One day your branches began to intertwine with mine,
We grew and grew until we were one large mass of tangled wood. You didn’t need to look up to see us, you could tell by the way the sunlight trickled through the branches and fell on the ground.
I suppose, it’s not a surprise then that it hurt when one by one each of our limbs were sawn off. It was a destructive process, some tougher to saw through than others.
We were left as stumps, treasured memories now lying in the dust.
But after a while, once the sap had dried up and spring came, we began to grow again. One small arm at a time. But unlike before, the wind now blew through the gaps which had once been locked together in love.
I wake up to the bitter taste of nausea.
I gorged on you again.
I want to throw up every breath you left in my mouth
until there is nothing but my own guilt lacing my teeth.
Maybe then I won’t so readily choose to tear open these wounds which had finally stopped seeping.
The thought of you awakens the darkest in me.
The reality of you brands me like cattle.
No matter how many times I change these fucking bedsheets, it’s still your shape I see in the crumpled linen.
So I rip and tear until I’m surrounded by shreds of us,
And then I light them and watch as the burning mound simmers,
praying for strength to rise from the ashes.
The moon shone as I slipped from the surface,
Far from where a head should be.
A bubble rose as the bobbing of chatter ceased.
I lay down in the dark, crushed under the weight of the prison I
so gently carved for myself.
It cradled me to death.
It will do the same to you.
But if we could succumb to the sinking, dig into the sludge,
Squeeze it though our fingers until the truth oozes out,
Maybe we would have a chance at this whole stupid thing.
Rather, we climb and climb until the sun blinds us and we blind each other.
So, I propose we all try to sink, for swimming never did us any good.
To stay still long enough for the quietness to seep in.
Each bubble will cause ruptures to begin with,
But eventually you won’t be able to tell blood from water.
And as we lie there the the delight of weightlessness and filth,
we may eventually begin to hear each other.
How many handfuls of mush today? On a good day it’s 13, on a bad day it’s more like 79. Shall we build you out of cardboard? Shall we build you out of tin cans? Maybe tin cans would be more sustainable. Last time the cardboard got wet.
You are no less than 130 perfectly aligned tin cans. We’re happy, we’re feeling good. You clank a little as we walk down the street but people don’t stare, much.
It’s Monday and I come and see you. Anxiety grips me as I wonder how your structure is holding up. I walk through the door to see a sea of cans strewn across the floor. 79 handfuls of mush today. My heart sinks. I gather you up, carefully placing one can on top of the other. It’s ok! I say as I cradle you, knowing that’s it is definitely anything other than ok.
But we agree, as long as we’ve got each other we’ll be ok. Right?
And as we lie there lying… to each other and to ourselves I think… maybe next time… I’ll build you out of oak.