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Mikaila Sep 2018
The day you got your hair cut
I went to a lesbian bar after work.
It was 3
And I was tired
But I went straight there
Because I had to do something.
I knew it was a lost cause before I even got there.
The back of my neck was prickling with tension
With fear
Because I knew I was too late.
Somewhere in the depths of my soul
My free will was on a gurney,
Cold.
But I couldn’t help it-
I needed to feel like I had control,
So I went inside.
People were dancing.
None of them held themselves the way you do
Like a marble statue that has set down axe and shield and stepped off the plinth for a brief rest
(You will be returning to battle shortly-
After you fix your eyeliner.)

I did a shot
Because that’s what you do.
They were free- *** on the Beach.
I sat there,
Wondering why the fact that you named your cat Heathcliff as a child meant that I had to love you.

I decided that I needed something stronger in the way of alcohol.

A girl with soft brown eyes and long hair came up to me.
Her name was Tiffany.
She wasn’t clever like you
And her voice
Wasn’t low and rough like yours
But she told me I was pretty.
I already knew, but I thanked her.
I felt nothing.
She wasn’t interesting
Or funny
Or smart.
She was attractive- beautiful even, I suppose,
And maybe she was kind.
She bought me a drink,
And mistook my sadness for shyness.
As I answered her questions I was afraid your name would fall from my lips like a seed
Take root and grow up through the floorboards.
Nothing she said changed me, nothing I said back changed me,
And my thoughts kept snagging on you
Tearing and unraveling.
I needed you out of my head.
She was looking at me with big eyes
And I suppose they were compelling
But they weren’t yours-
Rimmed with black, hypnotic and stormy at times, sparkling with mischief at others,
Forever changing and forever captivating,
Windows to a soul I fiercely wish I knew-
They were just eyes, and maybe they were vulnerable
Or curious
Or sweet.
I kissed her so that I could stop looking into them
And not seeing you there.
Her lips tasted like nothing.
I closed my eyes and kissed her harder,
Hoping for a reason to forget you.

We were beautiful, I knew that.
I could feel eyes on us-
Two small, lovely women
Tangled on the dance floor under the lights
Fingers in each other’s hair-
We must have looked
Just like lovers.

I searched for a way out of my feelings for you.
I kissed her for a long time, until we were both gasping.
I found nothing.
In my frustration I pulled her head back,
Bit her lip
Pressed my fingers hard into the back of her neck
And I felt her lust
But not mine.
It was nice to be wanted
But not nice enough.
I wanted to hurt her for touching me
For not being you
So I pulled away
And kissed her cheek gently
My hands beneath her jaw.
“Wow,” she said.
I couldn’t look at her.
That tenderness wasn’t hers
But it didn’t matter.
I kissed her hands
In penance disguised as sweetness.
Suddenly all the anger was gone from me
And I felt desolate.

That night I walked home with my head buzzing.
I wasn’t drunk,
I was sober as hell
Head pounding with thoughts of you.
I hated it.
I hate it.
Somehow I fell into this feeling
And I’ve been fighting not to drown ever since.
When I look at you
I feel everything I wish I’d felt while I was kissing her
And more
That I sometimes wish I’d never feel again.
Sometimes I think you see it.
Sometimes I know I cover for it badly.
Sometimes, when you’re suddenly present
Like the sun has turned on just for me
And then distant later
Like the sea at night
I think you know I already love you.
Maybe you hate it like I hate it.
Maybe you worship it like I worship it.
Maybe you fear it
And I don’t blame you.
A storm presses out against my skin when I look at you
And I’m surprised no chaos seeps through.
My bones hum with it
My heartbeat reaching like thunder into my fingers.

I’ll probably never kiss you
And maybe that’s for the best
Because even being near you makes me feel like I’m falling from somewhere high up.
If I kissed you, I’d feel everything, I’m sure of it-
Everything there is to feel
And it would end me
And I would be grateful.

I wonder if you ever see that in my eyes.
That fear, that longing, that shame and joy.
A love and loathing so intense it scalds.
‘I can’t believe I’m here again,’
It pounds through my veins.
‘I can’t believe I love another person
Who is always looking elsewhere.’

Just know, if you ever discover how I feel
That I tried to **** it.
I looked at this beautiful feeling
A feeling you could pray before like an altar
A feeling you could whisper into like a temple- barefoot and cold with wonder- and hear your soul echo back,
I looked at the sacred piece of humanity that had suddenly risen in my heart like a hymn
And I tried to silence it-
I tried hard-
So that you would never have to fear it.

I failed. It lives.
It took root in me, and whenever I speak your name little harsh flowers push their way up through the concrete under my feet, sending cracks out like jagged spiderwebs.
They bloom like wounds.
They kiss the sky.
And, slowly,
They are crumbling this city to dust.
Title is a quote from Milton’s Paradise Lost, spoken by Lucifer.
15.2k · Sep 2018
Easy
Mikaila Sep 2018
It’s just easy for them
Isn’t it?
This couple on the train.
They walked on laughing together
Holding hands
And I felt that familiar something-
Not jealousy
Not envy
But...
Chagrin.
Astonishment.
Incredulity.
Incomprehension.
Looking at them feels like looking at one of those
Impossible pictures
Where the stairs keep going forever in a loop.
It’s just
Easy for them.

It doesn’t hurt anymore, that thought,
But thinking it feels so odd in my mind
When I can’t imagine loving someone without
Shame,
Without pain.
They fit.
These people,
They fit without having to carve anything out.
They fit without punishing each other.
They fit like puzzle pieces cut from the same board-
No worries, they just go together, and that
Is that.
They fit like
“Of course.”
Like breathing.
Neatly.
Simply.
Carelessly.

I can’t imagine what it’s like
I can’t comprehend it-
To fit
Somewhere
Much less to fit somewhere
With someone.
I am always trying to corset myself into this world,
Lungs burning,
Trying to remain small enough to squeeze by
Catching myself by the wrist to keep from reaching
For anything.
And if there seems to be a spot where I might be able to exist as I am

It is always

Occupied.

Like a shiny pinprick
That thought hurts-
Not like the others it is newly cut
And still ******.
The idea that maybe there is a home for me
And that maybe I was too late for it.

They’re laughing.
He says something clever,
Passes a hand along the small of her back
And she leans into it,
Smiling because she loves that he wants to touch her innocently.
They seem to exist behind glass.
Not for the first time I wonder
If I could just slip into that life
Like a drop into an ocean
I want it badly
I want it stupidly
And I examine all the parts of myself,
All the edges and cracks,
All the things I’ve worked so hard to protect and repair.
It is not a welcome sight-
I am not a home
I am like an old ruin
Full of murmurings and cold spots
Full of dusty sunlight.
I sigh,
Knowing the secret I keep so poorly-
That if I really had a choice to be otherwise
I would have already made it.

I couldn’t reach them if I ran for a thousand years,
They are too far away.
They walk off the train, arms linked
Talking about nothing
And I watch them go
Like a hallucination,
Like a mirage in the desert.

Her perfume smells like forgetfulness
And it lingers.
This is a poem about how it feels as a gay woman to see a straight couple on the subway.
13.1k · Apr 2016
Depression
Mikaila Apr 2016
Depression is
"I should shower now, while I'm still feeling okay."
Depression is
Drinking water with every bite because you don't want to eat.
Depression is
Having an audiobook on while you sleep to keep yourself from waking up vulnerable.
Depression is
Taking risks to try and reach yourself.
Depression is
Vivid memories overlaying themselves on reality.
Depression is
Wanting to do your schoolwork but being unable to find the strength.
Depression is
Not answering texts because too much interaction tires you out.
Depression is
Having to work harder than everyone else for the same result, and being called lazy anyhow.
Depression is
Sleeping for 14 hours and still being tired.
Depression is
The guilt that comes with finding one person who makes you feel good, and knowing you will burden them.
Depression is
Being left by your lovers or friends because they don't understand.
Depression is
Piles of ***** laundry you wish you had the inner fortitude to do.
Depression is
Wandering the empty roads in the middle of the night because you can't sit still.
Depression is
Reading a book whenever you are in public to ease the stress.
Depression is
Not always
Visible.
12.4k · Oct 2013
A Musing About Loneliness
Mikaila Oct 2013
Loneliness.
What is it?
It is a concept we so rarely describe in detail.
We've made up a specific word for it-
Three little syllables-
Just so that we can say it and be done with it,
And escape the contemplation.
But I know my own loneliness cannot be captured,
Cannot be encompassed,
By merely the word.
What is loneliness?
It comes in all shapes and sizes,
A space,
A lack,
That can be big or small,
Sudden or excruciatingly slow,
Sharp or fuzzy at the edges.
Hell,
It can even be comforting.
What is it about loneliness that is so insidious?
Harder to rid yourself of than fear
Or anger
Or even such tricky, barbed things as doubt
Or hope,
That stick.
Loneliness doesn't stick.
It seeps.
Steeps.
You stew in it.
It is beginning to occur to me that I don't believe,
Once one realizes loneliness for the first time,
That one is ever truly rid of it again,
Even for a second.
I think it is a permanence that we as a race refuse to acknowledge most of the time.
Some forms of lonely are fairly benign-
The little tingle on the edges of you, when you are home alone and the house is silent,
And for no apparent reason at all-
No sadness, no fear, no thought that is particularly unpleasant that you must drown out-
You nonetheless feel the compulsion to switch on the television
Even if you won't watch,
Just to break the stillness with a human voice besides your own.
Then there are the darker types, the truly ensnaring ones,
The lonelinesses born of the memory of times when,
Perhaps, you were less lonely,
Or even thought that you had flushed the feeling from your soul entirely.
Loneliness is an otherness,
An alien thing that lives in your heart,
That makes you question whether there is anyone out there who would have you
If they knew
What was on the inside.
There is the type of loneliness that creeps up on you and follows nipping at your heels like a shadow on the pavement as you move through your day,
Reminding you, whispering in your ear that here you felt less alone, and there, and that those places are full now,
Of emptiness,
Because those times have passed and not had the courtesy to clean up their cobwebs-
Memories linger in certain little spots, and collect like dust little pockets of loneliness that grab you all of a sudden,
The way forgotten spiderwebs stick in your hair as you move through an old house.
This type is jarring, disturbing, and
Afterwards I always feel the desperate need to wash away the feeling,
Scrub myself down.
There is the breed of loneliness that is a bit more genteel,
And curls cold at your feet like a well trained dog,
Formal and subtle, but constant,
Watching.
This is the sort that makes you feel just somewhat hunted,
When you try to sit in silence by a fire at night in your living room
And find that you must read a book to drive the stillness from your head.
There is the truly hollow kind,
The kind that has no courtesy whatsoever,
And actually slithers into you, inhabiting your heart and stomach and bones
As you try to fall asleep
With ice.
It is this kind that, if it is strong enough
(and you are weak enough)
For it to remain until morning
Forbids even the smallest human touch-
Every gesture of tenderness from another person
Makes this loneliness increase,
Every embrace, every handshake, every accidental contact of skin
Becomes unbearable,
And the afflicted shies away,
Perpetuating a cycle of vicious disconnection.
They all leave a little something cold, even when they recede,
In the core of you, that won't be dislodged no matter what you try.
Loneliness,
Like a cancer,
Can only be considered in remission,
And never truly cured.
For when given room to prosper even for the space of a second it expands and swallows up your thoughts
Until they whither with frostbite.
I suppose I shouldn't be shocked-
As humans we live side by side, arms linked with
Most of the things that will eventually **** us,
What's one more, cozying up inside our skulls,
Inside our hearts?
We have a partnership-
An entirely human concept-
With all that destroys us.
And so we live with out loneliness, like a second shadow.
What is loneliness?
I am still unsure.
I can only describe what loneliness does,
Not what it is.
*I think that maybe to understand it
Would be to die of it.
11.7k · Mar 2013
Kinky Boots or Glass Slippers
Mikaila Mar 2013
A bit off the heel and a bit off the toe,
It won't hurt very much, and they're pretty, you know.
I've got the perfect pair of shoes for you,
All you need is some fitting- an inch off or two.
A slice of skin here and a little blood there,
These are the most beautiful shoes you could wear.
Let you go? Heavens no!
I admire you so
With your perfect physique
And your delicate feet.
Oh it's only a smidgen, a droplet of blood!
Come now dear, no one's fond of a stick in the mud.
Come- rush to the ball and we'll all have such fun!
On second thought, maybe you, ah... shouldn't run...
It's worth it, though, isn't it? These beautiful shoes.
And darling, they look so exquisite on you.
There now, not so bad, and they fit perfectly,
All you needed was just a little surgery.
Now let's off to the ball and you'll dance all night long.
No silly, don't cry, you've got it all wrong!
I told you- you're beautiful just how you are,
Now come on and stop whining, you don't have to walk far.
But you see, there's no daughter, or stepmom, or shoes.
There's none of those things- there is me and there's you.
And you've got this idea of what I'm s'posed to be,
And as hard as I try, I'm not her, love, I'm me.
I'm afraid that no matter how much pain I bear,
I just don't fit in the shoes you are making me wear.
10.9k · Jun 2014
Poem #526
Mikaila Jun 2014
It's true that I never really knew you.
But I did love you
In a certain, breathless way.
In a hushed way.
I was very small, then. And very sad.
And I looked out on a great, green, vivid world,
And I was afraid, even, to whisper into it
As if my breath would push the color out.
I watched. I noticed.
I perched on the edge of myself,
On the line between me
And the air around me,
Too cautious to slip into either fully.
I was used to looking.
I was used to being a shadow, and I enjoyed it.
I thought I enjoyed it.

