They are gripped and shattered by something intrinsic to their own being.
I don’t know what you sleep with, in your saturnine heart. But you were what I held onto, the only thing that mattered. You saw it, love, saw what I am. And I know it was so ugly that you left me. You left beautifully but you left all the same. I don’t blame you. I can’t begrudge you that. But when I wake in shattered constellations of thought, I still see your face on the underside of my soul. When I love and am consoled, I feel you, the last of your hands. I remember what you said to me, how I held you. I recall, my god, how I adored you.
When you write, is it empty? Your throat, the voice wherein I felt my knuckles move, I know that it is never empty. When I held your shivering form and listened, waited for the pulse to slow and sigh, I know that we were never empty. I am in love with you. I will leave this place knowing that, and swallowing it like a silence. Under the weight of that knowledge, I fold like a nightmare.
I am not designed for malice, but I am cruel to my own body: insatiable, self-satiating, I devour myself. There is no pain, where once there was. I only wanted to love you, to know you, and how did it get to be this way? Miles to go, right? Miles to go. You broke beneath my tongue like a cresting wave, breathless, salt-stained, lily petals strangled in your wind-bitten hair. Some nights, I feel your teeth on my bloodstained bottom lip, sense your absence like a missing limb. The sorrow and the sentience and the mournful liturgy of my bones. Your skin is tangled in the wind, your eyes haunt the sunrise, your body is one with the morning light. The strange and singular half-lost bliss, the text-on-flesh, the printing press. My girl, my only girl, where did you sleep last night?
I wandered home, found solace in the embrace of my only true lover, the crystals that fracture beneath sordid skin, breaking fast with my blood, shortening the tether of my breath. Soon I won’t remember the color of your eyes. Have you forgotten mine?
I believed you, father, lover, stranger: ingrate, sometimes I still do. Say the word, and I’m there. But you speak no longer, and I am not finished yet. Whatever I am, however little I know you, how scarcely I retain myself, however bruised I may be, I am here. I will stagger and survive. I will bend until I break. What are you doing here? When did you remember I exist? What can you do to me? What’s left to wound? Something is wrong so deep inside of me that I cannot recall it. I cannot name it. It’s not coming out.
“None of us suffers as much as we should, or loves as much as we say. Love is the first lie; wisdom the last.”
I saw you with another. My lover, please remember me.