Margaret Liang




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Everything I Ever Told You
30

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You castigated me, when there was no one that I compare with,
so I thought it was because when I left you, when my arms grew more capable than yours, you grew envious of me.

You photographed with a small point-and-shoot,  just like all other small women with their small cameras, stuck up on small, insignificant things.
You loathed those photographs, so you destroyed them, along with my newly grown hair, my newly acquired words.
Or maybe you were indifferent.  

I love you.

I sing your songs,
and when they started to become void of meanings, I’m more obsessed.
I remember you looking at my palms, telling me what a bloody mess they were,
and that a woman needs to be unfortunate enough to be beautiful. 

I am a flower,
I am a peeled soft-boiled egg,
I am a warrior,
I am all the kindness and evil in this world.
I am your pain. You are you. 

How do I photograph you? I wield the camera violently, I dream about big, significant things, or sometimes you.
I conformed to not conform. I inherited that violence from you. 

I wish you would disappear, I think that there is much more expected from me in the presence of you.
I was jealous, embarassed.
So I consumed you. You told me that’s some pathetic bullshit. 

Yet you wonder why I turned out this way when what needed to be absent was absent, 
why you died, and why I lived.

Home is where I am myself now. Because I might or might not have become you.