Magnolia: An excerpt from Porridge: A Memoir


Magnolia: was the name of my dearest friend.

Locked boxes were we with one another.

I could throw words into a pond


She’d promise me their security.

I could cry in the distance,



Or settle in complete silence

But still hear the love from the other end.

We bloomed together,

Leaf & Magnolia

Hand in hand like two lost children.

I saw her as Alexander,

And me

Hephaestion: her mere nobleman watching the show.


Immersed then, was I, in freedom and fear


I let myself fall,


Into the tunnel of the unknown.

Seeking, was I, for a new route

To take me home.

I let it comfort me,

I let it force out the words

I chose to swallow.

I should have choked.

Jealous, was she, of my newfound land.

And on the brink of releasing our biggest secrets,

She went first,

To relay a succession of truth that I interpreted as poison.

Her Atlantis poorly intertwined with mine,

And in freedom I found fear.

Pensive and inpatient for nearly an era

I let Magnolia’s words sit in my gut as I

I considered all the times I placed my pain on a shelf for her.

Her ultimatum was made:

Your exploration must end,

Your tunnel must cave,

If I am your friend,

You must behave.

There I was again,

Caught in between.


Myself or Magnolia

A decision that had to be made.

I found a solution

In this box of untouched tools,

With no intention of their use.

But my pain fell from four stories

Pulling nails out from the ground.

The shelf had refused to hold anymore.

Myself and Magnolia were no longer possible.

So I brushed the dust off this untouched box.

Myself. Magnolia.

As Hephaestion let go of Alexander the Great,

I let go of Magnolia,

You see we were two figures standing before a mirror,

Repulsed by our own reflections

But enchanted by the other’s.

We were lost in a game of comparison and competition.

Our Atlantis became a dystopia of conflicting insecurities.

Again, I chose her,

Because I could hold pain within forever

But I knew her heart would break if she watched the second figure abandon

Its self-doubt.

So I let my figure vanish

So she would have nothing to compare hers to.

Mystified am I,

To discover that although she was my Alexander the Great

And me, her Hephaestion


Was her


Porridge: A Memoir 

A memoir about life after death, and a little girl who nearly lost her life after her father lost his.


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