Bilateral: Control

i’m bigger than my body

i’m colder than this home

i’m meaner than my demons

i’m bigger than these bones

It burned.

Like vodka, like fire, like defeat.

Was this death?

Collapsed in the wreckage of her empire, she painted the snow beneath her hands red.

Was this her blood?

Glass. Shattered picture frame. Broken family.

Weakness.

She hadn’t been strong enough to hold it together.

Bruises covered her body. Self-inflicted, self-destructive. Mistakes.

They hadn’t hurt one at a time. But all together they broke her.

“Russia?”

She saw a face through blurry vision. It wasn’t his, but she imagined it to be.

Her chest heaved, body shook, mind rattled.

This was death. The kind that swallows a phoenix and brings it back into the world screaming and searing and craving revenge.

Fingers curled tightly around broken glass. Crimson bloomed in the snow.

“Please, Russia. Put that down. You’re scaring me.”

Goddamn right, you should be scared of me.


Notes

Some people say the end of the Soviet Union was peaceful. Socialist republics got together in Alma-Ata and agreed to leave the USSR. Gorbachev resigned on Christmas Day. There was no revolution, no riot. During the final years of the Soviet Union Gorbachev might have been making strides to end the Cold War, but nobody likes it when their sand castle crumbles. Especially not Russia.

I’d been wanting to do something based on Halsey’s darkly beautiful song “Control” for a long time. Please give the song a listen. It’s good.

 

 

Author: Allison Black

Allison is an author, nerd, and international relations major who loves bad political jokes. When she's not writing or gushing about global affairs, she's playing video games. One day she will have a Ph.D., speak Korean fluently, and command an army of chihuahuas.

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