dinner for Two

Logan G. Sands, 19, he/him/his

It was like he was invisible. Not visible. Indivisible
Unseen by the naked eye. Dirty. Dusty. Glass.
Fragile goods masquerading with thicker skin
Caution: Handled without a Care

Invisible. Lost in Translation. I witnessed. Eye. Witness.
Eyes. Wise. Lies. Disguise. Rationalize. 

To see and be seen, oh how great a luxury.

But somehow, it seems, tearing from the once mended seams, that we all have a choice,
Whether we choose to be seen or heard within our word.

A Choice. A Voice. 

Dinnertime.

Dishes and Fine China hit the dusty floors.
Surrounded by 4 Paint-Chipped Walls and a Roof
The suffocating walls trembled at the very sound of a war-torn home.

Is this a cold war? Who left the refrigerator open this time?

Time heals. We become numb. We forget. Forgetting the hurt until problem seems much smaller now. Miniscule. Petty. Petty Problems.

Time heals. Time runs behind nearly stepping on your heels. Time scabs. One more time.

Voices bounce off our discount kitchen tile
when I wash my hands for dinner
The dirt under my nails is stubborn and needs a good scrub.
The faucet turns on and water pours on. Pouring. Streaming.

Denial of my truth. Denial of my pain. Denial of all the chaos in my brain. Anxiety in my walk. Anxiety in my role. Comparable to a parasite, the anxiety in my soul?

The soul is similar to a rusty faucet. Fau-cet. Fa-cade. Faux. Set. Ready. GO.
Feelings flow in the constant stream of water.
Falling. Fleeting. Flushing.
But that rusty faucet, so easy to turn on
But not so easy turn off. The handle is broken
Was it tampered with? Was there foul play?

Playtime. Play Pretend. The monkey bars are missing a rung.

The stream continues. It makes a way. Always will.

Water droplets hit the sink with a light touch.
Reverberating off the glass plates, bowls, and cups
Dishing out our troubles. Heavy Pots and Pans.
In a Washer that just doesn’t work like it used to, so they say.

But, he didn’t make a sound and he said not a word.

Home. Home Grown. Like produce picked from the vine too soon.
I rise at noon and ponder my choices. All of my voices.
And if. And if. And if. That’s funny. May I laugh?

If somehow our vocal cords weren’t cut,
our muscles weren’t weak from strain,
our eyes’ weren’t forced shut,
the troubling tales those four paint-chipped walls and a roof told,
He would have shared the second he had heard.

But I didn’t make a sound and I said not a word. 

Dinnertime.

Invisible. Invisible Man. Bound to paper and ink.
A translucent skin with a fragile whisper.
One may say I wear his heart on my wrist
Rather than the cloth of my sleeve
To hide from the things he was made to believe.

I digress.

Dirty Kitchen. Pots and Pans
And if And if And if.
“If “ifs” and “ands” were pots and pans,
there’d be no need for tinkers’ hands.”
But he is a writer and instead he chose to hide what he’d heard

Because alas,

We didn’t make a sound
And we said not a word. 

I look in the mirror. I see what looks like me but please do not be fooled. He and me are not the same boy. One sports a mask of joyful pride. The other burdened with heartache held on the inside. In many ways different, yet alike, so they’ve heard,

when asked of their troubles, neither made a sound nor even spoke a word.

The walls could use a new paint job, I suppose.
Or are all the surface flaws and cracks merely invisible?
Time will tell. The faucet is off. Another scab. I can’t tell who is in control today. He or me?

I’m not so hungry anymore.

Photography by: Brad Diaz, 15, he/him/his
Find him at @brady_diaz on IG, Brad Diaz on YT, & braddiazphotography.com

Artist’s Statement: With the photo, I wanted to symbolize the idea of having another persona that lives among some of us as the “voice” in our heads. With that said, the shadow serves that symbolization as it is the more pessimistic and darker side of people, with the light serving as the direction we want to head to and work towards. That shadow is pulling us away from our aspirations and ideals (our voice), so we fight it.