The City Looks Different.

You can map the sprawl
of city life in the twist of
veins beneath my skin,
trace my blood flow like the shifting of the earth.

The rhythm in my chest matches
the beat of your wanderlust; the blaze of
lights and the familiar hum of crowded streets.

The oceans in my eyes are nothing
compared to the constellations
on my lashes, the curve of the
mountains in my smile.

Nature is attached to the very breath from
my lungs, the heady scent of earth and
rain clinging to my fingertips.

I am a crystal clear day.
I am a thunderstorm.

You just press kisses to
my rivers and valleys,
whether violently raging
or eerily calm.

your head rests against the branches
of my heart, your arms entangle in
the roots that span my ribcage.

(I can’t help but wonder:
are you in love with the metropolis
that sings beneath your hand or the girl?)

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Open Letter to Former Lovers.

I keep racking my brain, trying to figure out the best way to rid myself of you. There have been countless words, unending tears, random boys and girls, and more heartbreak than I thought possible since I left your life.

History has always been a hard thing for me to walk away from. And although we were together for such a short time, you’ve been a part of me since before, before this beginning, before this life.

I always focus on the wrong thing when it comes to you. The wrong moment in time. As soon as I start thinking about the beginning, it’s already ending.

That’s the thing about history; it can deceive you. It’s so easy to get caught up in the way the past connects you. It’s so easy to become blind to the way the present is tearing you apart. I think I always knew how we were going to end, the quiet strangle of our demise. After all, how could it have ended any other way?

I was always going to walk away.

You were always going to be the better person.

What I didn’t predict or expect was just how hard I would fall for you, how deep the rabbit hole would go. I never expected to give you all of me. I have grown in that absence, grown hard, grown weary. I forgot how to love after you. You left a fissure so large I separated. You took something from me, you took my love and my trust.

I wonder, every day, if you ever loved me. Did I mean anything to you at all?

It doesn’t matter. I’ve been looking at this wrong the whole time. I don’t need to move on from you, I need to move forward from the girl that loved you. I need to let go of the pieces of myself that I let you infect. I need to cut myself down, until I can rebuild myself. I need to completely dismantle myself and start from scratch. I need to carve out the heart that learned your rhythm. But even knowing what I need to do, even with you worlds away and back to a better place, I don’t want to lose you completely. (I can’t lose you, because you never mine to lose. You were never mine).

I know that someday my logic will rule out over my emotion. I know that someday this fresh new scar will bloom into a new person, that this pain is just the healing itch.

I gave you all of me. And I want to thank you for taking me. I have no regrets.

I hope you’re really happy. Because I’m going to be.

-E

broken frames

Dear Heart,

I don’t want to wake up some distant morning from now, filled with regret and resentment. I don’t know if happiness is part of the equation, our equation, my equation. I don’t think there is room for both of us in this relationship. I won’t lay down my dreams for you, I can’t sacrifice my potential to help you fulfill yours. I would support you, uphold you; I would do everything I could to stand by you, everything but walking away from my own chances.

I’ll likely never be satisfied. I demand a lot from the world, from the people around me, and especially from myself. I set impossible standards, and I hold everyone accountable. One of the many reasons I don’t have many friends, I’m sure.

I know exactly now what I’d have to give up to make this relationship work, and I can’t make those sacrifices. The things I have to leave behind to achieve what I want are different from the things you to have to walk away from, and so we are walking in opposite directions. I have to do what is right for me, even if that means letting you go.

And maybe that’s the point: I prioritize my life above anything else. I value my dreams more than my relationships, I value my purpose more than the idea of stable and idealistic future. I have to do what is necessary for me, even if is does not fit into your scope of reality.

Please don’t ask me to apologize for that. Please just stop trying to make sense of this fairytale. Understand that we are fiction, believe that we have made the choice of where we stand with each other–it was never partners.

You wanted me infinite, so I chose the only part of me that can be. I chose my freedom.

-E

cruelty and miracles.

I’ll never forget the way
you looked right after sex,
blissed out with heavy lids
and a lazy, happy smile;
the things that meant:
let’s not fight, not right now.

and you would bury your lips
in the curve of my neck,
and fix your hands in the
space of my waist,
and for just a moment we were
stars without a purpose,
burning into each other.

Later, words full of hate
and laced with cheap vodka
would break the air between us,
and my own tongue would just
keep slicing the tension with
biting accusations, and neither of
us would ever say the things we meant.

There are moments, just before the sun
spreads over the horizon, when I
remember the sweet embrace of your
grin, the gentle comfort of your laugh.

There are moments, when the sky is
darker than the breath that passes from
my lungs, when I remember the silent
seething that led up to an alcohol-fueled
year and half long breakup; there were just
too many things to lock up all at once,
and I feel like you never shared the keys.

there are moments, in the quiet,
cigar pressed idlely in hand, eyes fixed on
an unknown future, when I dial your number;
a thousands questions fixed on the tip of my teeth,
poised in the back of my throat. (those moments
end with a well-timed email and memories
that just keep leaving bruises).

there’s this constant, this rhythm in my chest,
this undeniable beat of your name against bone,
carved into muscle and flesh.

It’s not a heart, but it feels like love all the same.