I can feel an adventure growing in my toes, I am not bound by law to any body of land or servitude and at night I play Portuguese love songs. Never meet your idols, meet the men you worshiped as gods and see them fall off clouds, you will make better friends that way. Keep the optimism in your elbows so you can swing it around like a back-alley weapon when it gets too dark. I will assume the honesty of telling you I wear my shoes backward is enough to let you know it was always like this for me, and I have been waiting for you so long.
I wonder where your image flash went to now that you got no grin, just rough girl eyes to lay bricks and close the blinds. Loved how you didn’t care who saw us hold hands, new city, you rubbed my back when I got sick and you cried and I got scared but not the kind where you run off, you were angry I didn’t get up when you left and I gestured to the sky, saying, “I used to see how this was a sea, now it’s a light show for our first dance, fireworks for our fingertips brushing, I am a prairie home companion no broken anthem batterer, I got bird bones but I dusted off my back a year ago so now no dust will settle again.” This is not a poem about me or you.
I know you wanted to die, and I wonder if you know I know, I wonder if now you know I know, I wonder if you know I get scared by stones thrown at mammals and you got boulder shoulders, do you know you are so strong, do you know I know you never needed me to tell you, will you cringe when I pain for your left shoulder still, do you know how sure I was until you broke those knuckles open on my plywood chest.
You called me once and I left a party and you were drunk and asked me what it’d look like. I said I wasn’t sure.
My mother stopped saying I’d meet a nice boy once I became one.
My father stopped smiling once the sun glared
in my fangs like a prism window to god’s tongue.
I only lied once about being in love and it’s when
she travelled for two days and sat on my floor,
I felt barometers drop to their knees
and I should have said, “I could love you someday
but you have to pass some literacy exams;
I’ve got an ancient text scrambled beneath my ribcage
and we need to see if your stone is Rosetta or first-cast.”
She took a plane back and gets sick when she reads these poems,
Still think this is funny?
Hear them all groan under the weight of words at night.
Are you reading this too,
knowing I am a phantom limb?
I worshiped you like the moon, you deemed me
timely and appropriate for mutilation.
Leave your lovers better off than they were when you found them,
I etched into the arms of every one,
pick up the garbage they left behind in my
and charred ash under my eyes.
I have been laughing for no reason,
and it has been eight months since I didn’t care to die.
I buried my body wrapped in cotton, thicker than tongues opening night, gleamed me out like Christian snow; saw it sprout wildflowers so she poured sea salt on my grave; a month was never enough to not know how your skin smells. My intestines are black currant wine and tangerines, my mind is made up to bloom and boom, this is the sad song of cauterizing the wound you saw coming like the blade balanced on your skin but you were too afraid of what you’d do without steel so you just tried to stay steady. I am yearning for the churning of a radiant grace but understand the subdued nature of time. Love is when someone always thinks you’re the funniest person in a room, I told her one night, and we knew we were everything some moments. I only miss the concept of what we had; your foliage fell and I see your dry rot.
I lost your note that said “I love you all the days” long before you deleted me on Facebook, message received delivered sender tendered resignation (I need no eloquence when I had to ask you if you were breaking up with me and you said you didn’t know).