We had a strange love,
one that you probably
have never read in a book,
or seen on a painted screen.
No, we were something else,
a sight to be seen.
We met years ago, randomly
constantly forgetting each other
in the crowds of strangers in
our separate towns, but then
one night at the bar, we spoke over
empty glasses of whiskey, and
compared our Star Wars tattoos,
laughing so loudly, we kept
the town awake until dawn.
Night after night we laid with our bare
backs pressed against the wooden deck,
taking swigs of that Tennessee poison we
love so dearly, while he taught me how
to blow smoke rings.
Somehow, we fell in love that night.
He said he adored my passionate writing,
how I gave words a whole new meaning,
something deeper, like my heart was speaking.
He never bought me flowers,
chocolates, or overstuffed animals
that made up for his mistakes or time away.
No, we were inseparable, we made dinner
together every night, throwing flour, flicking
milk, and tossing egg shells at each other
in the process, laughing until our sides ached.
Sometimes I’d wake up to breakfast in bed,
and often after work, I’d grab a bottle of whiskey
so we could drink our stress of reality away.
We loved each other, passionately,
and the thought of the future never
once frightened me into pushing him away.
We fought with conviction, rarely,
and one day I realized something strange.
That I couldn’t imagine living a day
without him in my life.
It was almost as if he had been here,
been with me, all along.
We had what some people called
a strange love, but you know what?
It was our love.
We had a strange love,
I don’t know what I could
have done to make you stay,
sitting here on the lonely back
porch I balance the cancer between
my yellow stained fingers, and take
burning gulps of whiskey.
I admit that I think about the night
that you left me more than I should,
I replay it like a film on loop,
over and over in my clouded mind.
We weren’t ourselves that night,
no, I don’t even know how we
had become such strangers
over the years we had spent together.
We had grown so far apart, it
was a slow and painful process, and
I hate myself for not noticing it sooner,
but hey, you didn’t do anything either.
I want to blame you for the nights
that I cried myself to sleep, begging
my tear soaked pillow for answers,
I want to blame you for the distance
that stood between us, the silent
conversations, full of words that
were left unsaid.
But as much as I want to hate you,
and blame you for this sickening void
lodged deep within my chest,
I know it won’t change the love that
we abandoned, and the time we wasted.
So I spend my nights wondering
what I could have done differently
to make you stay, who I could have
pretended to be, just to keep you around.
But I can admit that deep down, I know
we were just caught in a slow motion
lover’s nightmare, and you couldn’t
wait to wake up and leave me in the dark.
I was that girl
I waited there
for days on end
until those days
grew to weeks
and when the
to slowly fade
away, I picked
up my withered
a strong drive
to fight back.
my heart went
cold that night,
and I realized
I am beautiful,
even without you,
and I won’t be
when you return.
Give me back those wasted years
the empty promises, the tears.
Figure out a way to give me back
the memories and moments we shared,
the emotions that were false when you
had me convinced you truly cared.
I tried to read what was behind
your sullen eyes, but the whiskey had
replaced my blood flow and our
eyes never met, like the stars never aligned.
The air was thick with smoke that hung
in this small room, I coughed and gagged
and you sat silent so proud of your coal miner’s lung.
Give me back the nights I’ve spent in bed
sobbing alone while I try to erase these images,
the words you spoke, screaming in my head.
Give me back the hours, days, months, years
that I spent kissing you softly, singing you to sleep,
just give it all back to me.
Teach me the symphony
of the rain drops as they tap
and screech down the window pane.
You swore you studied music,
so this is why I ask, but I dreamt
once you learned for years
about words, like me, and we
could take turns, singing
each other to sleep.
I thought maybe today would
be the morning I could sleep in,
but nature and these dark clouds
were mimicking the pain
embedded deep within my chest.
The rain, the drops of moisture
that cause my hair to curl and
fizz, woke me up to the scolding
sight of the sun, as it drenched
my skin in light and heat, the
last thing I wanted from this wretched earth.
But the seasons change and I
can’t seem to put the world on
hold to feel sorry for my
broken heart and soul.
I’m writing this for you.
That’s what you wanted,
isn’t that it?
When you first told me
in that sweet southern twang,
I love your words,
my skin tingled, and I
wanted to write you the
most beautiful, lovely
perfect words I could
Maybe then you’d
I explored my mind,
wrote until my fingers
were bleeding ink,
ruining these pages.
I thought drinking might
help, but I just wound up
drunk, spilling whiskey
all over my typewriter.
I tried, I did.
But then I realized,
over the tragically painful
years of keeping you close,
(but not too close)
that my words are
simply just a cluster
And I can’t trick your
heart into beating
for me, not with these