Re: No Subject

Dear—

I sat up all night waiting for this to be a dream. Or a joke. Or something other than what it was. Relationships don’t just end in three paragraph emails. You simply can’t disappear on me. It’s not fair.

I am not a business transaction you can just end on a whim. Especially not after you tell me you’re in love with me. Because you realize that’s kind of a MAJOR PLOT POINT. Because yes, we are a long story. There are plenty of twists and turns and an absurd rising action but very little resolution.

And you changed everything. So excuse me if I need a moment to gather my thoughts on the matter. I’m sorry I couldn’t get back to you sooner, but you see I had other matters to attend to, such as:

-Finding an attorney to help me voice my own guilt in our transgressions
-Condemning us both in verse. (Of course you’ll get none of the proceeds to the endless books I could write on our tumultuous love affair)
-Buying wool socks to keep my feet warm after you vanished from between my cold sheets

Oh and I forgot to vote because of you. Not that my opinion holds much weight in any election when you’ve just decided to run off and spill my secrets to the press that I’m a bad person, who actually likes to keep some things to herself to avoid the paparazzi and its starving lust at devouring what little I had to begin with.

And you think this is about you.

Bullshit. It stopped being about you the moment you stepped off that plane and came crashing into my life expecting me to love you. Just like that. Really though…I’m a mess in comparison. So don’t you treat me like I’ve made any plans to haunt you when I’ve got plenty of ghosts following me.

I’m sorry I didn’t live up to your expectations. But at least I’m still here, fighting. Even if it is in poetry. At least I’m here. Where as you are gone. Fucking coward.

With all due respect,
Me

Old Habits Die Hard

It’s been a long time since the idea of calling you up has crossed my mind as tears spill down my cheeks. It almost took my breath away. How strange to remember what that feels like. Back when the sound of your voice soothed the aches and pains. Back when your words attempted to heal the minor atrocities that felt like the end of the world to me. Back when you were all I needed.

Back when…

It’s been a long time since ‘back when’ was something I never had to ponder. Whodathunk I’d ever have to? I certainly didn’t. It only makes the tears sting a little sharper as they fall. Because I’d like to call you up, because the you that I’d like to speak to would offer up some laughter filled neosporin and a love stuck band-aid to keep all the germs away. The you that I’d like to call would fix me, to the best of your ability.

Back when…

It’s been a long time since you were the you I’d like to call at 2am. But it’s been a long time since I was the me that would call you at 2am. Funny how that works…But it makes me wonder, what would happen if the me that I am, called the you that you are–just something to think about I guess. It is getting close to our meeting time anyway…

Back when…

It’s been a long time since we first met. That was fun, wasn’t it? You were you. I was me. Those first few days were great, don’t you agree? But that was back when, and this is now and we don’t talk anyhow you see it, it doesn’t matter how it goes around. It always comes back around doesn’t it? Except then, I’d be back in love with you. That’s never made much sense to either of us. That whole ‘not so much in love with you as I was used to’

Back when…

It’s been a long time since a lot of things, especially me wanting you. That’s something I’ve forgotten how to do. Except, I didhave the urge to call you. Which is new. At least since ‘back when’ came into existence in our lives. Obviously I didn’t follow through. I’ve always been good at fighting off those resounding urges. Because it went through my whole body, from head to toe–>”call him” But I didn’t. for subtle reasons even I’m not sure I understand.

Back when…

It’s been a long time since I knew how to talk to you. Since I was fearless in confessing everything within me. I’m out of practice and some times I just prefer to remember you as someone else that I used to know, who’d save me from myself. Those late night rescues back when we knew what we wanted but didn’t fight for it. Back when we fought to keep the things we never knew we needed. Back when calling you up was an urge I always heeded.

Back when…

It’s been a long time since, well, back when. So much is different and yet it seems the same. At least most moments before you came around. And then there is 2am. That feeling has come back around, it looks different now after all the carnage and the resilient sounds of silence. So much so I almost wrote it off, but there’s nothing like a momentary art such as yearning for the days we used to share and the nights we used to love. Or is it the other way around? I can’t seem to remember anymore…

Fiction Taunts Me

I’ve become this shell of a person.

Neither wanting too much, nor needing too little. Except that everything that seems important is hidden away, too secret for me to discover. And everything that I think to be so trivial is all my eyes are able to capture behind my corneas. My heart can’t comprehend your absence in my sight. Now all it can feel is what’s like not to feel.

