It was like this: she was there
until she wasn’t
In the time it takes for the sun to dip below the ground
She left everyone
Towards new sights and new sounds
New quiet like quiet she’d never known before
New darkness like the darkness behind your eyelids can’t hold a candle to
She left us all for it
And wiped the sticky blood on the front of my jeans
And asked her, how many times will I grieve you?
Ella Wade is a hitherto unpublished 16-year-old living in Indiana who writes about their experiences as a nerdy, neurodivergent lesbian in the American public school system.