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Megan May Jun 2018
I count my I love you’s in the stars I see in the night sky
In my hometown on a clear winter night
Not in the city
You’ve only heard the bright ones, the ones that light up the sky, the ones that people have names for, that they build stories around
(It’s a shame that they’re all just stories now)
But I like the soft ones, dimmer but no less beautiful
The I love you’s you can hear on the breeze as you wrap your arm around me when we’re hiking
(It makes it hard to walk but I don’t push away too fast)
The I love you’s that were shot across dining rooms full of people
(I’m sure I had it written all over my face)
The I love you’s in white wine close to grape juice
(Even though I know that’s not what you prefer)
The I love you’s in every almost we could’ve had, the ones I never got the chance to say that I whisper to myself still
(In the shower, on my walks home, as I fall asleep)
Count them
I know you see them too
I love you
I’m slowly starting to no longer feel so strongly about him, but there’s still a lot of love there, even if it’s now of a different sort.
Megan May Jun 2018
You love me like a poor boy
Who grew up without heat
Cold house cold room cold bed
Now you make my bed warm
But when you leave my souls cold
It’s hard to know what warmth is when it’s not in your vocabulary
There’s a pleasant sort of irony in lighting people on fire just to let them burn out
Tears can’t quench all flames
This isn’t coherent but has some good lines.
Megan May Jun 2018
His arm already had about ten tick marks on it
He liked them in neat sets of five, like a school child would write them while they’re learning to count
Sometimes he asked for them to be drawings
One tally was green, with a rosebud on the end
One had the texture of a rope you’d find keeping boats tied to the dock
One was just a simple line like all the others, but blue
He would come in roughly every three weeks or so, sometimes more often sometimes less, never on the same day but always around the same time, two pm
Once he’d hit 11 marks, and I had to start a new set, I finally asked him what they were for
I joked that I’d seen Black Panther one too many times to assumed they’d be for anything but lives taken
He looked solemn
And said not taken but lost
He went on to say that he worked for the suicide hotline
And every time someone called in and didn’t make it through
He got another tick mark
He said he wanted to remember them, to show that someone cared about their lives even though they never thought anyone did
The rose was for a girl, fresh out of college, she made it through classes but not through the anxiety that had haunted her for four years
She had called about a week before she departed, saying that the smell of roses was the only thing that was keeping her going
A drought came through, scorching everything
He read in the paper that she’d died not to long after that
It wasn’t always the suicidal ones who called though
Sometimes it was friends, family, concerned people that wanted to help
One time a friend called after a death
Asking about signs they could’ve caught, making sure that nothing like this would happen to someone they loved again, because they would catch it next time
Her friend was found in the family pool
The only thing the girl said was that at least the last thing she saw was the blue of the sky, or the water, or the bottom
Blue was her favorite color
Hence the blue tally mark
The rope he said was a classic
His whole arm could’ve been covered in ropes if he wished
Some of the worst ones he couldn’t bear to remember, didn’t dare ink onto his arm
The sound of the phone crashing to the floor after a gunshot went off in the background, after minutes of pleading look just take they phone they can help you
Some of them gave reasons, others didn’t
They couldn’t live with mistakes they had made or things were getting hard or everything just hurt
He said he’d been working this job for about a year or so now, and that most people don’t last much longer than that
It takes too much of a toll on them, but he said this was nowhere near the burdens his callers were carrying
With that, the next line was done
I didn’t really know what to say, besides to wish him well and that I hoped I never saw him again
He said the same
This was written from a prompt:
You run a tattoo parlor. Every couple of weeks, the same customer comes in, always requesting the same tattoo: an additional tally mark on an ever growing cluster of tally marks.
I took it in this direction.
Megan May Jun 2018
They say
Don’t kiss and tell
They say
I’d rather keep this between us
They say
If anyone finds out we could get into trouble

