I stood with my back to the mouth of the open field, my reflection pressed hard against the river’s teeth, my sharp face looking back at me; I am clothed in a skin I never asked to be kept in. Caged like a nightingale, the song that once sang inside of me. Air standing thick around me, crawling on its tippy toes, trying not to wake the beast inside of me. The tremble of my hands shook the ground like an earthquake. I looked around inside myself searching, searching, searching for whatever it is you needed more of, for whatever it is you could not find right here with me. Clenched jawline painted against the winds breath, chattering teeth, my heart beat’s wince, wince when I heard your laugh echo across the snowbanks, wince when I felt your voice take form in the back of my throat as a mountain, wince, as the trees stood still, wince, as I could hear them breathing.
Leaving for you must have been easy. The fire you lit growing hungry, somehow I am burning and becoming lighter at the same time. Leaving for you must have been easy. You walked away from here without even making a dent in this silence. Leaving has become a ritual. Being left has become an expectation.
Being loved isn’t always a good thing. You left without a second thought, but you loved me. You scratched a hole in my chest big enough to build a house in, but you loved me. You left me, but you loved me...
I forgive you, for what it’s worth.
I forgive your silent tongue, your snakeskin hands keeping their distance, I forgive your fractured voice, and the way it wavered like an ocean when I begged you to stay. I forgive the stars you said you’d catch for me, I forgive the sky’s selfish hands. I forgive your wandering eyes, your run away feet, the way you were always searching for something more, something better. I forgive myself for not being something better.
For what it’s worth, I forgive you. I forgive you for not knowing how to love me the way I wanted to be loved. I forgive you for not being able to forgive her. I forgive you, I forgive you; I I forgive me.