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Sometimes I want to scream.

                  I stand in a crowd of my peers and look up and out and think, what’s stopping me.

                 what’s stopping my mouth from opening wide, jaw dropping loose like the unhinging lips of a snake swallowing its meal, what’s stopping me from shouting and screaming and bringing the world to its knees with the force of my voice and the breath of my lungs.

Sometimes I think, what if I changed the world.

                 i am strong, and I am willful, and my best friend’s voice echoes in my ears: you can do anything you set your mind to, you can do anything you want because you are strong.

And sometimes I think, I could. I see the media, and it says, get out there and do something. change the world and shape it in your own image like clay on a wheel or mud between your fingers. paint it on the canvas of your life with oil and pigment and let it dry so it sticks. I hear the voices of my peers rising up and fighting, see their posts on social media, see articles written about their ingenuity, their bravery, see our elders condemning and praising the initiative of my generation and I think, I have a voice.

Sometimes I open my mouth and try to scream but all that comes out is a squeak. Sometimes I try to hit that high note but I didn’t take a big enough breath, sometimes I try to jump but my legs just aren’t quite long enough. Sometimes I try to change the world and all I get are the self-same responses that I’ve always gotten, relative’s commentary on my own maturity, when really what I want is to make waves.

Sometimes I wish my voice was a megaphone. Sometimes I wish I was famous, that I could stand on a podium and speak in a whisper and still be heard. Sometimes I stand on a stage, in the spotlight, and scream at the top of my lungs, but all they hear is the character I portray. Sometimes I wish I could change the world.

Sometimes I am angry and I am powerless. Sometimes I write meaningless words to give to no one. Sometimes I write speeches I know no one will read.

Sometimes I want to scream.

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