It’s alright if you can’t stay, but take the chap from my lips and wet them with your tongue before you go, the front door is so heavy and brings in such a draft. I’ll understand if you can’t stay, but pull your shirt off of my back and keep it where it belongs, don’t leave your scent like a trail I could follow to hunt through your ribs and find the right strings to pull. It could leave you mangled. It could leave me lost. I’ll wash you from my skin in the morning. I’ll be just fine if you can’t stay, just pack up your things and leave the rest how you found it. Be careful with my bones and leave the rest how you found it. You can leave the windows open, it’s quite alright if it’s going to be a chilly night, two knees in these sheets is company and three is such a crowd, just leave the touch to a minimum and only tell me what is necessary. As a matter of fact don’t tell me a thing at all. It’s alright if you can’t stay, I’ll understand if you can’t stay, I’ll be just fine if you can’t stay, but don’t tell me. Leave a note that you’re off for coffee, Babe. Whisper it in my ear when you know I am much too unconscious to remember, that you’re off to work, that something came up. We’re out of sugar, and it’s a beautiful day for a walk.
I promise I won’t wither waiting for you to come back, I can play pretend just as well as you. And I will still be here just as I am now, just as you left me, just as you found me. There won’t be questions waiting for you at the door, only cold sleepless knees and bare skin draped along the apartment. Don’t get too picky with your brands, Babe. Come home if your boss raises hell. Don’t go too far.
Don’t go too far.
Note to my future life forever lover partner: I will frequently sneak out in the middle of the nights when it’s rainiest and gloomiest in some cute raincoat to find a cozy cafe to sleep with instead. Consider this an acceptable affair or don’t marry me.
You’d sit with my t shirt swallowing you to your knees, tugged and stretched to cover your bottom from the sting of the metal. Every night you curled yourself outside of our bedroom window to rest on that fire escape, you would lift your hand and let just the edge of your thumb touch to my lower lip, waiting just a few breaths against your flesh before you silently dismissed our nest of sheets and legs. Every few steps on the tips of your toes you’d look back over your shoulder, hair stuck to your neck and wild from my palms. Some nights you’d balance on the sill and stare back at me, the same way I studied you perched against the bars. I ached to know what it is you thought in those moments, the only disrupt of silence the draft wrapping like arms around your waist, but I couldn’t bring myself to even so much as stir slightly to give away that I was awake, looking back. It was intricate watching you this way. It was these nights, every night, where I found you. A small marbled pot sat against your feet, the pot I had brought you home a Lily in from the apartment down the block. Whenever we had passed my hand would lose sight of yours and you would stand before the pane and stare in at the arrangement, small paper bags against striking petals, the woman’s shaky hands tying yellow ribbons to bind the stems. Most nights you’d light a cigarette and balance it between your fingers as if you wished it’d slip, but when the piece hit your mouth the smoke danced around your lips like teeth nipping for contact, tasting you just the same. Only after a few drags would you diminish it’s end, letting it fall to the pot. A habit of nicotine just to feel it’s breath escape you. Some nights you would bring a mug to balance between your thighs, and all it would take is the shuffling of feet against the streets beneath or a deafened bum from the Moon Cafe to leave you transfixed, the coffee chilling in your cup, your knuckles lining the brim again, and again, and again. And again. Some nights you kept yourself quiet company, humming pieces of the songs you’d defend you couldn’t stand. Rotten music to pretty lips. Some nights you would laugh, after your fingers touched to blemishes against your skin, teeth marks against your thigh. Then, always, you’d look up in through the window at me once more while your teeth clasped the edges of your lips to calm. And some nights you would cry. I never asked why, though those nights were hardest to stay in bed. But I knew that you needed that. You said you loved to cry. That it was the closest you could come to feeling everything and nothing all at once, catching the drops on your tongue. Some nights you would sit just briefly, others you’d prefer the streets company to my own. And as you’d return to me you would nestle yourself into the down, lifting your thumb to touch to my lip once more, watching until your eyes fell traitor, body still amiss where you had left it. You’d bring to bed with you the night air, scenting our bed and your skin, my skin, tangling your hair. I would press my mouth to your mascara-stained wrists, swollen eyes, and lastly my thumb against the edge of your lip, waiting just a few breaths against my flesh before letting it drag free, drawing them in to let the cigarette, the streets, you - rest along my tongue.
There is something about lying next to someone in a completely pitch dark room, not able to see a thing (no nose, mouth, batting eyes), and knowing they are looking at you, and you’re looking back.
I think the person who holds your heart the coziest and closest is the first one that comes to mind in an empty room when you whisper out the word, “You.”
the warmth behind your knees
Your raw skin
breath on my cheek
Your tongue uproots
All that we
You make me able to write. Which is probably the most control anyone could ever have over me.
“I’m not suicidal or depressed, and I’m actually a really happy person when it comes down to it. But sometimes I find comfort in the fact that one day I will die. It sounds scary, weird and insane I’m sure. But my mind never shuts the fuck up and I couldn’t handle this for all of eternity.”