The day I met you, you looked back at me.
You were the first.
Imagine that- all those years, and you were the first person
To wonder what it was like behind my eyes
Enough to really look into them.

I could have loved you
Just for that
And maybe I did, originally.
I remember small things, small wakings-up,
Tiny moments that made me realize who I was.
I never lived inside myself before that year.
When I met you I discovered
That I had hands
That when the breeze was warm
I felt it
That my fingers could read the world I so loved to look at-
Change it
Mold it,
Have it.
I discovered that maybe I didn't have to exist alone
And for that knowledge
I must bitterly thank you,
For ever since then I have craved to be held,
Every second
And it has been wonderful and terrible.

I remember snapshots of that time.

The first time, when you looked at me, when you stood close to me
And I was so surprised that I forgot to recoil
And I discovered that I didn't want to.
Your eyes,
Pale and warm, a clear grey-blue, sparkling with mischief,
And what was behind them-
Pain, fear, love, wit and imagination.
You.

I didn't know you,
But I saw you.
I was looking. I always look.
I rarely see anything I wish I could write poetry about.
When I do, it keeps on coming, even years later.
Go figure.

I remember going home and laying awake in the dark
And your face wouldn't leave my mind.
You were leaving within the week,
And I didn't want to forget it, somehow.
I didn't know what made me want to look at you.
Thinking of you-
The curtain of dark hair you hid beneath a hat,
Your softly freckled skin,
Your low, husky voice that always made my head turn
As if everyone else was just background noise.
Maybe it was the way your lips would quirk up in a half smile
Whenever you said something witty and knew it.
(I loved that you knew it.)
Somehow the sum-total of you
Stuck with me and wouldn't leave.
I'd met handsome men.
I'd met beautiful women.
I'd met many people, by then,
But none I'd wanted to know quite like I wanted to know you.

It had never occurred to me
Before that summer
That I would ever want to kiss anybody.
When I discovered that I wanted to kiss you...
I didn't know what to do.
So I said nothing.
Did nothing.
I passionately looked at you
As you told your mesmerizing stories and laughed and looked elsewhere.
I didn't mind.

That was the year
Two weeks later
That I rolled over in bed and asked my best friend to kiss me.
That was the year I discovered why I'd never fantasized a white wedding
(It wasn't legal yet.)

In the years after, I searched for you.
Sometimes I found you.
Sometimes
I couldn't stop telling you you were beautiful.
Sometimes I felt close to you
And my heart would race.
Sometimes you chose a boy
Over my small, dainty face and my eyelashes and my high heeled boots
And that was the first time I felt
The now familiar aching shame- the fear
That maybe that would always happen.
The fear I still grapple with, if I am to be honest.

Still, there were moments when you and I were close, and I treasured them.
Once, I asked you for a hug
And you pulled me down onto the bed beside you
And that was the first time
I ever felt my stomach fall through my feet
In a delicious way,
In a thrilling way.
All I did was hug you,
And looked at your soft, brown eyelashes
Casting shadows down your cheeks.
And then somebody walked in and the moment was over
But I never quite forgot it.

You were kind to me.
You were kind to me in a way I hadn't experienced before,
And I wanted to make you smile.

I remember the day you told us why you wore shorts at the pool.
I remember the white hashmarks shining in the sun
All the way up your thighs.
I remember I thought a thousand things in that second.
I wanted to tell you that you didn't have to hide them.
I wanted to show you that you were beautiful.
I've kissed scars since then, you know.
Because of that moment, I've kissed scars before I've kissed lips.
I've left people loved instead of wounded.
If I'd have let myself think such things about people back then,
I'd have wanted to touch those long-healed cuts with my fingertips,
Feel the smooth hills and valleys of a chaotic heart
Made damaged flesh.
I'd have wanted to kiss them, too, like I did to different skin-
Softly and without lust, looking into the eyes that witnessed their creation.
It was a very, very personal thought. A very, very private longing.
So confusing that I locked it up and didn't think of it for years to come.
And when I did once more,
I was raising a pale white wrist to my lips, tracing a wax-white pattern of healed hatred with soft kisses
And I saw what I wanted to see in the surprised, vulnerable brown eyes I was looking into.
That moment for her
Was your fault.

I remember when I realized why you had such trouble eating.
I never did hear all the details.
I couldn't presume to ask.
All I did was watch you walk away from the table,
Burning with the desire to comfort you
But
I was so used to looking
And not touching
And so I watched you go
And thought of you all night.

It rained a lot, those years.
It never seems to rain like that anymore.
Whenever I saw you it seemed to rain at least once,
The sky turning the same grey blue as your eyes when you were thinking
And thought nobody was looking
And cracking open with a rush of rain and lightning and the sweet, low rumble of thunder crackling through the hot clouds high above.
The holes in the road would fill with water
And the whole place would become a river.
It was so free.
Somehow I began to think of you whenever it rained.

I'm almost sure it was your eyes. They were so deep and stormy, sometimes.
Sometimes they were bright blue, like those summer days when the clouds skip along the sky, pushed by warm winds and shattered by sunlight.
Sometimes they looked very, very pale, like the tide when it folds up in satiny layers against the sand.
I always felt a little strange, looking at your eyes like I did.
I couldn't stop.
That was probably why I rarely touched you.
I was afraid that I was already invading, already pushing too much
To see what was inside of you.

I remember listening to you learn lines late at night,
The way your voice would rise and fall,
And I didn't even know why I was listening-
It just pulled me in, a sound I was partial to,
A tone I wanted to feel on my skin.

I remember tagging along for countless adventures,
Making up excuses to be here or there that I knew you'd be
Just so that I could be a bit closer.
I didn't have an end game.
Didn't have a goal.
I wasn't me enough yet. I acted from fascination.
I wanted to stand near you and watch you be.

I have the most vivid memory of you taking off running
One hot, hot summer day
Into a field of tall grass,
Your laughs and shouts echoing further away
And sometimes I'd see your pale arms stretch above the wildflowers and underbrush,
Waving a gauzy net after the white butterflies that rode the sunbeams.
What a happy field that was.
I didn't run.
I watched.
I always watched.
But I remember that the smile that touched my face
Filled my bones.

I remember when you cut your hair
And I could finally see your face in full
And I wanted to photograph it
In black and white
And maybe catch the way your laughter lived in your gaze.

That was when
You started to fade away.
I saw you less,
And you saw me... much less.
Perhaps I should have let you turn away
And never said a thing,
But
You were the first thing I ever really wanted
Enough to reach for in any way.
I spoke, and you heard me.
And even though you pretended you didn't
It was still the first time
I ever shouted.

Now... now I'm not sure what I think of you
Or what
You think of me.
But I know what you were when I knew you
And I love that girl
And that girl
Created much of what I love about who I am.
And most of the time
I think she grew up.
Found a man, found a life, found a place.
Most of the time I think it's okay that we don't talk
Because you probably aren't her anymore.
I wish I could say
I thought I'd grow up like that and leave my skin behind
But
I am the girl who looked at you back then.
And I have been her ever since,
Only added to.
I know I will never outgrow how I love,
Who I love,
Whatever woke up when I first realized how I felt about you.
I will only learn to wield it.

Sometimes I wish I knew you now.
Sometimes I wish I'd known you then.
Just because... look at all the firsts you were, to me,
And for years into knowing you
I didn't even know your real name.
Imagine if you'd let me in, how we could have changed each other.
I wonder who I'd be
If I'd done more than just watch you silently and smile.

What I learned
From years of gazing at you across picnic tables and bunk beds is that
You can love somebody you don't know.
You can give to someone you haven't taken from.
And you can be changed by someone who never even touched you.
And I'd like you to know that.
And I'd like to remind you
That you never quite know who out there
Is quietly writing you poetry.
10.4k · Apr 2014
Welcome Home
Mikaila Apr 2014
Tonight, the wind sings, "Welcome home."
In a soft, sighing language that the dusk wrote upon the sky in starlight for you,
And you alone.
This place missed you. It was mournful all winter long.
8.8k · May 2014
Medusa
Mikaila May 2014
Thin, white wrists.
Bone white
Like china
And just as brittle.
They make that coarse, scraping sound when they touch one another.
The kind of sound that delicate, expensive teacups make when stacked
The wrong way.
It makes me cringe.

Little blue veins kiss the surface of them,
Hissing and sizzling when the air gets
Too close
Like tiny snakes.

These wrists
Have made promises.
They have
Borne loads.
These wrists have snapped like twigs
Under the weight of a heavy,
Punishing love.
But, pressed back together the way they'd been,
They hardened oncemore
Like stone
And the cracks and fissures
Sank inside again
And smooth, unmarred, delicate white skin emerged
To begin the process over.

At night the snakes whisper and murmur against my cheek in their sleep
And sometimes, quite suddenly,
They sink in their fangs
And I awaken with a start,
A sharp pain radiating out to my fingertips
Like a shock.

Last night I felt their strikes by the hour
One,
Two,
Three, more.
And this morning a strange... fullness
Began in my wrists
And seeped out
Up along my arms
Through my collarbones and down
Into my heart.

Perhaps it was the venom
Working
But where it spread I
Settled
Like an old stone wall.
Like the halls of a castle
That has seen too much death
And too many kings.

I sank into myself
For the first time
And the ground felt heavily solid
And I felt
Only the hollow hiss
Of little blue and green serpents
Dreaming inside me
And that
Was something like certainty,
Although of what
I still don't
Know.
7.0k · Jun 2013
Heartbreak Girl
Mikaila Jun 2013
They tell you it gets better.
I will tell you the truth.
I am good at telling truth
And bad at being heard.
I hear your sorrow.
I see that your blood
Trickles like tears
Like mine.
I'm telling you what they're afraid to say
Because they don't want you quitting.
Selfish little children,
Tell you your pain isn't valid,
That it will flee if you wait.
Darling, I saw it in your eyes.
I heard you break.
And I'll tell you, I wish you'd seen me.
Back when I was being told what you are.
"It'll get better, time heals all wounds."
I wish you'd seen me raw as a skinned ****,
Fresh and ready for chopping.
I wish you'd seen my eyes when my guard toppled and I was truth.
I'm telling you now,
My truth,
And I think it's yours too,
Heartbreak Girl.
They're lying to you.

Don't be discouraged, don't be sad,
You've gotten through
You're getting through
The worst.
But they like to say-
Them, they, the people who care but don't know-
They like to say it goes away like a cut scars.
We both know about that, don't we,
Heartbreak Girl?

They're lying to you.
What happens is this.
Healing happens, yes, healing
After a fashion.
But not in the way you want it to.
Healing from love is not healing from injury.
It's not a broken arm which can be set and cast and grown back
Like new
With only a little crack along the edge
Fixed with a pin or a *****,
A stitch or two,
And a pale shiny line along the place where your skin
Parted ways with the rest of you.
No, love like this,
Broken love,
Heartbreak Girl,
It doesn't heal quite right.
It's like the old man down the street
Who was shot in the war,
And they had to cut his fingers off.
Little stubs left behind,
That feel like they're whole but they don't grab like they used to.
He loses things.
Not big things, not always. Not everything. Not life.
But it's never the same after.
That is what losing a love is like.
A heartbreak isn't a break,
It's a hole.
A whole hole that means you'll never be...
Whole.

It's something you find that time doesn't treat the way they all say.
Time Heals All Wounds.
It's a true statement, in essence,
But not literally. Not in actuality.
What time lends is distance.
Takes a lot longer than you'd think-
Just ask that old man-
To learn to live without your hand.
I'm giving it to you straight,
Heartbreak Girl,
You'll live again. You'll walk again.
But you'll always have a limp.
See?

It will feel like they all lied, all that time.
A long ******* time.
Longer than you can respect yourself for taking
Over some stupid boy
Who broke your heart.
A long ******* time,
And you'll be ashamed,
But you'll just keep on
Keeping on.
And if you do that,
Heartbreak Girl,
One day you'll find you have learned
To live around your loss.
Because it's not him you miss,
I promise you that.
You think it is, but it isn't.
You miss the you that you became by loving him.
And that's a very personal loss
Deep.
Tender.
Right down to the marrow,
And it takes TIME
To even wrap your head around the damage you can do to yourself
Over somebody else.

It's like that man in the commercial
The one about quitting smoking.
Ever seen it?
He sits down trying to have his morning coffee without his cigarette
Day after day
And he can't figure it out.
Pours his cream on his pants
Dumps the sugarbowl instead of spooning it in.
Tries to drink the stuff without using the handle on the cup.
He's a mess,
Heartbreak Girl.
He's you.
He's me too.
Trying to relearn everything we used to do
With that love of ours burning in our fingers.
Love makes you an addict
Loss, a *******.
But you learn.
At the end of the commercial,
He takes a sip,
And he smiles, and I always smile too,
Because that means that if you keep going,
Inch by inch you'll take your life back from this loss.
It's dumb, but that commercial always meant a lot to me.
It was on,
Heartbreak Girl,
The days when I couldn't eat for missing her.
When every moment was made of fear
That I would see something that would tear me open and make me miss her
Make me re-realize that she was over
(And so was I.)
(The me I loved, whose ghost I still look at in the mirror behind me.)
(The me I never got to say goodbye to before she died.)

