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quarantine confessions

by Catherine Xu (’22)


I don’t know who I am anymore

The dreamer?

The lover?

The young and innocent?

I live on borrowed words

From borrowed people

Downloaded into my brain

And I just want to be free

Free from the doubt

The worry

The sinking feeling that

I am not good enough

Smart enough

Charismatic enough


brain fog

My mind is curiously empty

The thoughts I wish to convey

Simply won’t leave my neurons

And into words on a page

It’s like I’m walking in a haze

Lulling apathy and normalcy

Waiting for the world to light up again

I’m tired enough but not tired at all

Like every breath I take is a string

Pulling in and out catching in and out

Over and over until it stops


the truth about depression

I’m flying for a second

Then falling for eternity

Happiness just doesn’t fit well on me

I can brandish melancholy

Like a cape about my shoulders

But joy stretches too thinly 

And wrinkles too easily

I climb towards happiness

Like a plant towards the sun

But sadness whispers 

That it’s so much easier on the ground


To the me who sometimes finds this world a little too much to bear

Don’t forget that there are 

Those who love you

Those who hold you

In high esteem

And actually care about

Your thoughts

Your feelings

Your life.


Don’t be afraid to take

A helping hand

Or offer one if needed


Even when all else fails

And you are left alone

Don’t give up

Just listen to the insistent

Hope and strength inside

Every beat of your heart

Chase the dreams that

You’re afraid you’ll never catch


Head up

Shoulders back

Smile on

You can do it



I want to: 

Be better

Do better

Choose better

Change the world

Fight the system

Love better

Eat better

Write better

Exercise more

Be more organized

Completely change who I am


Or maybe I just need to: 


Put one foot in front of the other




Be present 

Hold on

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