I remember telling him

I remember saying


I told him I was dying

And I put it in pounds

And he told me he was almost impressed

And then we laughed and smoked a bowl and he took off my clothes and I forgot that I was deteriorating because he always had this way of making my nothing feel like too much


He turned a blind eye, everything my thighs were saying didn’t matter

My wrists were not loud enough for him

So I painted myself indifferent, if indifferent is the color of hospital walls


He called me a few times

So he could ask me about my body

My hipbone rib cage spine and no ass to speak of

My no tits to speak of


Even when I left him, he didn’t leave

He was already moved into my body and mind, key twisting into my sternum like I open only for him, I open only for people like him

That my definition is the one that he wrote

The one that he carved into his own leg


I told him it was over and it didn’t graze his ear

I told him that we were stuck, and he cried until I was weak enough to kiss away his tears

I told him it was killing me and he said he was almost impressed



The taste for sweetness lost on burnt tongues

Looking for reasons to scorch fertile earth


Familiar shames boil to the surface, and then are reconstituted

All in the blink of an eye

Before they can be skimmed off to salvage the rest


Eyeing true growth has me searching for a name for what we have

(I hunger for understanding but no longer wish to be troubled by it)


This is not the way I should have finished it

So precariously

Balancing disappointments on the disappointed


Alternating layers of ruin and rage

Ash and fire

I expect it to fall

And I wait for it

Between inhales, between indulgences

Baited breath and smoke-filled lungs

Gasping for air, choking on you to fill the time


And the collapse is all at once

More instantaneous than I thought possible

I dodge showering coal and blistering remnants

Scorched earth that I created, earth that I damned

And from it I cannot


Fast enough


Two seconds have passed

And you are in my rear view mirror

While she is next to me

Nothing feels the same


It is cold now, but I am not

And neither is she

Because there’s more tea than either of us can drink

And we both brought scarves

In the event that our words were not warm enough

And we didn’t feel sufficiently wrapped up in conversation


I wonder if you can hear me praying for your touch

I wonder if you see it in my eyes, or if my cheeks are flushed

Am I biting my lip?


Have you realized that we’re pink and white

Like the song in your headphones

And the light of this sunset

And the colors behind my eyelids

I can’t sleep again but it is not out of pain

It is out of the unceasing desire to continue to devour this savory reality


You ask me “what is a dichotomy” and I say something dumb, like “us”

Because there is not unity but we are two halves of a whole

I can feel it

On my scalp, racing down