i read a short story once, and in it it described how every age you've ever been is like a tiny tin can inside another tin can, and on and on, like russian nesting dolls, and all the while all your ages are rattling inside you. i was thinking about it on my walk to school, and i thought that maybe love is like that, too. maybe all the people we meet and love make our hearts grow, but our hearts grow layer by layer, person by person. so the reason our hearts can be so big is because we've loved and been loved by so many, and the influence of those people rattle inside us as we move along. 

but maybe not, maybe that's not what love is at all. who really knows?

but i do know that i can still feel certain things rattling inside me. certain people rattle inside my heart, making noise and reminding me. i wonder how much of me i really am, and how much if me is a conglomeration of all the people i've met and all the love i've felt.

i wonder if my determination is jenoa rattling inside of me, or if jackson's tin can is what makes me so still or if trevor's drives me to be kind, and maybe julia and whitney are where my laughter comes from and the way i squeeze people's hands comes from mikelle's place in my chest, and maybe mack gave me two aspiring green thumbs.

when i gracefully concede in arguments, parker taught me how. michelle painted me lavender, and the wrinkles in my nose when i laugh are steve's. i think my generosity originated all the way from the sands of weihai's international beach, where mei first handed me an orange and a can of coconut milk.perhaps all future lifts of my right eyebrow will have a bit of ben in them; perhaps my blinks will be sydnee's. all my sunshine came from allie's light, and colin is in the way i dance.

i ask emily's questions and listen with ari's ears,
or at least all that is what i'm trying to do.

and i could go on and on,
and on and on,
but if you're ever around and you hear rattling,
it's my heart making room for your's, too.

originally written 8/25/12
*i often find that things i wrote on the diaries of a fly on the wall keep teaching me lessons i need to learn. i would like to relearn them, add to them, and collect them again. anything posted with a date at the bottom like this is a repeat of something already written.

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