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Broken Crayons

by Lauren Vieira 20 days ago in social commentary

by Lolly Vieira

my favorite smile in the world

he happily picks up

his broken red crayon

(the one I taped back together)

and colors his apple

while proudly showing me

that he knows it starts with the letter A

but all I can think about

is how I broke that crayon

trying to show him how easy coloring should be

teaching him that my frustration mattered most

more than his own

hiding my empathy lest it soften him

engaging my petty anger

I swallow my guilt down a dry throat

as I smile and tell him,

“Yes, apples are red- A P P L E S”

and I wonder how many more broken crayons I’ve left him with

ones that I didn’t even notice

I recognize how many broken crayons my own mother gave me

and think about how I melted mine down

to make my own rainbow crayon

hoping I can teach my son to do the same

will he have broken crayons to gift his own children as well?

I ask myself desperately how do I stop breaking my son’s crayons

how do I teach him to hold his future child’s crayons with care

is this an inevitable cycle?

is there no way to stop our bags from filling with broken tips

of waxy anger and shattered hearts

he makes a million more pictures in red

his firetruck with the dalmatian whose eyes are crossed,

strawberries without oddly placed seeds,

a stop sign with not enough sides

but in each one I only see my mistakes

I see the lineage of trauma we have passed down each generation

a family of broken crayons

somehow still coloring

how many times can I accidentally break my own child

before he becomes unfixable like me?

social commentary

Lauren Vieira

I am many things; a mother, a survivor, a creator.

Welcome to my page where I make sense of all the facets of myself.

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