"My boyfriend/girlfriend won’t let me"
What was that?
How lovely congratulations on your 3rd parental guardian”
But seriously if your partner won’t let you do something (eg, hang out with your friends)? That’s actually a GIANT RED FLAG for an abusive relationship, please get help or get out of there.
Last night, I wrote this poem because I forgot to call you.
I say “forgot” because it sounds less desperate than saying “I dialed your number five times but never pressed send,” than saying “I resisted the urge to drive thirty miles to your house just to lodge a noise complaint,” than saying “the thought of you is still in my brain and it’s making a racket, so please turn down the volume.”
See, nothing about this is poetic when it’s been six months and you’re still all I can think about. Didn’t your mother ever teach you to clean up your messes and not overstay your welcome? My mother taught me that there will always be people who have pieces of my heart, but fuck that, my heart’s an empty bottle for you — my heart’s an abandoned quarry.
I’m so tired of your late-night, high-volume escapades, so sick of all this one-sided fighting that you aren’t a part of anymore. The least you could do is show up at my door again so I could slam it in your face. The least you could do is pretend you miss me too.
After six months of all this noise, I’m learning that you were always a loaded gun, baby, and you loved to make me scream. I was always bloodshot, bullet-wound, gut-wrenched lonely. You were always this loud, this deafening and heart-breaking, I was just half-in-love and tripping over my chest and, baby, I didn’t want to hear the way everyone said you’d tear me apart just to watch me bleed.
Seems like I’m reaping it all now, rows upon rows of the poetry that wasn’t ever about me. Seems like I should learn how to plant something other than my heartache. Seems like I’m always breaking over you somehow, six months of wine glasses shattering from the sound of your voice.
Seems like I’m always dialing your number these days, but baby
I swear I’ll never call again.
You are my best friend as well as my lover, and I do not know which side of you I enjoy the most.
I treasure each side, just as I have treasured our life together.
Three years later, a new girl sits cross-legged on your bed.
She tastes like a different flavor of bubblegum than you are used to.
She opens up a book that you had to read in high school, and a folded picture of us falls out of chapter three.
Now there are two unfinished stories resting in her lap.
Inevitably, she asks, and you tell her.
You say: I dated her a while back.
You don’t say: Sometimes, when I’m holding you, I imagine the smell of her vanilla perfume.
You say: She was younger than me.
You don’t say: The sixteen summers in her bones warmed the eighteen winters my skin had weathered.
You say: It’s nothing now.
You don’t say: But it was everything then.