i do not fit inside your back pocket.
i will not fold over in those same wet creases you leave on my skin.
i do not fall into the same shape,
pitiful face in my hands pressed against my knees, back hard against the wall,
every time you leave me.
you cannot set your watch by the curl of my lip.
my fate may be carved into the palms of my hands,
etched on my forehead for you to trace.
you can, perhaps, divine my future from the pattern of peeled bark
on the spot where you stabbed my initials into a tree
the same spot i leaned against while you marked my shoulder with your lips.
but i do not fit into these shoes you think i own.

your face is a little like summer, i think;
a resemblance, semblance, and somewhere dusk.
nights i’ve spent on the borders of your body,
drug-struck with the knowledge of you held in my nostrils
like some primordial treasure, eau d’ homme —
the residue of the post-coital rising from the stain of
your flesh like dew. to prove the depths of my obsession
i pretended to know you better than you knew yourself,
redefining aspects of you with a gaussian flourish,
the back of the knee and the indent set above your lips,
for no better reason than that it pissed you off
to see yourself contained, to love your container.
a bitter lover, me, with a bite like winter —
frosty fingerings and yet you still smell like flowers,
fuchsia lilac honeysuckle foxglove snowdrop
and all waning now, in the aftermath of may.

it’s all about the ending with you, isn’t it.
all about waning, things dying, finished, days spluttering into messy dusks.
i don’t think you can even look at winter without feeling melancholy
with its inevitable end in melting fire, destruction and roses.
you even hover around me where i end; the tips of my fingers,
the corners of my mouth, where my hip bone juts out.
you are a perpetual mourner, looking always at beginnings ended,
fading sunlight, moans drifting into soft sighs. when you let me go
i’m never certain you will ever drape your arms around me this way again.
you breathe me in as if that air, that piece of me you take inside you,
Has such a limited life.
you smell me as if i am new, as if i am bounded, complete, an island.
you weave goodbye with every breath.

(when enough time has passed)

have you heard? probably not. no one knows but me
and him
and i’m sure he doesn’t think about it anymore.
passing fancy. fads fade and no one remembers them.
facts become fads become fabulous dinner party anecdotes,
and i don’t get those kind of invitations anymore.

in an effort to explain this to myself,
in an effort to ease my own pain and punch back my own rising panic
i imagine that i must have just gotten lost for a while.

it’s easy to get lost, after all, in the curve of his stomach,
the taste of his skin, the passion he can pour into one kiss, one kiss,
in an empty hallway, in a coat closet, in an empty classroom, kneeling on his bed at 3am
in the momentary flashes of something in those steely eyes of his.

there was a time i thought i understood him, at least a little.
there was a time i thought there was something he could give me,
something i could offer him. how many different ways can one emotion fail you?

i’ve been foolish, i’ve been naive. i’ve been hopeful, it’s a crime these days.
i went on pounding a desperate path from my cold bed
into his indifferent arms and imagined them warm enough.
i traced a hot, wet line from his mouth to his cock and how i longed for it.
heat, as it turns out, in a limited resource, and he stole all of mine.
even now my fingers are cold from the ice of his breath. i feel sick.

(the last time you touched me was your fist into my face.
the last time i touched you was my knee against your stomach.)

and i try very hard not to remember that last kiss,
the last time his lips grazed my neck and i wasn’t afraid.
at night i still dream of him, his body pressed against me,
his heart beating under my hands. i wake up crying and kicking at my sheets,
and remember that this is not a nightmare.

(ten days later i am still mourning the piece of myself i left with you.
twelve and a half days later i am still waiting to stop loving you.)

he catches the snitch in the next quidditch game and i don’t cry foul.
i can’t concentrate, and when i see him duck down to chase after victory i only feel relieved
that he is going in the opposite direction. i imagine that if i fly straight up
eventually my heart will explode and all of this pain will end.

oh, the pathos, oh the melodrama.

(deep down, i think you’ve always hated me.)

bravo, i say, my beloved enemy knows how to hurt me best. bravo.

(libertine and ivy blossom, in dialogia)