Those tempered moments of fluid respiration you used to inspire in me have vanished. Although I’m beginning to wonder if you were ever here in the first place, or if I’d just imagined your laughter in my ear. Because it seems my imagination has truly gotten the best of me lately as I follow superfluous ideas of you and me walking hand in hand in the chilly autumn air. And I can’t shake the feeling of your arms around me.

This is what writing has done to me. I’ve lost myself in fantasy. Because clearly you do not exist, except in my self-destructive memories of things that have never happened. We have never met, and I cannot begin to recall your name as it has never danced along my tongue. None of what I’d thought has come to be reality. I always hoped it was a self-professing prophecy. I’m not so sure anymore that I have the power to make my own future based off fairy tales and Hollywood endings. Real life isn’t like that.

Fiction likes to tease me in my loneliness. Skipping around me, singing “na-na-na-na-na, you can’t catch me.” Apathy has taken over romanticism and put it to shame at ever trying to prevail. Cynicism and bitterness have come along to shelter my fragile heart from the rainstorm of almosts and indefinite maybes. Fiction taunts me. All the time. Don’t think me a fool in the gravity of the situation that leaves me alone in cold sheets at night.

My damage control is faulty. Some pieces of me are irreparable and I’ll never be the same after this. He should know that. I do. I know that he can’t fix me. He won’t even try. But he thinks he can fill me up, remold me from the inside. And I hesitate, because I know I’ll still feel empty. Maybe even more so than before. He doesn’t understand. He doesn’t even try. And yet he whispers to me, is everything alright?

No it’s not. I’m not okay most days. I know how it sounds. And some days, it’s exactly how it sounds. Like today, when I’m waiting for someone who might never show up, when I’m hoping that he’ll call and whisper how he can fill this emptiness up, knowing that it will never work the way we’d like it to. You see, I know these things, but I find them hard to believe anyway.

Possibility has always been my vice, a temptation all too sweet not to taste. Yet it always leaves my heart bitter and sour–incapable of wholeness, as others take a souvenir and go along their way to visit other monuments and make them incomplete–yet giving more to those who pass by than keeping any of it to myself until I am a shell of who I was, except I’m not sure I know who that was anymore.

So to me, you will always be fiction. As fiction will always be just beyond my reality. Because even reality fools me. And I will succumb to giving myself to the man who I know will never love me, just for the chance to feel something. Because the idea of something, is better than nothing. That is what this emptiness has taught me.

The Truth of the Matter

Do you remember when you quoted
Into the Woods
and told me I’d get major brownie points
if I knew the source?

I do.

And I racked my brain
much longer than I should have
because I wanted to impress you.

I wanted you to think,
“this girl is so amazing…
she knows my favorite lyrics”

And I considered googling it,
I almost did it too.
My pinky was ready to hit enter on the search bar

But we’d promised we’d be honest.

So I told you I didn’t.
No brownie points for me.

And now those brownie points
seem so trivial
in comparison
to the miles between us
and how far apart our souls are

You used to be the reason
I got up in the morning
and the reason
I didn’t go to bed till 2 or 3am

You were my before
my after
and everything I could fit in between

It’s harder when the nostalgia kicks in
to let go
Even after all that’s happened…

I’m afraid to let go.

I’m beginning to think though
that it’s the only way to save us
And part of me wonders
if there’s anything left to save…

Or maybe I’m just not used to change
although you entering my life was such
a rush
so unseen…

I’m grasping at straws
trying to decide

the truth is…

I don’t want to decide.
I just want this to be simple.

And in a way,
it is.

I’m just over-thinking
over-analyzing
over-complicating it.

That’s what I do.

And you,
you know that.
You know me so much better
than I’d like you to.

And I,
I know you.
I know you so much better
than you think I do.

Which makes this so much worse
Because I know how you’re feeling
and why you’re feeling that way
because I feel
felt it too.

I wish I could tell you
that’s it’s all going to be okay.
But I can’t lie to you.
and things aren’t okay.

All I can say is…
I’m in pain too.

Absence

You’re still here
not the way you used to be
cause now your presence just haunts me

I’m constantly reminded of what
I didn’t know I’d lost

Mostly in the songs you used to hum
under your breath
just loud enough so that I could hear
but so quiet I had to lean in closer
and murmur the question,
“what’s on your mind?”

