How do you live so freely?
So untangled from societal reigns?

my mother taught me the independence of a woman.
When a man leaves, he mustn’t take your spirit—
it must strengthen with the wind that carried him away,
like my father,
who was willingly swallowed by the cigarette shop,
who willingly stepped into the jaws of the smoky beast.

I smoke, but it does not own me;

nothing ever will.

My mother taught me that silence is a superpower—
people fear what they do not know.
So I became a lethal enigma,
and quietly terrorized the expectations I never asked for,
needing no one to give me permission.

I indignantly wink at those expectations,
and refuse to depart from the shades of freedom that molded me.

I am grateful to my mother,
for making me silently free and mysteriously independent.