i never wanted to kiss her lips,
just hold her hand
maybe kiss her cheeks because she suited a gentler kind of treatment
something softer and more delicate, quiet;
quieter than the constant raging storms inside my stomach,
inside my mind
(never my heart)
those plump lips
she bit them raw when nervous, and they swelled
blossomed ruby as she looked at me
like she knew this wouldn't last
her eyes remained doughy and mellow
when i met her gaze.
my smile stung as it stretched the lines left by winter's bite
and split them open once more.
she brushed the blood beads away with her fingertips
with a touch so reverent that, for a moment, i thought
maybe she felt as though she were touching rosary beads instead,
and i held my breath to stop myself from chasing her
touch, and pressing her down into the mattress
unholy, chasing pleasure.
both agnostic, but she was much more pure than i;
chivalries always in mind, i wanted to preserve that.
there's always been something inside me
that presses down the animalistic urges with
a conscience caught on consideration and something akin to courtly love-
i wanted to woo her before i pursued her
but i never got further than pressing my lips to her forehead,
wrapping an arm around her shoulders.
i laced my fingers with hers but avoided tying any knots.
i am not a man to be bound,
too free-spirit, too restless, too claustrophobic;
a few months in and i was choking on the ghost of a future;
she kissed me first and i suffocated on the phantom of her hopes for us:
a future that didn't yet exist,
and i didn't want it to.
i never kissed her; i never let her kiss me again.
we tangled fingers over the duvet
the television a background noise to our unsteady breaths,
than my love for her
i enjoyed her quiet affection like one might enjoy curling into a blanket when cold and ill.
i wanted her smiles, i wanted to fill her memories with goodness
so that she never need feel hopeless, like all men are the same
so that she had something to smile about when she looked back on us;
once the bitterness of our breakup had left her mouth-
whenever that eventual end would be-
she could savour the taste of our sweet, slow-burn, love affair
and be reminded that not all love is true love, but nor is all love heart breaking
i broke her heart anyway.
nobody ever taught me how cruel kindness could be.