Too Much Loss For One Year

Too Much Loss For One Year by Valerie Parente

This has been a really devastating year
with more loss than our brains can comprehend,
some said with goodbyes
some with unfinished sentences.
It’s not that we’re okay with the loss,
it’s that we didn’t have a chance to lament.
It’s not that we’re dwelling in the past,
it’s that there was no proper end.
And it’s not that I’m mad or insensitive,
but there are some goodbyes I simply cannot accept.
Some explanations are not just explanations
but a farewell, my dear friend.
And I guess the collective conscience within all of us
is learning a very hard lesson,
that the world will keep on turning
no matter who’s lost interest.

– Valerie Parente (10-17-2020)

Being Abnormal

Being Abnormal by Valerie Parente

It’s just lonely…
when you’re not allowed to express pain
because you’re the mentally ill girl who can’t be taken seriously,
when you’re not allowed to drive the freeway
because no one has faith in the skills you’ve achieved,
when you’re not allowed to paint your face
because you never give in to a normal level of intimacy,
when you’re not allowed to respond to hate
because defending your mental state is a luxury,
when you’re not allowed to remember heartbreak
because normal people don’t take this long to grieve,
when you’re not allowed to cut to the chase
because only crazy people act with so much honesty.

It just gets kind of lonely inside my brain
when even your loved ones can’t understand how you operate,
because I know that my honest-to-God pain only frustrates,
adding a whole new layer to what should be normal heartbreak.
I guess what I’m trying to say
is that ordinary things like a broken heart or a common sickness
are a lot harder to cope with when you have a mental illness
because people always have a million rational reasons for why you’re incorrect
but your hyper-sensitive mind has never been dictated by such logic.

– Valerie Parente (10-9-2020)

Sitting on Skulls and Bones

Sitting on Skulls and Bones by Valerie Parente

A pile of skulls and bones,
she sits on them like they’re her throne,
resenting the death that rots beneath
while presenting the depths of her beliefs.
So much destruction from perfectionism and ultimatums,
so in love with what she had, but love’s what made it complicated.
She was suspended in a bittersweet purgatory,
still existing, but never free,
not quite in heaven, not quite in hell
and you’d be surprised how bad that felt.
So she did what she does best,
she poured her heart out then she left
convinced there’d be a saviour,
but no one came to save her.
Now she mourns all the love she once had
while the things she loved don’t mourn her back.
It’s a truth she has yet to accept
so she built this throne out of death.
Coping by spinning gold
out of moping that has grown old.
So regal in all of her grief
turning life lessons into a trophy,
because there’s so much value in every loss
you don’t fully see it until it’s gone.
Now she sits here in grateful defeat
honoring the things she willingly reaped.
Dead and gone but not dead inside
because this gratitude is still raw and ripe.

– Valerie Parente (10-9-2020)

Like Fine China

Like Fine China by Valerie Parente

How can one be so strong and indestructible
yet appear like fine china, so fragile.
Royal blue details drawn on clay
art on top of an artistic display.
Breaking as I break down,
a million pieces so jagged and profound.
I could use them to separate my skin
instead I made a vase out of porcelain.
I filled the china like a beautiful bouquet
with flowers that had already decayed.
And everybody calls me a sick freak
because I can still see their beauty
but it’s them who fail to see
that dead flowers make great tea
and I’ll sip it as I grieve
remembering how it felt to be
like fine china, too pretty to comprehend
until they break me down again.

– Valerie Parente (10-5-2020)

I’m The Bad Guy

I’m The Bad Guy by Valerie Parente

I’m the bad guy
because I knew how to use my words to paint a picture of how it felt inside.
I’m the bad guy
because I wanted someone I cared about to have a permanent place in my life.
Somehow I’m the bitch and cold-hearted
because I removed myself so you could have the relationship that you wanted.
I’m the bitch and a creep
because losing all the good times devastated me.
I’m the psycho and a trouble-maker
for the tumultuous sadness I’ve put to paper.

I guess it just amazes me that to this day
I’m the one with all the blame
for the hyper-sensitivity I put on display,
the thing about me you once called a strength.
And you might ask “Why is she not over this yet?
Why can’t she shut up and just forget?”
But who cares? This is anonymous.
If its hard to read, that’s your own conscience.

I’m doing better in so many ways
but I think that as the seasons change
it reminds me of the old days
and that brings back a lot of pain
because nothing destroyed me more than when I left
well aware that I was about to lose a good friend
and every now and then I just need to express
the very worst feelings that once felt the best
because it’s still confusing to comprehend.

I want nothing but the ability to cope
with the scars that once marked my hope
and I’m not sure why I even have to explain myself
to the very people who ridiculed my mental health.

– Valerie Parente (10-3-2020)

Pick A Side

Pick A Side by Valerie Parente

I’m either a threat or I’m a mess.
This cannot be a dual process.
Because you say that I’m problematic
and then in the very same breath
that I have no influence on your conscience.
You cannot have it both ways,
I’m either intelligent or I’m crazed.
And if you think I’m a combination of both
then you’re in support of the role I chose.

– Valerie Parente (10-2-2020)

How It Is

How It Is by Valerie Parente

How tragic it must be
to know you are someone else’s life lesson
in the grand scheme.

How frustrating it has been
to know I look like the bad guy
in someone else’s conscience.

But how remarkable it truly is
that being on someone’s mind
can have an impact on their life.

– Valerie Parente (9-26-2020)

We’re Headed for a Dystopia

We’re Headed for a Dystopia by Valerie Parente

The precedent we’re setting is incredibly scary
where I can’t talk and you can’t talk
unless both of us agree;
where my freedom and your freedom
is no longer free.
Our basic freedom to think
is our soul’s freedom to just be.
To recognize that opinions aren’t objective
is what marks our humanity;
to collect our differing ideas
is what make us a society.

I don’t know if we can get any more low
than our current reality
where people are in a race to ruin each other’s livelihoods
just because they don’t like the way someone else breathes
and I know we all mean well
but any form of censorship is the enemy
the right to feel is dissolving before our eyes
and I think it’s a symptom of a bigger disease
because my generation was given a broken world
and we feel more in control dictating how each other speak.
We all have a different mind
and I want to hear the different stories
but we are headed for a dystopia
if we can’t agree to disagree.

– Valerie Parente (8-22-2020)

Sad

Sad by Valerie Parente

I’m sad
about the things that still don’t make sense.
I’m sad
about decisions I try not to regret.
And I’m really sad
but I know that I did what needed to be done.
I guess I’m just sad
that you never tried to stop me once.

– Valerie Parente (9-23-2020)