"Please don't ever leave me."
And love, I never would have left — not for all the serene mornings unsettled by these shapeless thoughts. Not for all the sanest kisses laid gracefully on scarring skin. Not for all the storms that had dissolved into the calm. I never would have left you — not for the world falling away into a mess of sorrows while the sun watches from afar. But the street lights are spent and mornings are colder and my hands are bruised from picking up all the pieces that you broke.
Did you feel most alive when you were killing me?
Now in the silence, my poems mourn over a loss that isn't theirs.
And in the silence, you say, "Please, don't ever leave me."
And in the silence, I answer, "I wish I never had to."
Maybe it's all still here, like storms made of bruises and the relics of Carthage under siege. Here, like the laments of a Sunday morning while staring back at tragic eyes. Maybe it's all here, somewhere in this layer of skin beneath the white lines on your wrists. Now the blade just feels like another stranger coming home at 4 a.m.
It was right here in the bones of a girl that once was made of sunlit blunders and curiosities; if you dig deep enough, you might exhume the remains of what she used to be — all purple vervains and the poems she swallowed whole.
Oh, that cruel, cruel joke of delicate things, still withering at the wake of storms such as yourself. Has no one cared enough to tell you that maybe, this isn't what getting better looks like? Maybe you just learned how to seem less messed up.
It's that cliché half-past midnight scene:
you're reading her my poems, under the light of your cigarette, not knowing they were all written for you —
god, the words you read her —
as you kiss her,
they were all written for you.
alice never bothered leaving.
i know a thing or two about girls who jump rabbit holes —
all dead eyes and ripped laces and cigarettes;
there was no white rabbit to begin with.
i know a thing or two about girls
who run away from themselves.
alice — a wildflower as they say:
with limbs made of wilted dahlias,
with wasps nesting in her chest — alice,
has the cat not told you that
one can only lay too much flowers
on just a single grave —
just a single hollow body,
before they grow into forest of trees
from where all your nooses hang?
nonetheless, tiptoe and fall.
this way to wonderland —
this way to the rabbit hole,
this way to the cemetery,
this way to your eyes,
to your chest,
to your palms.
has the fickle cat not told you that
there was no white rabbit
in the advent of your own apocalypse?
this is your fairytale, sweet, sweet girl.
light that cigarette and set yourself on fire,
your mind already is hell anyway.
and i know a thing or two about a girl who descended to hell —
you are proserpina without the weeping.
you are proserpina without the crown.
but in someplace else,
alice never bothered leaving.
no one's waiting back at home,
and no one's waiting to be found.
and i will wait for you here on the other side, where the earth and her fields await the footsteps of that girl who dared to swallow pomegranate seeds — each one holding a tenfold of unsaid apologies. i will wait for you here, where the storms i brewed found themselves pressing against the softness of lilacs, where the nightfall forgives the sunset for leaving, where morning smells of teakwood and rain. and you will realize that each sigh does not have to weigh like a thousand bent bromeliads — that each breath does not have to ache in the presence of morning light. you will deserve every bit of softness you tried so hard to ****. you will deserve every bit of moment that doesn't hurt — someday, you'll get here and you'll know. you'll know.
— to my younger self
and i love you like this:
in these freshly washed sheets,
with our limbs tangling,
with your breath on my skin where my shoulder meets my neck
under your gaze,
under what's left of the stars,
in the air, the scent of coffee, and apple crisps, and something that's just purely you,
in these cold, quiet hours before the daylight,
in the every silent ticking of the clock
with newfound honesty
with newfound softness
with each calming of my breath,
with each time it's taken away
with the high of knowing you're here and we're here.
and with the fear of that high,
with the sunrise so far away
with us just lying here in the stillness, in the dark
in the inadequacy of poetry — darling this is peak experience. this is perfect.
Somewhere in these long, midnight drives, somewhere in these litters of I love you's I never said, in the creases of my month-old sheets and in the calls I never made, somewhere between the daybreak and quiet Sunday mornings, between the lamp posts in the streets, between tonight and the first night I knew you, between the sound of hello's, and the sound of things ending for good — somewhere out there, darling, is a place where we've never fallen out love.