barefoot in the street with your next-door neighbor, drinking soda out of bags, eating with your hands, letting a stray dog follow you all the way back to your house. You say goodbye, before you're tied to a tree, before your tongue is beat out of you, not even for speaking, but for swallowing-- I know you dread waking up, washing your face with cold water from a bucket while your mother prays in the kitchen. Your sister kills herself and we are all ashamed (or told to be). When you were younger, did you ever indulge in painted nails, silk pillowcases, cuffing your shorts that you cut yourself? I would tell you I did the same thing, except mine were too ugly to wear. If we wore the same outfit, would we be twins? With hair cut below the nape of neck, curls bouncing as we run from corner to corner in the market, stealing small goods from vendors who wouldn't miss it. The anticipation of leaving! I never want to be where I am. Did you feel the same, contained in your shack, your loveless bed that felt the ground beneath it? Did you too want to escape in the lamplight, travel through the empty streets until you found someone to lionize, idolize, emanate? I desire to free your skin, leave it to shrink behind you in your shape, your throat wants to crawl out of your body, your chest wants to flatten, as does your stomach, like a soda can in the middle of the road. It wants nothing to do with you anymore. I can see where you're at, what about me? Can you see me, in the marsh, with my shoes wet and muddy? I take them off-- to be like you.
Britt Sanchez is currently a student at the University Texas of Austin, majoring in Radio-Television-Film with a certificate in Creative Writing. In addition to baking and reading, they enjoy screenwriting and experimenting with different ways to make coffee. They currently work as a student assistant at their university.