I'm giving you the facts, Heartbreak Girl.
Time isn't medicine.
It's not nepenthe.
It's just time.
Time for you to learn and grow and become stronger,
Stand up again and say,
"Okay. I lost him. I lost me.
But I will create a new life."
I won't be one of them
The people who care so much
That they lie to you that you'll be
Good as new.
You're already new,
New and old.
Damaged, wearier, a little worn around the edges of your soul.
You're mourning,
Heartbreak Girl.
Mourning the loss of an innocence you didn't know to treasure
Until you lost it.
That you are
angryscaredhurtbetrayedamazed
You will never have the chance to relinquish of your own will.

But
Heartbreak Girl
Like that man down the street with no fingers
Who learned to play his guitar a new way
Like the one in the commercial
Who took his first sip of coffee and realized he hadn't lost his mornings after all
Like me
When I held a funeral for myself in my back yard
Trying to let go of loving her
When I finally, a year and a half later,
Woke up with a smile on my face and allowed it to stick around for a while.
Like us,
You will have your day
You will make new music
You will take that sip
You will accept your loss
And find a smile
Because there is,
Heartbreak Girl,
So much to smile about
When you have lost so much.
6.1k · Dec 2014
insomnia
Mikaila Dec 2014
I'm in love with you and I'm so ****** about it. Because I want to scream at you but not as much as I want to kiss you.
And it keeps me up all ******* night.
Mikaila Jan 2015
There is something beautiful about two sad people who agree to hurt each other.
Something comforting.
It is a comfort only very damaged people understand- the tacit agreement to cause pain, and to receive it.
Pleasure is for people who have what they want.
But for those of us who are starving, ours is best peppered with suffering.
Being with someone who understands that carries its own worth-
I don't want you to make me feel good.
I couldn't stand it if you did.
I don't want you to touch me gently, or ask if I'm alright, or stop to look into my eyes.
I am starving, and so are you: I want your teeth.
I want you to make me hurt. And I want to hurt you.
I want you to hurt me because I'm not him, and I want to hurt you because you're not her.
We want to see each other suffer because we are starving and we need to feel that someone else is.
Don't hold back. I want you to lower me because I'm too good for her.
Don't love me, don't caress me. Dig your nails in. Drip candlewax on my stomach.
One step down from torture is all I can stand in the way of human connection, when it isn't her.
Punish me for looking at her like a baleful puppy tonight, even as you waited in my room with your soft skin and your sharp teeth.
There is nothing you can do that will be too violent, too brutal, too sadistic.
I don't want to be loved right now.
I am too raw.
I want to be touched. I want to be ruined. Leave marks. Smear lipstick.
Lower me because I am
Too
****
Good for her.
Let this heart know on no uncertain terms that its needs don't matter.
Help me **** it. Help me pin my demons to the bed and make them writhe, and I will do the same for you.
Let's exorcise our loves tonight and banish them to hell.
Let's tell our skin that it is irrelevant.
Let's say "*******" to the things that bind us. I will cut your heart out for him.
I will kiss your scars, not to heal them but to remind you that when you put them there you fought for something, something we both fight for now.
Hurt me. Fight her. Do it for her.
Do it for her because I'm not good enough to hurt.
Do it for her because I'm TOO good to hurt.
Crush me.
You could boil me alive and it wouldn't make up for her, so at least leave me bruised.  
I will give you what you need, and you will give me what I need: not love, but contact.
Please,
Let my heart know on no uncertain terms that its needs
Don't
Matter.

There is something beautiful about two sad people who agree to hurt each other.
Mikaila Sep 2013
I'm pretty sure I dreamed you up
Late last night while I was walking in the rain.
I probably shouldn't tell you
That nobody's ever been
Proud
To hold my hand
In front of anyone else.
It probably shouldn't mean something to me
That your fingers felt natural laced with mine.
Everybody has hands,
Everybody can touch me.
Ah,
But few people can touch me
And make me feel it.
I could go on about your voice,
The way you stumble and trip over your words
That tugs at my heart in this deliciously painful way:
I want to stop your confusion
With a kiss.
I could talk about your eyes,
Sparkling, sparking a connection like a short circuit in my head
That makes me have to stop and re-collect myself.
With a ring of dark around the edges of the iris
That I read somewhere makes somebody more beautiful,
Scientifically.
It didn't feel scientific.
It felt gravitational.
I could say lots about the way your hair
Never falls the same way,
And dances, reaching, in the breeze
And somehow the image makes your eyes glow more.
But your hands...
Contact is a thing for me, you see.
Skin.
(Yours.)
I love contact, and it's because
No words get in the way of what you want to say.
If you feel and wish, you need nothing more than a brushing of fingertips
To say exactly what you mean to.
I think you heard me, all night.
I was saying everything
I wasn't saying.
You kept drifting back to me, your fingers on my knee
Or resting in my palm,
And I think that's really what did it,
Honestly.
What made me decide I don't care if this is a terrible idea
(oh it surely is)
I know I should probably make a better show of it-
A token attempt, really, to be smart.
But then again, when
Does that ever work out?
And your fingers twined with mine...
I think you carry some kind of low level electric charge,
And it sizzled through me every time your hand touched mine.
I thought of breaking the connection a hundred times,
Easier for you,
Easier for me,
But god, how impossible.
I held the thought in my mind and it hurt me to consider.
And so instead I pulled you a little closer
And kept going.
Outside walking in the rain early this morning,
When the streets were paved in silver and gold from the sheen of the water
That caught and held the soft glow of the streetlamps
I thought,
"Well ****, this is going to keep me up nights, isn't it?"
And it began immediately
To pour.
4.6k · Jan 2018
Eve
Mikaila Jan 2018
Eve
This is what animates me
The force to set the motion of my soul
Gears that grind, thoughts that whir, the sustenance of something holy.
I do not think I sprang from Adam’s Rib
I think I must have been struck into the ground like a stone
A thread of lightning from the leaden sky,
And the mechanics that rose after
Demanded fuel, demanded heat
And thus was born in the cooling core of me
This mad desire, this stumbling, ceaseless search
For words to light a fire in my head
For eyes to light a fire in my bones
For some weapon of beauty
Some flaming sword
A tool- nothing more-
To sift among the dust and grit of time
To stoke the embers and evoke a spark
Prodding, prospecting
As for gold
Searching for a remnant which still burns
Softly, feeble, buried but unquenched

I chase the fire
For it must always be:
It cannot die
But cannot be held
It is escaped and never captured,
Only felt and lost, an infinite second-
A running step to overtake itself.
4.5k · Jan 2013
Sewing Kit
Mikaila Jan 2013
Somebody has unstitched my heart.
Pulled the thread and let it fall apart.
And I'm empty now, it's all hollowed out
And I'm trying to breathe with the lungs I'm without.
It wasn't me, and it wasn't you,
Life did what living tends to do,
It stretched the seams and split the sides,
And I felt nothing here inside,
The only thing that's telling me
That things aren't how they ought to be
Is the seizing stop of breath
Inside my outside heaving chest,
And a familiar ache along
The seam that seemed to last so long,
That now across my ribs agape,
Allows my reason to escape,
Along with not a little blood,
To seep beneath me in the rug.
I could tell you I'm surprised,
But that would surely be a lie,
I feel some grimly got relief,
To succumb finally to belief.
I'm not sure that you understand
I'll be waiting here until the end.
Mikaila May 2015
Antigone, the heroine.
I am proud for you,
With your high cheekbones
And your straight spine
And your low, ringing voice.
I am proud for you,
With tears in my eyes-
"Antigone, the heroine,"
He said, holding an exquisite, strong-featured mask
With delicate fingers,
And I saw your face in its sharp lines,
And I thought,
"It's true.
How saved I feel,
Knowing you."
3.7k · Apr 2014
ForGIVEness
Mikaila Apr 2014
Life is too short for this.
I have never found a good enough reason,
A deep enough betrayal,
A hideous enough flaw
To condemn someone I love.
Life
Is too
Short,
And I can try all I want to stay angry
But all I can think is if someday I read their obituary in the newspaper,
Will the days,
Months,
Years I lost to silence
To grudges
To misunderstanding
To judgement
Be worth the feeling of that moment?
Will whatever made me hate them have any meaning in the face of oblivion?
And the answer is always no.
And the answer is always forgiveness.
And I wish they gave me the same gift.
3.5k · Aug 2013
Busy
Mikaila Aug 2013
It's strange to feel displaced so quickly.
I thought I'd have more time than this.
More time until
"You have a life and I'm not in it."
Would reverberate through my bones
Like the shockwaves that shoot up your knees when you jump from somewhere high.
It hurts.
It's disorienting.
I can't tell if I am annoying you by missing you,
Because I don't get the chance to hear it clearly in your words.
All of a sudden,
There aren't any
For me.
I want to say "I'm sorry."
And be forgiven like I made a mistake or said something wrong.
But I didn't.
I couldn't have,
Could I?
Just last week you told me a secret nobody else knows,
Shared the intimacy of love and trust
With me.
And now again I don't know where I stand,
Can't see my own feet in the haze.
Am I on solid ground,
Concealed but steady,
Silent but firm?
Or am I on a crumbling cliff face,
One breath from tumbling
With loose stones and tree roots
To tear my skin on the way down?
Am I losing you
Or are you just busy?
Are you cross with me
Or do you just not have the time to be gentle?
I don't want to care.
I don't want to need you.
Because this happens from time to time,
You see?
It happens.
You feel like trying to hold the waves in my hands.
Trying to find purchase with my fingers in the morning mist.
I can never be sure you won't slip away
With no warning and no reason.
And so when for a day you are departed
I grieve,
And fear,
And worry,
And suffer.
And I hate that about myself.
So much that I think you must too.
But maybe I just need to have a reason in my head
That you were here, and warm, and tender
Yesterday
And aren't today.
3.5k · Dec 2015
A Strange Love Poem
Mikaila Dec 2015
I harbor
A great loneliness in my heart.
It has long plagued me.
It is where all desperation comes from,
All strife,
All fear.
It aches.
But that is not the true problem.
The true problem began when I realized
It could be otherwise,
That people existed every so often
Who could calm my tempestuous heart
And comfort my soul.
Then I began to fear.
Because to be without
Isn't bad
When without is all you know.
But the moment I knew comfort
I was ruined for hardship.
Never again could I swallow it with grace.
Since, I have been searching for a way to tell myself
That comfort will return
When it leaves-
For minutes or for years.
I have found very little to help me do this,
And yet I am improving.
Slowly I am crawling up that mountain.
But oh,
Sometimes it does ache.
Sometimes fear does threaten.
Sometimes I am very, very lonely
Even within comfort.
I am finding my way, slowly,
To loving you right.
To knowing that you can fix every pain I have ever felt
But not requiring you to,
Not cringing in doubt when you are absent.
I will not lose you as I have lost the others
To my need
To my craving for comfort.
I will not let my intrinsic loneliness taint this.
I am sad, today.
I am lonely, today.
And today I will sit with that, and be strong, and understand that you are there
And will be.
I will practice patience and I will not let despair overtake me.
Loneliness is the price of love.
I cannot **** it in me.
I cannot use you to treat it like a disease.
I must accept it,
For you.
For you are more important to me than fear.
Yes,
Yes this is a love poem.
A very strange one
Born from the hollow feeling that threatens sometimes when you aren't around.
I am telling you that I love you more than to demand you chase it away.
I am telling you that I can sit in this and know that although you fix all suffering in me,
When you are not there to do it
That does not mean you make me suffer.
I love you enough
To free you like this, and to trust you
To always return
And unknowingly but perfectly
Heal me.
3.3k · Sep 2018
Thank You
Mikaila Sep 2018
Gazing up at the sky with that stupid grin on my face
Radiant with undisguised joy
I said
Thank you for hanging out with me.
I didn’t mean that
Not exactly
And I don’t believe you think I did-
I think you saw through me
Completely.
You looked at me sidelong
And I blushed,
Having just seen
Forests and deserts and oceans in your eyes
Having just seen the world all wrapped up in a person
Looking at me
And been
Overwhelmed.

See?-
I can’t just say
What I mean.