I can’t even hard boil eggs
because
EGGS=BASKETBALLS

Every time I cook I think
of tasting not quite done potatoes
because she wanted the pan…
and you,
you came so close to me
I almost couldn’t breathe

Because now I’ve blocked out the songs you sent me
even though I fell in love with them too
Because it hurts too much
to feel you in the air
knowing that things such as these
are only meant to taunt me

My heart is not that strong.

So in my absence
I had hoped to regain
some sense of self
in order to return to you
with more certainty of who I was
and who I wanted to be with you

because it was unfair
to be such a mess of myself
and try to explain it to you

I didn’t have the words.

And now in your absence
I have the words
but I don’t have your attention

I just have this emptiness
and it has enveloped me
in missing you
and what we used to be
so much so that I am breathless

But not the way I used to be
when you were near
It is uneasy now
In the silence
that you have mandated

I still hear you though
your silence is so loud
so loud I can’t hear myself think sometimes

And I think it’s a shame
that I was willing to fight for something
but since it wasn’t what you were fighting for
our unspoken truce was violently broken

Or so it seems to be that the way I fought,
more than what I was fighting for
convinced you that I wasn’t committed
to the cause

But if you had waited,
even a moment
or spoken up
without accusations
maybe I wouldn’t be so claustrophobic
in this silence

Because you’re still here
Not the way either of us want you to be
the lack of your presence haunts me.

Did you know the hold you had on me?

Out of Touch

I’m so young
Twenty is not old enough to
know anything
‘I don’t know anything about
you’, he says
but he wants to know
everything
like where I want my dreams to take me
like how to bring me to my knees
except you knew that from a thousand miles away

Life as I know it
well–
I don’t know much of
anything.

Do I love you?
Because I miss you
and this red wine’s
not helping at all
Ain’t that a shame?

Red wine usually helps
But here I am,
lying on the couch
bottle in hand
tears teasing at my cheeks
waiting for a break in
the silence

Because I don’t handle
these things well.

I’ve never been good at goodbye
and December’s never the
best time
to turn me loose on myself

inner monologue after
inner monologue
that sometimes slips out as
self-inflicted lectures
on how it’s my fault
you left

And I’d claim desperation
like insanity
to get you back,
repair a year of damages
if you asked

We could skip that blizzard crazed
Thursday in February
when I first felt you slip away
and did everything I could to pull you close
or those not so sunny summer days
when losing you seemed unbearable
or every day since then
now that you’re gone.

You think I don’t care
and you’d be wrong,
Just take a walk with me
in the midnight hour
meet my misery and all it’s
company
as I let you get away
with the murder of maybe

That’s all I had to give you,

and the corners of my mouth
or my cold feet you used to warm.

The Judgment:
I’m so young
Too young to feel this old
Too young to know anything
Like how to find myself in this silence
you created.

A Truce

I probably shouldn’t be telling you this–
not sure if I’m ready,
not sure about anything really.

but a part of me
misses you.

Not in the way you’d probably want me to
but still
You have to admit,
it’s something.

Are you okay?
Are you happy?

I just wonder if you’re doing alright.

That’s all.

A Letter

Dear —

I wrote you a letter today. It said everything I needed you to hear, in the most perfect way. The t’s were crossed, the i’s were dotted–all in my fervent cursive hand. The words flowed out so easily that I almost couldn’t fathom setting them free.

I wrote you a letter today. A confession of my deepest thoughts, a revelation of all the possible plots. I arranged it just so–no rhyme, but lots of rhythm to sooth your soul. The sentences pieced together, like a finished jigsaw puzzle of my scattered heart.

I wrote you a letter today. It was pretty, yet simple. Not generic, nor excessively chatty. I reminded myself plenty of times not to get carried away. And I signed it off with a quiet flourish–an offer of my love and good wishes.

I wrote you a letter today. You would have liked it if I had sent it. Because, of course, this isn’t that same letter that was written so diligently–so amorously. You might have noticed the imperfections, the discombobulation of sense that I sometimes feel.

I wrote you a letter today. It said everything I needed you to hear, but then the wind in the park it blew away. And I couldn’t catch that single sheet of paper I had left my heart on. So I thought that maybe it was meant to be–for us to go along as we are–to just be you and just be me.

I wrote you a letter today. It was not perfect. My grammar still needs some work. My cursive is a little sloppy. I might have misspelled some words in all my haste. Just don’t hold it against me. Try to read between the mistakes–although they are abundant–I had the best of intentions to write you the loveliest letter…only to find there is no perfection in pouring ones own heart out onto the page.

