complete your self
You see my eyelids like butterfly wings
stilled on flowering cheeks,
you lie so still
hoping they’ll land on you.
But I never was anything so peaceful;
I am not the color of my cheeks.
I don’t remember stepping into this light
to read lines,
but I’ve already got the role.
You love me like stars.
You love me like looking back.
You love me like a compliment—
like I fit into you—
a seed you swallow,
plant in your esophagus—
and grow within you.
You make me a moon
just your size to eclipse your light.
(I’d rather be a shape that won’t stack with yours—
I want everything of me to show).
You reduce me to tides
And I push into you, pull away,
push you to throw your mother’s music box
out the second story window
and drive to Sunoco for a pack of Newports,
though you quit 8 months ago.
I don’t laugh like skips of sunlight
off the Swarovski crystal hung in the rearview mirror.
It’s just a sound in my throat.
Sometimes I think
you produced that sound:
stuck a nickel in my ear;
pressed play, repeat—
your favorite song.
I breathe out carbon dioxide;
I won’t breathe your oxygen.
I won’t try to give your heart a beat.
I cross my arms around my chest,
reaching nails in my back,
checking for wings.
I want to rip open my skin and show you my spine—
how it doesn’t have your signature on it,
how I’m a quarter-broken inside,
the way you are a quarter-broken inside.
How I’m breathing my way
through my own life
how that life doesn’t exist
as a completion to yours.