Not ruling out
Granules and meltlets
Beach front green screen
Lines like, “Heart attack, cancer, or death,”
I kissed someone else. And any actual feeling which wasn’t a ploy was a willing casualty. And, the family you’re from, you better than anyone understand what compromise is: a daily occurrence, not a prison sentence because even they eventually end, mostly.
Months later, once you’ve fucked my friends and I, yours, when you’d think it too late to try you ask, “What if?” and the boyfriend box with your name on it which I loft-shoved, barely saved from setting light, changes status. Trinkets waning in and out of use.
You pick me when I’m not me – when you think I’m someone else completely. And I always pick you.
The problem is, who you fuck alters timelines, and you fucked in the wrong order. Her first.
You don’t know what I’ve given to god and the times I’ve given it up and how many times I’ve sworn to stop something for good. But I never do. And the mere promise of it – quitting – is enough to keep me conducting for my whole life which, if I’m lucky, lasts ’til 2062.
When I ask, assume it implies I’m not a let go, forget kind of a person, and I’ll want you when you don’t want me, won’t know how to shut off those feelings simply like closing kitchen cupboards to hide disorganised ingredients. Public opinion won’t change my mind about Tom Cruise, not when I’ve seen that method, logged that screen time. And you’ll plump up exactly when you should oven-sink.
And you should be a screen door settler, who I bar better than Columbus who didn’t discover anything evidently and thought he’d discovered something else entirely, and it’s the unexpected finds that foundation-fuck and undermine plans which you shouldn’t make unless you’re ready for a lesson in fate which doesn’t exist but you’d think it does going by every decision you did make and the unbuttered side of it as it gravel-scraped.
In another life, an actual one that a timeline is living out right now, adjacent to yours and simultaneously, this this this is. But not here.
Play. Don’t do right.
Tactics, rules, retaliate,
deductions and make heard.
Make it heard.
Once, spirit was a thing,
Coco Pop real
and I cherished skin tags
like design label lipstick.
Now, teams are numbers’ games
and I add up better than Duffy,
any of those super-good
Because 5 is better than 4
and 4 is better than 3
and, target, I eliminate you
when you’re 15, 5 or 50.
Mess with me, fuck, I’ll
and discerning language
about you winning. Chance.
You’ll never fucking win this
You’ll never fucking win with me here
and it’s the good of somebody
at the stake. At stake.
The mistake I make
is taking advice
from someone’s authority
and again. I do it.
What I didn’t want:
rejection’s a package deal
in this life.
But they know it now.
There’s no saving. Not. Just
retaliational penalties and
“I’m glad you didn’t win.”
I’m glad you didn’t win.
The tea tastes like coffee because the jug once had coffee in it and you are inscrutable stains Caleb made on the sofa after impromptu nights with Emma – I can almost make out Australia. And even the second, bitterer cup can’t shake the taste with sugar. You’re the crack in my right eye. The skin I pick off of my heels.
When we kiss, there are people watching, but we don’t get a kick of it the way women do in Crash, and men. We’re not the sort to give snatches of our webcam selves. We wouldn’t sell a photograph for money if it could later incriminate us; you don’t need much evidence to destroy teaching careers, marriages, pop stars’ lives.
And these people, watching, are those that could take empires down, having lain in wait for at least eight months, or maybe just four. They’ve cried themselves sleeping, wondering if they’ll get their lottery shot, cash advance, salaried job, finally.
I’ll start with my Polly Pocket, my collection of rocks, matchboxes full of the smallest trinkets: acorns, rings, fluff, conkers, receipt notes, scrabble tiles, letters. And then I’ll move on to the unburnable stuff that exists in memory but is thick like a jelly ghost in front of me ready to slime me or stick.
And once you know them too, it’ll be a soulless sort of feeling for me. I’ll be an inch lighter. Like my debts you’ll have a responsibility, same as feeding me, making me sleep. And you won’t be ready, prepared, the way no one is for anything really. It’s only a bullshit blag.
You’ll wake next to mistakes of mine, luggage without shrinkage, stuff you’re sure we gave away. But nothing ever goes, and especially what you’re rid of first, you’ll want back. But eBay’s an unexpected soiled, an almost but sun altered or sat on. A hair in the spine of a book ready to slip out when you get to page 154.
I’m implicit, implicated, undeniably entwined, constantly erroneously eroded.
I watch your boat like you’re Pacey and this is Dawson’s Creek and I’m too late to run, and even if I did, your impulses aren’t thick, your eyes quick. The last time you made a decision was 2002, and even then it was only which box set to buy; VHS was an option.
I’ve made unconventional choices but not unconventional enough. I won’t wear a rosary when it’s fashionable to in case the implications are true even though I don’t think they are now. I’m hard-wired with a certainty there’s a man on the roof surveilling me, checking I don’t expose myself in public, that I’m fucking who I should which is nobody because I’m not married and even then it’s pretty questionable and Bible study’s more important. “Read it in a year,” they said.
It’s simple what I want. The undoing of shirts. Zips stopping to work. Incantation. The promise of guilt free spirituality, which is not in support of wrong doing, but evidence of the fact morality’s standalone, slipping, ebbed.
If I knew what was good for me, I’d read. And the Bible would say stop what you’re doing, listen when a man’s talking, feed periods to the wolves and die in the desert if you’re pure and deny the devil or, at least, Richard Dawkins.