oofpoetry

Love’s not the way to treat a friend.
I wouldn’t wish that on you. I don’t
want to see your eyes forgotten
on a rainy day, lost in the endless purse
of those who can remember nothing.

Love’s not the way to treat a friend.
I don’t want to see you end up that way
with your body being poured like wounded
marble into the architecture of those who make
bridges out of crippled birds.

Love’s not the way to treat a friend.
There are so many better things for you
than to see your feelings sold
as magic lanterns to somebody whose body
casts no light.

Richard Brautigan, “Love’s Not the Way to Treat a Friend” (via oofpoetry)
oofpoetry
What I know of survival is this:
how to adjust my body around the cool spots in bed,
the way my hair is never exactly right
when I leave the house for a hopeful second date,
the imprint of my bra on my skin after coming home
and letting my dress pool at my feet.
Sleeping, alone.
Missing you and missing you.
I eat olives and arugula standing up in the kitchen,
wearing nothing except underwear and pearls.
I do not recognize myself.
Being sad only makes me thirsty.
I drink two glasses of water, take an aspirin,
dance with myself slowly in the living room.
Everything comes back to me in moments—
flashes of your skin, the freckles on your chest,
your perfect wrists, a kneecap, the small of your back.
I peel away the sadness to get down to the pit of the thing
and can never quite manage to finish it.
My hands smell like oranges, clove cigarettes.
Pounds of sadness. I get out of bed. I run the bath.
Chocolate shavings and blueberries for lunch.
Little things, but I am handling it.
Yesterday, I almost called you to tell you that I love you,
but then I remembered I’m not allowed to say it anymore,
and it is awful. You are with me even when I brush my teeth.
Kristina Hayes, “Love So Good That I Forgot to Say ‘Ouch’” (via oofpoetry)
oofpoetry

I remember holding you against the sink,
with the sun soaking the window, the soft call
of your hips, and the intricate flickers
of thought chiming your eyes. Your mouth,
like a Saturday. I remember your
long thighs, how they
opened on the sofa, and the pulse
of your cry when you came, and
sometimes I miss you
the way someone drowning
remembers the air.

I think about these students
in class this afternoon, itching
through this hour, their bodies new
to puberty, their brains streaked
with grammar – probably none of them
in love, how they listen to my voice
and believe my steady, adult face,
how they wish the school day would
hurry past, so they could start
spending their free time again, how
none of them really understands
what the clock is always teaching
about the way things disappear.

Tim Seibles, from “Slow Dance” (via oofpoetry)
oofpoetry
I keep telling you ‘I love you’
and it comes out as an apology.
I’m sorry. You want it to be bolder, bigger, less pathetic.
‘Love’ has become a fighting word for us.
You argue that you love me more. I don’t object.
I turn over in bed, sob into the pillow, pity myself.
I mumble it back to you because you
like the way it sounds coming out of my mouth.
We’ve turned caring for each other into a duty dance
that’s cheapened ‘love.’
It has become another way of apologizing
as you roll your eyes and say, ‘Sorry, I forgot to buy milk’,
a habit with every evening’s, ‘Night, love you too’,
a promise we keep breaking:
‘Of course I won’t, I love you’,
a lie.
It hits me that we no longer know what it means
when you slap me across the face and instantly,
I tell you I love you. I can’t help it.
I have spent months associating it with this much pain.
My insides are bullet-holed basins where the past goes to die.
I feel death when you stand close.
Stay away from me.
I love you.
Lora Mathis, “We Need a New Word for ‘Love,’ It’s Overused” (via oofpoetry)