what i’ve learned about trauma


What I’ve Learned About Trauma
Brenna Twohy

It isn’t as easy as being
Something That Happened to You
a package you opened once.

You will wake up in a new ZIP code
have to wander your way home,
carry a few of the things you love to this new place
you live in now.

& so you buy throw pillows.
You put up twinkle lights & have a big celebration,

point at the open windows
& tell everyone who has ever seen you crying –


                 look how I have not caged myself.

                 look what I have made out of two paint buckets

                 and the blessing of my still-here body.

but, of course,
trauma leans into the bar cart.

Spills a drink on the new rug.
Breaks off the door handle on his way out.

Trauma sends you letters
without warning
for the rest of your life,
usually disguised as something else –

a medical bill, maybe,
or a box of photo albums packaged up by your father,

just so you remember
trauma knows exactly where you live—

who did you think built the house?

Photo by Cindy Tang on Unsplash

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