The Tiniest Russian Doll

Today she appeared,
heralded by tears
and by unspoken fears
that have no words.

She lives inside my head,
remembers what was said,
became someone else instead,
became me.

But once I was that child,
unbroken, running wild,
that long forgotten child,
I was she.

But one day it wasn’t safe,
for that whimsical waif,
and she didn’t feel so brave,
so she hid.

And I helped her hide away,
in the hope that one day,
there’d be another way,
for her to be.

But she hid away so long,
I forgot she’d ever gone,
I just felt like I was wrong,
it was me.

But I was missing a vital part,
a part of my heart,
one there at the start,
now lost at sea.

In dreams tossed and torn,
her remnants blown forlorn,
I treated her with scorn,
that child.

But she holds my tears,
and she holds my fears,
and as separation nears,
she broke free.

And today she tried to speak,
barely louder than a squeak,
but to squeak is still to speak
and she was heard.

Emotions laid bare,
body frozen, purple chair,
an experience so rare,
I was stunned.

And yes, I was there,
pinching fingers, pulling hair,
I sat rigid in that chair,
but wasn’t me.

Later, marks on my skin,
I hadn’t felt my nails sink in,
how do I even begin,
to explain?

She burst out of me,
my eyes could not see,
and when he spoke to me,
she replied.

 Art Journal Sketch Series. Watercolour Pencil on Paper. Image and accompanying Poetry Copyright Katy Matilda Neo, 2017.