I say
I say
I’ll speak my truth
I say
I shouldn’t have to hide what wasn’t my mistake
I got ****** over a lot this past semester, quite literally. Boys are the worst.
Megan May Jun 2018
They called me a temptress
Rolling the dessert cart out always makes people say the oddest thing
You’re a temptress
I always assumed they were talking about the desserts
The ones I’ve repeated so many times I can rattle them off from memory without the cart in front of me
I never thought they’d be talking about me
I am dessert

I am cake
Not chocolate, I’m not dark enough to be called by such an unimaginative and racist name
White and pale because I’d never dare to tan without bottoms on
Light brown just around the edges because I can’t help if those bottoms happen to be a little cheeky
Cake for the way my *** looks in the leggings I wear nearly everyday
Cake because I know you’re watching when I tip myself into the freezer to scoop ice cream
Cake for the way the girls tap it as they go by
I am cheesecake

I have creme brûlée skin
Light until I lay out in the sun, under the broiler
Browned to perfection
Covered in darker spots where the heat was too intense, freckles dancing across my cheeks
I am a creme brûlée

I have a cobbler mouth
Pink, nearly red lips
A perfect circle right before I kiss
Sweet and supple like a raspberry
Tangy like a cranberry if I bite
(I have yet to find a boy that doesn’t enjoy that)
Words, sticky sweet, spill out like melted ice cream
I am a cobbler

I have key lime eyes
The centers lined with pumpkin
Sometimes they turn blueberry
It changes with the seasons
(The pies are seasonal too)
I have pie eyes

Maybe when they said temptress they were talking about me
Cake that could be called chocolate when it’s wrapped in black dress pants
Creme brûlée skin that’s all covered up but my face and my hands
But see, see my freckles
See how they cover every inch of me
Cobbler mouth asking if there’s anything else you may want
If you want something to drink with that
My voice dripping out two pitches higher, sticky sweet
Blueberry eyes, almost always, the blue of my shirt brings it out
Even if I’ve only seen that flavor served once
Maybe I am dessert

The first thing that gets dropped
Always last choice
Those who say they’ll save room still start with a main course
Only eaten if your main course didn’t fill you up, wasn’t satisfying enough for you
Only touched if your girlfriend or your last **** or your lonely aren’t satisfying enough for you
If you’re full would you like one to go
Keep me in your pocket, save me for another day
I’ll wait, I don’t know how not to

They always called me a temptress
I always assumed they were taking about the desserts
I am dessert
Maybe they were talking about me
I work in a steakhouse and the summertime makes people say the weirdest things. I absolutely hated being called a temptress and it happened about once a week.
Megan May Jun 2018
One hour after: her lipstick still lives on my cheek, a stain that has somehow managed to find its way to my heart
One hour before: she is still laughing at my jokes but her smile never reaches her eyes
One day after: I've tried calling and calling and calling, her voice mail taunts me but I never seem to get through
One day before: she says she's just tired, only tired, there's nothing wrong at all, but she doesn't wrap her arms around me as she sleeps
One week after: I've been lying in my bed unable to function because most of the time your laughter was the only thing that kept me going
One week before: we visited the carnival and you gripped my arm as hard as you could on the Ferris wheel, screaming about how you hated heights and hated me for bringing you up here. I should've known then
One month after: I've been told that heartache shouldn't last this long, that there's plenty of fish in the sea, to go out and find someone new, but they don't realize that nobody could replace you
One month before: we lay tangled in your bedsheets, warm bodies touching and moving together, laughing, singing, full of joy, full of life
One year after: I've met someone else, she has your same hair and same long legs but not the same laugh, not the same smile, and somehow I'm okay with that
I wrote this almost a year before my ex broke up with me. It’s been almost a year since then.
Megan May Dec 2014
There will be lakes and rivers and broken dreams
There will be happiness and sunshine and fallen down trees
There will be smoke and ashes and bright burning coals
There will be holes and patches and unworn clothes
There will be peace and sorrow and a great big war
There will be killings and hangings and meadows of green
There will be love and blood and half open caskets
There will be beauty and torture and pain among masses
There will be strength and heart and paper unfolding
There will be stories and pleasure and and and
The future holds so much
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