Generation Z

A death a wish
and a one inch heel
The cold floor on my body reflected the feeling in my heart. Cold, empty, and hardened. I had been laughing just a few moments before, but how? How was I happy when he was dead? Dead. My love, my life, my soul had been ripped from me. I could see all the legs of the furniture because I was flat on the ground. Flat like my emotion. Flat like the little line on the machine that once beeped an exotic blue. I collapsed. I had fallen, my hand gripped the white fabric hanging from the bed above me. I couldn’t breathe. I wished more than anything to become one with my papa; clueless, emotionless, void of pain and dead. Plugged in. I put my music in and stayed; only emerging to sleep. My Papa unplugged, but could I? No. Not the same. He promised me he would try, for me, with me and because of me.
But now I stand here in my black dress and little velvet shoes with a one inch heel. I stand here trying; trying for him, trying to stay and not kick off the velvet shoes to run. I stay. Standing under the drooping tree, reflecting its posture; unlady like. I get disgusted looks. I don’t mind, I'm plugged in. The music plays, the people cry, the stories come, and the people leave. I stay; for him. The music, the black dress, the velvet shoes with the one inch heels, the drooping tree, and I stay. The little sequins on my dress are cold on my skin. I don’t like it but I don’t do anything about it. Once again, I can see all the legs of the chairs. Collapsed again. My thoughts are like alphabet soup; making no sense to me. I cry hoping something beautiful will grow where my tears fall like in the movies. Nothing does, I feel stupid. Stupid and still plugged in, I don't take them out to sleep this time. The grass is comfy and it takes me. I am one with my papa now. Clueless, emotionless and void of pain.

Cosette Waterman

I am from the ash of people’s belongings drifting from the sky.
I am from the sirens embedded in my dreams and intertwined in the music of the street.
From late nights and early mornings anticipating flame over the hill.
I am from cat crates and fish tanks taking up space in the trunk.
I am from the footsteps of people running from death.
I am Generation Z.

I am from the needle and bobbin it takes to craft a life saving accessory.
I am from the daily dose of disinfectant and hand soap.
From the required distance of six feet and lack of interaction.
I am from the gloves and masks that cause arguments but save lives.
I am generation Z.

I am from political activists claiming their rights and defending mine.
I am from angry actions that kill mothers and fathers, sons and daughters but are looked at as just another Tuesday.
From broken windows and empty gun shells.
I am from the funerals that follow death and the anger that follows funerals and the death that follows anger.
I am generation Z.

I am from darkened classrooms and silent students.
I am from the anticipation of footsteps in the halls.
From gunshot wounds and news reporters.
I am from the fear that my life may end because I go to school where I should be safe, but I am a target.
I am from the generation that needs to buy bulletproof backpacks to protect us from our friends.
I am generation Z.

I am the kid left to extinguish your fires.
I am the kid that is left to put out your anger.
The kid left to comfort parents whose kids’ lives were taken based on the color of their skin.
I am made from disasters, but that doesn’t define me. I am resilient.

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