I'd forgotten how I would sit hugging my knees,
the bathroom sink leaking, the darkness
in the pipes,
and how I would listen to each drop
fall, a bell slowly tolling —
shadows from that winter
striping my legs, jailing me in.
the hunger, which felt like sickness,
which canceled hunger. I'd forgotten
the way I'd lie in bed cradling them
because for the first time, I could feel them, jutting.
I'd forgotten how everyone seemed to know
how to eat, how to breathe.
I wrote page after page
in the corner of my room,
my bony wrist puncturing the pages.
I'd forgotten how he forgot me, how I forgot myself.
But I remember how he kissed me one
October morning, and the blood
to my lips, my throat.
I forgave him because
he was only a child, too.
But I don't remember —
I can't remember
how far I fell,
how deep a hole.
My husband and I are high school sweethearts, and this poem was written about the winter that we were broken up (we got back together the next fall). I took the break up hard. Looking back, I see it as a sign of how strongly I felt about him. It's when I started writing poems. We've been together continuously for 23 years now.
Glass: A Journal of Poetry is published monthly by Glass Poetry Press.
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