UNTITLED: Poetry from the Archives

james dean smoking

I take another hard drag, hoping to finally end it.

It’s days like these I hate myself the most.

She sits slumped over, cross-legged and sobbing on the carpet. I’ve clearly fucked up again. Done my worst, which, over my course, I’ve become far too good at.

“I wonder if I’ll ever truly understand her,” the voice in my head connives as I nod in feigned comprehension at the snap of her words when she hooks me back in with

“ARE YOU EVEN LISTENING TO ME?”

A pause. Finally,

“Yes.”

Yes, I’ve done a great many horrible things to many people, but this, I tell you my friends, is the worst:

To look at the woman who loves you in spite of yourself – not your fake self, or your work self, or your bar self or your Facebook self – and to see her hurting because of the person you are inside, and you’re too selfish to let her go when you know you really should…

That’s pretty fucked up.

But don’t be too hard on yourself. That’s just how your Mama raised ya.

And how school charged its tuition.

But know that there’s no class in life that can prepare you for it. I propose that maybe if I knew the value of delayed gratification over the definition I wouldn’t be stressed so much. And maybe if I learned vulnerability instead of viscosity when dissecting the human heart I’d be able to reach out to her like a normal fucking human being.

But I am the product of my experiences, the majority of which are shit. I have the makings of greatless and she deserves a hell of a lot better than me.

Yet in spite of that, and me, and my cold words and explosive reactions, her hand still rests on my thigh, squeezing it white-knuckled as she works out her demons in frantic exorcisms on the floor.

She sees what I could be, drawing attention to everything that I’m not. Her praises pierce the weak points in my armour and I stand defenseless against her innocence. How alien my black-and-white world must seem to her childlike wonder. She is everything that is good and pure in this life. She is colour. She is the sun.

I am what remains once she sets.

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