He sits us down in a freezing blue room
With a round table and wood back chairs
Such that when I sit,
If I close my eyes,
I’ll be back at home
Sitting in my own little wooden swivel chair
My home feels like warmth and drinking boiling ginger tea on an overcast day
Of simmering pots of herbs and vegetables
Of a wet dog somersaulting on the carpet
Of laughter and oil paints and cooling lemon loaf
On the kitchen counter
I open my eyes to the cold blue room once more
We’re each handed a bright neon Starburst
One for each thing we betray
I feel my feet brush the frigid floor through the worn heels of my socks
I cling to the oversized shirt I do not own because I feel this place is crawling all over me
What do you value most? Who do you love?
The sugar and fake lemon lights up my tongue
Do you miss who you were when you weren’t swallowing capsules?
A sweet touch of artificial cherry
Where do you wish you were, instead of this place?
At this, I smile, and refuse the third and final treat
The place that lives in my memories and my dreams, calling ever so sweetly and strong
Is for me to enjoy
This is the one secret you lot cannot wrest from me
The secret I will keep
About the Author: Amelia Harrington is a senior at Townsend Harris High School in Queens, New York. She enjoys writing short stories and poetry surrounding mental health advocacy, including this poem. She plans on majoring in Anthropology.