Dear Tissue

It was an odd habit really, one I don’t admit to much–
all of the balled-up tissues I used to have in my desk–

in what grade was it? Fourth? The years I was fat and refused
to shop. My sister was on a campaign that could have been waged

by Seventeen magazine to make me look more appealing.
Wash you’re hair. You’ve got more oil than Saudi Arabia.

I didn’t have a good concept of having a body.
Everything was feeling and thought and wanting

And strange things I couldn’t get out of my head. Not being
an object, yet. Still an internal organ.

I never threw away a piece of paper–old homework,
magazines, scraps of paper with one word on it.

I might need it. It seemed to have information. Messages
from myself to myself about the world. Things I may forget.

These ideas, these plans, this thought,
they were all part of solving the questions, the big questions,

the ones I was still forming. The ones that I needed to keep notes
on to try and remember.

My sister said homeless people were attracted
to me, I looked like one of them.

Kleenex formed a nest around me I had a condition
where phlegm was always in my throat. It always felt like

something on the verge of coming out.
I hid them in my desk, rather than openly throw them away.

Using a tissue more than once is unhygienic,
touching it more than once is dirty. I had this problem.

My sister said I was creating it myself.
Stop making it in your mouth.

It’s just spit, you can stop doing it.
Why don’t you throw the tissues away?

When I had to clean out my desk at the end of the year,
I panicked, thinking everyone would see them.

The teacher said maybe I wanted to move the trashcan to my desk.
I threw out all the tissues.

The papers I couldn’t throw out.
They were clues about myself I was still deciphering.

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