i found a fossil at the creek today. phylum: brachiopod. diameter: nine millimeters. forty-one ridges carefully molded into an area smaller than my pinky nail. if you look fast enough, you almost can't see the prehistoric evidence perfectly stamped into the rock like a watermark, proving the validity of the once living organism practically no one has heard of. now all i need to find is you. i envision us meeting in a library where we'll both be skimming, bro... buc... bukowski. love is a dog from hell, one copy left. you'll grab it's warn out spine and offer it to me with a smile, your hand against mine slowly rewiring my veins into the shape of your fingerprints. the rest-- history. one day, i will present you with this fossilized relic as my way of saying: you will be in my heart forever. the way i see it, you've always been there. i can find pieces of you in the security of my father's arms, in the forgiving eyes shadowed behind my grandmother's rose-tinted glasses. you're in every dew-encased blade of grass i've walked on with bare feet, every body of water that has swallowed my pale skin entire. i breathe you in by the mouthful, from shallow gasps of discomfort to deep gulps of serenity and everything in between. decades will pass and still, my affection will not decay the way my white tic-tac teeth are bound to, i can promise that. i will find you one day, mon chéri— i just hope you like rocks.