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In Ancient Greece
healers used to keep snakes
they’d let them live beneath the beds of the sick

because they believed that snakes represented change, renewal and healing

in Greek the word for poison is ‘φαρμάκι’ but the word for medicine
is ‘φάρμακο’
like pharmacy
because inside the poison
is where we find the antidote

And they say - "Live by the sword, die by the sword"
but the word "sword"
has the word "word" in it
because our words can be the antidote

So much so that we can retell history
I retell my past in any way I choose to I even called my last terrible break up

'the best thing that ever happened to me'

I rewrite proverbs just to prove the point
Like, it’s not - "The bigger they are the harder they fall"
It’s actually - The smaller they are, the harder they brawl

And it’s not - "Behind every great man is an even greater woman"
It’s actually - In front of every great woman

stands a mediocre man who just gets all the credit

And - You can lead a horse to water... but they’re very hard to drown

And - You should keep your friends close, and your enemies... as far away as possible

Unless you want their poison to teach you how to cure yourself
You see this poem is for the snakes
because every time they bite they leave a drop of the antidote inside me
I extract the medicine
hang it around my neck in a vial the shape of survival
carved out of the time I broke that red neck kid’s nose in Musgrave Park when I was 15

I broke my pinky knuckle when I did it though
I guess that was his antidote to my poison

See this life is a snake
eating its own tail in a cycle
constantly shedding its skin
dying and reinventing
killing and giving life
and unlocking its jaw every now and then to eat something bigger than itself

We all need to learn how to eat concepts bigger than ourselves sometimes

My friend went into chemotherapy this week

her son shaved her head
I took her beanie shopping
we bought two
one was green and the other survival
afterwards we had dinner and she asked me all about my problems

I spoke so much about myself the cancer almost disappeared
Jack she calls it, is a blind date with a parasite
who couldn’t finish his own meal
it’s not her time
the poison the doctors give her will kill her just enough to keep her alive
and she’ll live long enough to make it look like it was medicine the whole time

And the whole time she’ll keep telling herself
I am surviving
I will survive this
I am surviving
I will survive this

Because she knows that while they say
"Live by the sword, die by the sword"

It also means - "Live by the word, die by the word"
Which also means - Live by the sword, die by the sword
Because your tongue is the Excalibur
stuck in the rock of your mouth
most of us spend our whole lives trying to pull it out

learn how to use it properly
try not to swallow it by mistake
but still carve a name for ourselves
inside of ourselves

That’s why we need to keep speaking our truths
like - Give a man a fish and he’ll eat for a day,
teach a man to fish... 


and he’ll build a billion-dollar industry 

that’ll cause thousands of aquatic species to become extinct


To have and to hold in sickness and in health until divorce do us part

or even my headstone when it reads:




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