I turned on the television
to find my myself
pinned in the opening credits
of Criminal Minds.
My life flashed between bright orange square
and black and white selfies.
The show opened with my love life
splattered on a driveway, or held hostage
in a backroom, or newly discovered bones
in a schoolyard sandbox.
Wrapped in bright yellow police tape,
the team examined me.
I become a pile of photographs
that Gideon riffled through for a cause,
while Hotch gathered me up to interrogate.
Garcia and Morgan bantered over my facts
and pulled me apart for flirtatious excerpts
to deviate from the dark undertone.
Reid wrote my name over and over
as if every syllable created a puzzle or a riddle
that could be solved in an hour episode.
I wanted to decode every toxic relationship
with featured commercial breaks
of island getaways, feminine hygiene,
and fifteen minute confessionals.
I watched episode after episode
and traced each chalk outline and hoped
that every white line formed a pathway
to find myself before the damage.