Especially not when what I mean is
Thank you
For ever being near me in this world.
Thank you for the nights I’ve given up sleep
To sit and watch the light seep through my curtains, lost in the strange beauty of your dreams and thoughts and ideas.
Thank you for your art
That digs its way into my heart and takes root there
Making me vibrant inside.
Thank you for those times I’ve spent
Happily close to you
The warmth like sunlight that spreads through me whenever I see you.
Thank you for the beauty I notice in the world
When I think about you-
The broken glass on my street
Suddenly like fallen stars.
The little weeds that push valiantly up through the cracks
Like mighty trees.
The lights spilling over the pavement
Like dawn.
Thank you for
The chance to feel
Alive.
Thank you for knowing me.
Thank you for letting me in.
Thank you for letting me in even though you know me.
Thank you for the image of an odd, smart, wonderful little kid
Asking mom what color her A was.
Thank you for the tenderness that brought to my heart.
Thank you for your stories and your courage and your wit.
Thank you for looking at me with gentleness.
Thank you for giving me some of your time.
Thank you for your passions, your dark, angry moments,
The beautiful, bitter hurt you carry inside of you and let me witness like a storm at sea
But always shelter me from being touched by.
Thank you for being the kind of person
Who struggles to understand being loved
But does not rage against it.
Thank you for being kind.
Thank you for being complicated.
Thank you for being strong, and insightful, and wicked, and bold.
Thank you for hoping I’ll be happy.
Thank you for making me happy.
Thank you for the moments when I can look at your face in full
Its captivating beauty
The little thoughts that pass across it like clouds across the sky
Mischief and vulnerability and laughter and pain all mingling in your eyes.
When I look at you like that I feel like I might belong somewhere someday.
Thank you for being sarcastic, and humble, and sweet, all at once, all the time.

The truth is that when I said thank you for hanging out with me,
I really meant
Thank you
For being.
I meant thank you, thank you, thank you
For ever being born.

But,
After all,

You can’t just say that.
3.2k · Jul 2015
---
Mikaila Jul 2015
---
Nowadays I know
That I still exist
Even when you don't say goodnight.
3.2k · Feb 2013
The Whir of Tiny Wings
Mikaila Feb 2013
Hummingbird heart flutters in your throat.
It's like having someone squeeze your lungs slowly.
It must be what dying feels like,
Hummingbird heart.
You know how their wings beat so fast and hard,
How you only see the blur?
Hummingbird heart,
It HURTS to be so fast inside.
Whirring like a machine out of control, overheating,
Friction fire in your throat,
Tears escaping bare and raw.
It hurts to be so vicious, like a runaway train with sparks flying.
Hummingbird heart,
Stuck on the other side of glass, pounding, pounding to get out.
Hummingbird heart, faster, faster.
A balloon about to burst.
Whirring, spinning, shivering.
Hummingbird heart,
Nowhere to run.
Hummingbird heart,
Nothing to be done.
Hummingbird heart,
Hemmed in, stuck fast, immobilized.
Hummingbird heart,
Speeding up, frantic, painful.
Hummingbird heart,
You don't have long.
3.0k · Oct 2013
Candlelight
Mikaila Oct 2013
Last night I lay awake, long after you left
And let the sheets on your side grow cold.
Long after the door clicked shut
On the last sliver of hallway light,
I stared at the ceiling, wondering who I am when I'm with you.
I've never felt safe enough to really show myself to somebody.
And there I was with you,
Taking the liberties I always deny myself.
You know
Just how to touch me.
I could have stayed in that place
Where time meant nothing
Where we were a pinwheel of legs and wandering hands
And wandering lips, as well,
Breath snagging in gasps on the jagged edges of lust,
Forever.
It was like drowning in a person.
Amber and slow,
Somehow so calm but so desperate as well.
I've never met someone
Game
For the build-
The hours of little looks and casual touches,
Fingertips here,
And there,
Those moments that make the first kiss a slow, sweet death and rebirth.
It always feels,
With you,
As if time means nothing.
We have all of it.
There's no rush, no hurry,
Because you and me,
We're a sure thing together.
And yet still when you touch me I surrender to you
On instinct,
Full of need
All of a sudden.
You are a dangerous sort, I sometimes think:
You say yes to me.
Everything I need,
That I am not supposed to need,
You offer.
Every permission I have ever denied myself
You grant me.
Maybe that is why when you slide your teeth along my lip
I could cry out from wanting you.
Maybe that is why when I finally did manage to sleep last night
I dreamed every inch of you by candlelight.
2.9k · Jan 2013
Sins
Mikaila Jan 2013
Lately you're tender,
And my heart greedily takes,
While my mind warily wonders.
What is the reason?
Do you love me in tenderness, in passion?
Or do you love me in repentance?
Darling,
I've not the strength
To refuse to be your atonement.
Mikaila Dec 2012
You gave me roses when we met,
Little tiny tea roses, so very sweet.
I looked for the false one in your bouquet,
Too late realized you did only mean a week.

Their corpses lay yellow in my bedroom drawer,
And you lie far away from me,
I guess I must've loved you more,
To lay in my own lies like petals plucked
Innocently.
Mikaila Sep 2013
What must you think of me?
Dark
Hungry eyes
Full of hurt and hope,
And
All
That love,
So sudden.
I've never met someone like you.
I know you see it,
And yet somehow I think you believe it,
Receive it,
Understand.
And I don't know what to do,
Because
Nobody's ever known that
And not flinched from me
The way you recoil when your hand rests accidentally on a hot stove.
In your eyes I saw...
Joy.
I saw that you wanted
What was in
Mine.
And god,
I've been trying to recover from that ever since.
It makes no sense to me.
No sense.
You saw
You saw the secret.
It spilled out at your feet
And I wanted to fall to my knees there
And beg you to forgive it.
But your eyes never shamed me-
They glowed
(god I cannot unsee them)
With excitement,
As if maybe my touch shocked you
The way yours shocked me.
In that moment
You must understand,
And every other moment since
When your eyes have found mine
And burned my disguises to dust within seconds,
Every single thing I ever knew about myself
Was overturned.
That's why I can't get you out of my head.
Why I'm scared,
Why everything I do now is a little shaky and uncertain in my mind,
Because everything
Is new.
I based my life on the knowledge that I had to hide.
Everything I was sure of, everything that had been
Proven
Time and again to me
By never being disproved
Dissolved in that moment.
You razed it to ash.
When you touched me with tenderness,
I fell apart.
When you kissed me,
I lost everything
I've been wanting to shed
For my entire life.
2.8k · Jun 2014
Whatever You Want
Mikaila Jun 2014
You really can do whatever you want, you know.
People who say that aren't just naive optimists.
However, they do leave out a very important caveat:
You really can do whatever in the world that you want...
So long as you want it MORE than anything else in the world.

Like... say you want to leave town.
Maybe you don't do it.
Maybe you sit in your office and dream about getting on a plane but you never do.
Responsibilities, money, family, friends, fear...
Excuses.
Honestly,
Excuses.
The truth that people don't like to face because it makes them uncomfortable is that if you REALLY wanted to leave town,
If you wanted that and only that,
If you wanted it more than anything else in your entire life,
You would do it.
That is the simple truth about... most impossible things.
You want it? You've got it. But you've got to be willing to give up every other thing in your entire life in pursuit of it.
You've got to know yourself well enough to know, absolutely KNOW, that this thing is what you want, what your soul craves, what your dreams revolve around.
You have got to be 100% dead SURE that what you want is what you WANT.
And if you are, if you can know that and face it and understand how selfish it might be to abandon everything else in your life for it, and if somehow it still pulls you towards it like a magnet even with all the rationality and doubt and practical thinking you can throw at it...
Then that is your purpose. Your dream. And you will have it.

That said, anyone who thinks I'm unreasonable, or silly, or naive, or wasteful for going after love...
Quite simply, I know what I want.
I know who I want.
I know what makes me happy.
And since I know it so clearly, so utterly, so inescapably, I couldn't possibly live with myself if I didn't do everything I could to have it.
And it's not an easy path, knowing what you want.
Because when the answer is no, it's no to your deepest dreams, to your heart's most aching desire.
When you have to wait, you have to wait for air to fill your lungs, you have to wait to be born.
When you lose it, you lose the sun, you lose the earth under your feet, you lose the courage to look in the mirror.
But when you have it... when you have it, you have a home.
I know what I want. I want love. I want to be happy.
I want to do what I love doing, and I want to be with who I adore.
And if I know that, and I admit that, and I put everything I can into that...
Well then,
It's not over until I breathe my last breath.
I haven't failed until I've fallen.
And I think I can live with that.
2.8k · Aug 2013
Waking Up
Mikaila Aug 2013
Sometimes I stay up nights waiting for you, just so I can pass the days that follow them asleep and not awake to miss you.
The daytime is always harder, the waking up.
Staying awake into the small hours of the morning, that is somehow a bit numb and detached.
Late at night I can even stand to think about some things that hurt me from behind the glass of my own fatigue, protected from their full effect.
I stay up as late as I can, in times like this.
If I can whittle away the hours and the next day delay my wakefulness,
I do it wholeheartedly.

Waking up is a vile thing.
No, not just because mornings are drowsy and too bright and too quick and I never feel rested if I get up in the AM.
Waking up is terrible in a different way than even that.
It is insidious.
It is the departure from my dreams.
Even the awful ones are better than the waiting.

Going to sleep I adore, truly, because it is an escape from living without the permanence of dying.
But ah, the waking up.
That is what makes me hesitate long hours in the dark depths of the early morning.

I dread waking up.
All the illusions are shattered, good or evil,
And I must taste the bitterness of reality.
Every day it gets a little more sour.
I suspect it's this way for many people. I don't know, though.
I know only that in the first moments of waking up each day, my heart is seized by this wicked, burrowing grief,
And so I begin each of my hours of awareness with the painful sorrow of loss.
That is why I stay in bed so late, most days:
I lay there and before the haze of sleep departs I think, "Oh no, not yet, I can't bear it yet."
And in fear retreat back into my stupor.

I don't know what it is, this feeling.
If I had to put a name on it... I'd say it feels akin to disappointment, regret, and....
Shame, all at once.
It swells up inside me and fills me to my fingertips the moment I decide to leave my bed for the day, sometimes even before.
And the fact that it can fill me everywhere reminds me that that space is usually unoccupied by anything of substance.
The only comfort I've ever found for it was the safety of your arms, and even then only a few rare times when you and I were truly honest with each other and I clung to you like I always want to.
It's like I am only a shade,
Made of glass thin as paper and hollow,
Only in the shape of myself,
Until the moment you wrap your arms around me
And only THEN am I flesh.
And when you aren't around this cold hard seed of panic and bitterness rattles around inside, making an awful high pitched tinkling sound and chipping the brittle walls.
I'll be waiting a long long time for you,
For this feeling of total loneliness that comes upon me each day as I open my eyes to the world to dissipate and anything of any real joy to take its place.
So to make it easier on myself, sometimes I stay up nights,
Waiting for you,
Just so I can pass the days that follow them
Asleep and unaware,
And unconscious,
And unfettered,
And unable, in my innocent ignorance of all the world's harsh, brutal reality,
To miss you.
Until the headache that comes with too much sleep forces sunlight into my mind,
And I must wake up,
And face the day all over again.
Oh, I just loathe waking up.
2.8k · Aug 2013
No, The Tides Pull The Moon
Mikaila Aug 2013
In the heart, most people are temporary.
They roll off like tears shed and fall away,
Not forgotten, but finished.
But some people...
Some people have no horizon.
Some people are forever.

When I met you, you were vast.
I saw the ocean in your eyes.
I heard waves crash in your voice,
Rough and low and musical like the tide.
You're like a storm on the ocean,
And I drowned in loving you.

I didn't know what it was,
Didn't know what to do.
How could I?
You were the first.
Before I met you I'd never
Wondered if somebody's lips were soft to kiss
Wished I could reach out and touch anyone's cheek with my fingertips
Just to feel the warmth of life beneath their skin.
I never treasured the sound of anybody's pulse
As they hugged me
Until I met you.

I'm afraid I floundered,
Like a moth who had seen the moon in the waves
And tried to kiss its cheek
Only to stick to the mirror like water
And flutter madly, trying to stay afloat.

I learned, slow.
I grew.
I knew though, underneath I knew
I'd never get over you.

As the years blurred by
Like raindrops sliding down a windowpane
You were a constant in my heart,
Faint but vital.
As I shed my skin painfully and became...
Calmer, I suppose,
Less hopeful, less wildly passionate,
You lingered,
And the thought of you changed as I did,
But the love never left.

It's absurd, really, that I love so instantly
And so permanently.
But...
I saw your eyes four years ago
And my entire world changed.
I saw your eyes and I wanted to see only them
For the rest of time
The way I can stare at the path the moon makes along the sea
For hours and never tire of its subtle beauty.

I was afraid of you,
Of the power you had over me.
I just shrank back, stood aside and watched you be who you were,
Awed.
I quietly loved you like I'd never loved anyone,
And when you were gone I found that the thought of you
Was not.

And since then it has remained in my mind,
So constant and so quiet, like the white noise whisper of the surf on the sand at midnight,
That I hardly notice it anymore.

Back then, I could have fallen to my knees at your feet.
Back then, I couldn't help but be the fool
Who trailed at your heels
Because I was held there by gravity.
Back then, I couldn't hide a thing.
But now...
I've learned how to go under.

Many times since then, I've felt the fire of salt burn in my lungs,
I've lost my sight of the surface.
I've drowned in a love so deep
It soaks up all the light and consumes any heat,
Crushes the air from my lungs.
Many, many, many times I have felt death
Dashed upon the rocks by brutal storms and black waves.
And as I struggled
I saw your eyes in my head,
Grey and deep and beautiful
Like clouds finally breaking into soft rain,
Like a flower unfurling.
And I kept on.

And eventually, I learned to weather the storms and currents of my passions.

