sibling rivalry

It’s always been a competition
I don’t know why
I’ve never seen us as the same person
or even close to the same
other than the random chance of being born related.

the memory that keeps coming back to me
over and over
and invoking the panic of your presence
no matter how much xanax i take
is the mantra you used to chant when i cried:

you’d be first to be married
first to have a kid
first to get your license
first to move out
first to succeed at life, because I’m a loser.

you were first to get married and have a kid
– only after you called begging me for cash
for an abortion since you’d only been dating
for two months.

your license was lost due to tickets and theft and probation
– and only regained after begging me for money
to pay off your fines.

mom kicked you out at 18
for drinking, skipping school, and being a dick
– but you preferred to live in a van and hotel
because it was more of a struggle.

And now, I’m terrified because it seems
like your last prediction of us is coming true
in the opposite way –
how much meth does it take for you
to call in the middle of the night
claiming to be sober and that’s why
you need money for your light bill?

i wish that I didn’t have to plan
for when the cops call me because you’ve
succeeded so much in life.

At least I’d still be a loser.


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