Gathering My Children To Me by Elizabeth M Castillo

Come on, crippling sense of justice, come on, bitter, bitter sting of betrayal,
come poetic sensibility, you’re needed elsewhere, we’re leaving.
Explanations, justification, reasons hold each other’s hands now. Settle
down. Come, fresh tears spilled into clean laundry, come, those few,
thrilling seconds I hold myself underwater in the bath. Come, sweet,
bewitching intensity, step this way, total disregard for consequence.
Come pride, come faith, come bloody, scuffed-up knees. It’s time to go.
We’ve long outstayed our welcome.
Come here, crippling need to please.
Come on, hurry up, food intolerance and chronic pain.
Come along now, depression, out you get, stretch your legs a little.
Come on now, breath caught in my chest, that could be asthma, but I’m
pretty sure is regret. Come back here, sensitive skin, eclectic Spotify
playlists, come here right now, childhood obsession with dinosaurs.
Get down from there, incorruptible self-assurance!
Come now, I’m not going to say it twice. Come procrastination, self
flagellation, come increasingly perpetual anxiety. Come wit, come dry,
absurdist humour, yes you can sit up here by me. Come on over here,
darkest of all dark clouds. I’ve made room enough for you in the sky.
Come now ambition, wait your turn, come, easy forgiveness, come, too
many reasons why.
Get back here lust! You’ve done enough!
Settle down, bruised and vindictive pride! Let’s go, come on now, we’re
leaving, we can’t stay a minute longer, watch out for incoming traffic,
that’s it, hope against all odds, right then left then right again.
Come on now. No time, no reason, no chance to say goodbye.
We should have been long gone by now.

About The Author

Elizabeth M Castillo is a British-Mauritian poet, writer, and indie press promoter. She lives in Paris with her family and two cats, where she uses her writing to explore themes of race, ethnicity, motherhood, womanhood, language, love, loss, grief, mental health, and a touch of magical realism. She has words in, or upcoming in Selcouth Station Press, Pollux Journal, Revista Purgante, Feral Poetry, Streetcake Magazine, Fevers of the Mind Press, Melbourne Culture Corner and Epoch Press. She also runs several interview series on her website to promote fellow indie writers.

reclaim: an anthology of women’s lives

Featuring 18 female-identifying writers, this digital anthology is raising money for Rosa UK, Women’s Aid UK, and WriteGirl, with 100% of all profits going directly to charity.

Cover and interior artwork by Taliha Quadri

Bandit Fiction is an entirely not-for-profit organisation ran by passionate volunteers. We do our best to keep costs low, but we rely on the support of our readers and followers to be able to do what we do. The best way to support us is by purchasing one of our back issues. All issues are ‘pay what you want’, and all money goes directly towards paying operational costs.

1 reply »

Leave a Reply