I learned.
To breath deep when my head breaks the surface,
Not to fight the undertow when it wraps its icy fingers around my ankles and yanks.
To show you what you can handle seeing from me,
And to accept that maybe I can't give you anything
But a reverence in my heart and a place in my mind
Where the thought of you will always be
Like a soft summer rain in the morning,
So light and fine that it hangs like mist for a moment before floating to the grass.

Some people are forever.
Some people never leave your heart, your mind, your soul.
Whenever I see you again,
It is like coming home.
It doesn't matter anymore that you don't love me.
I love to see your face,
Your eyes like a rainstorm,
Little lightning strikes of mischief or inspiration crackling within them.
Your little mannerisms and ways of standing that grab at my heart.
I love to hear you speak,
Notice the words you choose
That nobody else ever thinks to use,
And the rise and fall of your husky voice
With the rhythm of a tide against a shore.

I love to be near you
And appreciate every moment of you,
Here in my head.
I am good, now, at weathering the elements:
You see not the poetry that flows across my mind,
Words in a rush that break in swells over my head
And find a push and pull to sway me like a current.
You see not the magnetism, the urge to reach out to you,
Nor the tenderness that I've trained to lie still in my heart.

It only sleeps, you see, like a dog curled at the hearth:
My passion for you surrounds me when I see you,
In ebbs and flows and eddies,
But passively, dreamily.
It feels like standing at the bottom of the sea for a moment,
Anchored but suspended just barely
With my feet hovering on the sandy bottom,
Being tugged gently to and fro by the water.

I let it wash over me, my ardor, but I do nothing,
Only enjoy how soothing it feels, to know I can love so deeply.  
For I have learned that souls don't need air beneath the sea,
And so I have forgotten to struggle, struck motionless by silence and peace.
When I see you now, I treat you like the old friend you are,
Someone cherished, someone missed,
But calmly so.
And underneath loving you has become that.
I lived with my head above the water for so long,
Fighting, striving,
And now all it is is that I have realized
That that was only the surface,
And there is so much more.

I love you like the ocean.
Wild, desperate, powerful and chaotic
As the waves that dash themselves upon the cliffs, white and foamy and brutal,
But also silent, restful, calm and deep
As the underneath is, slow and blue and graceful.
The battle and the surrender,
That is how I love you.
Both at once, like the sea is.
Vast, like the sea is.
The fight hardly matters, the losing of it,
The nevermore-
I love you in a way that needs no possession, no validation.

Ever changing, but eternal nonetheless,
Like the sea is.

Some people have no horizon.
Some people are forever.
2.7k · Nov 2013
Consumed
Mikaila Nov 2013
It's 4 pm and I haven't eaten yet.
Again.
I didn't notice.
Again.
This has been happening
Again.
When I love someone,
Really love them,
I need less.
I'm not kidding, I need less.
If I think of them, I am not hungry or thirsty or tired.
My body stops asking me for what it needs
Because of what my mind and heart are busy needing.
It's a mindblowing concept.
And I can tell you this:
It is 4 pm, and I have not eaten since 6 pm last night,
And I do not feel hungry.
When I get my plate of food in 15 minutes-
As I intend to, now that I've realized this-
I will not be hungry then either.
I have to be careful, when I fall in love.
This is why.
I stop needing things. I stop noticing.
It feels unsafe, it feels insane.
I haven't eaten in nearly 24 hours, and I feel no different at all.
It kind of makes me think a bit more seriously about that phrase,
"Love consumes you."
2.6k · Jun 2014
Shadows
Mikaila Jun 2014
I'll turn missing you into a way to spend my life with you.
Just see if I don't.
It doesn't matter what you do to me, I will love you every **** day.
I will make something beautiful and devote it to you.
My pain for your absence will solidify with time, and become a being of its own,
And it will follow me like my own shadow wherever I go
For the rest of my life.
And when I turn out the light,
It will envelope me, surround me, swallow me,
And we will be the same.
I've called you the sun, I've called you light, I've called you the universe,
I've called you my love,
And now you have become something even more heartbreakingly present.
Now you inhabit the dark as well.
Now the thought of you is the air around me,
In my lungs, along my skin,
So absent that it is everywhere.
So empty that it fills everything.
And never in my life will I be able to find a place without it.
Never anywhere will I stop breathing you in.
And as I murmur your name into the dark every night before I fall asleep
I realize that even if you don't care if I die, you will keep me alive.
2.6k · Mar 2014
Lovesick
Mikaila Mar 2014
It is true, what you say you saw
In my eyes
That made you so afraid to let me love you:
I will die if I am not with you.
However
I do expect it to take
About 70 years.
2.6k · Dec 2012
Swan
Mikaila Dec 2012
When I look at myself, I am not beautiful.
My feet are twisted and gnarled like the wood of an old tree.
My limbs are gangly and thin.
My eyes are too large,
My hair is too straight and too dark,
And my ******* are too small.
In the mirror each day, I cannot tell myself I am a radiant woman.
But when the music starts, I shine.

The notes hit me like rays of the setting sun, and every hue of grace and passion is splayed across
The folds of my dress,
The arch of my back,
The curve of my ankle,
The stretch of my throat.
Each harmony, each crest and fall of sound and feeling
Is a wave that breaks over me,
And I am lost.
I drown in emotion, in the distinct expression of self that only movement can allow,
And in that moment, I forget beauty.

I forget love and hatred and pain and joy, and as I forget I am freed.
I forget because they no longer belong to me.
I have given them to the melody,
To the dance which draws them out of me like venom-
The next move, fraught with the tension of 'goodbye forever',
The next turn, spun by the unraveling of my heart,
The next leap, lent weightless wings by the joy of a first kiss,
The next slow reach carved from the desperation of 'it's all my fault'.
As they leave me, they become me, crashing down on the audience I've also forgotten, burning the bright after-image of my soul into the shadows of theirs.

I have never seen myself beautiful.
I have never looked. I have forgotten to look.
For when the music hits me, it turns me in on myself, and I can see nothing but my own spirit- a shower white hot of sparks-
And the cascade of the notes in folds of velvet against my mind.

I have never seen beautiful, but I have felt it.
It feels like a smooth silk shoe and blisters on my feet,
It feels like the trickle of sweat along my brow and the stab of muscle cramps in my legs, and the scrape of hairpins and sequins.
It feels like breathlessness when the curtains open.
It feels like the worn wooden stage upon which my heart may bleed all it wants.
For it does, it gushes, and it is the ugliness of passion.
It is terrifying, it is raw, it is light-starved and beaten, it is all I have.
And when I get up on a stage, people call it beauty.
Inspired by the painting by Andrew Atroshenko. (this one http://www.artatyourdoor.com/site/wp-content/uploads/andrew-atroshenko-ballerina.jpg)
2.5k · Oct 2013
Dreamcatchers
Mikaila Oct 2013
I am cobwebs and smoke.
I am shards of a person who cannot decide
The difference between
Love
And god.
I am razorblades and thin air.
I am ink and shadows.
I am drowning in moonlight-
I am a spun web of starlight and wanting.
I am the wire frame of myself-
See through shape with nothing inside.
I am the wrong port in this storm,
Sending out beams of
Don't-ignore-me,
Blades of light that split the hazy fog of apathy.
You've sewn me with seeds of humanity
And I feel the life beneath my skin
Like it will sprout
Roots
Any day now.
I have a ribcage full of fireflies
That shine through the spaces when I breathe.
I have glimpsed dreamcatchers
In your eyes
And snagged my darkness in their dizzy thrall.
2.5k · Jan 2014
Casting Bones
Mikaila Jan 2014
Don't you worry,
I know which days to hurt on.
I don't need a calendar
Or any fanfare.
You can try to hide them from me
(I always wonder if it's a kindness or a cruelty...
I decide I like to think you're protecting me.)

But in the end my bones know
The days to feel like chalk
My veins know
The days to ache in that peculiarly itching way
My stomach knows
Those days on which to feel sick with disgust
My heart knows
Which days to break on, all over again.
My bones know.
Sometimes I don't realize it
Sometimes my mind
Has no idea
But my body always tells me anyhow,
And if I deny it enough, I can always come up with some manufactured explanations
Not quite right, not quite tidy
For the tightness in my throat
On days like this.
They feel flimsy and cheap though,
And I don't believe them so much as use them like slipcovers
To keep the garish truth from peaking out from underneath.

Because when I know
I know
Cause being intuitive's not all it's cracked up to be.
In an information age
The only use for a sixth sense is self mutilation of the mind-

It's a curse that only warns and warns and warns
And forces you to live in fear and pain,
And no matter how you run from or bury or get around it,
You know
You know you're lying to yourself
You know because you always know
Because that's what you do-
Know.
You can't imagine the horrible things I've tried not to see
And failed.
Wonder why I worry
When all my worries are really just advance warnings,
And forgive me if telling myself it'll be okay sounds a little thin
When my bones know it won't be.

I tried not to know the day you said yes.
I tried and failed.
Felt it in my skin like fire ants
Underneath,
A new hate, a new wound, vicious and ugly,
A new pain that felt like someone sliced me open to the marrow and branded secret words in all the little hollows.
And eventually I faced the reality that I knew you'd left me long before you ever let on.
Like I know everything that hurts me
But can never avoid it:
The only difference between knowing and not knowing
Is how long it hurts
Cause life is a runaway train and whoever's steering
300 mph towards the nearest concrete wall,
It sure ain't me,
And it sure ain't The Plan
And my bones
Know.

You never fooled me.
You never do.
You give me the kindness of trying
And I give you my cooperation
But the truth is
You've never hurt me behind closed doors.
Thank you for giving it your all, love, but I always know.
I feel every second of it
Real time
And find the explanations later,
Scattered like weapons and bodies after a battle,
Making perfect, searing sense.
And I bury my head in the sand
Try never to fully understand-
Even though I'm loathe to preach a lie
And let it echo through the temple of my soul-
Because I know that if I don't look away
The truth will burn my eyes out of my skull.

Knowing ain't all it's cracked up to be
When the knowing can't change the end game,
And yet
Scattered like twigs and just as brittle
On days like this
My bones
*Know.
Mikaila Sep 2013
When I was eleven I joined the cast of the school play
Aladdin
And the genie was played by a girl
Three years older
With straight dark hair, and a nervously witty way with words
And the most captivatingly violent contempt for the world
That masked and mingled with a host of little insecurities,
And the largest jewel tone eyes I'd ever seen.
One was blue and one was green,
And she looked at me.
I think it was when I was peeking out from behind the curtain.
She just looked at me for a second and
I fell in love with her right there.
Six years later was the first day I forgot to think of her,
And I do believe I'll never go a solid month without the ghost of loving her pressing up against my back once or twice,
Quite unexpectedly.
I didn't speak to her for the first four years,
And when I did I became her best friend, sure that that was what I felt for her.
And two years after we met,
She disappeared and I was glad by then,
But loved her no less.
That was the first.

Then during my eighth grade summer,
Just before I started high school,
I walked into my summer camp
To the theatre to audition for the play
And there on the stage there was a girl
With freckles on her shoulders like cinnamon sprinkled.
She always wore a close fitting hat over her short hair
And her eyes were the deep, slate grey of the sky just before a rainstorm cracks through the clouds.
Her fingers looked like porcelain,
And I couldn't stop looking at them
Because I remembered the sculptures in the Museum of Fine Art
That I always wanted to touch as a child- smooth and white and delicate but with the suggestion of strength.
And when she spoke her voice was the lowest, richest one I'd ever heard
And everyone in the room bent toward her as if caught by gravity.
The way she uses words when she talks is the way a concert pianist uses the keys-
You have to stop and stand in awe, sometimes.
She can make you feel things.
I saw her on that stage, and I fell in love with her, right there,
And this time I think I knew it was love and not friendship.
Four, maybe five years later,
I know I'm not over it.
She was the first girl I ever thought about kissing.
That was the second.

Then my sophomore year, I suddenly looked at a good friend of mine
And saw her for what she was instead of passing by.
Chocolate brown eyes full of sweetness and vitality,
Long brown hair that fell in little curls about her face when it escaped its pinnings as she danced,
She was radiant, inside and out,
Full of this innocent joy, an ability to be... happy
That I had never imagined.
Her little beauties snuck up on you,
And then all of a sudden hit you hard and knocked you over.
It was her loveliness as a person that made her truly extraordinary-
She was nicer to me than anyone I'd ever loved.
By then I knew it was love, and I felt ashamed.
I gave her what gifts I could-
Perhaps too many-
To satisfy some need in me to thank her for existing.
And although I finally learned to keep myself from pining for her
I know that to this day I would fall for her again if I saw her.
She was like a balm for the hard cold brutality of everyday life;
Knowing her was like healing from being alive.
She's overseas now,
Lighting up some room somewhere,
And I hope that the people in it feel the warmth of her like the sun, like I did.
That was the third.

