. What kind of forgiveness got me in this fetal position? At some point a change has got to come. I have not the time to keep traveling on repeat; the same old album forgetting to change it’s tune; a dangling sacrifice. The birth and death of me are these apologies; both the resurrection and artwork of my eulogy. I have just had enough of these wretched…. I’m sorry’s.

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I’m Sorry

death
it’s sting
produces a humility powerful enough

to find itself a home
even inside the heart of the one

who holds the cup of “I’m sorry’s”
hoping their voice is sad enough

to produce the kind of sympathy
that peels back the brick

that found itself a place

inside the gut of the bereaved
the lump
waiting inside their throats
is this “I’m Sorry” strong enough?
“I’m sorry”
makes me feel guilty
because I know that it is not enough,

in fact
it almost sounds cliché
how can this routine “I’m sorry”

ever guarantee the sincere apology I feel
for the woman
who lost her husband in the hands of doctors

with spines like jellyfish,
the inconsiderate “I’m sorry”

floating out the window of the hospital,
where his breath left it’s good bye on the table

without warning
didn’t want to wake her sleeping gorgeous
so he left in the middle of the night
just to see her smile one last time
for he knew that she would smile

in her dreams

Or the man
who lost his brother with the split of atoms
like storms breaking through to the clouds
like a mother’s arms spread wide enough

to capture his smiles in a bowl

but aint no rainbows today
cause grief
it convinces us that the world

has ceased existing
and molds its rotations to the contours of our hearts

Why are you sorry?!
screams the confused silence of my bones
or the unflinching expression of a man’s face

after a life-time of catastrophes
tainted love
chocking dreams

and memories like the scenic route to civil wars
& he wears it all

with a walk like a stone cold killer

and a face fit for poker
but his heart is pale with grief
I know
cause I heard it in his smile
he laughs
but only because his body weeps
too weak internally

to die physically too
so when he grieves
and when she grieves
when their pain is too deep

to find alongside the outline of their faces
too far to find within the pages of their past
but close enough to smell in the sorrow of their loss
in these bags
filled to the brim with all their stuff
what do you say
when the air isn’t pure enough to breathe
and a routine, “I’m sorry” is simply not enough
to convince them

that the world

still spins

When Death Gives Birth to Humility

rose

Have you ever felt guilty trying to console someone who has lost a loved one even though it’s not your fault? Like, why do we say we’re sorry in the first place? What have we ourselves done? We apologize because we’re sorry for their sadness, and also because somehow, their loss has humbled us:

“It is apparent, that death, it’s sting… produces a humility powerful enough to find itself a home even inside the heart of the one who holds the cup of “I’m sorry’s

hoping our voice is somehow gloomy enough to produce the kind of sympathy that peels back the brick that found itself a place inside the gut of the bereaved.”