I Had a Satchel

A metaphysical conceit using a common accessory.

I had a satchel

A beautiful, genuine leather satchel.

I wore that satchel


Because I was the girl with the satchel.

Everything was safe inside that satchel-

that satchel that slung so perfectly

from my left shoulder,

across my heart,

to my right hip- a frame.

That satchel became worn,

and I loved it all the more,

holes grew in the lining-

spaces for secrets,

for the girl with the satchel.

Sometimes a tube of chapstick

would disappear within its walls,

only to show up,

unexpected and welcome,

days or weeks later.

I was the girl with the satchel,

the gold-tinged buckle

bouncing along rhythmically

with my step,

marking my presence.

I was the girl with the satchel-

the girl with a satchel who met a boy

at the beginning of the fall season-

a boy with lazy shoulders

and lanky muscles-

a boy with hair the color of damp beaches

and a honey-melted voice-

a boy who stayed around

for the girl with the satchel.

Autumn drew to a close

and the satchel broke,

the leather seam that held the strap

giving way to gravity.

Dexterous hands

and desperate fingers




but the satchel was beyond repair.

I was the girl without a satchel.

A girl who began wearing a purse around-

a purse that didn't quite sit right,

short straps piled onto her right shoulder-

a purse that scuffed against her,

with its metallic pleather sheen

and chrome fastenings.

And the boy who stayed around

became the boy that weighed her down,

and eyes that were once cerulean seas

became puddles on the sidewalk she tried to avoid.

He begged to keep her,

with that honeyed voice

that was still sweet to taste,

but never quite satisfying.

I was the girl without a satchel.

A satchel that was dearly missed.

Winter chilled their bodies

and Christmas brought a gift from the boy

with hands that brought no warmth- a satchel.

It was black with a braided strap,

and had beads embroidered on the flap- tan and grey.

Something pretty, but something

she would never have picked out for herself.

She slung it across her,

and it fell like a pall over her body.

It was made of a type of fabric she would never have chosen,

the type of fabric that catches lint and hair,

the type of fabric that would ball up easily,

constantly being picked and rubbed and brushed off

by hands that are all too aware.

But I wore it anyways.

And now I am a girl with a satchel.

A girl who wears things that don't quite fit her,

who realized that the places inside her that she thought were full

have been empty all along.

Because when the time comes

you find out

that theory is nothing like practice,

and you can very well fail at

the one thing

you thought you'd be best at,

and you question your degree of humanity,

because now you are just a girl with a satchel,

and you never figured out how to love.

The End

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