with a lump in our throat
called America.

Speechless,
we stared at screens,
our lips listless
but fingers feigning
fortitude, typing our
tantrums.

How did we get here?

Beneath the clacking,
America confessed:
I have always been
this broken
but you
didn’t care enough
to notice. Distracted
by the projection
of perfection,
the sheen of new love.

You praised me, she said,
and you held me tight,
but you didn’t feel me shaking
as I counted down the days
until I would be exposed,
our love
a farce,
a fairytale.

We stared
wondering if
what we had
was ever real.

But, she said,
if you paid attention
you would know
this was
always me:
I, forever complicated;
I, forever made of blood.

July 8, 2016

I posted a slightly different version of this internally to Medium employees on January 29, 2015. See Hatching Inside Medium for more context.

Three misunderstandings about design research

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