hello (dear 2016)

Dear 2016,

I know. It’s too soon. It’s too soon to sweep you up as though we were two souls growing fat and thirsty in anticipation for each other. We just met. I will disappoint you and you will make me long for the year which just ended.

But how about we touch a little. Like over-the-shirt fondling of secrets. I’ll give away my four favorite vocab words and you can give me a sneak peek of August or even March.

You can mention I’ve gained weight–my mirror already told me so. You can tell me that I will forget how to breathe properly. And I will tear up. And I will scream open my seams and need repairing.

You can mention that grey hair only one person knows about and the fact that I lie about the length of my sorrow.

I get it. You’ve gotten a lot of requests. Expectations, you clarify.

Everyone wants you to be better than last year and the ones before that.

I want you to be limbless, so you couldn’t possibly pick up a gun or handle weapons of any sort. I want your mind to be like a disengaged jaw–wide open– to people of all colors of all religious beliefs.

You want me to back off when I beg for a hint of November’s results. I just want to know I’ll be safe. All the queers and gender non-conforming folks and the wombs of the women who need full access and rights to their body.

You tell me that it’s just the first day. The earliest hours. How can I possibly know all this? you say.

I know. I just…I cannot handle more blood coloring up the black-and-grey newspapers. And all this warmth feeling up the earth. Should I worry? How can I protect it?

I hear you. I mean, I sense your invisible fingers prodding me. Begging me toward patience. But. 2016, can you just sneak me a little hint? How about Hillary? Or the Syrian refugees? What ever happened to those girls, stolen by the Boko Haram? Do we find them, 2016?

Can you…can you tell me about the rising cost of living? We need more affordable housing, 2016.

And how will you protect our speech and how will you pay better attention to the warning signs of terror and how and how and how will you resolve all the bodies buried and left for dead, suffocating our soil? Tell me.

We are all struggling for breath, these days, 2016. How will you fix that?

I know. I’m sorry. Yes, I see that line of people behind me. Wanting to know. Begging for answers as well. But. But I just need to know….will I figure myself out this year? Will translate the ghosts and hidden cupboards in my body? Get this gender dislocation in order? Is this the year? What? Can I not inquire about myself just a little? I didn’t think you’d answer. I mean, I didn’t think I’d make it to you. But. Here I am. Here…we are. So, tell me, 2016, how are you going to save us now?