it's so cold and my hands
are freezing. my numb fingers
curled around a pencil, the
handwriting hardly legible
and i don't know why i'm bothering,

i painted my nails red last night because
all i ever wanted was to be brave
but instead i sliced my schedule in half
and ran away from home and
told my boyfriend that i know i need to
un-invest myself, stop caring
so goddamn much.

i skipped statistics today. i swear i
didn't even mean to, but i just couldn't
face it. those forty minutes are
everything i hate about myself, magnified:
stupidity, reluctance, failure.

people insist on calling me smart -
"one of the brightest kids in this school,"
he said, as though he knew anything at all -
but the truth is i just know how to
manipulate words, tell people what they want to hear.
my math teacher can see through it (after all,
it's not like i can lie about the numbers
like i can about the past)
so i just never show up and hope to god i pass.

i mean, i can't even spill out
coherent poetry, the way i used to do.
because all i can think, over and over,
is it's not supposed to end like this,

and i'm just so fucking cold.