-phrases i repeat until-

Thomas Jackson


spitting acid from my calloused mouth,

like a viper

defending itself,

fending off a threat

that turns out to be

its own reflection.

in the majority of the problems i face

lies a glimmer of myself,

the fingerprint of an artist found at the core of a piece.


repeating “go away” until my back is against a wall,

flame floods the hall

to prevent escape.

i’m trapped in this room with twelve people,

twelve strangers,

my mind has decided hate me.

so i’m standoffish,


i’m too drained of energy, 

i become the villain

and i’m known for that day.


scratches into spinning vinyl

heavyweight LPs

track one

“you’re a bad person”

snipping the safety net beneath me

until it’s a pile of rope

tangled in the grass below.


i fall faster

with each syllable

until a final blow,

a final bone snap.

my jaw becomes unhinged

and i repeat the nuclear attacks,

vaporize every ounce of confidence

splitting through the tension in the air,

repeating phrases to destroy myself 

until my tongue bleeds.

biting my cheek until a hole opens,

biting my nails until my fingers fall off.