Words| Dawn

By Doreen Njue
As I walked on the sidewalk I saw it

The bench… That bench… My bench

There was a number of them in that court park but for some reason I chose That One

And I never sat on another since

Because that bench knew all my tears, felt all my fears, heard all my hushed curses

It never said a word but it was always there, silent and non judgemental

The first time I walked through this park, I was broken

The first time I walked through this park, I was crushed

The first time I walked through this park, my world was caving in and my hands had grown tired of holding up because each second that passed was pain and torture

The first time I walked through this park, he had reduced me to a sack of smithereens

And that was when and how I met this bench

“It was never right from the beginning ” he had said. Those words darted back and forth in my mind

My heart ached, my heart bled, my heart cried

What did he mean? Why didn’t he speak up sooner?

So what, all this time I had been a fool?

Giving it all, sacrificing my comfort, being the shoulder to cry on, being the listening ear, believing in fantasy?

So it was never right from the beginning…

I dragged my feet. My body felt like a log. My head swam. My eyes were puffy. My heart was worn out

I felt that I had to sit… On the park grounds, in the middle of the path, under a tree, anywhere. Anywhere… I just had to sit

So I spotted a bench. This bench. I sat there and stared into space. I didn’t cry. I was empty. I was not sure if I was even alive at the moment

I sank into the calmness of this place

I wanted to think everything through but I couldn’t

I had no strength. So I hugged this bench. And spent my night there

Every day, I came here

I processed my thoughts

I listened to my heart

I argued with my brain

I sat on this bench

With time, I realized it was all worth it

That giving all I could was the best that I could have done

That I was not a fool

That I was human

That I loved

That maybe I lost… But I gave it my all
And isn’t that the best feeling in the world?

Knowing that you lost but you fought?
So tonight as I walked by and saw this bench, I smiled

Because here… On this bench, I had found myself

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