Poetry, Prompted Writing
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You Cannot Stay

skyline saying you cannot stay

…you’re afraid
if you stay here they might talk
And these nights
you only want to hear someone say, Yes,
I think of these things, too…

“Henry’s Song,” Beckian Fritz Goldberg

Today you look out over the city, breathing in the smell of grass and wet stones.
Such a strange thing to notice, the smell of wet stones. A longing, praying for rain.
You’ve been at this exact place a few times before, breathing, wishing, knowing
that you cannot stay.

The wind whips against your face, cold
and sobering. You will never be alone here.
Even the wind knows your name.

You take a breath and close your eyes. If you leaned forward, you would fall,
tumble into the grass and weeds and gravel of this place you know. Home.
Will it still be home when you leave?

You watch the streetlights flicker in the distance, try to place yourself,
find your porch, your tree amidst the darkened roads. Your fears
lay heavy on your tongue. And you shiver, swallow them back.

You cannot stay. You cannot be here, be in this place
any longer. What’s familiar no longer feels right
and you’ve been called other places, to chase
other dreams.

So you gather your courage, speaking affirmations
to the sky. And you step down from the ledge
wondering why silence always speaks
so loud.

Featured Image Credit: eak_kkk

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Marisa Donnelly, M.Ed., is a writer/editor, credentialed teacher, proud bonus mama, and CEO of Be A Light Collective, a coaching and content creation business and digital marketplace. She is the Director of Donnelly’s Daily Apple, a flexible learning/tutoring and educational resource platform, and the lead voice for Momish Moments and Step by Step Parents, verticals dedicated to sharing and advocating for non-traditional parenting journeys. Marisa currently resides in San Diego, California, with her fiancé, kiddo, and their two rambunctious Pitbulls. ❤️

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