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  • Skylar Pekarek

What Are You Running From?

Shattered glass rests on wooden floorboards

as careful footsteps tiptoe around.

The thick walls of mortar and cracked bricks

a shield against the nighttime stars.

The graffiti, a comfort in a chamber of solitude.

This is your fortress, hidden from the word.

Rot, rust, and mold enter your lungs,

exhaled by a foggy breath.

The cotton from a torn couch shifts

as you crouch behind it, awaiting

sirens searching for a trespasser.

You cling to yourself, nails digging into your scarred arms.

The first step inside was a mistake, but

if you leave, you will be caught, captured, chastised.

The longer you linger, the worse it will be.

A warm tear falls down your cheek as sirens blare in the distance.

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