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“You don’t have to say you love me,
I will understand.
You don’t have to stay forever
Just because you can.”

I wasn’t enough.
You kept telling me to stop saying that.
But if you took our relationship and boiled it down to a sticky dark residue,
It would show you
I wasn’t enough.

We never said
We loved each other,
Until the end.

“Believe me,
Oh,
Believe me.”

Sitting in your car,
My hand on the door.
I had dabbed the edges of my eyes
To keep the perfectly applied makeup intact.
When I said it,
“I fell in love with you.”
Silence.

“You don’t have to say you love me,
Just because you can.”

“Maybe I shouldn’t love her the way I do,
Maybe I should’ve loved her the way I love you.”
I loved you in the quiet way.
In the way that made me pop the cap off of your beer,
Or walk up behind you and hug you.
In the way that made me stroke your forehead in your sleep,
And learn the touch of your hands.
I didn’t demand anything,
I never demanded from you.

“Believe me.
Oh, believe me.”

You loved me in the way that you would wash my dishes for me,
And give me rides to work
So I didn’t have to walk in the rain.
In the way that you’d cook for me,
And buy me extra towels.
We loved each other in action.
Without demanding anything from each other,
We let ourselves have room
But made clear we were each there.

“You don’t have to stay forever,
I will understand.”

I had it all figured out.
I forced myself to channel my love for you
Into our friendship.
I told myself every time I saw you
That you were never truly mine to lose.
That it was only a few weeks,
That we could make this work.
And then you said it...
“We might not always be friends, just keep an open mind.”
And I took it the way that made my chest swell with hope,
Instead of the way it was meant.

“Believe me,
Oh, believe me.”

And then
One drunken night
You slept over
In my small twin bed.
I tried to keep my body as far from yours
As possible.
I wanted to honor the woman
You were trying to have a family with.
But you touched me.
I told you to think about what you were doing.
You said you wouldn’t tell her,
I said that didn’t make it okay.

Please don’t make me love you again.
Please don’t stay forever,
I’m trying to move on.
Believe me.
I confess,
My blood pounds in my ears,
And my mouth opens before my head catches up to it.

I’ve only ever lived for others.

When I didn’t want to be alive anymore,
I kept going
Not for myself,
But for others.

I’ve been taken from my lifeline,
My codependent
Reason for living.
Other people.

So now I have to slap my own wrist
When I go to help someone,
Keep to myself
Before I try to keep someone.
Live selfishly,
And hope to find myself.

My mouth gets ahead
If my head.
And suddenly I’m saying things
Like “I love you,” and
“Leave me alone.”

My way of self preservation
Was to invest in others
For so long,
And now it must be
To keep only to me.
And I don’t know if I want that life.

Easy there, ******.
Quiet your tone.
Don’t let yourself get angry,
Sit there
And take it.
If you want to
Survive.
And everything
Had happened
The way they promised
It wouldn’t.
taylor swift sounds
petty and vindictive
until someone hurts you
and then suddenly
she takes the words
right out of your mouth

there are mean
people and then
there are people you trust
and one day you
realize they’re
the meanest ones of all

the mean ones
don’t bother me
it’s the other ones
that do

i just want
to be big enough
strong enough
that they can’t
hurt me
anymore

to shake it off
as it hits me
not to let it
crush me

because if anything
takes energy
i don’t have to spare
it’s being hurt

but hurt me
you do
even as you
seek my love
and forgiveness you
still manage to dig
sharp little barbs
into my skin

don’t you dare
tell me what
i’m thinking
don’t you dare
tell me what
i’m feeling

and most of all
don’t you dare
tell me how
i should be living
how i should
be dealing with
things i would like to
leave in my bad memories

but if taylor swift reminds me
of any one thing it’s that
you will probably
never change

and i just have to
roll with the punches
let ******* be *******
and never stop hustling
copyright 9/27/19 by b. e. mccomb
“He’s just trying
To
Get in
Your pants.”

“He’s just going to use you.”

“He’s only your friend
Because
He’s going to try and have *** with
You.”

“He’s a bad influence.”

“He’s got no redeeming qualities.”

But he,
He is the one sitting with me tonight.
He was the one to hug me tight
And dry my tears.
Not any of you.
  Sep 26 Anonymous Freak
Lydia
I think
I'm doing
okay.
I'm still bullying myself
over the sugar
in fruit juice
at breakfast.
I'm still convinced
that I deserve the pain
from running.
It's penance.
It heals the sugar wounds.
I haven't thought
about skipping classes
or entire days
I haven't forgiven
the man,
But I forgive myself
For not forgiving
I'm out of breath
because this run
is your replacement.
I’m winding
The idea
Of loneliness
Around my fingers

Weaving it
In and out
Between my knuckles

I knit my brow
My fingers
And my legs together

Leave my future
To the future,
And content myself
In
Myself.
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