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i should sleep
my body is exhausted

i roll back into bed and i feel my bones release
sink into the mattress while all i hold in floats up into the sky
at least for a little while

but i cannot let go
visions of you playing back in my head
a black and white movie on a vintage projector

i suppose i was just another girl
i am just that girl in between first and current
the least significant of your loves
and for that reason i am forgotten
easily

but i am in a different place
you were the first to draw me out of where i’d been hiding
and the one who knew my darkest secrets before anyone else
it was you who made me cry and the one who made me laugh
and you who showed me that i can let another person into my life
and be content
at least for a little while

however you had flaws for sure
and when i think back on you
sometimes your flaws overwhelm me
and my past ignorance
sweeps over me like a sandstorm
and i wonder how i could ever be so blind
so stupid
so powerless
the absolute antithesis of who i am today

maybe god was showing me
a path i could have taken with you
but i did not want it
not like i suppose she does
and so he left us out in the sun
to curdle and dry out and expire

so i threw the carton that held us out
let the garbage man take it away that tuesday morning
and didn’t look back
i leapt into that smoke cloud and inhaled
i dove into that bottle and floated
and i thrust myself into him and let him have all of me

and he threw me away before i had expired
used me as much as he wanted
and before i was done
tossed me out
like garbage

and now i look for that trash truck
i seek out the body that once cradled me
the optimism and security that stitched my world together
the love that once gone
shattered me
and left me broken on the sidewalk
without tape or glue or any remedies

i cannot fix myself
because although our relationship had an expiration date
my love didn’t



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