I faced my fears
the night I walked alone
headphones blaring
my legs moving faster
than my thoughts.

I faced the uncertainty of success
the potentiality of failure
the pain of rejection
the bitterness of alienation
as I let the music lyrics
envelop my anger, my doubts
until all I could hear was the bass.

Every now and then
a memory would emerge
or was it someone else’s story
hidden in the undertone of a song?

I felt the panic, the anxiety
as I listened
trying to move my legs faster
so I could escape
get to a place no one could hurt me.

I faced my fears
the night I walked alone
I felt the wind on my skin
saw the sky above me
and I realized
all I had to do
was change the song,
find a soothing voice
a gentle instrumental
that would bring me peace
until I made it home.

-Vanessa Hernandez

poem audio recording

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