By Ashley Jane

Night comes calling
long before sleep ever does
and i know that even if i manage
to tumble into dreams
i will wake with an ache
still living in my bones
the sunlight shimmers
between the slits of closed blinds
and the birds chirp an alarm
they do not know
that there is no one to rise and shine

i push myself to move,
to follow the same routine
and hope that my body cooperates today,
that it doesn’t protest
every footstep
and scream with every breath,
that today will be good
and i will not run out of spoons
before lunch is over

i still hear their voices in my head
telling me
i’m lazy
i’m useless
i’m faking it
i’m expendable,
all the things
that make the panic set in,
all the words
that know exactly how to hurt
this disease may be invisible,
but i try to remind myself
that i’m not

i move through the motions,
smile and nod my way
through the grocery store,
wait patiently
in another doctor’s office,
hide the pain from my mother
when she asks how i feel today
“i’m fine, doing great, just working”
she always knows i’m lying,
but it’s just easier to pretend

i ran out of spoons before lunch again,
but i’m still holding out hope
for tomorrow

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