With all my uninspiring faults and my fearful thoughts,
Me

Awake

It’s getting late where your soul resides. Oh how I wish to lay myself beside you in the tumultuous sheets of paper that hide in every crevice of my room, in drawers, corners, and trash bins. Our love would be ink stained lullabies, rhyming with the sweet and low sugar you pour into your coffee every morning on your way to working full time at feeling alive.

My skin, sunburned and itching to be submerged in the warm raptures of your eyes, velvet pools of blue ocean mystery. But you still won’t wake. What plays on the back of your eyelids when you fall asleep? I’d love to see. Because I know you dream in extremes. I hear you murmur melodies of aspirations, and I lose respiration at the sound.

I strip down to the bare essentials, scantily clad with invisible tattooed memories of hours staring at the night skyline retreating into dark shadows of dreams I cannot recall. My heart is hot on the trail of missed opportunities ignited by a snowstorm in the middle of July. And I’d chase you around the world to get the answers to unasked questions of faith and how to fish meaning from the ocean of this life.

Why do I wonder if you’re real? Or just something for which my heart would like to feel? So many times I thought my head was teasing me with words, words I think I’m supposed to say or hear, just to fill the silence between the poundings in my chest. But the interruption seems to be too much and no amount of sleepless nights waiting up for peace of mind will satisfy my urge to fall asleep in your embrace.

From: The One Still Here (Draft 1)

I sat up all night waiting
For this to be a dream
Because
Clearly, you had to be joking

You couldn’t be…

GONE.

A part of me,
Knew.
But didn’t want to believe.
That a three paragraph email
Could be the end of us.

(And the silence kills me.)

I didn’t even feel you leave
After all this time,
There must have been a sign,
I must have missed something

Because those words
cut so easily
A swift slash to my heart
they don’t make any sense

The fact that you’re…

GONE.

Hurts me.
So much more
Than I’d give you credit for

I never thought it’d end…
This way.

You were such a force
In my life,
How could you just leave?
So business like
In blaming me for things
So outside my own intentions

That’s not really fair
Now is it?

And you said,
“I want you”
like things would never change.
Except they already had.
And I said,
Nothing.
All because you asked me to.

(And you know how being speechless kills me)

You won’t allow me
My own attorney
To plead guilty
In my own ignorance,
My own selfishness.

But I have condemned us both
In verse.
Just like
You always knew I would.

But who cares,
you’ll probably never read this

because you’re…

GONE.

How inconvenient
For you to leave
Just when I was getting
Back on my feet.

The feet you used to tangle yours in
To fight off the cold chill
I’d never noticed until you came along.

And my feet are cold again
Without you.
I wear socks to sleep
But they do nothing
Next to missing you even more.

Even in missing you though
I don’t do enough to satisfy you
I’m never enough—

So you decided that you’re better off…

GONE.

And I have a tendency
To agree with you
On most of life’s
Controversies

Yet, with this one…

You have a tendency
To brush off the other side
Without even a glance,
To acknowledge
What the other guy
might have to say

You leave me,
Just like that.
Like there’s nothing left to say
Like you have every right
To just disappear
Like you are the only one this affects

Like the fact that you’re…

GONE.

Doesn’t break my heart.

Because it does
In a way I never expected it
To shatter,
Was it something you expected?
Did you even think it could?

Did you stop to think
That maybe,
I was vulnerable too?
And that maybe,
Given time
Things would have worked out
The way you wanted them to.

But now that you’re

GONE.

There’s no chance.
You’ve lost it.
And I’ve lost you.

Because of a three paragraph email.
We’ve lost ourselves.

How poetic.

Except—
that it’s not poetic
At All.
It’s not even tragic,
It’s just…
so like us

“Us”
That doesn’t exist anymore
You’ve made sure of this,
Even though you were the one that
wanted there to be an
“Us”
And you just took it away,
Like taking candy from a baby

Except—
Have you ever tried taking candy from a baby?
It’s not as easy as it sounds.
It’s quite difficult actually.

Except—
I am not a child.
I am a woman
Who doesn’t believe in happily ever afters
Who doesn’t believe in finality of anything
Who doesn’t believe in giving up

just because the odds are against “us”
and just because perfection doesn’t exist
and just because someone else says you’re not worth it.

You are a man,
Acting like a boy
Who is too afraid to try
Who is too afraid to listen
Who is too ignorant to realize

That love takes time
And patience
And hard work
And…

And it means you have to be…

HERE.