The day you died before you died

Rachael Aiyke
2 min readJul 2, 2023
Photo by Stormseeker on Unsplash

Deciding to die is not something that comes to you at once
It's gradual
Like a lover, it teases you
Pulls you in; flirts

A year ago, Ryan died. Do you remember? He left without saying goodbye, daring you to miss him. Daring you to come after him.

these days
when the wind carries you to the bridge
and teases you
flirts with you
says to jump
you almost do; almost go after him

On that hot afternoon, you walked home from school, skipping happily. Your dad promised to make your favourite meal: Spaghetti Bolognese with chicken. It was all you could think of all through the classes you had that day.

you heard the screaming from the driveway
panicking, you looked around and weighed your options:
run back. or run inside.
your dad always said you were a superhero;
his superhero.

"you might not believe it, but your dad was happy. Not for a long time, though—his brain broke before he could enjoy it. But he was happy. Are you? You can’t even say the same for yourself," the bridge mocked as it rocked, threatening to make you disappear.

your mum was screaming with your dad in her arms
you didn't understand because dad looked fine
dad was grinning
what's wrong with mum? why is she screaming?

The stain was horrible when you saw it. Spread on the left side of your dad, as wide as his head. You couldn't help but wonder if he couldn't have chosen a less horrible way to do it.

Deciding to die is not something that comes to you at once
It's gradual
Like seeing your dad's smile
shaped into his signature grin, to lessen the pain

It pulls you in, like watching your mum wither
right before your eyes
watching her slip away
like the sands of time
watching blood drip from your hand
everytime you look at it.

No.
Deciding to die is not something that comes to you at once
It's gradual
Like watching yourself die before you die
like floating
like a lover's arm, pulling.

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Rachael Aiyke

Rachael Aiyke is a writer, reader, student of psychology, blogger and poet who believes the world is a canvas and our thoughts, paintbrushes. Let's paint away!