Then my junior year, quite unexpectedly,
I found that I loved no one and hurt over no one,
And I began to find a peace in that
Until on Halloween I walked into my friend's party
(My friend who has, since, sadly spoiled from the inside out over the years,
Or maybe he always was rather that way.)
And I saw what sunlight would look like if it were a person.
Dark hair, black eyes like whole galaxies, high cheekbones, full lips
And the softest, most radiant skin I'd ever seen or felt.
I thought I dreamed her that night,
And many, many times since then I've thought the same.
She kissed me and I felt it through every cell of me,
And although I slowly fell in love with her mind in the coming weeks,
I knew I loved her soul when I saw her eyes the moment she first looked at me.
The joy of being hers left such a glow upon my soul
That when she left I was blind, and fell to my knees.
For a long, long time, she was all there was-
First in love and perfection, and I shivered when she touched me,
Then in loss and devastation, and I shook without her near.
I worked harder and longer than I've ever worked for anything in my life this past year
To learn to love her and live through it even though she is gone
Instead of letting go of the memory of her and hence losing her for good.
Worth every second, I maintain.
She was the person who first loved me back-
The only one so far, honestly-
And I know I will be in love with her until the day I die.
That was the fourth.

And then when I had resigned myself to a life
Of loving someone who wouldn't touch me anymore,
I met somebody new.
She has dark hair that catches the light red,
Wild and curly and it dances in the breeze.
She has the bluest eyes I've ever seen, full of laughter and warmth-
Eyes like that are dangerous, they can make a whole room hot or cold
All on their own.
She saw me loving her, and drew my soul from me
With the touch of her fingers on my cheek
And took it with her when she pulled away and walked down the hall
At 3 am
And when she rounded the corner
She'll never know that I sat down and cried
Right there
Because I knew I'd never quite get it back.
I knew she wouldn't be so close ever again.
But I cried with a smile
Because everyone I meet who can make me feel so intensely that I lose control
Is the most important person I've ever met, all over again.
So now there is her
Her and all these ghosts that press cold against my back when I lay down to sleep
See-through arms around my waist,
Making sure that nothing warm quite touches me truly.
And if she fades with them-
For she is already blurring around the edges,
Starting to retreat into the part of my heart that can house the things that
Hurt
-If she fades with them
There will have been another lesson to go with this loss.
I never know what I'm being taught
So brutally
But hopefully someday I will figure it out.
Maybe then somebody will chase the ghosts away and put her arms around me
And I will know security for the first time in my entire life.
She is the fifth.
But heaven knows who will be
The last.
2.4k · Jul 2014
Lover
Mikaila Jul 2014
Please love me, although I have loved before.
Please know that even if
I have worshiped foreign hands,
Marveled at constellation eyes,
Shed tears for other minds and hearts
That tore from me some brutal, awesome love,
Know that nobody has ever made me feel safe
For any measurable length of time.
That not one of them ever stopped in the midst of kissing me to say
"You are just so beautiful."
The way you did, Lover,
2
3
4 times,
Just yesterday.
That all the flowers I ever gave them,
All the gifts and poems and artwork
All those things to show my love
Were tolerated
The way the sun is tolerated on a blistering summer day
Because to escape from it would be too difficult.
Know that I always knew that,
Felt it from them,
Felt shame for it.
And no matter how many photographs I have obsessively taken
Of a face I thought they must have molded the face of the sun after in every ancient carving,
Know that she never wanted me to see her.
And that that
COUNTS.
You looking up at me from those white sheets, Lover,
And never glancing away in embarrassment or apprehension
Counts:
Skin
Counts
To someone who has been held at arm's length for so many years.
Kisses count,
And I count them, every single one soothing the ache of the losses I never asked
To suffer.
It is true, you are not my first love.
But never have you pushed me away.
Never have you shut me down,
Never
Have you been cruel to me.
And all this
I find it counts
More than the awe I felt for those who would abuse me,
More than the fear and loss and devotion and destruction that they demanded
And then blamed me for the consequences of.
Although I have loved before,
Please, please, please love me now,
For that is something you can be
First at,
Lover.
Mikaila Jan 2014
I'm not a winner.
Now, before you all rush to tell me how great I am, and how I should really have more confidence,
Take a breath because that's not what I mean.

When I say I'm not a winner, I mean I don't want to be.
I mean that whenever I try to cut corners in my life, and get the better of it, and come out "on top"
I just end up feeling...
Empty.
I'm not a winner.
I don't get to do the I'm-just-having-fun, wild, crazy stuff.
Not because I'm not able, not because I'm restricted,
But because at the end of the day no matter how much I think I've changed, it does nothing for me.

Who I am is the person who would rather, despite numerous but half-hearted efforts to the contrary,
Spend my life alone than with anyone but the girl I love.
The person who's done with the party after a couple of hours, and wants to go do something quieter.
The person who looks long,
Thinks deep,
And doesn't win because she doesn't find it fulfilling.
What I mean when I say I'm not a winner is that I am a lover.
I know what I want, even when I try not to.
And I try to ***** out feelings that limit me, that confuse me, that make me afraid,
I try to at least shelve them and pretend I have control.
But always it boils down to a moment of clarity:

I am not a winner.

I do not win over my heart.
I do not want to.
I have no use for excess, no time for compromise, no patience for pretense.
I fought to be the one who has control, the one who doesn't care,
Who takes risks just to prove she can,
But
The truth is my real risks are being saved up like lucky pennies in a jar, and I can't truly spend a single one on anything but love.
And I've been spiriting them away, trying to give them out to everyone I know
Just so I won't have to be brave enough to box them all up and set them on her doorstep, but I can't do it.
I'm kidding myself- It's already happened.
There's a girl walking around some far off city
With my love tucked away in her coat pocket like a stray coin
That you don't spend because its weight against your leg has become habit
And I am fooling myself to think I have even the slightest bit left back here to offer anyone else.

No matter what I try, the answer I come to is always the same.
I think I'm so clever, getting around it, finding a new path
But in the end it's always the same shade of lame attempt to be
Less serious
Less in love
Less... brave.
It always boils down to cowardice, and once I see that, I quit trying and smarten up.
Plain and simple, I've been trying to win.
And I've failed.
Not because I was not strong enough for the fight,
But because I never wanted what I was fighting for in the first place.
(Title from Neil Young's song "Old Man")
2.4k · May 2014
Grit
Mikaila May 2014
My special talent is being tough.
Not being unreachable,
Not being invincible,
Not being unaffected, but taking blows.
It's a dubious gift, to be sure.
But I think I can no longer deny the fact that my biggest strength in this life is my ability to take a hit and come back.
Yes, there are people who don't even feel the blows that life deals out.
And on the other hand, there are those people who fall to their knees and collapse whenever something hurts.
But right in the middle,
Between apathy and fragility,
That is where I live,
And I think it's the hardest place to be.
To brush off attacks is one thing.
To let them reach you and go on through the pain is quite another.
My special talent is SURVIVING.
My therapist says I need to learn how to thrive.
Maybe she's right. But with my life, I've not been allowed the chance.
What I have had some kickass experience with is enduring.
Surviving.
Going on.
Finding something to live for when everything I've lived for in the past has been knocked down like a line of dominoes.
And yeah, my acceptance of pain makes me vulnerable, but I spring back.
I absorb the force of what life throws at me and throw it right back.
I spend the time I need to crying, hurting, fearing.
But I always rise.
Always.
If you decide to edit the cast of my life, I learn to love new people.
If you take my chances from me, I make new ones.
If my dreams are shattered, I create new dreams.
I am not impenetrable.
I am not an island.
People touch my heart,
Leave handprints in wet paint, leave scars, cigarette burns, leave graffiti, but I
Go on.
They do not destroy me.
They can take, but they can never demolish.
My backbone bends in the wind, but it's made of steel, and you'll never break it.
I am tough, it is my special talent.
I fight wars every day that you will never know about.
I rise ****** each morning from battles against dreams of your arms.
And I will tell you this, my darling, my tyrant:
You can conquer, but you'll never win.
2.3k · May 2013
Better
Mikaila May 2013
When I hit the ground on my hands and knees,
And my shock turned to pain turned to tears turned to pleas,
And the beat in my chest turned to stutters and seized,
They all said, you deserve better.
I said, "Please."

When I lay there all ******, killed by my own hand
And all of my dreams had dissolved into sand
And I had no wishes, no wants, no yearnings or demands,
They all said, you deserve better.
And I said, "And?"

When I struggled up to my knees, every day another blow,
When I learned that the tears and the blood, they both flow
Much the same when you've nowhere you're fixing to go,
They all said, you deserve better.
And I said, "I know."

When I stood once again riddled hollow with air,
And I tested my pulse but there was nothing there,
And everyone noticed my vacant cold stare,
They said, you deserve better.
I said, "I don't care."

When I met her again and my trussed thoughts were scattered,
And my heartbeat was tripping its new-old pitterpatter,
And my soul was alight once again, if now tattered,
She said, you deserve better.
I said, "Doesn't matter."

They all try to tell me that I'll end up fractured,
That I shouldn't love somebody like her,
That things just can't be the way that they were,
They say, you deserve better.
I say, "I'm sure."
And I think,
*I don't want better. I just want her.
2.3k · Aug 2014
Touched
Mikaila Aug 2014
Sometimes at night when I turn over and my hand slides along the small of your back
I can feel the changes beneath your skin.
Sitting next to you, I read you like braille
Like something you need to touch to feel the meaning of.
I know you are a storm beneath your skin.
Sometimes I feel lightning reach out
To the answering chaos in me.
Our suffering makes our togetherness
Electric.
Cataclysmic.
We could crumble mountains.
I don't know if you know your own wildness inside,
Wilderness.
I think inside you are vast and lonely, wonderful but vaguely sad,
The way the trees sound when a breeze sighs its way through them and makes them sway.

Sometimes I feel a coldness from you like a chilly night without a fire
The kind of cold that starlight and silence bring-
Not a hostile chill, like the sharp fingers of frost or ice,
But just a distant kind of... Containment.
A solitude, like the desire to curl into the rocks by the river and become one by touch.
A desire to be still.
It scares me. I don't know how to reach that part of you.

Sometimes I look at you and I see storm clouds and wildfires in your eyes,
I see the end of days, and earthquakes, and brutal hurricanes,
But I see them through glass, as if you've stepped inside a mirror and imprisoned your rambling hurt to keep the world safe-
I see it through the cracks in a briar wall that's sprung up suddenly and sharply, tangled and complex, a warning.
And although I don't want to be
I am warned.

I want to touch
But I am so very good with boundaries
So very
Sensitive.
I feel the changes in the air
The way a deer in the forest may shoot its head up at the scent of a hunter miles away, caught on an errant breeze.
You change what I breathe in and out,
You change my weight and my texture.
Sometimes from you I can close my eyes and feel what warm honey must feel like in essence-
If sunlight found purchase in the air.
I feel fields of wildflowers and slow, dreamy, balmy nights and days at the seashore with diamonds capping the waves.
Sometimes I feel from you the tickle of cut grass, and the smell of fresh rain, and what a butterfly's furry wings would feel like if stroking them wouldn't make them crumble like spun sugar.
Sometimes I feel from you the slow, deep pull that I remember from sitting at the bottom of that coral reef in St Thomas-
The heat of the day sinking in layers through the water to hold me suspended in graceful pressure-
Poised to be swallowed by something much more significant and much hungrier than me.
And sometimes there is simply cold, the way I said,
As if the wind has somehow changed and left me adrift, sails dead, in a sea that offers no sustenence and no explanations.
In those times of stillness I wait, breathless,
Cautious-
They always pass,
So far.

I sit beside you and hold my breath
Hold my hands.
I sit and look at the grass
At the sky
But I see you instead
Silent beside me,
An unknown, a mirror maze
All of a sudden sunlight
And all of a sudden shadows.

When you go dark and silent I want to start digging.
I want to sink to my knees and pull apart the earth,
Find its heart, hot and sticky and molten,
Burning with the secrets of a forever life in the belly of a fragile stone.
I want to claw it out and put your hands on it,
Watch it feed your soul and sear away that terrifying cold.
Light you up so that you will never curl up silent around a black glass starless hailstorm ever again.
I feel the dirt under my fingernails and how
Odd it is
That it is familiar, from scrabbling out of grave after grave,
Confused and reborn and shivering.
How odd that now I am tunneling towards what remade me so many times
To try to break the laws of nature and bring it to you
Before you ever have to sink towards it.

But I feel from you. And then I don't. And then I do.
And it wakes in me an unsettled longing more powerful than my history.

I feel from you the silence right after the last note of a symphony fades
Before the audience applauds
Before anyone has even taken a breath.
I feel that exquisite beauty
And the fear that it will shatter.
(The fear that is the knowledge that it will shatter.)
I feel all of this from you
For you and
I think it might be
Love.
2.3k · Aug 2018
Magic
Mikaila Aug 2018
Blue stage lights on skin
The curve of a jaw
Eyes glittering in the dark,
Raw and human.
Something swells with the silence
A truth never spoken
Like a ****** of music only half heard,
Barely remembered but achingly lovely.
Some marriage of sweetness and savagery
Courses beneath the shadows of this place,
An intimate wound
It scrapes at the hollow parts of hearts and lungs
Demanding
Purchase,
Demanding breath-
Famished in its brevity.
It is made here and it dies here,
Witnessed, at least, if not inhabited.
Every other face- white as bone and as hard-
Stares, blank,
And they do not understand
But sometimes,
They feel.

