Trapped

I wish I saw the world as you see it, through
the eyes of an optimist where people are viewed
as good and true. I wish I could trust
as you trust unafraid of being broken,
but my heart has already been severed. I feel

one thousand skittish eyes follow my every step.
It comes so easily to you, the ability
to unwind. So effortless, but when I try
my heart does not appear on my sleeve, it shrivels
to the size of a pea and pushes back against chest. I cover
myself in an unbreakable barrier,
secure my emotions safely inside. Why can’t

I love like you, trust like you? I want to break free
of my shell. I am damaged. Cracked and fissured
past the point of rebuilding. My steel exterior
hides the mush of disappointments and failed
dreams. I cannot find the strength
to chisel away my pain
and free me from this cage.

I am suffocating inside
with no ventilation. How do I break
through the memories
of the ones who crumbled me?

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