This is how it ends:
Two sneakered feet pounding
Staccato hearts into the blackened tar
Of the streets, yelling.
(But what are they yelling?
A name. My name.)
And my platinum hair is up
Out of my face, so the wind kisses
My cheeks, turns them red and blue
Like me: Red, for the number of times
He will one day turn the color of my shame
To a scalding hot 10; and blue,
The cloud that lays
Over me, when he proves my instincts right
When they told me to run.
This is how it ends
And I’m six and overhearing
My mother tell my dad to
Do a different dance on
Someone else’s blackened tar,
And now they live in a cute house
Under a cloudless sky
With my dog and seven reasons why
They never look up and see me there,
Older and darker but
Always running to the south,
Away from their winter.
This is how it ends.
But not for him.
This is how it ends:
Pictures on a feed
Spinning realities you’ll never taste
And never need
With slings and smiles and
Canned joy, selling success for a nickel
And sadness for a dollar.
It ends, and you see her
With her dyed hair and lipstick
(Red, to remind you
And red, to forget you)
And you pause – because, really,
Did you expect that you couldn’t?
And suddenly you start seeing her
Silhouette in every doorway and
Hearing her heavy steel words
Laying like anchors on your heart
Always pulling, tugging, moving towards her
And that beautiful sunny day when
She looked through you for
The last time.
(You wonder how a ghost
Could feel this heavy)
This is how it begins:
One coffee full of
Too much cream, and laughter
Ringing too loudly
In your ears
Because of something you said.
And footsteps slapping on
Wet concrete, meeting tiny slippered
Eager feet, feeling safer now
Hugged by tiny hands
Than in his strong arms that left you
It begins in the quick silences
Between sentences, and meanings
Upon words, and breaths
It begins when you listen
And you’re sitting in your car
Watching dusk paint the sky
And you can feel the groan of the earth
Beneath you, see the planet revolve itself
Into darkness, and you can’t hear her
Caustic voice and
The way she sounded when she left, and
You can’t feel his hands on you or his
Beard where it chafed your thighs – no,
That is where it ends.
And this is where you start.
(Unload the anchors from your heart.)