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Sean Critchfield Jun 2021
“I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride; So I love you because I know no other way than this: where I does not exist, nor you, so close that your hand on my chest is my hand, so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep.”
-Pablo Neruda

Though this is beautiful, it is wrong.
I don’t want your chest to be my chest.
I don’t want your hand to be my hand.
I don’t want your breath to be my breath.
I don’t want your eyes to be my eyes.
I don’t want your sleep to be my sleep.
I want to exist apart from you but with you.
If you’re chest were mine, I could never offer it to rest your head upon when they day has been long or listen to your heart beat as we lay together in the soft morning light.
If you’re hand were my hand, I could not hold it on long drives from place to place or adorn it with rings.
If you’re breath were my breath, I would have no breath to be taken away when I wake and see you sleeping, cast in the blue of night, like art. I could not hear you singing softly in other rooms of our home.
If you’re eyes were my eyes, I would have no place to get lost as we chip away the time talking under blankets to the smell of coffee. I could not see them soften as you kiss me on the tips of your toes.
If your sleep were my sleep, I could not dream of you and all of our futures yet to come. I could not hold you to me on cold nights when our shivers match.
I do not want that love.
I want to love you full of knowing. Practiced. Perfected. Artful. You deserve nothing less.
I want to love you full with pride for the complex extraordinary creature that you are and are becoming.
But I do not wish to be one. If you were not you and I were not me, this love could only be half as good.
And no poetry could make that beautiful.
You are beautiful.
You are perfection, separate from me. And we are perfect together.
Sean Critchfield Apr 2020
Maybe, before this, I was wood smoke.
And maybe even then, I stung your eyes.
Sean Critchfield Mar 2020
It was when the bitter rain was falling against your bedroom window. Tapping out a chaotic rhythm like a heartbeat gone awry.
It was when you sighed. So softly. And pushed your head deeper into my chest, like you wanted to kiss my heart goodnight.
You were only moments away from falling asleep with only my rising and falling chest as your pillow and my arms wrapped tightly around you as your blanket.
It was when you lifted your head, eyes hazy with wine, sweet nothings, and half sleep and smiled.

“I should go to bed. But can I see you again soon?”

That was the moment... That was it.

And it was only a moment ago.
Sean Critchfield Mar 2020
She carries constellations on her arms. Visions of light in points on skin that tastes like milk.
Cascading upward to visions of heaven and hazel eyes, like caramel sunsets.

This one a kite.
This one a compass.
This one a whisper.
This one a secret language.
This one is a sacred thing.
This one. Right here. In the center.
This one is a single star that feels like North.

I will be fluent…

And from the start my boyish heart wondered
what your lips taste like stained red with wine and dripping with poetry like honey.

Haunting stanzas in the pauses between the notes of your voice.

These days we all need to carry a phoenix on our back.
These days we all need to be reminded that we can rise from ash.
Like high tides and crashing waves. Furious and poetic. Serene and powerful.
And at your core sits the eye of a beautiful storm. You are mighty. And mysterious.

You are serene and powerful.

And she weaves her hands around those strands of time gracefully. Casting spells like ripples, carrying outward, unaware that the pool stares back, jealous of her reflection. Her candle is lit.

“And what are you conjuring?”
“Subtle magic of the ancestors.”

The divine sits slyly in the moments between the moments. If god exists, it must be right now, with your head on my chest. Your hand in my hand.

The red and fiery windswept canyons make me think of her. And I. Earth that has accepted the kiss of fire and blushes the length of mountains. To crash against a sky so blue you could drag your knuckles across it.

And in that breath, I watched her take between the sips of wine, I felt that old and timeless ache become the days behind.
The moon is high now. The stars have danced from her arms to the satin sky, and some have even chosen to live as the shine behind my tired smiling eyes.

Tomorrow is dawn. Her smile will sing the sun up like an ovation. Cracking the horizon open with potential. And we are forever changed. Facing that horizon, eager to see what may lie beyond it.

I predict laughter. And adventure.

Perhaps I do believe in magic…
Sean Critchfield Feb 2020
I have these old grey mitts.
I want to use them to hold your heart.
The are worn and scratchy. But they are warm.
I can’t promise that my care of it won’t leave marks. But they will all be made from a loving touch.
My hands have callouses that run deep. They are cracked like stone.
Your heart deserves a softer touch.
But I only have these old grey mitts.
You heart deserves a birds nest. A place to wait and dream of flying.
Your heart deserves a silk cocoon to rest in until it is fully transformed.
Your heart deserves a heart to sleep in. A beat to match in time.
But I only have these old grey mitts.
I’d like to hold your heart. And if you’d let me, I’d protect it like my own.
For when I saw your heart, I spun my own into yarn of blood and bone and wove it into something soft.
I’d like to hold your heart.
But I have no heart.
I only have these old grey mitts.
Sean Critchfield Nov 2019
The sign said "Danger".
I only saw the river.
I would gladly drown.
Sean Critchfield Nov 2019
Fair warning. I am coming for everything they said I couldn't have.
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