We drove and drove and drove until we hit water I couldn't find the end of. You stopped and turned off the truck and then turned your upper body to lean against your door and you looked at me and I stared straight ahead, amused and a little pissed off that you cut off the one song I need on repeat these days and you told me it wasn't a very good song anyway. We both know you were lying just like you lie about all kinds of little insignificant things that might make you appear too relaxed and too permissive. Or too beautiful for words. People were never supposed to be so flawless or there would be too much claustrophobia.
You scowled at the tears that followed, such an immature response to the sudden unwelcome silence. Instead of sympathy you offered adventure and instead of wallowing I chose risk and I followed you into the water in my dress that I couldn't hold on to and the cotton drank the lake until I was soaked to my waist and you laughed and told me to take it off, that no one would care but I cared and instead I decided I would take it off later in the truck.
We walked until the parts in our hair were pink and painful and our freckles stood out (but only in the summer) and our eyes were blind to the shadows and blasted with rays that seek to melt us down into basic liquid human forms, with condiments of beauty and pain, served in matching tiny bowls, flavor how you like it. We tasted all of them, never finding one that pleased.
You kissed the salt from my lips and the tears from my cheeks and you swore ugly words right in my face and let me see the hate in your blue eyes for what I am and then maybe you lied some more.
A man with broken wings
I hold no blame against you like a lover for your honesty and no sadness for the truth of what this means. I am aware that you have asked for the thought as it arrives into my head but then it escapes from my mouth before my brain can capture it and keep it safe to avoid scarring you.
There is no competition here, my angel. Nothing to fear except for my runaway heart and it's your boomerang that you've lovingly shaped while I wasn't ever looking or even aware. While I daydreamed in my deafness, while I slept. You prayed and fought for the ownership of a loaded gun and you don't even know how to work it but you're learning and with few mistakes and a little bit of fear and blood you have discovered, to your delight, to your dismay, that you are still alive.
While I slept, you promised yourself you would learn.
With determination you drove all night and most of the next day to find a place where the water met the horizon and then you watched me unravel like a ribbon and fall apart. When it happened you were so surprised at the bang for your buck, the magnitude of what lies inside of the smallest packages, of what rage and fear and terror and pain looks like bottled inside of something so beautiful. Is it more or less real than holding it all in? Would it be better served hurriedly and distracted to lessen the strength of it, diluted with noise and mindless, endless tasks that help no one?
I only said he would have loved that song and it was too much for you and so you took out all of your remaining frustrations and poured them over me like a cold shower and I let you, I let you see how frail I really am.
We talked until we ran out of words. And then we walked until our legs could carry us no further before you turned and took my face in your hands and you told me we'd do it anyway. We'd keep walking beside each other, even though you said it was harder to be together than it ever was to be apart. Hard in a different way and I know what you mean, I really do.
We drove home in the blue-black night, the silence pushing into the truck and crowding us out, my still-wet dress plastered to me, making me smaller and more pathetic while you followed the yellow line south until we saw familiar markers and you never looked at me while I hit repeat fifty times on the stereo but I watched you as you mouthed the words to the song in the dark because you didn't think I was ever paying attention.
I am. And I know you love that song because it's about me.
And the bed that we're sharing
Is the home that I want to bring you
Want to feel you
I don't want to hear you