Elegy for Me, Before
Elegy for Me, Before • Alexander Seils
There are some things I miss about her:
How she smiled at strangers on the street and they smiled back,
How she hemorrhaged her own heart for others,
How she kept faith in things she could not touch or see.
And, yes, I also miss her superficial qualities.
Her long, satiny hair and perfectly trimmed bangs,
Her curated forbearing and nurturing spirit,
Her simple impression of the world.
Womanhood fit her like it was tailored,
Because it was—by me. To exist, to survive.
She saw reflections of herself in other
Men and couldn’t fathom why. But I did; I do.
She disjointed herself into a peculiar shape so
One day I could emanate; she was the sacrificial
Cocoon that swaddled me until I outgrew it.
She—I—always knew how to keep me safe.
Now she is gone and I remain:
A butterfly with full wings.