Michelle Says Or I have measured out my life in cigarette ashes

I never thought my life would be like this.
But isn’t that what we all say?

I remember planning and dreaming.
I was going to get a job with a big company
and live in Charlotte
in a townhouse or a swank studio apartment.
I could go to the movies on opening night.
I could go to the restaurants as often as I wanted.

But then the first baby came
and the father left.
And my song is the same as so many others, I guess.
It is what it is.
Isn’t that what we are supposed to say?

I remember thinking that I’d like to go to New York City
in the fall.
I wanted to see Central Park
and ride in a taxi and on the subway.
I wanted to see street musicians
and the bull on Wall Street.

But then the second baby came
and the money goes so quickly.
And my song is in a different key.
It’s all their fault; I am a victim of this economy
this small town
this mindset.
Isn’t that what we are supposed to say?

Some mornings (or afternoons)
when I sit out here on the front step of the apartment building
smoking a cigarette, contemplating getting out of my pajamas for once,
I can still see a glimmer of what I wanted:
New York City
a bank job
a husband
a break in the cycle

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~ by hannahcsykes on September 11, 2008.

One Response to “Michelle Says Or I have measured out my life in cigarette ashes”

  1. Oh, Hannah – I love this. This is so sad and dark and your character is so trapped and lovely.

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