Silver medal, red ribbon

I have always felt second. Like, I was just never that important or that special or that anything. I feel like I’m always in the background and no one ever really sees me. Not cool enough to be prime time featured, not uncool enough to be thrown off set altogether. Some people know I’m there but few know my name and fewer still know I’m aiming for the stars but ever failing to reach. Fewer than that even care.

Second in every friendship I have ever known. Second in relationships. Second to my old cat, of all things, how ridiculous. Second to every fibre comprising my libraries pages, second to all the garments I hide my form amongst, second to all the makeup I reform myself with. I’m unrecognisable if I’m not second.

Second in every race, second in every competition, second to my brother in my parents eyes. He’s younger than I, used to pull his own hair out and bruise his own thighs to get me in trouble. Once he even drew blood, that was a particularly good performance. I was always so frustrated and learnt to take the whopping punishments I didn’t deserve. They felt like fire and sounded like sirens.

Second to pleasure I know pain. For every hot and heavy moment I’ve craved a little danger, a little pressure on my throat, a little rope around my wrists. Don’t mind being roughed up a little, clothes torn, lipstick smudged and mascara bleeding. Shedding a tear or two for satisfactory indulgence because I’m second to you.

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