© 2016 by Kate Bartel. Created with Wix.com

Your Wrists Are A War I Am Afraid of Losing

 

we sat cross-legged campfire style, 

hands intertwined like the roots of mango trees,

our backs to the breathing wall of your bedroom

 

that night―

warm and heavy and full, 

pregnant with our laughter it rose with the sun and gave birth to a new day where

the smell of mom’s lemongrass curry spilled over treetops,

dripped onto sidewalks

 

every Friday night you stole me away

drove me to Sonic where

we had the pretty blonde carhop

 

but with summer’s end

there was a bend in the road

and we dropped

but we didn’t stop cause

we dropped like bombs exploding on playgrounds

dropped like a long distance call,

both sides wrung dry, 

but still heaving,

still screaming,

all fibers of my being ripped to shreds and left on the floor

cut with the blade you’ve since turned to.

 

your wrists are a war I am afraid of losing

 

we dropped like secondhand bookstores during the recession,

no progression,

we dropped like glaciers falling into the sea

your wrists

soaking the sheets

 

we dropped like a prayer unheard

our hands held high in pain,

the higher I held the harder it rained

your scars were nothing but prizes in a game,

my screams nothing but voices to a refrain

yet we didn’t let go because this was all we’d ever known

 

we dropped like us,

and I dropped you into the ground,

our summer in my arms

they keep telling me To Write Love on My Arms

but all i can see are 

your frail wrists,

a war 

I’ve lost.