Beautiful Girl

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You’re there, and there’s a beautiful girl beside you.
She won’t say she loves you, because she doesn’t.
She won’t say she wants you either. Does or doesn’t.
Maybe, maybe not, and she has four years on you,
but you know what you want, don’t you?
You’re young, but she’s young,
and you maybe don’t know what’s happening to you.
The sky is the most beautiful thing, for a while.
It limits.


You’re there, and you’ll both get older.
You watch her, and watch the watchers,
and she’s brilliant like planet rings.
Sister, friend, older, more, less,
something old, new, borrowed.
You’re in a car, and you could reach and touch.
Hands on an ankle, up, up, and you’d solve it,
an American crossword, no hints, cheating.
You could love her, but she’s got four years,
and she can crush you.
Get out, walk, four miles for a year, stand, wait,
hold up the sky as she comes looking.


You’re in a car, with a beautiful girl.
You’re bruised raw like knuckles, their eyes, their eyes,
what did I do wrong?
It’s not like you can help it.
You want a beautiful girl and they don’t want you,
but you want to mark and don’t quite understand.
She’s eighteen, and not pinned down,
and you’re not either,
but that wasn’t quite your choice, was it?
She loves it, and loves it, but not you.


You’re there, and you both grow.
You want to go back a clue,
to the crossword, you don’t like guessing games.
There are planet rings in the limiting sky,
and you push and push but they don’t crumble.
You want to run ahead four years,
and catch her under your skin, because
she’s a beautiful girl, and you’re not in love.

Your name is in a Lit book, and you’ve discovered
writing is for you.
Here’s something four years won’t give you,
but you’ve got an in to the Bodley
and a new name: that girl with twelve classes.
You can write to her,
you can write us and her and you
because who will ever know?
Maybe it happened this way,
maybe it happened that way.
It never happened except on paper.


You can’t decide if your name belongs in
Inferno, Purgatorio, or Paradiso.
You write, and you want,
and the people who read it call it talent,
but you call it I want you please.
Please. I can’t catch up.


You’re in a car with a beautiful girl,
and you’re trying not to say I love you,
and you’re choking on the words and trembling.
Isn’t your heart visible through your chest?
She’s driving, you just learned,
you want to mark and understand what this is now.
They don’t want you, you want her,
she doesn’t love you and can’t want you.


Her ankle is on the dash, and up, and up,
like miles and klicks and leagues away,
like not close enough,
like it has to be close enough.


You’re there, and you’ll watch,
and hope to be caught watching.
And maybe her glances are worried, but
you want to be wanted by someone, and
you want her so badly, beautiful girl.
Someone called you that, but you don’t want him.
Choke the words, hold the air.


Hold the air.
In, out, in? Lungs are burning.
You can wait.
She’s not in love with-


You’re name is in Paradise,
and maybe so are you,
because she didn’t say she wanted you,
but her skin is so warm
and so what if her eyes are closed.
It’s you, it’s you, it’s you.
You’re sixteen.
Her eyes are still closed.


You’re in a car with a beautiful girl,
and she won’t say she loves you,
but she does. She just doesn’t know it,
but you do, yes no maybe.
She’ll say she wants you.
Her eyes are open.


The world tilts next year
and she keeps her eyes open
because you’re seventeen and
you guess that means it’s all right now?
Four years is shorter but still too long,
but you think maybe you can grasp
at her ankle, now.


You’re standing outside a car,
but you really don’t have a place to go,
because it’s holidays and everyone else is gone.
You could say I’m staying with you.
She could say, No.
But I’m older now.
Four years is four years.
You don’t have to wait for me.
Yes, I really do.


You’re there, and there’s a beautiful girl
in the car beside you.
You really don’t.
You’re in a car, and you’re running up the sky
four years, and she won’t tell you she loves you,
but she loves you.
She won’t tell you she wants you,
but she does.
You know just what’s happening,
and the sky is breaking open.
Close enough, yet?





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