I built a tiny box inside my head, filled it
with the small thoughts and little fears
scattered like freckles on my soul.
But it got too full.
So I built a bigger box, with a pretty lid
hinged like a treasure chest,
and buried more things inside.
I carved into the sides
hard warnings about soft memories
and gilded the locks so I wouldn’t be tempted
to open it.
Because they say ‘x’ marks the spot,
I crossed my heart and hoped to die
before someone could smash me to pieces
and steal my jewels.
I keep them on a crown I never wear,
wrapped in thrift store silks,
stored beneath baubles of regret
and scraps of guilt.
Shiny bits of memory,
of errant thoughts and wild dreams,
some cut down to pretty edges but others
I am afraid to put it on,
afraid the crystals will scrape skin or pull hair,
or that it will beg to be put back
where it is quiet