The Fire Alarm Was Going Off But I Decided to Keep Sleeping

Every morning I wake up
with a bad taste in my mouth.

There are rolls on my belly,
but I’ll roll with them.
I guess this is my role,
but the big play
doesn’t like me.

So, what else do you expect?
Why are messes meant to be contained?


An astronaut brought a bathtub with her.
She wanted to contain it all
She wanted a place to hold everything,
the feeling of overflowing.

The Earth is like her childhood home:
Remembrance of being there
but not feeling there.
She looked real hard.
No one.

She thumbs through astronomy books
how a planet could be described
in one page.

A planet!
With chemicals
and articles
and spectacles
trapped in paragraphs.

She can’t stop floating,
grasping for more.
How did they learn to contain it?


I remember when things felt light
and I could swing
and swing
and think that I
could touch the sky.

The sky is so far away now.
A dream I can’t put into words.

I need more than a plane,
I need my own cloud.

So I can float
and float
and think that I
could be the sky.

A beautiful expanse
that can control everything.


I’m out of control.
I’m divided and
I keep dividing.

The slivers of the pie chart are tiny hairs,
so thin
that you forget they are there.
So insignificant
you don’t realize they make up a whole.

I don’t think percentages matter
when they don’t add up to
something informative.

So what did you learn,
They ask,
but I don’t answer.


I wonder what it feels like
to be a divorced movie star.
If I ever got to interview one
I’d gather my courage and say,

“Do you sneak into theatres,
masked but self-conscious,
just to see your lost love on screen?

Do you laugh when everyone else laughs?
Do you believe them as they play their part?
Or do you just see them as a mountain of hurt?

Does it hurt so bad that you can’t breathe
because you remember what everyone doesn’t?
The smell of their hair,
the way they snored,
the little notes they left just for you.

Do you feel like us,
only able to see that person
through a certain lens,
only seeing what they want you to see?

Does it hurt the most because you used to see so much more?”


I think about my dusty instrument sometimes
and how if I had
tried and cared
it wouldn’t be dusty.

It would be loved so much that
it would never have the chance
to become old and forgotten.
Isn’t that what everyone wants?

I was selfish.
I wanted the world.
Not the world in one thing.

So now you’re in basement torment,
begging to do
what you were made to do.

I’m afraid to try you out.
What if I ruin what we used to have?
What if I don’t remember
what I’m supposed to?


I don’t want to write about love.
I think I’ve tasted it,
but I know I probably haven’t.

That’s how I feel about most things.
Most things are the mushrooms
I think I tried in second grade.
I still swear they aren’t for me.

I’ve missed out on a lifetime of
mushrooms that could be
better than
anything I’ve ever experienced.
So I convince myself that they aren’t.

I won’t write about the not knowing.
The not knowing
is sacred
I’m scared.


Today I realized I have walls with no hinges.
I can’t even let myself in.

I don’t know why I exist.
But if I exist to lay on the floor
and stare with eyes that won’t close
then so be it.

Tomorrow is every day.
And all the days that I don’t appreciate
as days
as I wallow on the carpet
and hope
that one day
I’ll feel fuzzy too.


By COURTNEY ROSS / Contributing Writer


Courtney Ross is a Junior studying Film Production. She spends her beloved free-time daydreaming about things that will never happen and performing with FSU’s sketch comedy troupe 30in60. Courtney is a big fan of relentless positivity, infinite Cheetos, and Mary Oliver. All of which are basically synonymous. She also enjoys being serious… sometimes.


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