February 7, 2011
By , Lombard, IL
"What shall we do, all of us? All of us passionate girls who fear crushing the boys we love with our mouths like caverns of teeth, our mushrooming brains, our watermelon hearts?"

Francesca Lia Block

I want to be quiet and little. I want to be a mouse and a tuft of dust under the kitchen table; rarely used. I want to be the empty refrigerator, humming under my breath to myself. I am antsy, itching my fake-tan skin to find what’s underneath. The secret is not that I don’t love my boyfriend. It’s that I’m a little obsessed with his little brother. I want to take both my hands and shove the secret back down my throat. I can’t write about it because if it’s on paper that means it’s real and I can’t ignore it anymore.

Why. I’ll make a list: His taste in music, how 90% of the time I see him he’s baked, he has the cutest smile in the world, he has huge dark blue eyes that look sad, his essence. I like that he’s popular in his grade, and hangs out with a bunch of pricks. I like how he does whatever he wants. I like that he’s the youngest in his grade (August birthday) because so am I. I like his cute curly hair. I like that he’s trying to be older than he is. I like when he looks at his lap and smiles. His has an electric touch. My fingers brushing his when I pass him my lighter make me feel more than anything my boyfriend and I do. I see him passed out on the couch and it breaks my heart, because he’s too beautiful. I look away because it’s not for my eyes.

He seems kind of damaged because he hates his dad who hit him and that makes him even more beautiful I guess. One time I saw him cry and I wanted to hug him but I didn’t want to make him feel weird and it was the worst feeling in the world. (The second worst feeling is having a boyfriend who you don’t love back). I sat on the bed with my boyfriend who said all the wrong things; “it’s not that bad, at least you don’t have to see him when you’re older.” And the little brother sat on the chair with his hands on his knees and crying and his face was red and I sat there, silent, like a statue of a pretty-but-stupid girl.

Two years apart between all of us like two fingers between each jar of tea. 15, 17, 19. Two is a good number, even, perfect. But three is wrong. Three is the number of lying-by-omission. Two is the number of times I can eat per day, not three. Two is the number of things I consume for breakfast: cigarette, coffee. Two is the number of siblings I have. Two keeps me safe. Three is my dirty secret. I can’t feel my love, embrace it. I have to hide it. Hold it down, and suppressed happiness is much worse than restrained anguish.

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