if only you could see yourself now,
you’re settling back into a quiet autumn
and you’ve missed the smell of must, rain, and tobacco
kissed into the corners and couches
of the same house you share with seven others.
you miss the girl who used to sleep on your couch
who had the skull of the bird she is named after
tattooed across her arm.
you are glad you stopped drinking.
it’s 2am and you’re staying up far too late.
you have an interview for a job in the morning
that you will come to hate in 2 months.
you’re not in love the way you expected.
some memories turned into broken drawers
that you chose to store all your knives in,
every time you open them, they always come spilling out towards you.
you miss having sex with people you also love.
precariousness is now the pillow you sleep upon,
and you no longer have such structured repeating romance.
you no longer have such a structured repeating life,
and I know it killed you that you knew it wasn’t forever.
i know i can’t stop you from panicking,
but it will all make sense.
you repeat repeat repeat repeat repeat repeat
until you realized it was too early to build such a life based on repetition.
you’re settling back into a quiet autumn,
and you’re stone sober at 4am after a Friday night
while the world starts to makes a strange kind of sense,
the same way words become meaningless when repeated enough times.
all of this
is to say,
you made it this far,
and i’m proud of you.
I stopped going to therapy
because I knew my therapist was right
and I wanted to keep being wrong.
I wanted to keep my bad habits
like charms on a bracelet.
I did not want to be brave.
I think I like my brain best
in a bar fight with my heart.
I think I like myself a little broken.
I’m ok if that makes me less loved.
I like poetry better than therapy anyway.
The poems never judge me
for healing wrong.
Dating is probably the most fraught human interaction there is. You’re sizing people up to see if they’re worth your time and attention, and they’re doing the same to you. It’s meritocracy applied to personal life, but there’s no accountability. We submit ourselves to these intimate inspections and simultaneously inflict them on others and try to keep our psyches intact - to keep from becoming cold and callous - and we hope that at the end of it we wind up happier than our grandparents, who didn’t spend this vast period of their lives, these prime years, so thoroughly alone, coldly and explicitly anatomized again and again.