Jesus Christ. What a beautiful mind.
I have a lot of problems. I really just do. When I do things that make me happy I guilt myself away from it or talk myself out of it always and I don’t know why I do it. Lately I’ve been realizing that I don’t want to sit and wait to be happy or spend so long waiting to even be able to get to know someone. I have to learn that not everything needs to be serious not every person I like needs to be a potential relationship but I don’t know how. I don’t owe a soul anything and I sit and I cry to my mom trying to wait and hear her say something, just anything that will make this easier on me but she can’t. No one can. My issues and stressors always seem like such a small issue to everyone else because they just say well if it’s not a serious thing then why stress it? And I don’t know the answer. I take the tiniest things and dramatsize them until I can’t stand it anymore and make myself feel bad for actually enjoying myself because I’ve never once known what it’s like not to be tied down. Because even something that is basically borderline nothing I take too seriously. I don’t let myself be happy. Ever. I never hook up with people and when I tell people that they act surprised or in disbelief but it’s true. Because I can’t. I can’t do things lightly I can’t feel things lightly I could never do friends with benefits because I’m too emotionally complicated. With me it’s either friends or a relationship it is never between without guilt or me fucking my head up to the point where I don’t want to be around the source of happiness. But I don’t want to do that so I am trying to stop myself before it happens. I am not at the point where I can healthily like anyone. I am having a hard time and that is as honest as this could get.
I have a problem with holding onto things that I shouldn’t. I have a problem with sitting around waiting and finding that okay when I know I’m not happy. I tell myself I am because even when I get the slightest bit involved I feel like I’m trapped and I never know how to get out. I’ve stayed in abusive relationships because of it and I’ve never once made myself happy or found my independence. That’s my issue. That’s my issues. I think too much. I talk too much. I think myself out of happiness and talk myself into happiness rather than seeing that actual happiness with substance doesn’t require thinking at all. I’m not rational with my feelings and I’m pretty being around me for even a day out of your life will make that clear, I will bluntly tell you of my issue of emotions overpowering intellect. Because I’m run by them.
I don’t know if anything that I say ever comes out right. I enjoy writing because it’s like I’m talking and coming right out and saying it without the pressure of someone looking at me. Does anyone ever think if you really know your friends? Can you sit and list things about them? Do you remember their birthday? Do you know their favorite flavors of ice cream or their incessant details about the smallest parts of their mind? Do you fucking know them at all? Because half of mine, when I really sit down and get to the bones of it, I don’t. I could barely tell you shit about them. I don’t know any of the little things. So when you meet someone and learn more about them in a single day than you do your closest friends that you’ve known for years and counting, that’s a fucking friend. That is a soul you can bind with. That is someone you don’t want to let go.
Learning what to let go of and what to hold onto is something I have always had trouble dealing with. But I’m damn tired of letting my emotions control every single decision I make. Life isn’t as serious as we all take it. Life is a fucking joke. A twisted, masochistic, fucking incredibly beautiful one.
There is love in his broad fingers working the shampoo into your alcohol-dipped hair, clung to your temples with tongue clung to the stammers of short sounds excuses hums ceaseless as he’s heard many times before. You promised not to be late. Hip bones crumbling slowly night by night and even though most saw tangling in pitch rainy nights as childish, you let me roam. Stumbling into our apartment and drenching the floor boards with slurred toe prints, puddles left where you had paused me, firmed me, lifted me. And you’d carry me to the tub and sit me down and let my neck roll and my shoulders roll and my teeth clench and my thighs clench as the cold water shocked my skin. And he wouldn’t say a word except for here he’d murmur “You’re home.” and there he’d murmur “You’re home.” and just moments after “You’re home.” He’d wash and the bitter smell of vodka would sting your tongue and mascara your eyes and his thumbs knew the right times to clear and you’d drift and you’d call on and on about how June got lost in the streets was lost to the liquor and how Abby shouldn’t go home well she’d think twice before going home with another’s lips accompanying her own. And he would listen. And he wouldn’t say a word except for here he’d murmur “You’re home.” and there he’d murmur “You’re home.” and just moments after “You’re Home.” For a second you’d lose his touch and your bottom would slip but before you had so much more than a moment to acknowledge the wretch in your heart a towel was draped around your little frame and your weight lifted from the tub and you’d tap the hollow thuds of his steps with you in his arms and eventually you’d run out of words. And he’d heard it all before. With ankles and heels dripping and hair damp to your neck he’d lie you in bed and split open the window for he knew the night was one to blame for speaking to you so foolishly and he’d turn on the fan and soon his weight touched the buzz beneath you and he curled against your body leaving all of the right places open for the early morning to touch. Upper thighs just above the knees, forehead and the flats of your feet every place in which his lips had long before touched, soft spots drunken or not. And everything would grow still, and you’d cry. You would cry for the love in that room for the love left spilled in that glass for the love left scraped against your knees for the love left leaning against the doorway for the love in that moonlit apartment for the love rattling in that tub for the love in that linen for the love in those hollow steps for the love walking within the night for the love at those soft spots for the love of hearing it all before. And he wouldn’t say a word except here he’d murmur “You’re home.” and there he’d murmur “You’re home.” and just moments after “You’re home.” And despite me, you found a way to stay.
