The unboxing

There are things I’m hoping to find when the dust settles, and I tick them off like a grocery list I made when I still believed there could be a way to fill this house with light. Oranges, for the way I felt when busses took me to places I couldn’t name, purified water for strong bones and mint for the hard edges, and to sweeten the scratch at the back of my throat that has a name I won’t acknowledge. I think about adding lemons, but I have always tended to outgrow the parts of me that anyone really sees.

What is it to be here, to be anywhere. I ask this of friends I love and I ask it of you. No one knows, but we get dressed and go dancing and when the music is so loud I can’t hear the words I could only ever say in a scream anyway, it feels like maybe I know. Like maybe sweat and sound is the key to this promise I made myself and then broke, and keep breaking. Do you know what I mean, what this feels like? I’m not sure I know how to put words where they matter anymore.

I read a lot more now, and read about the stars to learn who I am. I write notes to myself to remind myself that I exist. I told you that on the couch once, that I don’t know if I exist for other people the way they do to me. I don’t remember what you said. I would like us to keep having this conversation somewhere where you didn’t dig your nails into my ribs and pry them apart just because you could. I’d like to remember what once had a name between us, and how it felt, and why I stayed. Perhaps there is a world, somewhere amongst the stars that say I was only born to be broken and brittle and brave, and that you were only made to be alone, where you are less of a dick and I can still say your name.

I have been treating my heart like an attic filled with boxes of things I swore I’d never need again, and it’s beginning to show.

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