I was always sitting on the
outer edge of the group
A lone meteor in weak orbit
I had no words that could get their gravity to pull me in.
Sometimes you would find me bowed,
over my desk, long hair
blanketing my face and hiding tears
Since I could never explain
Just what I was crying for.
During recess on the playground
I was never picked early
for any of the team games
because nobody there
really did know my name.
I always liked when we drew and
everyone colored suns with lots of smiley people,
but no one made tears and angry frowns
Which meant that other people feeling hollow as
An old tree didn’t show it.
Occasionally, somebody would notice my drawn-out silences
And then they would ask me,
“Hey, are you okay?” I would say “Fine.”
Because what else do you say
Feeling singular but living every day plural.
When I sat alone and
I couldn’t hold it in
I clasped both hands over
my mouth to stop the sobs.
I finally released those hands
to open my mouth
but I just couldn’t find
the words to make a sound.
About the Author
Laya Reddy is fifteen years old, and I lives in Vernon Hills, Illinois. She currently attends Adlai E. Stevenson High School. She writes poetry to connect people with the shared human experience of emotions and as a refuge from the stresses of everyday life.