confession; or the day the sun erupted – BT Hayes ’22

i used to walk around my house

and listen to the trains pass by,

feel the tremors in my walls,

mirrors shaking in the bathroom.

i used to eat animal crackers

and laugh out loud. i still laugh, i’m just angrier.

it’s my way of saying listen listen listen

i am still angry. i am still here.


i used to wedge myself between today and tomorrow

and exhale with the cold dark earth.

i watched my tinfoil stars crumple up

into the big blue black bruise called the sky.

Hello stars, i said. They winked back.

We flirted with each other until the sun came up.


you told me i had crescent moons at my fingertips

and sunshine hanging from my ears.

i could feel it, heavy with light.

i just don’t understand how i didn’t notice it

before you did.


the sweetness in my smile turned opaque.

congealed somehow, i don’t know.

my new, waxy, plastic jaw.


one day, the sun erupted.

the trains ran off their tracks. the moon turned her face away.

everything looked different, but their shadows stayed the same.


you told me i shouldn’t think about what comes next,

but it pisses me off, keeping my head down.

not being curious. it’s difficult to clench everything

in a room full of people. it sucks to suck in my teeth.

but you told me not to think, because expectation lets us down,

and no one will catch me.


the day the sun erupted, you told me you loved me.

the flowers stayed still as a fortress while i fielded

the attack.


the day the sun erupted, my chest

cracked open too. the fragments tickled my wrist as

they sighed into the future.


the day the sun erupted, i loved you too,

but i didn’t say a word.