the road bends and curves. our skin is dewy and hot and we fog up the windows, your breath is humid on my chest. my head throbs, the tips of our pointer fingers just barely connecting out of sight, my stomach churns, i forget to sleep for a day. 2 days. 3. i try to force myself to eat and i get sick. you make me think of damp leaves, cotton and rubber, as persistent as a hangnail and as urgent as a hole through my chest. you ask me where is the logic in this, i make excuses for myself again. i think you can tell how bad it is. this itch will never let you love me, no matter how i scratch it.
if these drugs don’t **** me first the withdrawals will
i. it’s a sad morning, but only i know it. he wakes me with such tenderness, with a graze of fingers across my waist. i realize he thinks im sleeping and i wonder if he was awake all night too. the bodies in this place are still. i rouse myself from the couch and look at the people passed out on the other side of it, on the floor, in the kitchen. i try to remember what their names were and i can’t. i think of how i want to take a picture, the whispers of 5am light peeking through the blinds. i don’t take a picture. this home is unfamiliar.
i struggle to open the door. the girl with red hair lifts her head from the coffee table, “where are you going?” her hair is stuck to her face, sweat matting the burnt ends from too much bleach. i have to go to school and for a moment this embarrasses me, i don’t belong here with my 15 years. i don’t remember what i told her but it wasn’t the truth, and from behind the curtain of hair i hear, “make sure you be quiet going down the stairs.” my new love and i look for the cigarettes and realize we smoked them all last night. we leave this apartment for what will be the first of many times. i trudge down the stairs with the force of an earthquake.
ii. i wake, again, with my head on the floor. i’m facing someone’s bare back. i watch the muscles ripple through the exhales, i reach my hand out to touch him. he twitches before my fingers reach his shoulder and i recoil: this will be another sad morning. my sweat sticks my shirt to my skin. i throw off the blanket. two years later and my headache reminds me of my nicotine habit. i climb up to the bed, i avoid the boy as best i can and i sit there and sob. i have 17 years on my back and i know i belong here. i belong where i put myself. i bleed under the morning light and nobody notices—every house is unfamiliar to me now. the parallels jar me. i don’t have to go to school this time.
he’s top-heavy, he falls head-first when he goes. i think of trees in fall when i think of him, auburn fluttering when it hits the light the right way, brown in the dust kicked up when the trunk topples. i can’t seem to find ways to blame this on myself anymore. i love the sunlight but all your energy exhausts me—im thinking about my next high. i just want to geek out in my room.
my limbs go numb, my fingertips swell like moisture in the doorframe. it was a scorcher out yesterday, and the sun burnt holes in our skin when we stood still for too long. we bonded over the fact that we all missed that feeling, missed the glow behind our eyelids in clear skies. i let the dust cover me happily, crying through the eye-burn, swaying, falling, i’m a collector. my eye catches a shiny thing in the sunlight and i slip it in my pocket.
i sit back and feel the joints of my hips respond to the pressure, bones creaking like a staircase, a palm on my waist. you leave fingerprints, invisible, and bruises that aren’t. i breathe with the movements. i think briefly of trapdoors. my heartbeat slows and quickens to the tune of your vocal chords.
the scars resurface like bodies in the dirt after rain, orifices caked in sludge. the blood pools under the surface, nearly bursting. the expression makes it ******, i'm confused again. i cannot write anymore. i cannot think in sentences. i think in fragments and memories and thoughts of her sleeping with her jeans on. i speak through the crack in the closet door. i know she would've found it funny if i stayed, i think of his sandpaper hands and a stained duvet, i am 16 again with no one to hold me. i am 17 and this has never felt so right. i lust after senses, i miss cleanliness and remembering, i remember who i was when i was 15 and realize i cant remember much of anything since then. i imagine a situation where i never lost my love and kept my appetite, a situation where the drug abuse never stunted my cognitive functions, everything is so clear until it suddenly isn't, the last coherent thought i ever had i was 14 and the whole world was against me. i cant make **** sound poetic anymore. i feel like im 14 again and she sleeps with her jeans on
you planted the ******* seed
somehow these walls look smaller with the pictures taken down,
i havent felt myself in weeks.
i havent felt this way since
my foot-soles kissed 230 on the comeup,
since 120 burned a hole in my nose and made me choke on the pellets.
i miss addiction in the purest way.
i miss your bed but not your mouth,
i miss your hands but only on my hips and nowhere else.