i am prince
Aaron Clark

i am being stalked again, watched from the corners. shadows that dash behind doors, throwing themselves at the floor, scratching at the walls or screaming from the ceiling. i can feel them reaching for my shoulders, rushing outlines inspired from memories; nightmares that waved while watching you grow as a child. they stay still long enough to choke my spine, lighting fire to the water in my head. I can feel their pounding, desperately waiting for my time; my time for introductions. iíve tormented myself with their faces. expressions to tease my emotions, making me impatient. sometimes itís laughter. sometimes itís only heavy breathing. sometimes at night they sit on my chest telling cruel stories to my dreams. but this sturdy frame doesnít cower when the light gets chased from the room. my hands have already described the darkness. i already know their names. there is no pain from their forms. suffering used only to widen my eyes. even when my skull starts beating me, wanting only to dance with the rest of my passions, my face still retains half a smile.

i am the laughter. i am the heavy breathing.

when Iím nothing but a faint glow, a tiny cinder, i still wonít apologize for all my ghosts. when my face is pulled into the earth and my teeth are chewing on the roots, Iíll still hear their creeping footsteps. i have but one wing, thatís always looking up, ready to write my name in the stars. in this place where the voices look like a dead tree, i am prince. when night is a crown to be shared, i am prince. when iím left only with dreams and my eyes are closed, i will still be prince. in the shudders that recall my past, i will close my fist. my scars have born me into this. even through the noises, i am prince.