Canvas

for teens, by teens

Canvas Teen Literary Journal is published quarterly in print, ebook, web, video, and audio formats.

Self Medicated

christina ramler


Gravity is what keeps me on this earth,
But fifty milligrams, day and night, 
Are what keep me alive.
Scraps of my lungs and bone marrow,
The wires of my veins,
Reside in capped prison cells.
Behind my reflection in this hall of mirrors
Is the state penitentiary. 

I swallow these pieces of me
To fill the rotting holes of my throat.
Digestible poison:
Staining the tunnels of my intestines
Like graffiti claiming neglected cement.
I swallow keys,
Hoping that they will unlock
My stomach so I can eat.

The warning labels,
Caution tape of my crimes,
Can never explain why
I always pick and peel at my scabs,
Even though I know
They will scar.
Or why I think
My moles are places I have been
Stabbed in my past life,
And yes, 
I have them near my heart.
Or why my body is eternally
Chained to this aching soul.

I remember my dosage but not
The last time I smiled
At my own reflection, 
Because I know what
Lives inside my medicine cabinet.
I am afraid,
But not dead yet.
And so I will fill my prescriptions
Until I can no longer

Swallow myself.


Christina Ramler is seventeen years old and attends Wayzata High School. She currently lives in Plymouth, Minnesota with her father and two younger brothers. Her older sister lives in California. An avid reader at an early age, she has gained a strong adoration for all types of literature. In turn, her writing skills have flourished into a passion that she seeks to continually pursue, and hopes to have a career as a writer or publisher. She prefers to write poetry and personal essays, but has gained enjoyment in writing short fiction. Her writing has become an outlet from her struggles with depression, an eating disorder, and the continual absence of her mother. She seeks to inspire young people and share her personal experiences of battling internal strife, hoping to make a positive impact on the lives of others.

© Canvas Literary Journal 2016
Writers & Books
Rochester, NY