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A Mentally Ill Girl’s Written Plea to Her Room
by Grace Alba

Most of my days are spent inside of you.
In the chaos that is my home, you are the safest sanctuary nearby.
Living in a house that is ready to detonate, my bomb shelter you will be.
With a sense of impending doom, I wonder if my safe place will only ever be you. 
My nostrils unclog from the smell of alcanfor that is yours.
Ridges of your imitation wooden floor sit quietly beneath my feet.
Your four walls stifle the rambunctious noise of bickering voices that I so direly seek to shut out. 
Epithets firing from the mouth of my father and ignored pleading cries croaking from my mother's coarse throat. 
The taste of cold air seeping out of your ceiling vents caress my tongue as I let out an exhale. 
You so generously bless me with your window to get a peek of greenery from the starfruit tree hiding from us. 
Your barrier offers me a sense of safety that I can only feel when I'm entrapped by you. 
My hiding place will always be your four walls, although I tend to ingest you in excess. 
The sight of your uneven mounds on the pepto bismol pink wall makes me sick. 
When the sun departs is when your mood turns awry.
Slowly, turning into a pitch dark blackness, you swallow me whole.
I've rendered you as my concrete fortress destined to shield me from danger, but more of a prison is what you've become. 
A dent in the floor that was made when I threw a crystal lamp in a fit of rage can show what it is like being held under your captivity. 
Under your gravitational force, I am now voluntarily bedridden. 
The stronger that is my desire to leave, the greater is your pull. 
Fear rushes to immobilize my legs as I near the door. 
I've credited you for keeping me from the outside madness of the world even though I now know that the loudest madness comes from within. 
Despair is building up inside of me and I begin to choke.
Do you see how devout I am, now that every night I drop down to my knees and to my crucifix I weep? 
Like my mother, devoting myself to a man ignoring my pleas.
My four walls, will you too ignore me?
When the sun returns, again I see the beauty in you as the sunlight pours its warmth on my skin through the small crevices of the blinds. 
All my days blend together and to me they are a blur.
Floral bedsheets with stains of black clouds from the mascara I've cried off wrap around me. 
The stark white vanity whose mirror I am afraid to make eye contact with, glares. 
A vintage white iron bed, whose bars I hold as I push myself down into the mattress to evade my calling for the day. 
You've guarded my heart for so many years and I now have become absorbed by all of my fears. 

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