Fairy lights
The trees glow and fade
Shadows stretch long, reaching for feet that scuttle back
Afraid to let light soak them
Because here it has substance.
Others bathe in it
Nourished
Faces bared to the blue and the red
Upturned as to rain after a long and bitter drought.
They know it as water
Hold it as water- it slides away from them,
A thought half formed, a memory half loved
A step toward
God
That falls into a stumble.

I am always afraid that nobody treasures this place.
Always sad, somehow, to suspect that many don’t.
They say the magic will fade with time.
They do not know magic.

Hands, gentle,
The hands of a stranger
But known, known as water
As light.
Contained within one fragile touch, the idea that hands are not weapons
The cautious testing of fingers against flesh
Innocent, a connection between beings
Who were born of blood and will turn to dust within seconds
And who only just now have become aware
That their palms are miracles.

Safety- a contract,
A careful consent  
To reveal,
To be vulnerable for a moment-
If the moment is scripted and choreographed,
The bow and curtsy of a dance both partners know,
The permission a mask gives
To tell the truth.

It is eyes which cut deep, not hands
Wounds that last for years
Resurfacing as prayer.
Silent in the mirror of another's eyes,
A vision of what we could be
If we shed our disguises as Ordinary People and rose to our forgotten grace,
If we let others in not as lovers or as owners but as fragments of the soul we all share.

That loneliness- the grief of contact- crescendos in the corners of this place.
It is loud
Louder than music,
Louder than shouts and screams.
It grows by the moment, reaching its fingers along the walls behind footsteps, digging its heels into the fragile fabric of whispers, wrapping its ghostly arms around shoulders and tracing collarbones with cold tenderness.
It is the grief of closeness, and the grief of isolation.
It breathes here, unsmothered by the roar of subway cars, the murmur of smalltalk, or the burn of a liquor that tastes like forgetting.
This is the feeling of remembering, of being, of a truth long lost but not quite gone-
Something far away enough to be painful
But close enough to be
Unsettling.

That is why people laugh here
Why they grab what is not theirs
Why they run.
That is why they shut the door and don’t return, content to float above the surface,
Desperate to,
Terrified that if they sink even an inch
They will fall forever into themselves
And, groping for an edge
Find none.
(Terrified to realize
In becoming endless
That they always have been.)
They turn away, and call it nonsense,
Begging to remain small inside.

Not me.
I could sew my heart into the shadows of this place and not be close enough to the world it holds.
Instead I press my palms against the walls, hoping to take some of it with me each day when I leave.

They say the magic will fade with time.

They do not know magic.
Mikaila Aug 2014
You tell me you're empty
And I know you want my sympathies
My acknowledgement of the problem
But all I can give you is the gawking gaze
Of a child on his first trip to the zoo
Leaving smudges on the snake tank as he tries to fathom
How something could be so alien and smooth and powerful.
You tell me you're empty
And all I can think is
That I have not a moment of my life to compare that to-
A day without suffering, without pain or danger,
Without that or joy so intense it tips right back over into treachery
I have no memory of any such day
To draw from for empathy.
I stand and stare at you
Empty you
And I know your sadness should be respected
And I know I shouldn't wonder so perversely
What it must feel like
Not to feel
But I can't help it
I feel like I'm standing on the other side of glass
Staring into the beady eyes of a boa constrictor
Wondering irresistibly
What its embrace must feel like for the mice it devours.
I know you are suffocating
But I
Am drowning
And I wonder
What empty feels like.
Title from Future Starts Slow by the Kills
2.2k · Jan 2014
Persephone
Mikaila Jan 2014
It's gonna get colder when you leave.
The ground will harden
And the trees will sleep
And the world
Will wait.
Underneath the snow,
Life
Will wait.
The wind will search for you in every face
Biting and frantic
But find nothing,
And in despair crack across the ground like a whip
Stirring up little ghostly eddies of ice crystals.
The snow will catch the branches and drag them down
Asking
Why the silence,
This year?
None of that summertime laughter
To light up the ice and make it sparkle.
The days will pull darkness around them like a thick coat
And slink by
In a hurry to be elsewhere,
Still too long, and too strange.

And then
Just when we've all almost given up,
Winter will soften, just a bit.
The rains will come, like a good cry you've been holding your breath against
For months,
And the snow will wash away
And the ground will be ugly and scarred,
But bare at last,
And the land will begin
Slowly
To bloom
In anticipation of your footsteps there.

The sun will hold its line in the battle against the night
For just a sliver longer every day.
The first flowers will shoot up through
The last little patches of snow,
Light green and fragile.
The world will wake
Yawn and stretch,
Is she back yet?
Is she here?
The cherry blossoms on the tree in my backyard will unfurl
White and delicate and frothy on tough, leathery branches
And we will all see that maybe
Everything is going to be alright
After all.

Is she back yet?
Is she here?
And summer will stroll in, laughing,
The moment you set foot on this soil again.
Mikaila Nov 2013
The Watch
The watch kept right on ticking, as if nothing had changed. It was like a sixth person at the little round marble table. The stone was cold on my arms. The funeral director pushed it across the table. "This was the only thing on him." My aunt took it graciously, set it by the folder full of everything ever recorded about Donald P. Baca, and from that moment on, it drew the eyes of everyone there, irresistible as a corpse, and as gruesome. tick tick tick as if nothing had happened. I found myself thinking that if he were my brother, I would keep that watch ticking forever, change its batteries, a type of insignificant immortality.

Funeral Homes
The air of calm in funeral homes has always disturbed me. It's cloying, somehow. Too strong. Like the overwhelming scent of peony flowers if you put them in a vase- it darkens your whole house with sweetness. I think I resent knowing that my feelings are being influenced by soothing beiges and classical music. A tissue box and a little bottle of Purell sit on every surface big enough to hold them properly. I find that the anticipation of my "needs" as a griever... offends me.

Survivors
Funerals are not for the dead. They are for the survivors.

Tears
Death is not about trying not to cry. You have to hurt yourself with it to heal from it. There is no shame in funeral tears. They, like death, are inevitable and natural. (My own dry eyes, they shame me.)

Looking In
That is the problem with us writers- every private, gauche little moment of impropriety is fuel for our art, and we must record it. (Intrude upon it.)

Paperwork
1953
***: Male
Color: White
How different it was then.

Grown Up
This is the first time my aunt, whose respect I have always striven for, has even asked my opinion on something "grown up". I thought I'd want her to, but I no longer care. Maybe that means I am finally "grown up".

Absurdly
My aunt gives her email to the man across the table: her name, first and last, no spaces, and the number 1. I find myself wondering irresistibly, inappropriately, absurdly, if anybody ever sits here with a "FaIrYpRiNcEsS4963luv4eva" and has to dictate it to him like that...

Mourners
There are 5 of us here. We are all different, in grief. I am on the outside looking in, an observer, offering the perfect hug or well timed touch of the hand because I feel emotions like room temperature, but not like fever. I look in on tears, silence, on the grip like a vice: on the propriety of being personable to a man who knows your brother has just died, as if that- even death! - gives no permission to be less than polished. And one of us is absent entirely, his truancy a palpable response, just as present as my mother's strangled tears. Her shame frustrates and saddens me- I admire the sincerity of grief, especially when I cannot reach it.

You're Here With Me
The funeral director answers his cell phone. He has the same phone as you, ****, and having seen you answer it yesterday, my mind overlays the images strangely, like a double exposure photograph. It should disturb me, but it only makes me miss you- my mind seeks to erase his image and leave only yours.

Age
Everyone looks older, right now- sunken collarbones and wrinkles weighing down faces. As if they age in sympathy that my uncle is finished with that.

Fishhook
My mother struggles against tears like a worm on a fishhook, and it is agony that ****** my arms, in the air and sliding along the walls. It clashes oddly with my aunt- like a still pond- her polished charm and practiced smile don't feel forced, which only makes it all feel more wrong. I know she is struggling inside, too.
2.2k · Feb 2013
Supergirl
Mikaila Feb 2013
If I could only open you up and reach inside.
I wish I could give you my passion.
I wonder what the look on your face would be, if you knew
If you knew what it feels like to love someone like I love you.
I think that look would **** me.
The grief that you hadn't felt it before,
The joy that you had it finally,
The fear that life would take it from you.

Your tears burn me.
They hurt in a way that can't find words to live within.
It is a concept that speech only talks around.
I want to give you the world.
I want to show you that you are not a mirror,
Flat and soulless unless somebody is looking.
You are an ocean,
Deep and dark and beautiful, and full.
You make me want to create something lovely and devote it to you,
Simply to let you know that you inspire such things.
You make me want to be what you see me as,
Be better, be stronger, be wiser
For you.
So that you may finally have something fair come to you in this life.
What a sad joke, that you get me as your makeshift savior.

I know the perfect things to say,
The very strings to tug to make you fall apart,
Unravel like a lovely tapestry ruined.
It slays me to do it, to hurt you to heal you.
I know just how to break you down and do it like it's an accident,
Because how could I explain to your trusting heart
That to save it I must bleed it out like this?

But the thing is, you can wreck me too,
You beautiful thing,
Fragile and raw,
You can speak the simplest words and my soul...
It tears itself to bits.
And I think, “Oh god, please don't tell me.
Don't rip my heart out.
Don't be hurt like you are.
Oh, if I could pause you now and never have to know!
It would be as if I didn't already see how fractured you are inside.
I could pretend you're not, I could still save you in my mind...”

But there it is, cold and hard in type.
And I am lost.
And I want to die in the worst way,
To slit my wrists because I exist in the same world that he does,
And I am so revolted that I could do it.
For a moment I really could.
Oh, and you can never know this, never.
Because I am your savior,
Your lion,
Your super hero.
And you hurt so much, and I die every time.

But I have to be there for you,
Up in lights.
As if I know what I'm doing.
As if I can bring justice.
As if I can erase cruelty.
As if I am not afraid, not just shaking with revulsion
That this world is such a place as it is.
I am your super hero, darling,
And I can't breathe.
I can’t save you,
And it will **** me.

How do you exist? How do you yet live?
How is it that you are this whole and so exquisite?
I want to be your hero,
God, I want to be perfect at it.
I want to be your hero.
Because in the end,
Until the end,
You are mine.
2.1k · Aug 2013
Without You
Mikaila Aug 2013
Without you I often feel
Like a child who has lost her parents in a department store
And turns round and round
Waiting to be rediscovered and led back home.
It is a childlike feeling
In that it is so pure and intense
That it overwhelms everything else.
It's consuming,
This...lost, echoing sort of feeling,
This space inside me that calls
For you to be next to me and heal me.
It's the simple, gripping yearning
Of the child inside my heart
For connection
For tenderness
For contact-
To reach out and find purchase with my fingers
In the warmth of someone else's skin,
Someone I love,
Someone I trust.
Someone I miss,
Even when they are close.

Without you I often feel
Like a balloon that has been cut from its string
And left to wander through the stratosphere,
A lone black dot wavering above the treetops.
I have no control over where I am taken,
No way to reach out to where I've come from and say
"Wait, I want to go back."
I am adrift, in the most terrifying sense,
Emotionally floating through the emptiness of air,
Above all else but utterly alone.

I fear being away from you,
Is the truth,
Is the constant struggle.
I fear the mornings when your arms are not around my waist
And your breath isn't on my collarbone.
I fear the days when my hand isn't clasped in yours,
Tattooed in golden brown henna and entwined,
Fragile but steadying,
Like the rope that holds a ship fast and safe from the greedy fingers of the sea.
I fear the evenings when you aren't curled up beside me,
Your smooth voice telling me stories and ideas.
I fear the nights when I cannot look at your sleeping face
And feel the heartbreak cry out in my chest
Of loving every curve of it
In the halflight shadows
And seeing your skin glow gold
Against the velvet darkness.
I fear every second that you are not near me,
And that is why I feel so oddly lonely
In any tiny breath of a moment
That I am unoccupied.

Without you,
I'm not even entirely sure I exist.
Not properly,
Not like one should exist.
I think perhaps I pale a little,
Like a negative photograph,
Perhaps my edges become a little hazy
And the world bleeds into me and takes my light,
And my skin becomes a little transparent
So that if I stand before a streetlight in the rain
You can see the wet road through my back.
I think a little bit of my color drains,
And I become drab as a silverscreen movie,
Only projected upon the world and not
Really there.

No way of approaching how I feel without you
Can explain it fully,
And little flashes of what I mean dart across my vision like meteors.
I can try to equate it with something relatable,
Something tangible,
But the truth is that missing you transcends the words I've got to explain it.

I feel like a child, crying because she has realized what the word "alone" means.
I feel like a ship, cut adrift and floating through a mirror sky of sea
With no land in sight.
I feel like a worn out film reel
Ghost of an image hollographed against the world.
I feel like I've lost something
I couldn't live without.
My lungs, perhaps.
Maybe an artery,
Or the bones in my legs.
It feels wrong, to be without you.
And yet,
I am.
Without you,
I am...
Something.
But I'm not even sure I care to know
What.
2.1k · Jun 2013
Accusations
Mikaila Jun 2013
Forgive me for my passion. I feel so stupid to feel so much, so deeply. Abashed, embarrassed, shamed by a feeling that so many seek and never find: love. And I've got too much of it to give, and no one wants all of it.

