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Dec 2013
He had this book, his favorite book
Wrinkled with use so that’s it pretty burgundy and gold color scheme was faded
To a crease lined reddish brown and tan

I've forgotten the title, like I've forgotten so many things about him
Cast off memories like clothes
Because they stopped fitting around the hole in my chest
But I remember the look of this book
So well loved, over the many years he’d kept it

He was like that, Mr. Commitment
Ready to hold out for the long-term
Ready for a wife and a house and 2.5 kids with a white picket fence and family dog
I just wanted to run away from the horror show I’d always known
Because I’d been raised where love meant shouting, and heartbreak

Love meant my sister crawling into my bed at 3 am
After yet another fight over the phone
And eating only an apple for the next three days
Because to her dropping a dress size would make love her right

Love was tear stains on my pillow and broken bowls on the ground
As my mom and dad tore into one another for all that had gone wrong
Angry yelling echoing through the board game
That none of my siblings or I really cared to play anymore

But he didn't hold angry yelling, only overly excited shouts
He held me like the book, like he’d want me forever
But the book, as amazing as he’d claimed it to be
Had one page unmarked by the wear of his love
The last page sat unread
He said it was too good a book to ever finish
And this way he could read it again and again
Without any end

But he held me like he held the book
Knowing so much of me too well, from so many readings
Caring for every detail, from my obsession with elephants
To the exact time we first crossed the threshold of friendship, into something more
7:47 pm he showed up at my door at our first anniversary
I’d though he’d forgotten, he’d just wanted to get it right down to the last minute

He knew each of my chapters
Memorized paragraphs of me
To turn over and over it his heart, reading and rereading
Yet leaving one page unturned

I couldn't be an incomplete story
I needed my resolution

It’s 7:47 pm and I've never been more alone
Annabel Lee
Written by
Annabel Lee  California
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