A Prose Poem Inspired By An NPR Segment

11 May

How can I listen when you don’t love me, when you ask me to love myself before you can, as if I could do you something you couldn’t, as if I could taste myself the way that you have, with your tongue in my mouth I plead for less, or more, or something that I can grasp onto that would let me know I wouldn’t have to go on searching for something that you refuse to give of yourself.

We’re told that this is love, this giving, and that’s how I know we’re holding onto with; withholding from one another the pieces of ourselves that we cannot bear to let, yet when I hear your voice across a line, beneath a surface, I come to you again and again, throughout time and know you are undeserving of such a response, know that one day I will look at your face and wonder what I let go of; know that we will scream across a room, a distance, a separation of what we once had together.

Know that I will see your face with closed eyes and think of all the unwritten words, and I will know that I can’t but return again and again to that thing I gave you so long ago and wonder at the innocence that we once were.

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