I Wasn’t Supposed To Tell Our Story

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That’s what you told me late one night.
These weren’t moments I could write about.
As if my expression could be something you were in charge of.
You made sure I knew that,
a gentle reminder that you always did like control.
Maybe we romanticize the past for a reason,
forget why it became the past in the first place.
I cried so hard that night, Plath asked if I was okay.
Hemingway said I seemed sad.
I tried to laugh it off,
the way I usually do.
Eventually, I woke up.
And I honestly thought, “That’s it. I am completely out of tears.”
I just ran out.
I Googled, “Do our eyes ever just get too tired?”
And found the results to be inconclusive.

I’m not sure that we’d still be together had we been closer.
It’s an unfair game I play lately,
One that has acquaintances texting me,
“I read what you wrote…”
One that has strangers assuming they understand the complex nature
of my relationships,
my histories.
It’s funny that everyone is an expert in me.
They all got degrees,
it would seem.
They all know who I am.
They all claim they know what I need.

For so long, I kept my mouth shut tight.
For so long, I bit my tongue and never once uttered the words.
That you weren’t always fair to me.
That you weren’t always fair to girls you dated,
calling me,
telling me you still loved me.

I hope this new one is different.
I hope this new one is the one.
I hope this is worth it.

I really do.

Because I don’t want to write about you anymore.
I want to write about dogs or oceans or sharks.
Anything.
I don’t want to think about our last conversation,
the way you paused before saying goodnight,
mentioned us fucking in the shower.
I don’t want you calling the way you do every few months.
Every few years.
I don’t want to think it could still be something
when it’s most absolutely
nothing.

Just let us be nothing, forever.

Or let us finally be everything. TC mark

Ari Eastman

✨ real(ly not) chill. poet. writer. mental health activist. mama shark. ✨

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