Post the Fourth

Bitter

We all have things
we feel bitter about
Like how our parents didn’t hug us
or hugged us too much
or talked too little
and listened even less.

What do we do with that bitter?
Do we scrunch up our faces
and smack our lips together
enveloping our mouths with the taste?

Or do we spit it out?
Leaving room for sweetness
for savory memories that stick
to our bones
filling out our souls
the way that puberty
simply didn’t.

I’ve tasted bitterness for far too long
and think it’s killed my taste buds.
But I just quit smoking down
the daily carcinogen bitter sticks
so maybe there’s still hope
for me, for you, for everyone
trapped in the bitter cycle
searching for the sweet escape.

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