Breathing Lessons

January 9, 2011
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When I breathe out,
A thousand tiny unsaid
Whispers and secrets spill
Over and across the length
Of a year spent alone,
In which nights I soaked myself
In clear water, and wished only
To forget you, as I am certain
You have forgotten me.

When I breathe out,
Papers stir on my piano
And the hairs on my left arm
Move and I am tired.
The windows are shut tightly
Through autumn, and over
Each new cold and cracking
Day spent alone.
You used to tell me,
“You don’t always have to be
With someone.”

There is a lake by my house
Where one day I go to
Wait for him with my feet
In clear water and rocks.
You cried to me by this lake
Once or twice after school
And told me you were scared
To leave her.

He says when he comes down
Sometimes, he has this revelation
That we are all alone.
But when I breathe out,
Somewhere across three towns
He stirs in his sleep.
And though I sit alone,
My presence unfolds like
A thousand autumn days spent
Waking up next to you.

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