I never understood Love
I grew up reading of Mr. Darcy’s
and yearned for a love that could withstand a war,
like Snape for Lily, always.
Love was a sonnet, a ballad,
it was the curl of his lashes
throwing shadows upon his cheek as
the morning sun hinted at the day ahead.
But Love never read like a poem.
When Love came, she came as an afterthought —
long after the whiskey had washed away
his amber eyes burning into my soul.
Long after the Absolut truths had left their indelible mark
upon my mind.
Love came to me as I laid awake,
dreaming of remembering.
She whispered that what we had was real,
after I had let him go.
Love came to me in moments of Absolut sadness.
Rubbing at the aches that wanted,
the longing for longing as I slept, warm,
in arms that circled but never belonged (to him.)
I used to think that Love was an ultimatum.
Love meant being together forever,
as fingers traced body into future baby parts.
Love was a picket fence and a dog,
a goal in the backyard where lazy Sunday barbecues
warred with noises that only children can achieve.
Love was quiet afternoons with a glass of wine
and someone who’d drop a quick kiss
on the top of your head in passing.
But I was wrong. Love wasn’t all of that. I get it now.
Love was wanting all of that (with him.)
Being with him was poetry in retrospect —
the night we cooked japanese curry together
with his onion goggles and him writing
“Rocketeer” upon the blackboard I hung
on my living room wall.
It’s hard to romanticize longboards and
tacky board shorts,
and frozen beer talks.
Love came to me in my memories.
In the scribbled margins of my scrapbook
decorated with pictures of his face,
his fingers upon my hips,
the lingering wanting to remember of my words.
It dances in the in-between
when you’re not quite sure of who you’re missing
and if what you had was even real.
Love exists in figments.
The parallels of who I am warring with
who I used to be with who I could be,
Love came to me in a Facebook message,
sent years after we’d ended any form of ending.
It came in a “hey, how have you been?”
that neither was expecting.
The hollow I had come to associate with him faded.
Long after the haunting warmth
and long, long after the lingering I miss you’s.
Love came to me that afternoon,
and she said, yes. What you had was real.
And good lord, was it beautiful.
But, what you’ll have next is better.
You’ve finally understood that Love
is not a singular.
It is not a thing to be acquired or remembered.
It is a choice.
To be all you can or to fade
Love, for me, existed at the bottom of a bottle.
Amber colored truths that came with the heady scent
of peat and smoke.
She came in Absolut terror,
at 2am in the mourning when yearning was so strong
and alone was a cardinal sin.
She wrapped her arms around me
as the cold wind blew
tears that couldn’t shed
because Love was finally a subject
that I knew, with certainty.
I never understood Love
when she appeared in books
and saved damsels in distress
but I get her now, after saving myself.
I don’t usually discuss my pieces. I think much of the allure of poetry comes from your own take of a piece. How the stanzas break apart to bleed into your veins. It’s why I write it, and why I love it. It’s why I read it.
Then again, it might just be some innate form of laziness. I don’t edit my pieces. Every piece that goes out is raw. I’ve been told that I should edit more, but somehow, I can’t find it within me to do so.
This piece, for me, is a form of edition. I wrote a piece similar to it for my first Poetry Reading, last year, you can read it here.
These are 2 separate pieces, claiming the same thoughts. They’re both written by me, but by different versions of me. I don’t claim to have grown, but I can claim that my thought processes have changed.
Time has a funny way of doing that. I’m pretty sure that my romantic tendencies (aka rambling writing) will remain. It’s less an ingrained habit and more of a personality trait. More of a writing trait. I’d like to be one of those concise writers, who can paint a universe with a sentence, but I’m not.
If you’re so inclined, please leave a comment. I’d love to read you.