Forgive me for my sweetness, my purity of thought. No one wants idealism mixed with such bitter truth. No one wants to see the ugly realities of life through such tender eyes.

Forgive me my simple admiration, adoration, intensity. No one wants to be worshiped with such devotion and selflessness. No one wants to be so loved without reason.

Forgive me for my undivided attention and careful agreement. No one wants to be listened to.

Forgive me empathy and sympathy and care. For no one wants to see that others share their feelings, and want to help. Not really. Everybody wants to be alone in their troubles, and somehow special for it.

Forgive me honesty and honor and truth. Nobody wants the truth, not really, the ugly truth. We like to live in our lies, and hurt our friends, and deceive ourselves.

Forgive me for my absolution. Cruelly I withhold my vengeance and bitterness. No one wants to be forgiven, not really.

Forgive me for seeing beauty unbidden, unrealized, unappreciated. No one wants to see the good in such a world that has hurt them.


*Forgive me for myself.
2.0k · Jun 2014
Physics
Mikaila Jun 2014
Maybe before the world was made
Before anything ever lived
You and I
Were a star that exploded.
Two atoms that crashed into one another
Defying physics
And destroyed an entire galaxy
For one moment of true contact.
Maybe that
Is why we are so
Inevitable
And so
Violent.
And so
Afraid.
Mikaila Sep 2013
Oh, I am raw.

You knew.
You knew this whole time.
And you made your bid for love and freedom oncemore,
Like you'd never been hurt in your life,
Like it couldn't turn out wrong.
You knew, you knew.
Every single time, the hope wins over the sense,
And it's like you don't even try.
Who are you to march away and leave me here,
Heart?
Who are you to skip away blithely into the night every time I beg you to stay?
It's like you don't even belong in my breast,
The way you leap forth and hitch a ride
With people you see pass near, who shine like stars.
You follow them like gravity,
And every time, I scream inside my head,
Locked in,
"WAIT! Don't go, don't leave me here to feel your space!"
But you ignore me each time,
And briefly I am sure you are right,
Briefly, every single time,
I believe that you are the one I should be following,
Dragged behind you,
And not the other way around.
And then it comes,
It comes and I trip myself just so I will have chosen to go down,
And I am here,
Left
Wretched on my knees
And you never have to take the fall.
You never have to deal with it.
You're only in control when the sun is shining.
When the storms hit and knock the breath out of me like thunder rolling,
You plead you never chose a thing.
You traitor,
I would claw you from my chest!
But you already did that,
And I have no way to take revenge on you for your treachery-
You are me.
Your pain is mine.
(your joy is mine as well)
And so you get to,
Every time,
Abandon me and make me thank you for it,
And I am so sick of it I could scream.
You don't have consequences, Love.
You ARE a consequence.
What ever gave you the right
To turn my life upside down?
To leave me so unable to do anything but watch as I am dismantled by a force I never asked to feel?
I'd be happy, content, perfect,
(no, unfulfilled, empty, lost...)
To just give you up and cut the strings
That she
(whoever she may be, for I never get to choose, do I?)
Saws at with a bow, poison-tipped like a Shakespearean sword,
Plays, like violins singing melodrama.
I'd sever you from me in an instant and let you go
Play your games elsewhere,
Heart.
I swear I'd do it and dance in the streets,
(I'd have nothing, not know what to do)
If only it was possible.
(I am not damaged enough to give up)
I don't believe in love,
(Oh but I do, and sometimes I don't want to)
But I am married to my work, to you:
My job is not to be paid,
It is not to be happy,
(you are my chance for "happy")
It is simply and exhaustingly to survive your choices.
I don't get my life!
I get you.
I get kicked when I'm down, I get holes and hollows in places
I didn't know a heart filled,
Like fingertips and rib bones and lungs,
And that awful twisted spot above my stomach
That echoes cavernously with loneliness in the middle of the night
And sometimes in the lunchroom or on the subway.
(I get to think maybe that sadness will cease)
I get haunted dreams and impulses I can't control,
(sweet relief from a life of restraint)
I get your puppet strings
Jerking me to my knees
Knocking the pride out of me like breath.
(It speaks, but underneath I worship you)
I get your fingers inside my head, on the ridges of my brain,
Digging in like a migraine headache,
Gouging a place for someone I don't even know.
(Replacing the sorrow with joy so intense that I fear it.)
Who put you in me?
You don't fit here.
(you are the only thing that fits here)
You don't belong here.
(I am so afraid you don't.)
Like a parasite, you feed on me
(I need something to take this ache.)
And I am slowly dying of it, Heart.
(cure for my loneliness, arsenic for my mind)
I've tried everything I know,
I even tried to make you die inside me-
(I didn't know what else to do, I'm sorry)
Husk of a soul skittering along the undersides of my graffitied ribs,
But no, no you rose again,
Stronger,
And I... I wept in fear, Heart,
I really did.
(I made the hardest choice and you unmade it.)
Nobody knows that-
That I wanted you to go,
That I wanted you to stop, actually.
Nobody knows that I'd have happily never felt a thing for the rest of my life,
(only in fear, Heart, only in fatigue)
When they saw me fight so hard to become myself again.
(I couldn't beat the part of me that needs you)
But I knew,
I knew
Because the day you stretched and yawned after leaving me for months to rot around your frozen form,
I felt in me a terror I will never be able to explain,
Never be able to understand fully.
(Self preservation was never one of my talents, or yours)
This gibbering, skin crawling agony of panic,
That here you were again to bend me and break me,
That I was mortal, carrying a love that couldn't ever be killed.
It was the moment of clarity,
(of awe, as well, and terrifying vitality)
Before I decided I had to force myself to work with you,
Slap a smile on and go look for my next defeat,
(oh, maybe this time I could keep the love)
During which I saw my life unfold before me like a vast map,
Your destruction burning it to ashes in all the places I'd love to live,
Place by place by place,
Charred path to death over the lengths of decades,
No control, no say, just heat- and me, following along behind
Like a lost puppy
Trying to rebuild something substantial enough to make my home in.
I saw before me a life without rest,
Of this, the constant struggle to find and keep a wholeness I apparently don't deserve,
(I can't stop trying to deserve it)
To catch you and stuff you back where you belong and force you to lie still,
When I know you will only consume me with flames anyway.
I hate you, I really do.
(fear, not hate)
I hate you because I want to live.
(I am afraid you will destroy me)
I hate you because I want to die.
(I am afraid I will destroy you)
I hate you because if it were not for you, I would never suffer,
And I would have nothing to live for-
For I know nothing but the constancy of you,
Pushing me down, forcing me to my knees
And me struggling to rise and find a way to bear your burdens.
(GIFTS)
I hate you because I will never, ever be rid of you,
And I hate you because nobody should want to be rid of
What makes them live.
I hate you because underneath I still believe, somehow, that every single second's worth it,
Because that naive faith in you just won't die-

How can I stand that?
(How can my pride abide a hate for something vital, and a love for something toxic?)

And you've betrayed me every time, Heart,
And I don't forgive you.
(I already forgave you long ago)
And what if you've gone and done it again?
(Let me say I hate you so that I can have some control)
And how am I supposed to know that
For all these years to come?
*(Please don't go cold again, my Heart.)
Mikaila Feb 2016
It was time.
It was time, and so I read every one of your poems and
Cried.
They were different tears from last time.
Some truer grief fell with these
And they
Were silent.
Silver, like rain reaching its fingers into the soil
Late at night
Ready to grow something
Lovely.
I know you
So much better now.
I loved you- oh, how I loved you
In a complex way
The way that always
Loses me the thing I love.
I shake now, the aftershocks of feeling vibrating my bones
A music too low and too aching
For sound
It murmurs to the earth
And, sleeping beneath the snow, the ground echoes my loss back to me.
I loved you, how I loved you
But I never knew you like I do now.
How you must hate yourself, inside.
People who hate themselves always hate me.
They love me first, and then they loathe me.
If I am lucky, someday they face themselves and forgive me for loving what they hated for so long.
It is all very wearisome and human of them.
Sometimes I see you in the halls.
You refuse to meet my eyes,
As if we were two high school lovers broken up
The week before,
Pretending our lives were not
Altered.
I look at you, though.
I loved you different than that.
There was nothing of owning to it, nothing of flesh,
And so although my heart and mind miss yours
Miss the rise and fall of your low voice,
Miss the thoughts and ideas, so intricate, exquisite
That you would write to me instead of sleeping at night,
To see you doesn't make me angry.
I know seeing me makes you angry.
I see it in your jaw, the way your eyes go dead.
Oh, darling, I know you so well now
So much better than if you'd been kind to me.
Do you forget that as I told you my dreams and my fears
You slowly unveiled your own?
I still feel them, beneath your wax mask of indifference.
They live.
They rule you, as always, more even than before.
They are why
You cannot look at me.
Maybe you loved me. Who knows. And if you did
Who knows how. There are so many ways
To love someone.
There isn't a word for how I loved you.
Now when I dream it is of a little flat with a cat and a curly haired girl in bed beside me
But you never took shape like that in my mind.
You were never a companion, never a lover.
You were never a home for me.
Nor were you a sister, or a friend.
I loved you like I love music, like I love the way rivers surge forward after it has been raining for days, the way I love the sea.
But there was always a difference, I suppose, although I couldn't see it-
For Nature cannot hate. It is, only is,
And my love for you
Was
In much the same way
It was, like a stone is, like the trees are, like the sunlight is.
But you weren't, aren't. You are flesh, and you
Are ruled by feeling and, sometimes, by fear.
I see you now and I know I should hate you
For when you walked away from me
You confirmed every fear I'd ever confided to you.
You took a larger chunk of my soul
Than I had even thought was left, just then,
And I mourned you
Like you had died.
I still remember.
I will always remember.
I sat on Rachel's broken armchair
And I cried for hours
Unable and unwilling to speak.
She stared at me, grief stricken with her own loss
But through it she stared at me as if witnessing a great mountain cave in
Or the sea
Suddenly boil.
She stared and stared, and I shook apart, pieces of me flying into all the dusty corners of that apartment.
I'm sure some are still there, sharp and jagged, ready to cut a foot or tear a hem.
I had thought myself incapable of grief like that anymore
And yet there I was, my soul rejecting itself like a bad transplant.
And yes, I was angry at you, so angry at your cowardice,
So maddened to be left again to try to make sense of a mess somebody else made with no warning
And no
Apology.
Weeks later I asked you why
In a last stand of sudden strength I accused you
And in refusing to tell me you confirmed my suspicions that it was
Your fear and not my wickedness
That lost me your love.
I saw you as such a meld of energies, fierce and delicate all at once
And moons and suns decorated
Some of the most beautiful art I've ever created.
That style died with you. You have the first and last of it.
Sometimes I wonder if you've burned my paintings, or else thrown them away. I don't know. I hope not.
If you ever truly look at me again
You will see that my hands have a white scarlike design of a sun on one thumb and a moon on the other
When I clasp my hands they form a perfect circle.
I couldn't sleep, you see, remembering how you wanted to erase me
Wanted me to erase you.
Everything important in my life leaves a mark
And even if you never speak to me again these hands will make beauty, will spread kindness, will carry loads
And they will bear your mark, for I was so changed by you and your sudden cruelty that for a long time
My own hands looked so... foreign
And would create nothing lovely, nor touch anything gently, nor hold anything fragile.
So much time has passed,
And yet when I saw you again, here, after all the ways my life has changed since then
I knew when you refused to look at me
That you did care
Would always care
Would always hate that you cared
And I gazed at you
Because although I can't say I love you as I did
I would be dishonest to say that I don't. I always will. I always did, really. I chose you. I saw your self loathing and the depth of your beauty and I chose you
To know
And I paid the price I sometimes pay to know people like you.
And I still consider it worth it.
I find I am still partial to your voice
To the lines of your face-
The face I longed to draw, because it reminded me, still does, of some mighty greek heroine.
I still admire how you move, and I still laugh at your jokes when I overhear them, although my face remains unchanged.
Sometimes I am brave enough to search for your gaze,
Sometimes I stumble on it suddenly and it immobilizes us both, and I look away, although I wish I could stare you down and force you to, instead.
Sometimes I think of doing something small and nice for you
Because the desire never really leaves me once I care for someone
But I can never discover something you wouldn't trace back
And I admit I fear your anger.
You told me to leave
And my pride will only let me try so much to give to someone who scorns my kindnesses.
And so there is this odd, unsettled, unresolved feeling I get
Walking these hallways.
I dread and crave
To walk around the corner and see you.
When I do my muscles thrill with fire and ice, ready for a fight, ready for a struggle for my life
And I placidly look your way, force my gaze to slide over you as if you are ordinary.
Know that you are not. That you never will be.
We are so similar, inside.
Reading your poems tonight I cried because I miss your friendship,
But mostly I cried because I understand you
The lost wolf, pretending to be lone
The lonely little girl with fangs.
I understand how much you must loathe yourself, how much feeling you must bury each day to be as you are
And
As all true friends do
I wish you wouldn't.--
I wish you well. I wish you happiness. I wish you all good things. And it makes me sad to see you in the hallways
Because I know that as long as you cannot forgive me for having loved you
You haven't forgiven yourself for being loved.
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