I am not sure if any of this is about to make any sense at all. I feel lonely tonight. And not in the sense of the absence of a company that will caress, a company that can reach out to touch you, but my mind is lonely. I find it’s only me keeping myself up at night. I find that when you’re not here for me to lay out, for me to inspect and study, I revert to studying myself. And somehow the swell of your knuckles makes me see the wind in my hips as wonderful, as lovely, as living, as a 19 year old timidity who is six floors up in an espresso scented apartment. I don’t even drink coffee. You see the reality is striking when your broad shoulders aren’t beside me to dangle over, so I hang limp, in half just there with a divide at my ribs and I can feel my bones digging into the wood further and further you see but when you are here it’s flesh. And an empty wine glass on the counter with my ruby lips as witness will not call a clatter to the sink in the morning, but collect dust. Muscle memory is all that seemed necessary when it was just shy an hour of taunting streetlights, familiar pavement, and the pressured blanket of night warming my knees before I could lean to let my mouth rest. Now there is a repetitious still, a calm, open land. I just don’t know what to do with the space. The dirt on your palms from the firewood was enough to know that I’ve loved you. Even if not here and now. I don’t know. I don’t know much at all. Just that I miss you, and I wish you’d come home.
Your cold hands rubbing up my thighs were always enough to dismiss every fragment of a thought rummaging in this tired mind of mine other than you, handsome, and catching my taste against your teeth.
When all that swooned me were the remnants of candle wax, the silk of the smoke curling around my fingertips, my sound struggling against it’s cage. Do you think it was just accident, then, that night with the moon’s breath thick against my neck, your tongue tripped into mine? Don’t you know my lips were long dry? Don’t you know they’ve kept quiet, mingling to one another to swallow back tastes past. Just thinking of the moment makes my mouth water. Pool, drip, sweat. Thirst. Even now, I drag my finger tips across the shallowed dips, what remains of my body and I am clung. Desperately, your murmurs heating my neck, your thought heating my thighs. What once called fragile is lost, as you’ve replaced every taste I can remember. And how could I possibly render anything but - a succulent peach, your taste, humid against my own. And don’t you ever wonder, love, what could possibly be an accident in such place as this? The ground nearly reverberates for us to touch.
Most nights I just don’t know where to put my hands.
I’d wait for you to come home, bottom balanced on the sill, biting the hearts out of the strawberries I’d let dangle from my fingers before dropping them to the earth beneath.
There were things that drew me to you with an insanity that should have been incomprehensible, but I was always too skeptic to list them for you. I always thought that if you were aware of them they might one by one become faint, dying out and leaving me with nothing to linger on while I sat. How your flannels would hang just to your swollen knuckles, flushed and rough, a texture my lips grew a hunger for.
The temperature much too low, and the energy bills much too high. Sometimes I never heard the end of it, but they were always too high. Still, I couldn’t help but to think a smirk would tip at your lips when you’d see me from two stories below, hidden beneath those knits, seeds leading you towards me.
How your lips would tremble as they sloped my abdomen, how my abdomen would tremble as it greeted your lips. And your hands would curl underneath my weight to arch to your arrival, your forefinger digging heavier than the rest. The bruises were marked with quite accuracy. Two ribs down.
Your shirts always curved just below my bottom. Sometimes the chills that caressed up my spine pinned me against the hall, my skin between your teeth, my weight cupped in your palms. The coffee whimpering on the stove. It took a car alarm a block back, an abrupt bark, the stuttering of a street light to introduce me to the street’s breath I once again mistook for your own.
How you rushed to knot yourself into the sheets, into my legs right after you stepped out of the shower, towel knotted to your waist. It took a few minutes to calm the tremors across your body, and I’d watch as little by little the steam dissolved into your back. You wouldn’t settle until we were burrowed into one another, the heat from the shower smothering our bedroom. Apple pie to my chest, the bathwater to your neck.
Some nights, while I waited, I would steady my knees out within the remaining inches and line the blemishes. The touch you’d left behind to rest with me, while I waited. It’s strange the things I could associate to your marks, how I would flinch to the contact of some, and know exactly the shirt I peeled from your flesh just moments before it was left.
How the instant the oven door clasped to hold my nights’ sweet, my feet lost touch with the floor and your mouth was sewn to mine, too much wine and an insatiable thirst to beat the timer. Fumbling feet against wooden floors, lip locked weight, God what the neighbors must have thought of the soundtrack to our apartment.
I’d wait for you to come home, and once you stepped onto 8th I would watch, and count the number of steps you took until you were positioned between my ankles, two stories below. I knew all too well what each range would mean when you bustled through the door, and left my body to anticipate the rest.