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When I Was Young I Wanted to Get Noticed by Rhea Melina

by Rhea Melina

When I was young I wanted to get noticed

I would pour 

my heart out to strangers 

and spill my art all over the streets

and scream on stage, paint 

in alleys like I owned them, strut 

down isles of stores

modeling on that laminate runway

my no fucks to give 

and I got noticed everywhere I went

I got all the attention I could ask for and more

until I was on the run

and in order to survive I stuffed 

myself deep inside my pockets 

I ran and hid and ran and hid and 

ducked and buried and knelt and dug

my fingernails will never come clean nor grow right

I’m alone most of the time but 

I feel like I’m always being watched

I got noticed

like a flame in the night

I got seen

like a moving target

in broad daylight 

and 24/7 I was unsafe 

I was unsafe I was unsafe

I don’t want to complain

I’ve been righteously trained

to focus on gratitude

like if I tell you all my sob story 

a great guilt will wash over all of us 

as if my shame will become your shame

as if my disease will spread 

and it will be 

All My Fault

“Just be happy you made it out alive”

“Just be happy you made it out alive”

People say that to me

But to what degree is it healthy

to act as though my survival 

is not a total fucking miracle?

Raped and left for dead again 

I've been hiding like I don't want them 

to know I woke up the next morning

and drank my coffee as usual 

I’ve since been hiding

in the grind, working 9-5 and dumbing 

down my energy 

so they won’t see me

I been hiding, grinding coffee 

the night before and barely sleeping

chock-full of anxiety but smiling

and knocking one back

but I don’t let down my guard

Trying to stay safe 

Trauma got me in a cage

I don’t know what happened

Because yesterday I just woke 

up and wanted again to be noticed 

to be seen

to be acknowledged for who I am:

a fucking miracle

not because I survived

but because sometimes I still feel alive

and correct me if I’m wrong but 

I think I’m glowing

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