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Radio Silence

It’s like I’m
always getting
your voicemail
except without the
personalized greeting.

Calling it four weeks
hurts less than
saying it’s been
a month
since you messaged me last.

It scares me
how quickly
time can seem to pass
without you here.

This radio silence
this static at the
other end of the line is
slowly unraveling my seams.

Four weeks
and I worry about you
a little more
every day.

Promise

It flutters like a hummingbird
rapid and delicate
beating against my ribcage
in an attempt to escape
and fly to you
across an ocean.

It chains me to my notebook
demanding ink be
spilled on paper
until words no longer hold meaning
and I run out of thoughts
exhausted.

It pulls me from the ground
making me float
among the clouds and stars
letting me kiss the moon goodnight
as I am lulled to sleep
by the song sung by the wind.

It is a promise
to be there as soon as I can
as long as I can
and the start of a
future with you
both terrifying and wonderful
to begin in a city
an ocean away from
what has always been my home.

Plucking Petals

He loves me
He loves me not
He loves me
He loves me not
and so on
plucking petals
from a posy
asking a question I
already know the answer to
asking it to the
flowers he gave me
African violets
tucked in my hair
behind my ear
soft and velvety
He loves me
He loves me not
He loves me

File Under “Interesting”

There’s something that
draws me to you
A resemblance to him
or perhaps the way you
dress and talk
It’s not romantic
I still love him
Sometimes
the times I
miss him most
I think how much
easier it would be
if I could
love you instead
But I
made a promise
that I
intend to keep
so I’ll mark you
“interesting”
and try to
keep you near
And on the nights I
don’t stop talking
about him
I hope you don’t mind
my being
in love with him

On the Back of an Emily Dickinson Poem I Wrote About Your Hands

Your hands are
bigger than mine
your fingers
wrapping around mine
with ease as we
lie in bed
a tangle of
sheets and blankets and
pillows and limbs
or walk through the grocery store
discussing what I’ll make for dinner
and what you can
do to help
In the evening they
find their way to my hips
and I move them
your right hand on my back
your left holding mine
and we dance slow circles
in the living room
stopping more and more often
to kiss until
that is all we’re doing
We wander to bed
and I sit with your
arm around me
your fingers
combing through my hair
reading you poetry by
Galway Kinnell until
I’m half-asleep and you
tuck me in
one last kiss goodnight before you
turn the light out and
press yourself to me
as we fall asleep
your hands holding mine

First Snow

You cross your arms
and bury your face
in the grey scarf
I knitted you
as we stand outside and
watch the snow fall.
I put a hand
on your shoulder and
lead you back inside
to the kitchen
where my mother has
made us mugs of tea.
I can see the
wonderment in your face
as you sip the
steaming liquid
still staring out the window.
It’s your first real snowfall
and I lost count of
how many I’ve seen
years ago
but as we warm our
stiff fingers by the fire
it’s like my first time seeing it
all over again.

Faith in Forever

Her eyelids droop
and you can tell she’s
struggling to stay awake
You close the book
and she tries to tell you to
keep reading
but you are settling yourself
under the quilt
and turning out the light
pulling her into you so her
head is on your shoulder
your arm around her back
With your other hand
you take hers
hold it to your heart
as you hum a lullaby
She sighs as she
gives in to sleep
and you lie
awake in the dark
her warm breath
tickling your collarbones
as you wonder how
nights like this became your
every night
when you thought you had
lost your faith in
forever.

Perhaps she became it.

Daddy

I watch as you

slowly kill yourself

not even realizing you’re doing it.

You don’t understand

what the problem is

or that there’s even a problem to begin with

And it scares me to think

that you can’t see

the monster

eating you from within

Mockingbirds

My insecurities plague me
pecking at my mind
like mockingbirds
imitating the calls
of thoughts I
had in passing
making them
echo in my head.

I think I will
let them feast
on what’s left of my sanity
so that perhaps I can
go back to thinking
everything is okay
and truly believe it again.