only in dreams

Only in dreams can I venture into the city and feel at home. Only in dreams can I visit the epicenters of my childhood. Only in dreams do you ever hold me tightly enough.

You could curse Norway for stealing your oldest friend, you could dream of Iceland, you could pray the book is right now in the backseat of a car headed towards Massachusetts.

You could be happy.

But you couldn't be happy. You sat in the closet they called an "office", you lifted your shirt over your back and let middle-aged women needing a big break to argue whether or not those scars looked like cigarette burns. You ran from the guidance counselor, screaming. You couldn't just stop trying, you had to preemptively destroy your life before anyone else could take it away from you.

Only in dreams do I ever feel your fears. Only in dreams do you admit to the desire to own a city in your heart, to be adventurous and happy, to never be lost and never be scared. Only in dreams do you ever revisit the places of your childhood, the childhood you denied ever happened, the childhood you wouldn't accept because it wasn't perfect enough. Only in dreams do you ever let him put his arms around you, instead of pushing him to the ground and crying.

I'm holding onto this life so desperately I think I'm destroying myself.