This is What a Failed Poem Looks Like
Chidera Abii

there is a poem that
needs to be written but
to write it would mean
getting out of bed,
opening the blinds,
confessing to the man
who threw away my pills
i painted my room white so it
would look like i woke
up in a Heaven i only
discovered when i wrote
some words down.
i am scared if i brush
my teeth, eat the oatmeal
for breakfast, it will prove
this is all even more false and
then there’s the ending, yes,
i skimmed around the middle
too long and the evenings
flooded with the man
who threw out my pills,

some other hole of emptiness,
or the wall i punched,
or the covers i dragged over my head.

Chidera Abii is a Nigerian American writer. She studied fiction and poetry at the University of Virginia and is currently a Michener Fellow at the Michener Center for Writers. She lives in Austin, TX.

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