How I Almost Quit Being Self Deprecating

Teighlor McGee


I am soft,

Bright-eyed, bushy-tailed;

I’ve had strangers ask to pet me.

I had so much oozing out of my small body that men would try to gut me like a fish,

so that they could hold that warmth in their bare hands.

They didn’t care at what cost.


When I was 13, I tried to kill myself,

tried to blow out the light inside me that never seemed to stop flickering;

when all I wanted was to swallow dark skies and hide myself in them.

I guess I brought this upon myself,

stuck my fingers into light sockets one too many times,

expecting different results.


They don’t know how addictive almost is:

Almost there, almost happy, almost loved, almost alive, almost.


And the day before,

And the day before,

He almost did.

But I still woke up the next morning, saw the sky almost crack through my window,

Almost allowed the sun to brush against my cheek.

But I made myself small again,

stuck my fingers back into sockets, set myself on fire because I was always cold,

and waited to begin again.



Teighlor McGee is a queer woman of color artist from Mequon, Wisconsin. She can be found on Twitter and Instagram under the handle "ohheyteigh." You can find her in school in the twin cities or exploring coffee shops in Milwaukee with a notebook and pen in hand.