The streets have cleared after the freeze like the geese flee the north upon one good gust. I don’t even brake as I approach the red light. I take my foot off the gas and I let the world carry me forward, just as it intends. It’s perhaps the only time in my life that I have done such a thing. I accelerate that which time cannot abbreviate. I crave what cannot be condensed into one drop. And I wonder, as I creep forward, if I have always been such a fool.
I think that, perhaps, I might. I didn’t ask for you to come into my life and turn all that was potential kinetic. I had found some pocket for myself in the rhythm of the universe at which there was stability. But now that you’re here, I don’t know what it all is if you go. I never asked to fall in love, and now I am being bound by it above the heat of this truth. I am falling in love with you. In fact, I may have already arrived. And yet I am still finding ways to curdle it with sheer force.
I know that you feel it, even if you have managed to ignore its lapping tongue. I don’t believe that it is misplaced trust that has landed us on uneven ground. I see the fear running laps around the bister pools of your eyes. It’s not a lack of acknowledgement, it is submission to the event horizon of your dread. I know it’s within you, it’s simply being gagged by a bad seed planted long ago.
I know this because we say the same things when we’re saying nothing at all. I tried honesty and found better prizes in the valueless games we play to not expose our hands. We fiddle with the philosophy of broad assertions, assigning them obvious meanings but delving into the ones we dare not say. In the end, we validate each other in far lower stake ways by not admitting anything tangible.
I find a sadness in that. But I find it sadder that it gives me some little piece of hope. I’ll take even a shanty foothold.
I could sense it. The precarious lines of a support shaking in the breeze. It wasn’t quite wrong, but it wasn’t just right. Perhaps I always knew, whether you ended up saying it or not, that I’m a slight green snake trying to find a way into your walled garden. I know there’s a way. I’ve seen the path in your eyes, in your soft words. I’m just a clumsy creature who has always longed to be welcomed with open arms but is of a nature that causes people to turn away.
So perhaps I’ve always been a fool. I’m tucking tail so many hours after I wished to flee, regroup, remember who I am when I am not possessed by a love that I was not looking for. I want to curse what you stole from me. But I can’t. I am in love, and it’s the first time I’ve allowed the words to find form. I can’t bring myself to regret what my heart won’t even imagine could be a detour. I can’t rue this undoing of myself, even as I feel you turn from me.
But it’s not entirely borne out of some manifested balance. It’s because I know it’s in you too, struggling against what cages it. I can imagine the tumbleweeds of your head rolling around to a chorus of “let it be!”. You have given me no indication of pause, you’ve had many chances to let it all go. And I have to believe that something this potent couldn’t possibly be lost on anyone. I’ll evict the fear that threatens to find me in that foolhardy place, after a night spent together in the darkness. Because as much as I want to run as fast as my little legs can carry me, I want you more. And I have to find some way to know peace in that, to not drag the grief of a heart that swells and breaks itself into a situation that isn’t overcast with my particular brand of lust.
I have to put faith in that thing in your eyes, in the truth that you feel but won’t look in the face. But it is not lost on me that I can know the contents of my heart only when I also know that you will not see them.
*authored 19 Feb 2021