His breath mingles
with the steam from his coffee.
Across the table
she stirs her tea
remembering the way the words
used to flow so easily
smooth and fast
and perfectly understood.
And how he brick by brick
built a dam
one "sure" and "yeah" and "idc" at a time
leaving her on read for days
which to her seemed an eternity
She used to love him
maybe she still does
yet the feeling of dread
and quiet, damp sadness
is something she cannot bring herself to shove away.
What if, in finding hope,
she unearths some long-forgotten pain?
These days she doesn't cry over him
just thinks of what could've been
if they had been different people.
Why do they call it heartbreak
when it feels more like a toothache,
overwhelming and unimpressive.
She sits curled up
underneath her desk
her mug forgotten in the microwave
she bit down on something too hard
an old memory of the way he smelled
like strawberries and minty aftershave
or the way his hair fell while he was asleep
and now she has to nurse her injuries
and wait for the pain to subside.
She knew her sweet tooth would leave her here someday
and now instead of tasting moonlight and caramel in her mouth
like she did that night under the bridge
she tastes something sour
bitter and rotting and familiar
and holds herself tighter
wishing & wishing the pain away.
There is so much about you I want to know
Like why you never respond to me anymore
And if you still like me
I would ask
but then that would be cheating
I would tell you
that I miss our long talks about zombie skittles
& true love
& thicc (with two c's) squirrels
but I can't handle rejection
especially from you
so I'll just sit here
writing poetry you'll never see
and watching us slowly fall apart.
K - I still love you, but do you still love me? Were you right that you can't trust love? Idk anymore - please, ask, because I cannot tell you unprompted.
I would like to write a poem
But I can never seem to articulate
the feelings that you give me
I think if I could
some of the magic would be lost
and those sparkles of gold
would only be pieces of forgotten glitter
blown in on the wind
from some second-place school project.
And so I skirt around you
trying to save the wonder
in the wild rose
be lost if it were placed into captivity.
To K and those 10-hour car rides.
I have phrases stuck in my head
they refuse to go down the drain
which leads to my subconscious.
They will continue to stay there
until I have written them down.
Some have been there for weeks
some linger for mere minutes
before being hastily scrawled in a leather-bound notebook
and letting themselves get carried away in the tide
off to another's thoughts.
Yes, I write poems
not very good ones.
No, you can't see them.
You don't want to.
My poems stay on one side
and my people stay on another.
Don't watch me
unless you're sure you want to see me.
Don't buy a rose
unless you can grow to love the thorns.
Stop looking at me that way.
This is why I don't tell my friends I write.
Now I'll push you back to where you belong
And we'll forget about this.
You go over there
and my poems over here.
There's stickiness on my fingers
Elmer's glue sticks to my keys
Making it hard to type.
There must be Elmer's glue in my brain too
because thoughts come more slowly
I have to force them.
It's not what I'm thinking of
It's who I'm trying to stop from thinking about.