It isn’t you, although you have told yourself time and time again it must be me. And maybe it is. Maybe I have given up on being your phoenix, awaiting the next needy moment that disastrously burns everything but my soul. And I suppose my ability to rise again was exciting the first few times it occurred–watching beauty burning in the twilight, only to erupt in a roar of glory. You had never attempted to fully allow someone to take all of you for fear that you’d never return. You said it was your mother’s fault-that her venom was too powerful to take such a risk. I only nodded in a disillusioned agreement, since I knew the wrath of mothers and lived in fear of fathers.
I could have seen the signs, they were drawn along your veins like invisible lines pleading to be set free. Each touch a cosmic reminder that this world had betrayed us and our bodies were destined for the stars. I should have felt the embers once you learned there was a power hidden among my desire to somehow complete you, breathing in your unsuspecting need to drain me of everything good. It wasn’t your fault, you whispered, as your fangs bit down and my energy became yours. You had become intoxicated by its allure, seeing that fire as your only escape from a past riddled with indecision.
And I, well, I have been here before-my feathers ruffled and my colors burning brighter with every ignite regardless of who started or ended the fight. It was I who took the first flight, but I only did so to get a better view, and that was when you knew how I survived all the scars that glitter among the moonlight. That was when you sprung like your mother, the one person you feared most in your life. You embodied her lack of compassion, but told me I was not giving enough. Your secrets lined your darkness like my light lined yours, and you coiled if I began to get too close. You weren’t trying to consume, and yet every mark along my body bled in warning that I was soon to disappear.
There was something about you, even you had seen others find it despite your inability to find it, too. We were drawn to your shine-it could illuminate and dim all at the same time. A mesmerizing effect as you approached. No one knew whether to hold you or run once you got too close. And, yet, my feathers found a home. You held me close with your words with your words, and I told myself this would be enough. I didn’t even open my eyes, just as you had asked. You said it was so you could describe every detail, and your words lit up the night behind my lids-I could taste, or touch, or believe in all of it. But maybe that is what you truly wanted me to do, it did give you time to attempt to drain me dry, but you had forgotten my spirit was blazing deep within.
I have never needed the light of another to be able to see in the dark. Living amongst terror only provided me a chance to shine a light for others, so you probably couldn’t have guessed that my home was always darker than anyone you would become. It didn’t matter if you were you, or the shadow of someone you or I once knew. You all came for the same purpose, and because my wings opened with grace, each of you believed you could take it all without leaving a trace. But that isn’t how it works, since my scars are the embodiment of knowledge and experience abound. For once you attempt to take from me, I can begin to see what it is you truly mean as my embers begin to dim within.
But, you could never have known since my actions are not based on fear alone. So a moment you’d run would become a moment I’d try since it only builds my spirit when it needs to finally ignite the dread-filled sky. And that is when I leave-the moment you feel you’ll be complete by leaving me obsolete. I ashen to ruins, and then ignite brighter than any of your daylight. Leaving you bewildered as I take flight.