#12 Sad Woman Walking

I am the sad woman walking towards you

Eyes on the ground, so you can’t see me

But you know

You know by my heavy steps

The extreme muscular labors that push me forward

Through the vacuum between us

That if I looked up

And looked directly at you

You could see the turmoil

Set in just under my eyelids

You know by the bags I carry

That pull me down

Packed with the contingencies for all possible disasters

To stave off the self-criticism to come

Too much, not enough, late, wrong

A rap sheet of epic failures

My spine bends in resignation to these faults

The bags would break my fall if I stumbled

It’s easier to carry the weight

But you also know

When we finally do pass each other

Our eyes making a simultaneous threat assessment

Giving each other the all clear

And you are talking to your friend on the phone

Or laughing with the group you are with

That I wish I were you

Living that life on a high shelf

I can’t reach

Because I’m too short, or because

It’s simply not meant for me.

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