Learning To Look Up When It Rains 

You’re twenty-five, counting down the days till you’re allowed to feel again, measuring time in terms like, 

“He broke me, but I am rebuilding” 

Learning to get dressed every morning and not wonder whose bed he’s in, or if she’s getting dressed in front of him, if each piece of clothing comes off just as quickly as it went on, because you remember the way skin feels on skin, the way his fingers wrote ballads with the way they danced down your body.

You’re twenty-five, teaching yourself to turn down the radio when a song comes on that makes you remember the ways he left, the ways he wouldn’t stay gone till he had scooped out every last bit of you, had left only the shadow of you sitting in that favorite chair of his in the corner of the living room.

You’re twenty-five, learning to avoid dark corners and the way a piece of furniture can make you feel scared, because on your worst days he’s he sitting in it, and all you want to do is curl up next to his ghost, but there’s never enough room.

 So you’re getting older, and you’re learning to stop making room for the people who don’t move over for you on crowded sidewalks, who don’t blow on hot coffee before handing it to you as you rush out the door in the morning, people who don’t remember the ways you roll over in your sleep, or that “two sugars” really means three.

You’re getting older, learning to appreciate the way raindrops feel, even when you’re afraid of mascara running down your face, learning to get up in the morning without screaming into the pillow, learning to set the table for one and be okay with an empty place setting

learning that 

learning to love again is the same thing as 

learning to start again. 


I Before Us. 

Sidestepping shadows as I stumbled home from the last hours friendly fuck,

I thought I had it all under control,

this insatiable desire to take everything that someone was willing to give, and then decide it  wasn’t enough.

Walking home in clothes that belong to someone else because I’m always looking for an excuse to go back to people who aren’t right for me,

bumming smokes in dirty, dingy bars, turning my lungs black for the kinds of men that don’t want to call me back.

I used to find a rhythm in the ways a Friday night was predictable

find, fuck, flee,

leave before I could be left

And call my mother every Sunday and tell her everything was just fine

and it was, before you.

Because  all it took was one moments stare from a strangers baby blue eyes and I was willing to give up three months of my time

before reality catches up and you’re too cold

I’m too needy,

and I’m crying in locked bathrooms wondering how I let it get this bad.

So I’m sidestepping shadows again,

only this time it’s because I’m scared of disappearing into the darkness again,

into memories of the way your fingertips wrote apologies on my skin for all the ways you would hurt me,

The ways you would promise to stay but always left again and again.

I’m sidestepping shadows in an attempt to take myself back to well-lit areas, away from men who leave behind bad habits and old t-shirts,

I’m almost me, I’m almost free.