Peppers and Praise by Stina Trollbäck

She hides, she seeks  by  Diela Maharanie

She hides, she seeks by Diela Maharanie

I wanted to live wrapped in a box

locked away from jigsaws and buttons

doors that slam and peppers that burn

I wished I would find appreciation in the veins

of leaves

of the ice on my sleeves when I walked

through the streets

I dreamed I would look up one day

and see stars that shined brighter

than electrical lampposts

I had the will to cut away the pavement

that made my feet hurt as they pounded

and hurried and bustled

I tried to see past metaphysics that made my head burn and cry out strings of lost thought

lost imagination

lost lovely sensations

It came crashing down on me

and everything unfurled and churned

and spun up a storm of failure and


and lust for clear skin

need for praise

eager for approval of yesterday's French braids

I left my impulses in bed

because of what she said

I ripped off my braces because they contrasted

my painted nails

I tied my shoes with one loop because two

had less finesse

And I forgot that people are animals

and I didn't know what I was and I should have

and I knew that but I didn't care because

she said I didn't have to

But I still wanted the sweet peppers and


leaves' intricacies

I just got distracted for a while

tossed off track


I'm sorry for that