a pumpkin robot (another letter i’ll never send)

dear k:

photo  by wottheduk.
i think i am a robot.

not the shiny high tech kind that a brainy person could build from scratch and program with enough happiness and frivolity to make billions of people happy. or the sexy, intriguing kind that writers like to ponder in their poetry. but a listless, lifeless, often redundant robot with limbs so heavy that sometimes it hurts to walk — if i’m lucky. but i am not lucky or shiny or sexy. i am merely a pumpkin robot. my insides stream out and color the ground a gentle orange; i am so empty that i wonder if i am dead.

i eatsleepwork but all from behind a trusty window. the days are so similar that i forget if it is monday or thursday. have you left me yet or am i still convincing myself that one day you won’t be angry and lash me with it? i could have loved you something wonderful.

i like to press my face against the glass and feel coldness push itself into my cheeks. if i wait long enough maybe my brown cheeks will turn a lush, soft pink like a baby. maybe i could start all over. it’s not like i have anything left.

i write the words save me into the foggy glass. i used to try to save everyone. i dreamed all the world needed was love to heal. people don’t want love though. they want food. they want their amputated leg to stop hurting. they want to erase the images of  gun shots and bombs that stripped their family, country apart. what can you and your stupid love do for me, they shout. i whimper and flatten myself against the ground — my pumpkin iron arms the only thing holding me together.

sometimes, i think there’s another pumpkin robot out there (maybe even you). i talk to him or her rather than to god — my soul is damned anyway. i know you’re out there, i whisper to her. the words you have to be float into the thick quiet.  roam the world with me. i know a perfect spot for dreaming where it never grows cold, the air smells like vanilla and honey, and you don’t have to wear shoes. the grass tickles your feet and you’re happy. you’re happy and it’s not a war to stay that way — it’s intermingled in each breath in and each laugh out.

come with me. we can paint our dreams in bright yellow and purple hues and string them together with band aids and the little bit of love we can muster from our rusty parts. we can fly away on them and never look back.

— lissa.

About lissa e.

Lissa's offerings include integrative mental health care, meditation and mindful movement (yoga, qigong, improvisation) instruction, and writings offered in an inclusive, compassionate, culturally responsive, and social justice-oriented framework as part of a lifelong mission to reduce suffering for all beings. If you appreciate this offering and would like to support Lissa and their mission to offer sliding scale and donation-based offerings, feel free to donate at venmo @embodiedheartmind or https://www.paypal.me/embodiedheartmind. Thank you. View all posts by lissa e.

18 responses to “a pumpkin robot (another letter i’ll never send)

  • johemmant

    Wow. Powerful stuff, Lissa. How you doing?

  • tiffini

    left me a sense of longing.
    a longing for stillness and calm~

  • somewhat voluble

    “i know a perfect spot for dreaming where it never grows cold, the air smells like vanilla and honey, and you don’t have to wear shoes.”

    I’d love to know of that place…

  • lissa

    I find this piece strangely enlightening, happy in a way even if it’s not suppose to be, I’ve always like how beautifully you put your thoughts together, like a dream that somehow seeps with undoubted yearnings for the one comfort, I trend to see things in a good perspective on good days and on bad days, nothing good settles inside, everything bad just pops out, like a madness controlled only by the bits of string that ties my sanity together, I suppose everyone’s like that

    • lissa

      yay. i’m glad you find it a bit happy. i hate to think i come across dreary all the time in my writing. the part you wrote about madness is lovely. you should use it in one of your poems.

  • Paul

    That is perfectly done but I’m not sure the uplift at the end matched the honesty of the beginning. Maybe that’s my ear which is irrelevant or maybe you should write more which isn’t. I understand the time limitations, believe me but it’s a tragedy that a voice as wonderful as yours, as unique, real and moving should be quieted by the difficulties of earning a living.

    • lissa

      there is a definite turn and perhaps there’s not enough of a bridge between the two sections. (however, i certainly don’t question the “honesty” of either section.) it’s a first draft so when I flesh it out more, this might change.

      though I do love to complain about work, I can’t say that my job is connected to the breaks I take from blogging. i touch upon this a little bit in my updated about me…

  • cocoyea

    Beautiful piece Lissa. So full of grace and very thoughtful. I love the pumpkin robot idea.

  • She Was.

    i could have loved you something wonderful.

    your writing always resonates.

    i think, that what I read as hope at the end of this piece, matches perfectly with the honesty of the beginning.

    thank you for coming by the other day, i’ve missed you.

  • paisley

    i find it interesting that you call your robot a pumpkin,, when that is the precise instrument that magically carried cinderella to the ball of her dreams…..

    and if i remember correctly,, her coach disintegrated back into a pumpkin before her dreams were realized……

  • Cynthia

    Honest, funny and wonderfully written. I’ve felt the
    same way, and still do sometimes, almost like the
    emily d. poem, I’m a nobody, are you a nobody too.
    For sure there’s another, but often we pumpkins are
    too shy or afraid to make the first move, to know
    the twin that awaits.
    The most lyrical part of your poem reminds me simply
    of childhood. I can remember that same feeling as
    at a very young age, 4,5,6, running barefoot our the
    shaggy lawns with my best next door friend Linda.

    Thank you for this post and for the memory, Lissa.

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