but you don’t want it. What a waste,
my dear, I say it to the still-beating heart. Hungry, am I not?
But hunger and appetite don’t always go hand in hand. Something down the bottom of my ribs knows what it wants, but I don’t. So I take everything it wants or nothing at all, and that’s all there is to it.
There, I’ve explained myself. Poorly, maybe. But I’ve explained myself
to myself. Not to you. Your back disappears into the night. Don’t you know me? You have a direction, a mantle of light and I’m in your orbit, transparent and illuminated. I’m here, I’m keeping the light from passing through. Don’t you see me?
Tell me something,
and I’ll tell you about the days when the curtains are pulled shut, the room baked in a hot shade of blue. About the fall, and the frantic moments that follow before time sinks onto the floor, shaking hands pouring cold water into a cracked glass, emptied out before any could seep out,
or maybe I won’t.
You don’t want any of it.
I cross it out, feeding the thought to death. I swallow my heart whole.
Let me drive you home, and let it mean nothing.
Coins dot the landscape after sundown, coins dot my tongue.
Let me drive you home for once.
I rinse the taste of copper with cold water. There it goes, hunger and thirst unquenched. What could go wrong? Something grabs the bars of my ribs, asking to be let out, and I figure I want something sweet, just for now, don’t you, too, want something sweet?
I’ll give you the sweet things, then, and nothing less. I’ll give you the old roses on my windowsill and glistening candies and pretty little porcelains and say they remind me of you and eventually they’ll be crossed out too, but the rosebuds blossom every solstice and we, too, will be recreated endlessly until the matter holding us up falls apart.
I’ll hold you up if you fall apart, I say to the star.
I haven’t been here since the dawn of time, but I have my hands and a heart I’m trying to keep down. I don’t know what your heart wants,
but tell me and I’ll give it that, tell me what it wants and I’ll stay forever.
Am I feeding you to death?